About The Orange County O Scalers
The “Orange County O Scalers” is the modular two-rail O Scale Model RR Division of the Citrus Empire Model Railroad Engineers (a 501(c)(3) nonprofit corporation) that participates in four to six shows each year, including the O Scale West Train Show held each year in Santa Clara. At one time or another we have operated at every major model railroad event regularly held in Southern California. Our modules operate exclusively with DCC (NCE boosters), including the option of wireless control, and the system is maintained to state-of-the art through regular improvements and updates. An important current project is the construction of new modules to high standards. Also, we are seeking a location where we can set up our modules and operate, preferably for the public, between shows. Donations to our parent nonprofit -- it should be mentioned -- are tax deductable.
Although thoroughly up-to-date with its emphasis on use of modern technology for operations, we have a long and interesting history, and it is appropriate here to pay tribute to its founders.
We originated as a club formed during 1976-77 as the brain child of Harry Whitmill. Harry, by himself, prepared and published the original specifications for his club. He named it the “So Cal O Scale Light Railers”. “Light Railers” because he elected to use code .100 size rail, a size commonly used in HO scale, although accurate for branch and some secondary main lines. (Our newer modules, though, employ heavier rail, code .125 rail size.) Harry was a highly skilled modeler having honed his model railroading skills throughout his life starting in his childhood. Harry scratch built equipment including locomotives and rolling stock in N Scale, TT Scale, and O Scale. Scratch Building and Kit Bashing became the trade mark of his hobby of model railroading
After completing the module construction specifications, Harry set about building a set of four, four-foot, modules and began recruiting other participants. In 1974, Harry had been one of the original founding members of the Orange County “N”gineers, a N Scale modular model railroad club. Harry knew that two other founding members of this club had earlier in their lives been two-rail O scale model railroaders. Harry was successful in his recruiting efforts. He persuaded Bill Darling and Tommy Thomas to join with him and build their own straight and corner modules. However, three corners, doesn’t make a layout; a fourth member was needed. Bill and Harry knew of other two-rail O scalers in Orange County and persuaded one of them, Eric Kaminsky, to join. The fledging O Scale modular railroad idea thus became a reality!
It is pleasant to note that although our founder, Harry Whitmill is no longer with us (he passed away in early 1991), his original four modules outlive him. Now under the stewardship of member Terry Thomas, they are still used at most every show.