2015-03.3: Cheshire Branch Open house

23 Mar 2015

Average: 4.9 (31 votes)
16:22 - March 2015 Act III - Cheshire Branch Open house (2015)

Once you build a layout, you have to show it off.  Jim Dufour greets old friends and new, as he hosts an open house on his HO-scale Boston & Maine Cheshire Branch the day before the Springfield model train show.

Act IV: Cricut tips with Miles Hale ...

Go to Act IV


Hey Jim , its a wonderfull layout . beautiful scenery! great open house.

i want to receive a invitation for your next open house !

thank you


CN6401's picture


Wished I could have been there to see your layout in person. It's a very photogenic layout, I only wished the video was longer. 

You've done a great job of modeling the Cheshire branch of the B&M.

Thanks for sharing it.

Ralph (CN6401)

fantastic layout, and showcasing it via story of prepping for, and then the events of Jim's open house, was a really good way to get "us" (i.e. the viewer) involved.  Just a really good way to tell the story.  I had a tortoise with connector go "wonky" just the way Jim described, so I could really relate to that.  Jim seems like such a personable friendly guy, I wish I didn't live so far away!  I would love to hang out with him and talk model railroad.  Oh - maybe run a few trains, too...

Bill Brillinger's picture

This is what TMTV is so good at, not only presenting a layout, but presenting the People. Wow, fantastic, you capture the emotion of the hobby so well. And thank you Jim for sharing your wonderful model railroad.

coyoteww's picture


Incredible grass ! Not only the length but the color. I really like your attention to detail around the tracks, the dead stuff looks great.


I'm with Bill Brillinger above. A wonderful presentation of a great layout and the feeling/emotion of model railroading. This is what TMTV is best at. 

I’ve been fortunate to have been invited to see Jim’s layout on many occasions.  TMTV has definitely captured Jim’s top notch modeling and attention to the prototypical details on his slice of the B&M Cheshire Branch.

Great Job Jim and looking forward to the upcoming ops session.


tpmarshall's picture

Jim's layout is one of my favorites on the planet. It has all the elements that make for the best layouts, in my opinion:

- It has a clearly defined prototype (something that can also be defined for freelance railroads) that helps to make it unique from other layouts.

- The layout design is achievable: the area chosen is possible to model well in an average-sized layout space, with a simple, uncrowded, and realistic track plan that provides plenty of challenge for operators without becoming overwhelming or stressful.

- Instead of going for "more", Jim is clearly going for "better". It's clear that Jim is challenging himself to do exhibit craftsmanship and excellence in all aspects of this terrific hobby - from research, to scenery and structures, to locomotives and rolling stock, all appropriate for his chosen time and place.

- There are many things for Jim to build for this layout over many years of hobby enjoyment. Yet it's also manageable enough that he will be able to keep on top of maintenance so that the trains run well and the scenery and structures will never look neglected.

It's great to see Jim's work get some public recognition. I'd love to see more layouts like this featured on TrainMasters TV.



There is no chance for me to see this layout in person, but through Trainmasters I get a glimse.


Well done video, loved the documenting of the prep work and thoughts that go into an open house.


Need more like this.





Great layout, great host! Thanks for sharing. Felt like I was at the open house.

Greetings from The Netherlands,


Many thanks for your comments and your compliments, guys. It is very much appreciated!

So much of the credit has to go to Barry Silverthorn. He is an extremely talented vidoegrapher and producer, in my humble opinion. He arrived at my home with the basic idea of documenting an open house, but he importantly allowed the story to go where it would go rather than forcing it to go where he may have wanted. 

Hats off to Trevor Marshall as well for suggesting the idea to Barry in the first place. Thank you, Trevor!

And if you have watched the video then you already know how I feel about George Corey. A true gentleman and a truly gentle man. 

My best regards,

Jim Dufour

this may be the best show on TMTV yet. A great layout, really well presented. 

Hi Jim,

A great video and wonderful layout.  You certainly are a great ambassador for our hobby.  My sister lives in the Keene area and I love visiting all the small towns in the area (including your modeled towns) and take pics of the old stations and railroad remnants when I'm visiting. 

I also has a tortoise short out due to a shifted connector during an ops session which shut down the main peninsula,  I didn't realize it was the connector which caused the main peninsula and main yard to die until much later and after I pulled hundreds of cars off the layout thinking it maybe a wheel short and even started cutting gaps in the rails to try and isolate the problem, all while 20+ people stood around!! ;-(   I've decided that hard wiring is the only way to go with these machines. 

I hope to be in NH in August and if there is any way to get a visit to your railroad, I would live to see it and meet you.

Thanks and best,

Andy Keeney (Nashville Road) 

Dewitt, MI 


Hi Andy,

Thank you for your kind words of encouragement. 

Please get in touch with me if you are visiting the area. Hopefully we can align our planets. My email is jimdu4 at rcn dot com.

I hope to hear from you,


I really enjoyed this visit to Jim's layout. Combined with the story told - the preparation, the problems (always) it was very good story telling. The layout is beautiful, the structure modeling excellent. Thanks for sharing your work.


Auburn, Ca.

Hi Jim,

My plans to visit New Hampshire have change for this Fall.  I probably won't be there till next Fall (2016) now but I will contact you before I visit so I may be able to spend a little time with you and your beautiful layout!!  Best, Andy

Hi Jim,

Thanks for the great video.  You've done a terrific job with this video presentation of all your hard work in buiding your layout.

A little late,