Lyon Valley Northern

This site is designed to promote the hobby of ferroequinology. It also provides an opportunity to show the development of the "Lyon Valley Northern": an HO railroad featuring CN and BNSF action in the West. Please feel free to contact me if you have questions or comments at

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Location: Ottawa, Ontario, Canada


Tuesday, December 27, 2011


To change the pace of the standard LVN operations plan, I introduced the Friday Night Group East Enders to my Switcherama.  This operating concept involves giving each aperator a locomotive and caboose.  They are then given a switching job consisting of a pick up and drop off from either an industry to yard or yard to industry or yard to yard or industry to industry.  This layout has over 15 industries and three yards so there is lots of potential action.  To control the flow, I dispatched by handing out one of 32 strips of paper, each describing one move to each operator.  This controlled the traffic density in any given area and ensured each operator was not doing the same type of job over the session.  So in a two hour period each operator had about 6 to 8 orders.  With thirty-two orders and six trains there were 192 possible combinations. Obviously not all got done.  After the session we retired for Christmas goodies, cheese curds and beer.  Ron, Mike, Mark, Jim, Dave and Joel had a great evening.  Thanks guys...It was fun. Give it a try on your model railroad.  It is a blast.


Blogger Eric said...

Nice video, Chris. While watching, not in real-time and 150 miles away, I found myself emitting the odd 'yikes'. I know your operators had things under control, and it's different than watching LVN runbys. Those cars and engines move in close proximity to each other during the switching moves, and I trust the new operating mode was a success as it appeared to be.

I was on the edge of my sofa!
Happy new year!

1:47 PM  
Blogger Chris Lyon said...

Happy New Year Eric. The switcherama does make for lots of close action. The guys are really good about looking ahead to make sure the way is clear. They also seem to communicate their intentions quite well. It is a great way to get folks in touch with the railroad, its industries and yard tracks. Of course during switcherama there needs to be a bit of patience with so many jobs on the go.

6:21 AM  

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