I've been a Garden Railroader for several years now. It all started with H0 Scale layouts my father maintained and I ultimately inherited. As a young man raising a family and living in smaller spaces, I switched to N Scale to get more train in a small space, but of course my fingers got too fat and my eyes to dim! What a perfect excuse to move up to G scale. Bigger toys for big boys!
I loved the design, construction and operation of this outdoor adventure, watching trains wind through a garden with large running ponds, and large buildings. Adding the dimensions of computer control for multi train operations and live sound it created a wondrous world to escape into. I would spend time in the garden, coffee in hand, watching trains appear and disappear through the foliage. I loved it!
What happened? A little more time passes and the act of bending to weed, and attend to trains became the issue. I would move around the layout, cushion in hand, on hands and knees ballasting, clearing switch forks, pulling weeds, removing sticks and leaves and tending plants in the garden. This work was taking the fun of the hobby. I guess I should have elevated the track!
At the same time I was spending more and more time making automata, and the garden maintenance was not being done regularly enough. It was time to move on, or my layout and equipment would simply sit until someone other than I would be responsible to find someone to pass the equipment to. So with sadness I dismantled the layout, and collected up the equipment and look to pass the torch to another garden railroad enthusiast.
It was a great ride!
Automata is a creative blend of my life interests , engineering, art and woodworking.