Read the introduction to a great story from Off the Tracks issue 4, then download the magazine to read the rest... and you can watch the video of their creation below!
In Italy there are many model railways, they can be large or small and if we were to put them all together in one room, they would reproduce all the regions of Italy. Model trains are deeply loved by us Italians who build them - just as they are by model railroaders worldwide... they remind people of their childhood... of their past and joy. Of course, it is not always easy, we often have to fight with family and roommates for model space. And of course money is needed. However, these and other factors have not stopped many model railway enthusiasts from Rome to Sicily creating masterpieces. In their efforts you'll see everything from Italian trains to fellow European ones... and even American trains - for those who are daring! In the past many of these model railroads would only have been known to a few through specialist magazines, for example - but now since the advent on the internet, and especially YouTube, many layouts are becoming more and more well-known. Social media allows us to see all types of Italian railways - from their creation right up to the present day; from regional trains to freight trains; from fast expresses to luxury trains ... basically, trains of all sorts. Despite the plethora of great Italian layouts that we can feast our eyes on through the web, there's still a degree of disconnect. Do we really know the men and women behind the layouts? We see them and hear them in their videos but we can't really 'see' them and 'know' them. Could they - and us viewers - really connect? I'm going to tell you of our attempts to create some unity and a shared channel and a way to connect all us YouTubers and Facebookers who have the passion for model railways. It's a story of union, of passion, of fun, but also of fights, because from the meetings between various train-lovers there were quarrels. The idea of creating a YouTube channel with the aim of connecting virtually all these model railroads scattered throughout Italy has remote origins. It was born from the thoughts of some train fans who had the dream of making model railroad film footage par excellence - film that would showcase some of the most beautiful “model-trains’ film” ever made. In Italy, however, as often happens, pessimism is dominant and therefore it was believed that the idea of connecting many Italian model railroads on a single "virtual trip" would fail - there would not be sufficient interested parties, for example. However, a group of train-lovers from every part of Italy, and against all odds, met for the first time in 2013. Their only purpose was that of creating a "train" which would “connect” all the model tracks of Italy. Crucial to this project was YouTube.
It's taken a while but it's finally ready the latest and possibly best issue of Off the Tracks!
There are so many great contributions and the magazine has a focus on great model railroads from around the world, but especially with a N American focus. You can read about Etoboicoke railways from Canada and how modelrailroaderUK (based in the UK) models the Pacific Fruit Express. Then there's a story on the Los Angeles Model Railroad Society and how a group of Italian model railway fans used youtube to bring together their hobby. You can take a train through many of Italy's most beautiful regions. Then there are stories on the Kyoto railroad museum and preserves Australian steam... so, there's plenty to keep all train fans interested. CLICK ON COVER to start reading. You can view the magazine on your mobile device and computer and view images and videos at a click!
Take a quick look through some of the pages in our latest issue and then download and read the issue. It's the creation of train fans from around the world (not a commercial magazine). We love trains and train related subject matter and contributed to producing this great content!
After much waiting it's here. Sit back relax and take a virtual train journey through our interactive pages. Read that Railway Girl's Journey across Vietnam, find out who designed the Pennsylvania Rail Road's iconic GG1 locomotives and the coca-cola bottle! Take a tour of two great railroad museums separated by thousands of miles - Japan's Kyoto museum & Canada's Exporail. Find out about the preserved railway scene in Australia and even read a poem from another Aussie "What if Trains could think?" Now there's a thought to ponder on. Read straight away, it doesn't cost a thing and you can download the interactive version as a PDF to your phone, tablet or computer (and the video links still work). Go on! Click on the issue's cover to start reading
We have pulled together three cover options for the autumn issue of the magazine. Let us know which one you prefer by adding a comment to this post. One comment only please per person. On Thursday the 5th October at midnight British Summer Time we will close the voting. You can also vote on our instagram page, where the three covers are also displayed.
Us model train fans can't get enough of Mr Ken Patterson. Ken has been a model railraoder, photographer, videographer, writer and now vlogger for many, many years. His model skills and knowledge are second to none. So it was great that he's and his train mates have created a weekly vlog. Every Saturday night the guys meet at Ken's house in St Louis to record a 20-30-minute chat-type show about what's going on in their worlds of model railroading. The show usually is live on a Monday. The visitors to What Neat this Week are in their thousands and increasing and the show has some sponsors and a crowd funding scheme has been set-up. Do check-out the show.
Description Episode 3 - A new companion piece to the Model Railroad Hobbyist monthly segment "What's Neat". Introducing a new format for "What's Neat This Week" taking a weekly video podcast discussion. July 22, 2017 Ken Patterson, and Chris Palomarez discuss the next Monthly "What's Neat" show and recall a few interviews that lead to a discussion of the challenges of being a teenage modeler.
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Issue 3 of Off the Tracks will have a feature on mid-19th century electric traction. We've articles on the developments in Italy and the USA, and its GG1 class. Here's a snippet on the Italian
These machines were a product of the technology of the nineteen thirties. These machines were was large, heavy, very powerful and fast. Initially they could reach speeds of 150kp/h. The E.428s were only the third DC locomotives designed in Italy, and as such retained the legacy of the technologies and some of the solutions typical of three-phase locomotives. In all the class was built in four series, and the E428s soon became the most modern symbol of Italian railways. They were emblematic of speed and progress in an era of change from steam locomotives to the speeding electric train.
Words Francesco Bocchicchio and Andrea Sossio.
We set up a gofund me account to help with the on-going costs of keeping Off the Tracks running, if you'd like to make a donation, please do so! Here
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It's taking a little longer that imagined but issue 3 of the instagram sourced, social media train magazine will be with you soon. It's a hobby project for a couple of guys and editor John, so it's a case of having to fit it in around normal work and life commitments. This issue will again stretch to 100 pages plus and there are articles on Australian steam preservation, modelling German railways and even a poem. That Railway Girl also writes on riding the reunification line in - a 1,072-mile journey that at times proved more than a test!
There's even a poem in the issue and a great story about how trains and train travel can bring parents and their children closer together. Jack's Train Guide is just that a journey through the US (west Coast) taking in heritage lines and museums. We're excited and we know what's in the issue. And it's interactive with video links to stories. Check out some of the spreads below and do like us on facebook and instagram. Search Off the Tracks Magazine!
We recently visited the Nene Valley Railway in Peterborough, England. The line provides great entertainment for enthusiasts and people looking to have a great day out.
You can find out more by watching our video and just what 007 was doing on the line!
Off the Tracks