2017-04.4: Crew Call - Rolling Back the Years, Pt. 2

27 Apr 2017

Average: 4.9 (35 votes)
26:37 - Apr 2017 Act IV - Rolling Back the Years, Pt. 2 (2017)

As a ten-year old growing up in a railway town, Bob Fallowfield could often be found down by the tracks.  When it came time to build a railroad in his own basement, there was no question in his mind that it would recreate the places, trains and operations he remembers from growing up as a kid in Woodstock, Ontario.  In this segment we’ll see models of some of the trains that passed through town, and sample some operations on the layout.

Part 2 of 2.

If you missed part 1, you can watch it here.

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I don't even have the words to describe what Mr. Fallowfield has done. I share a simillar feeling for my home town. It was once bustling with activity and commerce and is now a shell of it's former self.

Bob's design is fantastic. Maybe it's just that it is the first layout that I've ever seen that embodies exactly how I want to model, but I think this layout should serve as an example of what most people in the hobby should strive for. I can't stand the idea of being 20 years into a layout and not finished yet. Bob's layout is just the right size for a home layout IMHO. Finally, the scenery..... Truly some of the best I've ever seen.

I am motivated and inspired by his accomplishments, and of course the fantastic TM video that shares it with everyone. This is why I subscribe. Thank you. The only thing I think you left out was a track plan overview, which I would love to see.

espeelover's picture

Love it! What a great concept and operating philosophy, one we can all strive to replicate. Seeing this video puts me in mind of my days growing up along the SP, originally along Alameda Street (LA), then later, while in and after high school, along the Santa Ana (CA) branchline. That branch had cement, grain, lumber, vegtable oil, and all sorts of other traffic through town and would make for a great layout operation as well. Bravo!

I loved watching this video of Mr. Fallowfields layout.The scenery is spectacular, the weathering is spot on and the trains run great.

tpmarshall's picture

The only thing I think you left out was a track plan overview, which I would love to see.

Hi Jonathan:

Glad you enjoyed this two-part look at Bob's layout. It was great fun visiting Woodstock in both 1:1 and 1:87 scale to create these segments.

As mentioned in the second segment, Bob doesn't have a track plan - so we were unable to provide an overview. The "plan" was sketched on a napkin many years ago, and eventually recycled. Most of the planning happened full-size in the layout room.


- Trevor

philw2015's picture

WOW!!! that's what I say. Bob's layout is spot on to the 80's. Thanks for the share of this layout, it has me motivated again. Crew Call is a keeper. There are enough layout out there for TMTV to keep this series going forever. This why I choose TMTV over all other Modelrail videos out there.


thanks again

Phillip Wyman - MC²

I was very impressed with Bob's layout and overview of the Woodstock area. This kind of hits home for me. I have many relatives who live in Ontario, including places like Oshawa, London, Windsor and Toronto. Places I've visited many times throughout my life. I'm close to Bob in age (48-years-old). I've also always been inspired by the various roadnames running around my area of northern Detroit and throughout SE Ontario. I've modeled Grand Trunk myself in HO scale, but often I've seen Canadian National, CP Rail, Conrail, Norfolk and Western, B & O, and others around the area to draw influence from. There is so much to model around Detroit and Windsor with the automotive industry. Bob's layout really inspires me to want to do something similar....picking a local town and concentrating on a few industries.

Thanks so much for this segment. I hope to see more from Bob and his impressive home layout in the future.

Steve Rigelhof

Superb job of modeling and operations!  Congratulations Bob, you are an inspiration!

Chris_1's picture

I really have been enjoying these segments on TMTV and Bob Fallowfield has done an excellent job of capturing the look and feel of railroading in the 80s. I'm especially impressed with the scenery and colors which do such a great job of tying everything together so effectively.

Looking forward to more from Mr. Fallowfield and I'm really enjoying Crew Call!

Chris Adams


Modeling the New Haven Railroad's Connecticut Valley lines, c. October, 1948

As one of the many ""privelaged" folks to be able to visit and operate the layout, the videos and all of the posted pictures DO do justice to the layout. It is an absolutely beautiful layout. The scenery, bullet proof operations, details, flow of tracks, weathering, sounds, and on and on.....is truly phenominal. Congratulations Bob, and TMTV  for a great production. 


