Prototype modelers will be out in force in Texas and Missouri in June and July.
Saturday’s Red River Railway Prototype Modelers Meet in Forest Hill, TX, is one of two events on tap for rail fan purists and modelers this summer. The event − which features clinics, discussions and modeling of prototype railroading − is from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. and is the first of its kind in the Dallas/Fort Worth area.
Red River RPM was originally scheduled for last spring, but covid-19 put on the brakes. Since then, organizer Jacob Damron has canvassed the RPM community, and modelers from around the country are expected to attend at the Forest Hill Civic Center.
“We’ve gotten pretty strong response,” he said. “I’ve got prototype modelers coming out of the woodwork.”
Prototype modelers raise the bar high on their scratch-built reproductions of real freight cars, locomotives, structures and other railroad artifacts. They are a wealth of knowledge about many railroads.
On tap at Red River RPM are three clinics hosted by some of the best modelers in the country. “Manufacturing Technology: How It Impacts Model Railroaders” will be presented by Brien Wood. Jim Ogden, who has been featured for years in the model railroad press, presents “Head End Cars and Mail Trains.” Dave Oppedisano offers perspectives with “The BNSF Lakeside Sub: The Prototype and The Model.”
Ogden presented a similar clinic on mail trains in October 2019 for the Cowcatcher Division/NMRA.
In addition, paid attendees can drop in at a private open house hosted by the Texas Northern Model Railroad Club, which has one of the largest club layouts in the Dallas/Fort Worth area. TNMRC is hosting a special open house from 6:30 p.m. to 10 p.m.
Admission to the event, sponsored by the Texas Railway Modeling & Historical Society, is $20.
The St. Louis Railroad Prototype Modelers Meet is the place where prototype modelers will share their work after the 2019 event was sidelined. Hundreds of prototype modelers are expected to gather at the nation’s largest annual RPM meet July 30-31 at the Gateway Center in Collinsville, IL.
The event features over 28,000 square feet of high-quality models, displays, visiting prototype layouts, hands-on learning centers, and more. Recognized historians and modelers will make presentations, and over 20 railroad historical societies and 120 tables of hand-picked scale model vendors will be on hand.
St. Louis Railroad RPM offers a minimum of 18 clinics over its two-day meets. Each consists of a 50 minute presentation given by nationally known modelers, historians and industry experts. Presentations usually feature detailed explanations of techniques, processes as well as advanced tools and technologies including weathering, prototype railroad information, scenery and structures.
Among the presenters is noted author and modeler Steven Priest.
Attendees are encouraged to bring their models from all eras and scales – finished or in progress – for display and discussion. Registration is on-site.