Virtual Meetup Replays and Files - 2020

December 20, 2020 Meetup Report


This meetup had a Q&A format. 


December 6, 2020 Meetup Report


Lee Nicholas presented more about his railroad, the Utah Colorado Western, showing some aspects that he didn't show during his talk in October. He also talked about active vs. passive staging, as well as showing his home-grown software applications. You can see more about his railroad here:


November 22, 2020 Meetup Report


Rick Watson models the Southern Pacific in the San Joaquin Valley in central California on his SP Exeter Branch railroad. This HO scale railroad was specifically designed for switching. He has been operating the railroad for 11 years and has hosted 248 op sessions to date. Rick will be sharing his experience and lessons learned over the 11 years of operations.

You can see more about his railroad here:

These downloads are available:


November 8, 2020 Meetup Report


Stefan Bartelski showed us how he uses JMRI to operate his railroad. You can view his full presentation here:


October 25, 2020 Meetup Report


00:00 Dave Husman - Hazardous Materials
14:35 Lee Nicholas' Utah Colorado Western
1:04:00 Dave Husman - continued

Note: Dave lost his network connection during his talk and finished his talk after Lee Nicholas' presentation. 


October 11, 2020 Meetup Report


00:00 - Chuck Laggan - Reciprocal Switching
26:25 - Seth Neumann - Operations on the Union Pacific Oakland Sub

These downloads are available:


September 27, 2020 Meetup Report


00:00 - Steven Prevette - Operations on the Burnt Hills and Big Flats Railroad 
24:32 - Stephen Sprinkle - Continuous Operations for the Marietta Industrial RR


September 20, 2020 Meetup Report


This meetup had an open Q & A format. 

00:00 - Opening discussion 
17:10 - OpSIG YouTube channel 
18:35 - OpSIG printed magazine question 
24:45 - Adding a steam excursion/photo run-by to an operating session 
30:10 - Question about, an open source train simulator 
31:19 - Railway Express Agency (REA) car operations 
37:55 - Adding a work train or derailment into an operating session 
41:20 - LCL peddler cars 
48:34 - Writing meet orders for passenger trains under TT&TO 
52:20 - Recruiting/retention efforts within the OpSIG 
58:44 - Setting up remote operations 
1:03:58 - Blocking instructions for yardmasters


August 30, 2020 Meetup Report


00:21 George Sinos - Working the Can Job
30:52 Bill Messecar - Operating my UP Los Angeles Division 3rd District Layout

These downloads are available:

August 16, 2020 Meetup Report


00:00 Dave Husman - Trackage Rights

Dave's presentation is available for download, as well. 


August 2, 2020 Meetup Report


00:00 Gary Evans - Nowhere Line operations scheme
29:50 Bob Rodriguez - Nickel City Lines and Remote Operations

Bob's presentation is available for download

Bob also provided the design files (.gcode) for his train camera bracket and the powerbank so if you have a 3D printer, you can make them yourself:


July 19, 2020 Meetup Report


00:00 Mark Dance - Adding operational aspects to engine servicing. 
23:15 Cal Sexsmith - Discussing his Canadian Pacific Parkland Division railroad

Mark Dance's Hostling Job Aid: Download here


July 7, 2020 Meetup Report


This was a Q&A forum with no formal presentation. 

00:15 - Virtual Operating Sessions, JMRI
25:00 - 2021 NMRA convention
29:00 - What are the typical jobs on an op session?
47:00 - Layout tour question
48:30 - Difference between off spot and constructive placement?
55:50 - Small vs. Large layouts?
59:00 - Using RFID


June 24, 2020 Meetup Report


This was a Q&A forum with no formal presentation. 

