6. The Way Things Go

One of the more interesting aspects of the layout is that there are no wires, no throttle, and no control panel. So how does one operate the train? Well, remember the two factory buildings?

The big one on the right hides a battery pack, along with the main power switches.

The smaller building has all of the layout controls incorporated into the roof, disguised as vents, tanks and such. The two rows of small vents are actually pushbuttons that operate the turnouts; the large tank is the throttle, and the vent to its left is the direction control. It sort of freaks some people out a little when they see them in use—which can be part of the fun.

In terms of completion, the Trenton Transportation Company hit roughly the 90% mark; the only thing left to do was interior detailing for a couple of the storefronts. I'd planned to begin a new, much bigger layout when I returned home from my tour of volunteer work, but I was distracted by a very different, very "retro" detour, and now this layout has a new owner.

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