Tbgarland's picture

I completely agree with others who think Bob has an outstanding layout. I also think this series is superb and I hope TMTV continues to do more in this same fashion. Including the background and reasoning behind his concept makes for great storytelling and brings the viewers in. Since we have gained so much knowledge we now have an investment into the layout and can appreciate it that much more. 

I too like mentioned before would love to see a track plan but I think a better place would be on the pages of MRH in an article about the layout. Having a great layout like Bobs represented in both TMTV and MRH would be ideal. I'm sure Bob could arrange for a friend or enlist in a professional to create one.

I am 47 years old and grew up during the same era. During the 80s I remember the L&N and SCL followed later by The Family Lines and the Seaboard System. Then later still Railfanning the newly formed CSX. I can still remember my excitement seeing a Chessie System unit for the first time. Things have definitely changed since then but I wouldn't necessarily say the Railroad Industry today is nothing like it was then. This year marks my 21st year in Train Service as an Engineer for Norfolk Southern. Car counts are probably more now than they were in the 80s. Businesses have changed definitely for sure but the trains at least in my neck of the woods still move the freight. And I would imagine that somewhere today on the CP there is a town bustling with Rail Activity similar to Woodstock, ON in the eighties and more than likely some young teenager is there mesmerized by the action just like Bob and myself was at the same age.

Tim Garland

Great new series!  Bob has done a fantastic job from the scenery to rolling stock.  Definitely a top quality layout.  Everything looks the part.

One thing I would like to see in future epiodes of Crew Call is more behind the scenes of the operation.  There are hundreds of video's out there showing the actual operation but very little of how the owner/ operator prepares the layout before the session starts.  Theres generally a lot of thought process on how it all works.  I have recently set up an ops session and it can be mind blowing even on a small layout.  It would be great to see how others do it.

Once again love the new series and hope to see lots more.

Ryan Dora

Incredible video of an incredible layout. Stunned to hear this is Bob's first "serious" effort, not only is the concept well thought out the execution of the concept is first class. Bravo Trainmasters TV and Bob Fallowfield. 

Great new series! Makes Train Masters TV an even better value, than it already is! 

Hi Trevor,

>>As mentioned in the second segment, Bob doesn't have a track plan - so we were unable to provide an overview.

Given that there was no track plan available, I think it would have been nice to have a segment where you went around the room end to end so we could get a feel for the size and shape.Just something to consider for future installments.

That said, well done! Both parts were excellent.

Joe Parker

Great video presentation.  The modeling quality is obviously great.  However, what I appreciate the most is Bob's explanation of his philosophy ot operation, the inclusion and sharing of model operation with others in the hobby.  I will be starting my second layout build and a number of considerations that I value are what Bob has so well articulated.  Good operation with a true raliroad basis for its exsistance.  I too will be incorporating nearly all of the things that I have experienced from my past work with a railroad.

In the Part 2 video Bob mentioned that if he had it to do over, he would do the staging yard differently.  I am curious what that difference would be?

tpmarshall's picture

I believe that Bob would prefer to have staging out from underneath the visible portion of the layout, since its location belowdecks means it's difficult to work on. It also requires a fairly steep grade in and out of staging which has been a problem (but only rarely: for example, a single diesel switcher hauling brass freight cars may slip on grades).

That said, there isn't really room to put staging in another location, so Bob will live with this - with no regrets - for the time being. At some point, if he moves to another house, he'll learn from this lesson and plan for visible staging.

That's my guess, anyway...


- Trevor

CN6401's picture

Very nice job of building a local railroad from your youth! I like your weathering as well, there's not too many people that venture into the dark art of weathering, (extreme weathering)! 

Now I know who Bob Fallowfield is, he's a fellow Trainmasters Alumni! Thanks for sharing your layout and your thoughts Bob.

Ralph Renzetti



Inspiring attention to detail in the layout, rolling stock and operations. The weathering of all aspects of the layout is something for us all to aim for. After viewing the comments above, there is little I can add.

Wish I could see it but it's a little far from Australia, so I'll wait for some more episodes and run this one through a few more times. Thanks for sharing it and for TMTV for a professional coverage.


I'm really enjoying the new show and Bob's layout is amazing. His attention to detail is really a wonderful thing to see.