01:30 - Shenware Balancing
04:30 - How to get started with JMRI
18:00 - How figure out what type of car a commodity goes into
20:50 - How does a short line operate in the 1990's
25:40 - Keep JMRI from Picking up and setting out same cars
35:15 - How to Use Active Staging
51:00 - Flat file cabinets for storage
54:00 - Operating passenger operations into multiple terminal


June 7, 2020 Meetup Report


00:17 - Feather Mountain Railroad, Dispatching Presentation
28:50 - LA&SL's Third Sub

Scott Sabo - I have been modelling trains for about 45 years; 40 of that in N scale. I have been an OPSIG member since 2011 and a NMRA member since 2016.  The Feather Mountain Railroad is a freelanced railroad.  I have based my operations on Canadian National Railway practices. I began construction in 1995 and just 5 years ago I started scenery. (Life just kept getting in the way)  The layout has a home built ABS signal system based on a 1978 MR article and modified for DCC operation.  I have been using JMRI (Decoder Programming, Panels, Speed Matching, and Operations) for about 12 years.

Scott's presentation is available for download here

Dana Driskel - The LA&SL Third Sub is an N scale layout occupying roughly half of my garage. The year is 1920 and the Moapa, Nevada junction is the focal point. The Los Angeles & Salt Lake Railroad's Third subdivision runs from the recently established town of Las Vegas to the division yard at Caliente. Six passenger trains and two listed freights run daily past the Moapa depot. All other traffic is run as extras and TT&TO is in force. Moapa is the junction to the St. Thomas branch, an active 21 mile, single track run full of agriculture and mining.

Dana's presentation is available for download here. The video he showed is available here:


May 31, 2020 Meetup Report


00:00 - Carl Blum's Misery And Short Life Railroad 
26:50 - Tom Cain - Creating switch lists in JMRI Operations Pro

Carl Blum owns the Misery and Short Life Railroad. Carl discovered toy train collecting in 1994 and operations in 1995. First Place in the K-Line layout design in 1996. Publishing model railroad articles since 1998. Convention Clinics since 2011. You can see more about his layout here:

Carl's presentation is available for download here

Tom Cain (backup presenter) has worked on the board of the Central Indiana Division of the NMRA for at least 15 years.  His layout was built with the help of three good friends and he's been running trains for 10 years and doing operations for at least 7 years.  He will discuss how the JMRI Operations software uses the layout owner's car inventory and information regarding the size of layout sidings and cars needed at those sidings to generate switch lists for layout operation. You can see more about his layout here:

Tom's presentation is available for download here.


May 24, 2020 Meetup Report


Dan Hinel's railroad is the RailXpress, which is a terminal switching railroad with a CTC controlled double track beltline configuration surrounding a metropolitan area of Gotham. You can download Dan's presentation here and you can view more about his railroad here:


May 17, 2020 Meetup Report


00:00:00 - Wyoming Division Model Railroad
00:24:05 - Conrail Onondaga Cut Off
01:19:55 - Wyoming Division Model Railroad additional photos

Bob Ellis is a member of the UP Wyoming Division Historical Society and discussed passenger operations. Download this document for more information about the layout  You can see more about the organization at

Dave Abeles provided this guide to all the software used for remote operations on his railroad. 


May 9, 2020 Meetup Report

Unfortunately, the meeting did not get recorded. However, you can download Burr Stewart's slide deck here:


May 2, 2020 Meetup Report


00:00:00 - Burlington Southern Railroad
00:30:00 - Operating on a layout that wasn't designed for Operations 

John is from Syracuse, Indiana and his railroad is called the Burlington Southern. You can see more about his layout here:

Thomas Stephens presented the operations scheme for the Texas Northern Model Railroad Club. You can visit the club site at

Notes from the session:

  • The telephone system used by John Hanske is a PABX, 8 station unit. Model # is MS108-GSM. MK308., MFG Vintelecom SV308.


April 26, 2020 Meetup Report


00:00:00 - Richard Sieben's Illinois Northern Railroad
00:22:35 - Mark Dance's Columbia & Western

Richard Sieben is from Island Lake, Illinois and he's modeling the Illinois Northern, which also includes the Chicago Junction and Belt Railway of Chicago. You can see more about his layout here:

Mark Dance is from Vancouver, BC, Canada and his railroad is called the Columbia & Western. You can see all his videos here: