|Tommy Holt and the kids after first class. Model railroading is really easy and super fun!|
We've been having lots of fun over the last three weeks on Thursday afternoons hosting Tommy Holt's model railroading class for kids. Tommy has eight very enthusiastic (as you can see!) rail fans who are learning the basics of the hobby. Topics include modular layout construction, basic train operation, model structure construction, creating scenery, backdrop painting and more.
Tommy has been assisted with the class by several notable local model railroaders. Volunteer instructors include Bill Smotrilla, David Petersen, Steve Nelson, Jack Merkel, Mike Barrett, George Hollwedel, and Tom Pearson. All have vast knowledge of all aspects of the hobby and their combined years of experience adds up to at least a century. Tommy's students are getting a solid foundation in model railroading.
In the first class session, the kids built modular layout boxes and mounted dual track straight track sections on the boxes. The module box kits were produced by master cabinet maker David Petersen and fit really nicely. The kids then joined their boxes together using bolts, washers, and wing nuts.
|Kids joining modules|
The second week featured Mike Barrett teaching the kids how to build model railroad track side structures. It was a new expeience for the kids but Mike did a great job, and the students achieved really nice results.
|Kids, parents, and teachers working on structure kits.|
Scenery was the topic for week three. Steve Nelson was up to teach the kids how to apply ground cover including roadways, earth, grass, bushes and shrubbery. Emphasis was placed on varying colors and textures. In addition, Steve did a great primer on scratch building HO scale trees. Next week the kids will learn how to do sky scape scenic backdrops. The kids and teachers are having a great time. The students are learning that creating interesting and realistic model railroads is easy and fun!
Thanks Tommy Holt and all for sharing your vast experience in model railroading with our younger modellers.
|Steve Nelson helps young railroaders.|
|Students operate trains!|
|Celebrating new experiences.|
|Model railroading is fun!|
KIDS LOVE TRAINS!
By: Brad Perry
Photos: Bill Smotrilla