Volume 61 - Harold Werthwein's Erie Railroad Wyoming Division
Harold Werthwein's Erie Railroad Wyoming Division is one of the largest HO layouts in the country at 85x30 feet. Now he has added a new coal route above the original layout that we documented in Great Model Railroads, Vol. 18. It's the Wyoming Division with three coal branches. This show follow that line from Port Jervis, New York to Lackawanna, where it interchanges with the Erie's Delaware Division.
Even though the layout is large, Harold felt that he needed to add more switching work for his 14 to 18 operators. This group meets monthly and operates about 25 trains on an 8 hour schedule using a fast clock. He follows prototype practices as much as possible using official railroad documents.
A layout this large requires quite a bit of maintenance. Every week Harold and friends work on the railroad to make adjustments and repair the defects that can prevent successful train operation. It's hard to believe that this is Harold's first layout. Prior to this project he had been an armchair modeler, but after his retirement 28 years ago he began modeling in a big way. Now at 87 Harold shows few signs of slowing down. In fact the hobby helps him keep his body and mind active, and is a main source of social activity.
Harold will show you his coal mines, how to use prototype paperwork, block trains for operation and operate less than carload freights. The Wyoming Division is a Great Model Railroad because Harold has captured the feel of the prototype by using official railroad paperwork and by getting help from former railway executives.