Scale: HO

Location: Convention Hotel

Accessibility: via stairs and hotel elevator

Layout Description:

Being a modular layout, Free-mo can be set up as a point-to-point, point-to-loop or loop-to-loop operation depending upon the available modules and the room size.  All modules comply with the Free-mo standard to allow for interoperability and interchangeability.  There is currently no set time period for the layout and equipment of various vintages may be operating on the layout at the same time.  Our modules are generally sceniced to represent the North East and do not use backdrops.


We operate as a short line railroad with off-line traffic entering and leaving the railroad via the main classification yard.  Freight cars are distributed throughout the railroad using way freights and delivered to customers either by the way freight or local switching jobs.  Our primary goal is to provide excellent service to our on-line customers.

Passenger trains may be operated during a session which adds a level of complexity as the mainline is single-tracked and passing sidings are limited. 

A simplified switch list system is used to make up trains in the yard and deliver cars to the customer.  All cars move from the yard to a customer or from the customer to the yard as there is no inter-customer routing of cars.  The system does allow for continuous operation as new way freights can be made up in the yard while prior ones are delivering cars or returning to the yard to be broken down.

Operations are conducted without a dispatcher or wayside signals and all train crews are expected to communicate with each other and operate in a manner to prevent accidents or cause undue delays of trains on the main.

Digitrax DCC equipment is used for train control.  We have the ability to use either tethered or wireless throttles, the choice of which is dependent on the venue and may be a combination of both.

We anticipate being able to accommodate up to five guest operators during the modular ops sessions doing yard work, road work or local switching moves.  The simplified switch list system may be a good introduction for those wishing to try operations. There is really no wrong way to operate, however some methods may be more efficient and effective than others.  Try it and find out!

 New England Free-mo