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California Southern Model Railroad Club

12140 E Firestone Blvd, Norwalk, CA 90650 (562)863-3156

Club History
Club History
Layout Plan
Layout Plan
Layout Plan
Layout Progress
Open House Dates
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Now, onto the actual train club. The CSMRRC was formed in 1984 with the merger of the North Orange County Modular Railroaders and the Cerritos Valley Model Railroad Club. The purpose was to build and operate a large permanent HO scale railroad for the enjoyment of its members. Construction on the club's first layout began shortly after acquiring suitable quarters in the city of Norwalk.

The HO scale layout presently under construction is our second one. Our first layout built and operated from 1985 to 1997 was a single track mainline with passing sidings. There was a yard at each end of the run, with a connecting track to form a continuous loop. There were numerous problems with the design, mainly focusing on accessibility. Some areas were in excess of 4 feet from the nearest aisle, making it difficult, if not impossible to do routine maintenance.

Here is the interior of the club in early1985 with the beginning the first layout.

A view from the loft in 1997 at the beginning of Layout 1's tear down.

Steel work for the lower reverse loop in 1997.

By April 1986, most of the track and roadbed for the first layout was in place.

Whittier Narrows earthquake damage from 1987. All the containers on the ship and flat cars shifted to the left side

After 10 years of operation things were beginning to wear out. It was decided by the club membership in early 1996 that the old layout should be replaced with new one. A series of meetings and surveys resulted in what the membership wanted in a layout. Several plans were submitted and in early 1997 one was selected.
Construction on our new layout began shortly after our Open House in July of 1997. The new layout was to include an innovative "mushroom" design with two levels, stacked one on top of the other, but with the aisle ways reversed.   This design maximized the utilization of the space available making a longer linear run.   For a better idea of how this works, please see our Layout Plan.

Here is the beginning of Jack Malin Yard
before our November 1997 Open House.

As 1997 wrapped up, the old layout had been reduced to rubble and the steel framework and foundation left over from the first layout was rearanged and rebuilt to suit the second and current layout. By 2000 the mainline and 50 percent of the industrial trackage on the lower level was in place and operational. The first scenery was applied to Winchester Curve that year. New members over the next few years continued working on the layout with the addition of scenery and industrial trackage from 9th Street and Hadley to Esperanza, roughly 30 percent of the layouts viewable area.

In 2005, it became evident that the electrical control system was in need of upgrade or replacement so the club formed an exploratory group to learn about Digital Command Control (DCC) and it's feasibility for the layout. At the March 2006 meeting it was decided that the club should consider a switch from it's conventional DC system to a new Digitrax DCC setup. One year later at the March 2007 business meeting, the membership voted to begin the switch over from DC to DCC immediately following the May '07 Open House.

More construction from early 2000.

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