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July 4, 2012

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three lakes turn

News Events Are Always Up to Date on the Club's Home Page.


NIMH Batteries and charging as we install them in TLMRC PRO and Power Cabs from:
Mark Gurries
Electrical Engineer
DCC Website & NMRA DCC Clinics:

You can get long lasting NiMH batteries too that hold a charge as long as Li-ion batteries do.  So you can get what you want.  Buy the Sanyo “Eneloop" batteries for you Rechargeable NiMH batteries,.

AA and AAA sizes.  You will forget your using batteries.

Note: The charger used inside the cab is a trickle charger type which means it takes some time to charge the eneloop batteries.  The trickle charger is generic is not ideal for NiMH batteries, but it will work.  The problem is that trickle charger has no built-in timer to stop the charger to prevent overcharge.  Overcharging with a trickle charger will very slowly damage the battery.

But since you will not be charging so often to begin with, the number of times you need to charge will be spread over time.

But if you want to recharge the batteries correctly, Mark Schutzer offers a cab charger base station with a timer.

2/18/18 Brain P. Wussow Received his Golden Spike Award

2/15/18 Normal operation day today at Paul's layout. We tested and approved 2 of Jack's freight trains ready to operate between scheduled passenger service using most of the passing sidings. Paul programed Bob's E8s to operate together as different long addresses and speed matched them. Using Bon's SD45s we had a demo of a TSU (2) PNP including playing with options via JMRI. A good time was had by all and lunch followed.

2/08/18 Brian Wussow has taken on the designing of a bracket for Athearn "Ready to Roll" locos to have TSU-PNP decoders mounted on the motor using 3D printing.

11/01/17 Bob and Jack Receive their AP EE Certificates

9/25/28 The 100 car yard at Rhinelander on the PL&S is up and operating. The control panel needs to be installed so that we have easy control of the turnouts.

8/11/18 The 2017 Make It! Camp in Three Lakes, August 8,9,10th was a great success for 7th thru 12th grade students.

This event included Laser etching and cutting, 3D printing, truth tables and programming of Railroad signals on an Arduino computer, and programming an Arduino to send IR data to control a Robot.

6/10/18 Jack Zimmer's Layout has been rewired to be true DCC. This layout was DC and had the polarity of the mainlines reversed for right hand running which caused shorts at the crossovers. During the rewiring this was changed to match the parallel lines polarity.

Watch for the stories from projects underway.

ESU Sound system put into Loco with 1" Speaker after milling

Mantua locos to be rebuilt with gear kits 0-6-0, 2-8-0, 4-6-2


08/31/16 Make It! Camp TLMRC Adurino program used at the School Open House

08/21/16 We have a new friend in Three Lakes in HO and Grandson's Lionel

08/16/16 Store the modules for the next show and a Club Lunch

08/15/16 Contact with Modeler from the Netherlands Fab Lab about 3D Prints

08/11/16 Load out the modules from the Fab Lab with 3.6" of rain

08/10-11/16 NBC 12 had 3 stories about the Camp featuring the Club Modules

08/09-10/16 2016 Make It! Camp at the Fab Lab Three Lakes

08/08/16 Bob Knobbe and Paul Wussow set up 16' of modules in the Fab Lab

07/06/16 Meeting with the Fab Lab and Library to Finish plane for Make IT! Camp

06/24-30/16 Bob, Jack, and Paul build modules in Three Lakes

06/05/16 Paul Wussow Presents Awards at the Du Page Division meeting

06/01/16 Bob and Paul setup the modules at Liberty Hobby Center

05/05/16 Club Working at the Fab Lab produces Interiors and new Frames

03/28/16 Super Operating Session 12 trains 10 Loco sets 2.5 to 3 Hours

03/28/16 Brian Wussow prints MDC car .stl frames on his school's MakerBot form the .stl on our site

03/18/16 Word is out that we are in the NMRA Magazine

03/18/16 Bob and Jack install Crossovers and Turnouts on PL&S for AP

03/06/16 NMRA Du Page Division meeting AP Support Desk

02/23/16 Laser Etching and Cutting Walls for Starks Warehouse

02/10/16 Paul Wussow wins second term as a Midwest Region DAL

02/09/16 ARDUINO demo of Signal control for the Library Project

01/04/16 Projects at the Fab Lab for NMRA Frames

12/23/15 Holiday Special Photos of The Milaukee Road by Dick Neumiller

12/06/15 Paul Wussow gives a talk to the Du Page Division meeting

11/25/15 More Details and images of Pickle Tub Car

11/20/15 New details added to Pickle Tub Car Project

11/18/15 Standing Up for Rural Wisconsin Schools, Libraries and Communities

11/17/15 Building a Flashing Crossbuck (make and take)

11/15/15 Bob works on his AP EE

11/14/15 Paul assembles and tests Pickle Tub parts

11/01/15 Paul gives a presentation of Fab Lab work by TLMRC

10/15/15 Bob and Paul Test printing frames on MakerBot

10/12/15 Final Image of the Zimmer Project

10/09/15 TLMRC At the Fab Lab PowerPoint

10/01/15 TLMRC Working at the Fab Lab on Models and Community support.

09/29/15 Paul and Steven demonstrate 3D Printing at the Fab Lab to guests.

09/22/15 Jack and Roger at the Fab Lab and Paul Drafting Steel Underframes

09/22/15 October 2015 Bad Order newsletter from SCWD

09/19/15 New Look on the home page and a TLMRC Projects Page 2015

09/7/15 to 9/10/15 Paul and Roger had a full week in the North Woods last week. They worked in the Fab Lab on Printing and Laser cutting along with helping Kristin with the printing of the Farm House. HO & HOn3 Doors , Jacks Passenger car ends, Progress on the Pickel cars and Overton interior version "D" prints

On Wednesday they went on a road trip to Wabeno WI to photograph and measure the Phoenix Steam Log Hauler. The story is what we found and what we did not find.

09/1/15 The Club started the fall off with a split meeting, Bon French and his wife sponsored a presentation of the book Terminal Town at the Glen Ellyn Historical Society with the author presenting additional material and stories from his book. (Additional information may be found at .

Roger and Steven were at the Fab Lab with our guests from out of town working on printing and laser cutting models.

Paul's 3D Print of the Winter Project


A new Resized car end is ready to print for Jack's IC cars.


Working at the Fab Lab Three Lakes

As of 9/01/15

The test interiors were a success and Jack brought them back to me in Glen Ellyn today. Our careful study shows that the seats were a little high and the edge of the washroom walls needed to be lowered to clear the inside edge of the roof.

I have redrawn the cars removing .020" from the width to aid clearance for window material and making it an easier fit inside stock built cars. The thickness of the floors has been reduced to .020" which will lower the seats in the view from the windows.

Paul redesigned the interior of his Overton cars in the latest style for printing with thinner floors and finer details.




Roger Blocks and Jack Zimmer at the Lab

Roger and Jack joined Steve at the Fab Lab Three Lakes to print updated Overton car interiors. These interiors were redrawn by Paul Wussow to fit the standard Roundhouse 50 foot coach and 50 foot RPO.  The prints were started on the MakerBot printers and left to finish over night.

Environmental problems in the lab over night caused the MakerBot prints to fail. So the interiors are now being printed on the uPrint higher resolution 3D printer which has environmental controls.

Jack reported that the floors which did print fit the Roundhouse cars just fine. 
We will see the new coach and RPO prints on Saturday.


Paul Wussow and Roger Blocks at the Lab

We continue to build and test the use of 3D printing and Laser cutting of materials at the Fab Lab Three Lakes. The evening of May 19th we tested new car ends for passenger cars using cardboard for checking our designs rather than the costly Evergreen Plastic. The results look good so now we will give these to Jack Zimmer to check out on his IC passenger cars.

In 3D Printing we once again used the MakerBot printer to test a design. This time it was for the interior of a 50' Overton (Roundhouse) coach. Using the MakerBot is available and provides an inexpensive rapid prototype of the design. The printed interior will be checked for use in the model car before we print a higher resolution model on the uPrint 3D Printer.

With Steven Yahr, the lab director we tested etching of materials such as wood and card stock as ways to model other structures in a less expensive material. This also allows the designers to add etched details to their structures.

Photos and stories of this work will be out soon after the testing in and on cars.



Model Railroad Club takes advantage of the new

Fab Lab Three Lakes

Since establishment of the Fab Lab, the Three Lakes Model Railroad Club (TLMRC), President Paul Wussow, Secretary/ Treasurer Roger Blocks and member Jack Zimmer have been building models of historic buildings and cars with the help of the lab.

The TLMRC was established to promote the hobby of model railroading for all ages. From Thomas the Tank Engine to classic Lionel, they welcome all gauges and scale molders to join their love of trains.

Model railroaders recreate and preserve historic locations and equipment in a way that they can operate in a prototypical fashion.

The TLMRC is currently using the technology in the Fab Lab for two projects.

The club's winter project is creating a replica of a maintenance shed made using the laser printer to vector cut styrene. It is cut from a redrawing of a structure clinic given by Al Potts of the South Central Wisconsin Division in 1994 as a project structure.

The second project is to recreate Overton passenger car interiors in HO scale. These interiors include seating, heating, and water closet facilities. The walls and doors are detailed and there are heat shields around and under the stoves.

More information on the club activities may be found on the club website at

The Fab Lab Three Lakes is open to the community Tuesday and Thursday from 5 to 9 p.m. Single and family memberships are available. For information about the Fab Lab Three Lakes, contact Steve Yahr at (715) 546-3321, ext 3242


Winter Projects continue across the club(click for details)


Photographer Dick Neumiller Dies


Grandt Line Founder Dies


Report to the Du Page Division on the Region by Paul Wussow 12/7/14


View From The Tower posted 8/14/14 to the NMRA National site.


Bon French gives Gary Sinise a tour of the Railroaders: Jack Delano’s Homefront Photography exhibition at the Chicago History Museum.


Jack Zimmer Receives a Golden Spike (*5/6/14*) Achivement Program

Jack's Layout Photos (*5/6/14*)


Bob Dumke Receives a Golden Spike (*3/17/14*) Achivement Program

Bob's Layout photos (*3/17/14*)


NMRA Mid West Region News (*2/24/14*)

RAILFUN 2014 pre-convention registration rates end May 2nd


Guest Editorial by Bob Lake


RR Show Round-up Three Lakes Club and the WLD Fall Railroad Show


Achivement Program Achievements of the past year and more.


NMRA@HOME published these TLMRC articles.

Paul Wussow's Measuring Up

George Gilbert's Award winning Caboose (First place kit caboose at National)

R. G. Blocks' on Operations using Computers

Paul Wussow's Rhinelander Scale House

Black Jack's Bar near Wolf Creek. (Feb.2014)

Visit Starks and view the new historic images of the town of Starks from the Potato Fest Art Show in Rhinelander WI.


Historic locomotive no. 765 brings vintage Coca-Cola ad to life in a video. A Midwestern town in the 1940s experiences the arrival of a very special train. Learn more here about this speculative project here:

Youtube video link below produced by the Fort Wayne Railroad Historical Society


Index to Articles in the Three Lakes Turn 11/10 thru 12/12


By Laws 12/04/2017



Updated 2/15/18
Join us in the “Greatest Hobby” as a member of the TLMRC.