Mini Meets are one-day model railway events for members of the CMRS and usually include clinics, displays (Show and Tell), related activities, and sometimes lunch.

Other events, such as the following, are sometimes combined with a particular mini meet:

  • Annual General Meeting of the CMRS - AGM info.
  • CMT's (Calgary Model Trainmen's) Flea Market

(view material from previous mini meets)

CMRS Fall Mini Meet
and Annual General Meeting
will be held
Sunday, October 16, 2016
Glenmore Inn, 2720 Glenmore Trail SE
(corner of Glenmore Trail & Odgen Road, SE)

MINIMEET CLINICS, Glenmore Inn, Oct. 16, 2016

Here is a first look at the six clinics offered at the minimeet. I will announce the timing later. See you on the 16th – Roger Walker.

Show and Tell

Please consider bringing a model or models to the show-and-tell.

Models, displays, etc.are welcome for the Show and Tell. Let's see what you have made, or your work in progress, and bring along a brief description of the work. The items at the show and tell are always a focus for friendly discussion, and there is no judging. The Show and Tell area will be open for setup and viewing durng the morning.

Lighting your Layout with LEDs. Jim Ironside

An introduction to overhead lighting of your layout with LED tape strips. The clinic will cover types and colours of LEDs, achieving time of day effects, power and control, valences, baffles, and diffusers, and sources and costs. Lighting effects will be demonstrated on a sample module.

Rapido Trains HO Scale tips & tricks; troubleshooting solutions. Part Two. Sylvain Duclos

This clinic will including popular tips-and-tricks to improve the reliability of Rapido Trains rolling stock, particularly various passenger cars (Smooth Side Lightweight cars, Stainless Budd (fluted) cars and LRC (coach and club) cars). The clinic will also include some fine-tuning tips and tricks for the Rapido Trains FP9 and FPA4. Time permitting, some information on the LRC locomotives will also be presented.

Follow along as I share my experience and solutions to these issues. As a bonus I will also include the CP Angus Van, with possible issues and solutions and a quick note about its brother, the TLT PSC Caboose.

Using JMRI Ops for ‘Operating’ Your Railroad. Brian Keay

This clinic will provide an overview of the JMRI OperationsPro program. The clinic will touch briefly on reasons for you to ‘operate’ your railroad rather than just running trains without an end goal in mind. I will then walk you through what needs to be done to set up your layout for an op session using the JMRI Ops program along with an overview of how the program works and things I like about the program and its shortcomings. If time permits I will also go into some of the more advanced options. I will bring copies of switch lists (used by yard operators to make up trains and classify incoming cars), manifests (used by thru and way freight train crews), print outs that assists you in determining if the program is working well for your layout and a printout of the presentation slides. The program is adaptable to any size layout from a 4’ x 8’ table to a large pike. I have used JMRI on my Wolverine Lynx Railroad for 1.5 years to control the movement of >1100 cars, 47 main line freights and >20 way freights.

Decals. Roger Walker.

In this clinic I will share with you some of the tips and tricks I have learned over the years. In particular I will show how to make decals snuggle down over complicated shapes (such as the ribs on the sides of freight cars). Decals can be placed on surfaces that are not smooth and glossy (e.g., wood), and I will show how to place these decals, and then how to cut them apart to represent lettering on individual wooden boards. Finally, I will show how to make the decals “disappear” after they have been applied. The clinic will be part slide show, and part demonstration using CMRS’s new video camera.

Railroad Engineering 102 – Bridges. Paul Clegg

This clinic will provide a brief over view of prototype railroad bridges and how they can be realistically incorporated on a layout. In particular it will cover types of bridges, selection of bridges for a particular setting and details often missed by modellers. While all types of bridges will be covered, the emphasis will be on pile and frame wood trestles commonly built by modellers.

Layout design and Operations Bootcamp 102. Doug Lee

A model railroad is a major commitment of time and money. One path for obtaining sustained value for these efforts and outlays is the creation of an operating layout that mimics the business of the prototype. Creating an operating layout can easily complement other hobby activities, such as researching prototype railroads and building detailed dioramas.

To assist modellers in creating their personal vision of such a layout, Doug Lee will be hosting a two-part Layout Design and Operations Bootcamp. Members can attend either or both clinics, each of which is 2-hours long. There is no overlap in the material to be covered in each clinic. The morning clinic will start at 9:45 am and the afternoon clinic will start at about 1:45 pm, immediately following the CMRS Annual General Meeting.

The clinics will use John Armstrong’s layout design approaches, starting with a checklist to frame the modeller’s layout design criteria (scale, era, prototype, available space) and operating priorities (freight, passenger, switching, running). That will be followed by a thorough discussion of a methodology to produce a satisfying plan for an operating layout. The clinics will be of interest to modellers at the layout design stage, those who already have a layout and would like to embellish the operational aspects of it, and people considering switching scales. Techniques that will be discussed to pack realistic operation into less space:

Morning clinic 9:45 – 11:45 am

  • Understand the trade-offs between optimum train viewing height, length of mainline run and ease of layout room access
  • Orient the operating aisles and benchwork to disguise smaller-than-prototype track curve radii
  • Save space by matching turnout frog number and minimum curve radius
  • Make train movements graceful and prototypical using curve easements and superelevation
  • Reduce the footprint of staging yards by stacking them, by using single ended yards that still offer train reversing functionality, and reverted loops
  • Optimize the location and capacity of loads-in/empties-out industrial tracks

Afternoon clinic 1:45 – 3:45 pm

  • Pack more yard into less space using “sweet spot” turnouts such as HO Peco code 75 medium and Roco code 83 15-degree
  • Increase the reliability of train running and switching by banishing S-curves
  • Appreciate the personalities of the scales (visual impact, train running/switching, equipment availability/cost, and owner age/dexterity), and pick the one best for you
  • Have yard switching of N-scale freight cars derailment free, even when equipped with truck-mounted couplers
  • Design a helix to perform three, four or five key functions, thereby justifying the required construction effort

The first 20 participants will be given a hardcopy of the clinic materials. The handouts will contain eight minimum space track plan templates for N, HO and O layouts, including designs that do not require stooping to enter the layout room. The templates can be easily expanded or adapted to fit the modeller’s available space and desired curve radii. After the mini meet, the materials will be posted as a pdf file on the CMRS website.


Here is some information from recent Mini Meet clinics and Show-and-Tell sessions:

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