2023 Clinic details

We have our clinic presentations set for March 4th, 2023, and we’re happy to announce we have a two prototype history clinics, a regional prototype current events clinic, and two modeling clinics in the lineup. All presented by pros who know what they’re talking about so they’re all very much worth seeing.

As a kickoff speaker we have Martin E. Hansen doing a presentation on “When SP&S Moved Dead Logging Locomotives.” Martin’s presentations are always alive with great photos from his collection and fun information to back up those photos.

Next up is Greg Baker with a modeling clinic on “How to improve ready-to-use trees” from manufacturers such as Woodland Scenics. Today’s RTR trees are looking much better than the ice cream cone or Christmas trees that were commonly available back in the day but Greg takes the new trees a step farther with the addition of readily available scenic texture materials and a little effort on the modelers’ part.

Following Greg is Bethan Maher, the Executive Director of the Western Forest Industries Museum / Mt Rainier Scenic Railroad, who will be speaking and will bring us up to speed on what’s happening there. This is the straight scoop and should put to rest some of the rumors that have been flying around about the place. Come on out, hear for yourself, and have your most pressing questions answered.

“Mt. Rainier Scenic Railroad at Fifty: The Past, Present, and Future

Presented by Bethan Maher, Executive Director of Western Forest Industries Museum / Mt. Rainier Scenic Railroad.

Bethan will cover the Mt. Rainier Scenic Railroad from the organization’s founding in 1980 by Tom Murray Jr. to the current effort to restore the railroad and museum to operation. What will the Mt. Rainier Scenic look like at fifty? A presentation on the current effort to restore the railroad to operation and the importance of creating personal connections to our area’s logging and railroading heritage.”

Nick Lehrbach will be speaking about the Coos Bay lumber company and present a video on an aspect of the line’s operation. Coos Bay was a big operation and we don’t see enough about it here at Camp 18 so Nick’s clinic will help fill that information gap.

I’m also pleased to announce a clinic by Will Cochran that’s sure to be popular with the modelers in the group. 

“Modeling Steam Donkeys: a look at kitbashing, weathering, and detailing to match prototypes. Looks at commercially available kits and models, prototype photos, and suggestions on how to make one look like the other. Sleds, houses, and detailing… with a look at a variety of model kits and suggestions on how to utilize them!”

Steam (and electric or diesel) donkeys are an important part of logging modeling so another clinic on how to design and build them for your layout or diorama should be a popular presentation. Watch for it on March 4th.

That’s the lineup as it stands on February 1st, subject to change of course based on presenter availability and so on. We hope to see you there to enjoy these presentations from a stellar lineup of clinicians.

2023 PMLC Cancelled

We regret that the 2023 event has been cancelled. Weather-related travel difficulties have made it necessary to cancel this year, but we’re looking ahead to 2024 and hoping for the best.

After much ado about finding a more suitable date, we’re back to the first Saturday in March, the 4th, for our event. We had tried getting away from this early date due to some recent weather-related problems, hoping a month or so later would avoid the snow and ice trauma, but other conflicts made the original date the best option.

We’re back to March 4th, and we hope that works out well for most of you guys.

Thank you for your patience and understanding.

Clinic presentation details

First off, we sincerely appreciate the time and efforts our PMLC clinic presenters invest in assembling material to present at our event. It requires time and expertise to put together a first-class clinic and we, and our participants, appreciate that effort.

That said, we need to have you bring the prepared and finished presentation to the event so you’re ready to roll when your time comes up. A Powerpoint is the ideal format, and we also have a 35mm Carousel slide projector available for an old-school presentation. Nothing like seeing original “live” slides for a clinic! A Keynote presentation is also great, but you’ll need to bring along a Mac laptop with the Keynote software because my older Mac laptop does not have that software.

In the past I’ve roughly assembled a Powerpoint on site when given a stack of digital photos. When everyone else is upstairs having lunch I’m in the basement getting the show ready to go, which the presenter (probably fat and happy upstairs eating lunch and socializing instead of doing his or her own homework preparation) should have done in the first place. I am not doing that anymore. If you show up with a handful of pictures and expect us to finish preparing your show, we don’t be doing that, because we don’t have time for that and expecting us to finish your preparation “the day of” is unrealistic. You’ll need to finish your program before the day of the event, or you’ll need to work out how to get the show on the screen without our involvement beyond supplying the projector and show hardware. That’s not asking too much.

