East of the Blue Ridge

Chronicles of an On30 quarry railroad

The Sundance Central

I attended the National Narrow Gauge Convention in Hickory earlier this month.

A highlight for me was the opportunity to see the Sundance Central layout. This large scale display is beyond superlatives, but what I find most incredible about it is that the SC is both highly detailed and portable.

Walking around the perimeter of the layout, I paid particular attention to the small scenes that had been created on the fringes of the rail operation.

They created an atmosphere that very effectively pulls the viewer into the scene.

Lighting and scale figures are used to emphasize and attract attention to particular compositions.

When I saw these little scale people, I would try to interpret what they doing, exactly the same way I would analyze the motivation of real people.

In this way, looking at the Sundance Central was somewhat disorienting, since for brief moments I would forget the difference between model and reality.

For me, the Sundance Central epitomized the attraction of modeling narrow gauge.