Yes, I have to agree with you Lee. The "overseas" work seems to make the US efforts pale in comparison. Of course there are some here (those built by "pros" for big bucks to promote themselves) but they are far between. The modular guys just want to "have fun" running trains, the "diorama-ists" are more concerned with detailing and not much on train operations.This might be a reason that I don't go to train shows any more. I can have more fun visiting home layouts and having buddies over to visit mine.
Well, I think the most layouts build here are also not top class. But the ontraxs show only have the best. However this year there were some layouts that were not that great. But I think it's getting harder each year tot find top quality layouts. It is impossible for the builders to build layouts like this each year or even in a few years.
The last photo's:
14 I'm still not sure wich scale this layout was, N, Z? Something in between?