This is especially true now that my co-host Lon Wall is no longer with us. The jobs he and I previously shared duties on are now on me, my wife Pam and any other volunteers I can round up. That means there’s less time to handle the ancillary diversions like finishing someone else’s homework.

That said, there is an option if you aren’t onboard with Powerpoint software. I will happily assemble your graphics into a Powerpoint if you can send me the material at least two weeks prior to the event. If it arrives after that time I’ll be returning the material to you unused unless prior arrangements are made. This material can be digital photos and digital graphics. I will not work with your 35mm (or other format) slides because each one needs to be individually scanned, sized, corrected as needed for a presentation and then assembled in the Powerpoint format and that kills a lot of time that falls into the category of preparation you should be doing. Preparing your slides is your job, and once you have the digital images available, I can put them into a Powerpoint for presentation. If you aren’t able to convert the slides to digital, we do have a 35mm projector available for the event.

I hate to sound hardnosed about this but we’ve been jumping through hoops with some clinic presenters and feel it’s time to help streamline the process by having people do their own preparation, which I feel is entirely reasonable. If any questions arise, contact me at splco-mwry@comcast.net.

2023 Contest Changes

This seems like a good time to pass along some news about the 2023 Pacific Model Loggers’ Congress. We are going to be combining some contest classes for the 2023 event, partly for financial reasons, and for now we’re eliminating the Diorama class from the model contest. Our event (along with other model railroad conventions and such), and logging modeling in general, are experiencing some participation changes of late so some contest changes make sense for us.

Our changes will mainly be to combine certain contest classes which, lately, have had very few participants in each class. This is a good idea for several reasons apart from financial, and we feel the changes we make will make the contest a better fit for all those who enter.

More news on this as it develops.

2023 PMLC… Changes?

The 2022 event is not even a week old and already we’re working on some changes for 2023. We don’t have a specific range of things we need, or want, to modify but during our debrief chats we’re always looking for ways to improve. It’s always possible to tweak some of the details that go into an event, even just a one-day foofaraw, and any way we can make the event better or more appealing or fun for the attendees is a good move.

Because our model contest is so important to the event it’s naturally one activity area we’re discussing. We have several ideas we think most of our attendees will like and we’ll talk more about those later on this year.

We would be pleased if any of our participants would like to weigh in with any comments or suggestions they care to pass along. Send any thoughts to my email at splco-mwry@comcast.net, if the mood strikes.

Thank you! – Jeff Johnston

2022 PMLC In The Books

The 2022 edition of the Pacific Model Loggers’ Congress is in the books. We had a small crowd, as expected during this tumultuous “re-opening the country” time of history, but our attendees seemed enthusiastic and the model contest, while small in numbers, had its usual array of terrific quality entries.

Our event heart and soul, Lon Wall, was seriously missed. RIP Lon.

We’re researching our options for the event date next year and as soon as we can nail something down, we’ll let you know. In the meantime if you have any questions or comments, drop a line at the Contact Us link at the bottom of the home page.

One week to go

Hoping this makes it to the “News” part of our website, still learning this whole WordPress thing. And being darn slow about it.

One week from today we’ll be gathering at Camp 18 for the event. We’ve had excellent response from quite a few pending attendees and that’s a welcome development. Our projects are mostly finished and ready to go, we’re rounding up all of our usual hardware, and our crew is assembling well. With any luck this year’s Congress will be one to remember!

Remember, we still have a dealer table or two available, and any of our usual suspects who feel like volunteering to help should let us know at your nearest convenience.

Thank you!

March 6 update

We’re moving ahead with plans for the event as well as refining some Covid-related aspects our attendees may want to know about.

  • We won’t be doing food service in the room, but coffee, soda, meals and the legendary Camp 18 sweet rolls will be available upstairs in the restaurant.
  • Although the Covid-related mask requirement will have ended by then, we encourage our attendees to observe any sensible safety precautions we’ve been living with for a couple of years now.
  • There will be no water pitchers in the event space, so we’re encouraging people to bring their own water bottles to refill at the faucet in the room.
  • J. Clark McAbee’s presentation on St. Paul and Tacoma will not be taking place, but we will likely have a presentation on Dave Clune’s fantastic 0n3 Cascade County Narrow Gauge layout which includes a modest logging operation as part of the layout. This one you need to see to believe, Dave is both a fine artist and a meticulous technician. The combination is a stunning layout that sets a pretty high bar for the rest of us.