Red Star Railway's Comments

23 January 2018

Dear Friends --

Everybody has days and dates which are important to them. Today is such a day for me.

On Saturday, 23 January 1993 -- at exactly 1:00 p.m. -- I made the decision to devote the rest of my life to the study and modelling of the railways of the Soviet Union and its successor states. That's exactly twenty-five years ago today.

It was a rather sudden and abrupt change. On the morning of 23 January 1993, I had a large collection of scratchbuilt and kitbashed railways, mostly based upon Southern African prototypes, primarily in HO scale but with a few models in Sn3-1/2 narrow gauge. Within two weeks after that date, I had made arrangements to dispose of the lot. I was starting over with a totally blank slate, and there would be no going back. Looking back, it was rather like walking on performing on a trapeze without a net.

Obviously, this was an intensely personal decision. In this age of Facebook and Twitter, it's almost expected for everyone to share every detail of their personal lives. I'm not going to do that. Some private and personal things deserve to remain private and personal. So don't even think of asking me "Why?" It is what it is.

Looking back, I have no regrets. And I look forward into the future with undiminished enthusiasm, curiosity, and the desire to keep learning about Russia's railways.

Coincidentally, today also marks the fifteenth anniversary of the day I set to work "in earnest and for real" on the patterns for my HO scale 2TE10U model. On Thursday, 23 January 2013, I took my beloved 1991 Toyota Corolla for servicing at Martel's Foreign Car here in Dover(I always bring work with me when I take our car -- now a 2014 KIA Soul -- to the shop). I thought I'd be lucky to sell four or five 2TE10U sets; set number 300 went to my grandson Creede in Fort Worth, Texas, in August.

And in my wildest dreams I never would have predicted that on that January day back in 1993.

Chris White
28 December 2017

Dear Friends --

As per my previous comment, I am working on passenger cars.

Since my last comment, I have cast the underframes for 20 passenger cars. In addition, I have cast the buffer beams for 20 carriages. Knowing that I need to produce five Kalinin-built carriages, I assembled five pairs of buffer beams with Kalinin-style buffers.

Of the above carriages, two will be postal cars. I have known for months that I needed to go back over the masters and molds and windows for the postal cars. So, over the past few days I modified the masters for the postal car windows. I made new molds this afternoon. The molds are curing as I write this, and -- hopefully -- the new molds will be ready to use tomorrow.

I will post further progress reports when appropriate.

Best wishes,

Chris
15 December 2017

Dear Friends --

Here's what I've been up to recently, and what I'm working on now.

The models which most recently left my tiny workshop were two Russian 2TE10U sets, which went to a rather nice guy in Australia, and a Latvian 2TE10U set which went to my grandson Creede in Fort Worth, Texas. A grandfather must do what a grandfather must do, after all!

Another client -- a German guy working in Egypt, which for some reason I find really impressive -- had asked me to build a 2TE10U, but also some HO passenger cars. Around the same time, several other people in several countries asked me to make some passenger cars for them. I read the tea leaves, and decided that the gods were directing me to gear up for a decent-size batch of coaches.

So that's what I'm doing.

I'm happy to report that this afternoon I completed 20 pairs of passenger bogies [trucks]. After all, I can't make coach models without bogies, right?

Now I can proceed with these passenger car models -- which is exactly what I shall do!

And I shall keep you informed.

Best wishes,

Chris White