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Modeling the Gilpin Tram Part I
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 Posted: Fri Nov 9th, 2012 12:50 pm
   
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W C Greene
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OK, here's a link for GILPIN GOLD TRAM:

http://www.abebooks.com/servlet/SearchResults?an=ferrell&tn=gilpin+gold+tram

Check it out...

                Woodie



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 Posted: Fri Nov 9th, 2012 06:20 pm
   
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Keith Pashina
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Ray, Woodie, Smokebox, Mike,and Duane:

Nice to hear from all of you. Yes, modeling the Gilpin Tram is a lot of fun, there is a surprising amount of information out there on a railroad that was rather short and didn't run all that long.

I second Smokebox - the best overall reference is the Sundance book, "The Gilpin Tram Era". This has the most amount of information on the GT in one place. Also, Sundance has ceased publication, so when this book is gone, it's gone.

Ferrell's "Gilpin Gold Tram" book is a good reference, too. It is lacking compared to the Sundance book because it was published about 35 years before Sundance's, and a lot more research and information was dug up over the years.

Hollenback published a nice book in the 1950s on the Gilpin Tram. This book is not that hard to get - I have seen some go for $10. I suggest checking out ABEBook Exchange on the internet, or other used book sellers - you might be surprised.

Some other sources of information are:

1. Abbott, Dan. “Colorado Shays, Part 1: Introduction and the Shays of the Gilpin Tramway.” in Narrow Gauge and Short Line Gazette, March – April, 1995. pp. 38 - 42

2. Aldrich, John K. Ghosts of Gilpin County, Centennial Graphics, Lakewood, Colorado, 1989.

3. Brown, Robert L. Central City and Gilpin County, Then and Now, The Caxton Printers, Caldwell, Idaho, 1994. Pages 166 – 172.

4. Brunk, Harry W. Up Clear Creek on the Narrow Gauge, Benchmark Publications Ltd., Los Altos, California, 1990. Note: This is the reference for structure plans in Black Hawk. Also, the "More Up Clear Creek" book continues the story.

5. Cox, Terry. Inside the Mountains – A History of Mining Around Central City, Colorado, Pruett Publishing Company, Boulder, Colorado, 1989.

6. Crea, Joe. Mines and Mills in the Colorado Rockies, videotape published by Digital Video Images, Inc., Littleton, Colorado, 2000. Note: This video explains and tours many of the surviving mines that were served by the Gilpin Tram.

7. Crittenden, H. Temple. “The Two Footers: The Gilpin Railroad,” in RAILWAY AND LOCOMOTIVE HISTORICAL SOCIETY BULLETIN Number 57, January, 1942. Pages 94 – 98. Note: A good summary of the railroad history, worth the search for a copy.

8. Digerness, David S. The Mineral Belt – Volume III – Georgetown – Mining – Colorado Central Railroad, Sundance Publications, Ltd., Silverton, Colorado, 1982. Pages 290 – 412. Note: These pages have some great views of downtown Black Hawk trackage.

9. Ferrell, Mallory Hope, “The Gilpin Ore Cars – Western 2 Footers”, in Narrow Gauge and Short Line Gazette, September – October, 1998, pp. 30 – 35

10. Fire insurance Maps in the Library of Congress – Plans of North American Cities and Towns Produced by the Sanborn Map Company. Checklist is compiled by the Reference and Bibliography Section, Geography and Map Division, Library of Congress, Washington, D.C., 1981. (1885, 1890 and 1895 editions). Note: these maps can be found from many sources. I was able to obtain photocopies from the Denver Public Library, Western History Collection.

11. Gilpin Railroad Quarterly, the quarterly publication of the Gilpin Railroad Historical Society. Issues 1 (August, 1999) to 50 (May, 2012). This publication ceased with the 50th issue, but there is a ton of information here.

12. Granruth, Alan. Mining Gold to Mining Wallets (Central City, Colorado 1859 – 1999), self-published, Central City, Colorado, 1999. Note: Has good background information on Central City and a little bit on the mines.

13. Hauck, Cornelius W. Narrow Gauge to Central and Silver Plume: Colorado Rail Annual Number Ten, Colorado Railroad Museum, Golden, Colorado, 1972. Pages 104, 112 – 115. Note: There are some interesting photos here.

14. Pashina, Keith A. “The Gilpin Line – Snapshots in Time, Part 1,” in Narrow Gauge and Short Line Gazette, March – April, 1993, pp. 44 – 49

15. Pashina, Keith A. “The Gilpin Line – Snapshots in Time, Part 2,” in Narrow Gauge and Short Line Gazette, May - June, 1993, pp. 38 - 42

16. Pashina, Keith A. “Iron Horses in a Barn, The Gilpin Tramway Co. Engine House,” in Narrow Gauge and Short Line Gazette, September – October, 1999, pp. 52 – 57

19. Pearce, Sarah and Pfaff, Christine. Guide to Historic Central City & Black Hawk, Cordillera Press, Inc., Evergreen, Colorado, 1987. Note: A picture book with the history of several town and industry buildings explained.

