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LTT On The Road: Arborway, T.T. & Northwestern Railroad

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Lets Talk Trains

Lets Talk Trains


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The Arborway, T.T. & Northwestern Railroad near Steelville, Mo., is one of the largest private miniature railroads in North America. The ATT&NW is considered a "Grand Scale" railroad. The rails are spaced 15" apart, and everything is about a third actual size, but the technology and engineering are the same as "real" railroads. The freight cars, all equipped with air brakes and hand brakes just like their full-size prototype, can each weigh as much as a big motorcycle or a small car, and the railroad's largest locomotive weighs about ten tons. As a result, operations are undertaken under the guidance of railroad rulebooks with "Safety First" as the theme of all activity. The "crown jewel" of the ATT&NW is steam locomotive #801, a 4-8-4 "Northern" class locomotive. The ATT&NW has about 5 miles of track on the ground; the main line run is around 3- 5/8 miles long, most of it on a 2% up or down grade. The railroad features a spectacular single- and double-track main line graded to actual railroad specifications, two tunnels, one wood bridge. We will visit the vision of the late St