Evening Along The Mainline
Many scenes on the layout represent actual locations and features of the Monon railroad that Mont has visited and documented. He loves doing the research that leads to prototypicaly correct rolling stock and features to model in his layout.
There are many grain elevators that line this railroad that require loads of 40-foot box cars of the Monon and other railroads. Mont's focus has been on modeling many of these 40-foot/6-foot door models that were suitable for grain loading. Mont's layout has excellent examples of photoshop backgrounds that perfectly blend to the layout.
Mont Switzer's Monon Railroad
Mont Switzer is a popular author who has published over 250 articles in many of the model railroad magazines that we love to read. He specializes in modeling 40 miles of the Monon Railroad in Indiana from the Lafayette Shops to Monon, Indiana. His layout also has four hidden staging yards to the south end of the railroad (Linden, Crawfordsville, Bloomington), Indianapolis, Michigan City, and the north end of the railroad (Rensselaer, South Hammond, Chicago). The era of the railroad is 1958 and the layout is designed for operation. The layout is controlled by DCC and 5 people can run the railroad using a 3 to 1 fast clock, with authentic 1950's employee time tables for their paperwork.
The highway seen here is Indiana State Route 43 that parallels the Monon on this 40-mile secton on the Monon Railroad. Mont states that he has traveled this highway many times as he researched the Monon Railroad. Much of the layout shows this perspective of highway and railroad.
Blue Mack B-61 Tank Truck
This Mack Truck is an era authentic model representative of the trucks that were part of Mont's trucking company. He has so many truck models he often rotates these models on and off the layout just in the same manner that freight cars get rotated on and off the layout. Mont's trucking company transports the racing fuel used at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway.
The Boxcar and the Buick
This Monon layout is 18 inches wide in most places. This is an "around the wall" layout with the widest part only 24 inches wide. All turnout controls are pushrod switch controls and crews manually couple and uncouple cars that are equipped with scale size Kadee couplers.
Battle Ground, Indiana
Some of the Indiana towns that are represented on this layout are Monon, Battle Ground, and Reynolds. You will also see the Monon Railroad yard and the Lafayette Shops. We know Mont for his models the Monon Railroad but on this layout you will also see many examples of Indiana based trucking companys such as this Eastern Express truck. Mont makes his living in the trucking industry so you will see many truck and other vehicles on this layout. Mont comments that the layout has been a great place to display a lifetime of research and model building.