Category: City/Town

BayLTC at TCA 2012

Published / by Bill

The Bay Area LEGO Train Club displayed a train layout at the Train Collectors’ Association Cal-Stewart Spring Meet, in Santa Clara, California, on March 2-4, 2012.

This is one of our favorite events to display at, as they have a fairly low stress environment and it is in a very nice facility. We set up our exhibit on Friday afternoon, March 2, and finished setup Saturday morning. On Saturday, however, the show was only open to members of the TCA who were there for the Meet, so the crowd levels were low-stress. Sunday was busier, as it was open to the public from 10am-2pm. In past years, the attendance for the public day at this event has been fairly light, and we haven’t bothered putting up our “sneeze guards” (Plexiglass barriers that keep the little kids from reaching into the layout), but this year we quickly realized they had done a much better job promoting it, and we had to scramble to get the sneeze guards up before too many fingers found their way into places they shouldn’t (or worse yet, took things they shouldn’t … you know how grabby little kids can be around toys). Once we had them up, the crowd lightened up again, but we were still glad we did it.

This event was held at the Santa Clara Convention Center, where we will be holding Bricks by the Bay in two weeks. While we were there, I had a chance to meet with our representative from the Convention Center and tour the facilities we will be using along with some of the convention volunteers who were also participating in the layout. We finalized the BBTB event schedule and locations where all the activities will be held.

This year the layout was a rather unusual shape for us. Usually we make a big ring of tables, and Bruce brings a gate that carries two tracks across it, so we can have two loops of track circling the entire layout. But Bruce wasn’t able to attend so we tried a new design, making a large “C” shape instead, with the two loops of track doubling back at each end, making a total of four tracks around the layout. It worked quite well, but it presented us with a new esthetic challenge, as there was now a stretch with four parallel tracks and no structures. When I saw that Friday night, I decided we needed a signal gantry, so that night I whipped one up and I am quite happy how it came out.

Take a look at the pictures from the show. Click the image below, or view all the photos as a slideshow.

BayLTC at TCA 2012

Red House

Published / by Bill

This is one of those LEGO creations of mine that’s been around for years but never blogged about before.

A simple red house that I built a few years ago, which has been in may BayLUG/BayLTC exhibits but was never featured on its own until now.

Click the image for the gallery or view a slideshow.

Red House

Double Trailer Truck

Published / by Bill

A double semi-trailer truck made out of LEGO, featuring tractor, two trailers, and a dolly to connect the trailers together.

I built this a year or two ago and it’s been at a bunch of BayLUG/BayLTC events but has never been photographed and blogged before.

Click the photo to view the gallery on Flickr or view as a slideshow.

Double Trailer Truck

Mail Trucks

Published / by Bill

United States Postal Service trucks in LEGO. Designed by me in 2003, and featured on many BayLUG and BayLTC layouts since then.

Mail Trucks

I posted instructions to build this in 2007 on Brickshelf, but never posted any photos until now (except of course for the occasional candid shot in a club layout).

Click the photo to view the set on Flickr or view as a slideshow.

Fifth Wheel RV

Published / by Bill

I built this many years ago (2003 or so?) but never posted it online before. It’s been on many BayLUG and BayLTC displays, though. I’m still fairly happy with it, though it could surely be improved in a number of ways.

The trailer attaches via a Technic axle to a bracket in the truck bed, and is a “toy hauler” – it contains an ATV (All Terrain Vehicle) for off road fun. It has two slide-outs, one in the bedroom in the front and another with a dinette in the center.

Click the picture to go to the gallery on Flickr, or view them as a slideshow.

Fifth Wheel RV

Admin note: Over the span of the next few weeks I plan to post a bunch of older models online. After Maker Faire I brought all the boxes of models that have never been posted into the house, and am slowly working through them doing photo shoots and blog entries, and in some cases to make LDraw files for building instructions. So while the quality of construction might not be as good as stuff I would build today, they’re still models I like enough to show at train shows and events like Maker Faire. I hope you enjoy them.