20.Crea, Joe. Gilpin Ghost, videotape published by Digital Video Images, Inc., Littleton, Colorado, 2000. Note: this video covers the Gilpin Tram virtually from end to end, and contains many previously unpublished views of the area industries. This presumably is also available in DVD.

There are a few more not listed above, that have some good photos. These are in books such as Ferrell's "Narrow Gauge Country", or others I cannot recall their names right now.

All of the sources listed above, with the possible exception of sources #14-#16, have impeccable information in them.

Keith

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 Posted: Fri Nov 9th, 2012 08:56 pm
   
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mwiz64
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Well, that a lot more than I bargained for with that simple question. I haven't bought anything yet so I'll see if I can find a copy of that Sundance book. If I do decide to base my modeling on the Gilpin it will only be loosely. I do like it I just don't want to confine myself to only stuff that was found on the Gilpin. I'm one of those guys that likes every damn thing... I know, I'd be better off with a little more focus but I've lived with myself long enough to know that ain't in the cards.

Thanks for the wealth of information, Keith!

Mike



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 Posted: Fri Nov 9th, 2012 09:47 pm
   
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Sullivan
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Mike,

I really like the Gilpin also but like other mining roads too. That was what helped me make the decision to freelance where I could use bits of what I felt would look really good. It helps not being tied to one road.

In that manner I'm creating the prototype for the Chisos Mining Tram. The Chisos Mining Company actually did exist in the Big Bend of Texas but had no railroad. Now they do.



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 Posted: Sat Nov 10th, 2012 01:35 pm
   
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Keith Pashina
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Mike and Jim -

Yes, there's a lot of information available on the Gilpin Tram - I just got caught up in the fun of researching to see what I could find, and several years later, it amounted to a pile of stuff.

I also like to freelance models. Although the Gilpin Tram offers a lot of switching operations, and had an interesting roster, the traffic was limited to mostly ore, some coal, and a little bit of supplies, water and the occasional excursion.

The roster is pretty simple, too: 100+ ore cars, 4 flat cars, about 9 coal cars, 6 excursion cars, water car, snowplow, and 3 cabooses. This can be both liberating (not a big roster to attempt to model), but at times confining. I also like to model passenger traffic, shipments in boxcars, and all kinds of narrow gauge equipment that the Gilpin Tram never had.

My solution was to model equipment and scenes based on the Gilpin Tram, but on the same layout, model other traffic, cars, and places the real tram never had or went to. I adopted the name of a paper railroad - one proposed but never built, which would have been called the Gilpin, James Peak, and Middle Park Railway. This vaguely- proposed line never had a specific route mapped out, so in my world it goes and does what I want it to. So, the passenger rolling stock, boxcars, reefers, etc. are all lettered for the good old G, JP, and MP Ry.

Keith

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 Posted: Sat Nov 10th, 2012 02:06 pm
   
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mwiz64
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That's pretty cool, Keith. That kind of ad libing is what I've come to appreciate in a lot of the modeling I see here at Freerails. It's not prototypical per say but not out of place either.

If you might have noticed just today I caught another bug. I'll be modeling 60cm gauge railroad the US built in France during WWI for the foreseeable future. At this point, that could be a year or two or the rest of my life depending on how long that subject matter drives my imagination. That said, I may take a break from time to time do some other stuff.

Thanks again for passing along all that info. I'm sure many others that read Freerails will appreciate the effort you put into that post.

Cheers,
Mike

Last edited on Sat Nov 10th, 2012 02:07 pm by mwiz64



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 Posted: Sat Nov 10th, 2012 02:13 pm
   
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Keith Pashina
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The Colorado Historical Society's archives have 4 original journal books for the Gilpin Tram, besides containing tons of information on traffic on the line, there are 4 drawings of bridges that were to be replaced or built. Three of them seem to match locations that can be seen in photos.  One of them doesn't look like anything in old photos nor matched up to any known location.  That fourth, mystery bridge became a model, in fact, an exact scale replica of it!


The shay is a plastic superstructure over an N scale Rapido switcher mechanism.  The excursion car is an old Joeuf car purchased in 1972.


Chase Gulch on the real GT was a narrow, twisty gulch that the GT climbed through stiff grades and sharp curves.  On my layout, it was the scenic section between the upper and lower levels.    The bridges are freelanced, and just looked "right" in this location.




 

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 Posted: Sat Nov 10th, 2012 02:15 pm
   
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Keith Pashina
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Mike:

60cm railways sound like an awesome prototype. What scale will you model in?

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 Posted: Sat Nov 10th, 2012 02:45 pm
   
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mwiz64
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1:35 scale is my intention. That way I can use Bachmann On30 stuff as a base point. Take a look at the thread I started (and continued to post it all by myself) in the Proto Photo forum called "Real WW1 Narrow Gauge in France Video".

I'm pretty fired up about it. I'm not the modeler you are at this stage of the game but I hope to approach that quality of modeling as I go.

Thanks for asking!
Mike



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 Posted: Mon Nov 12th, 2012 06:26 am
   
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Si.
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Hi Keith

I petty much LOVE the Gilpin stuff.
Your referance list is SUPERB, thanks !

Have seen the Gilpin bridge drawings...
...your models look like a great picture of 'the gulch' !

Cheers

Si.



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