At 12:03 PM 8/24/2014 -0700, you wrote:
eventually bailed, and would be unlikely ever to join a club again. That plus the fact that some of us members actually worked on the layout, others only were interested in running trains, period. The disparity in effort was a little tiresome too.I was involved in a modular group for some years off and on. It had fairly loose standards and virtually no standards in terms of continuity or any minimum level of detail. That was ok with me, the club's main purpose was to give guys who didn't have layouts an opportunity to run their stuff. And that described me at the time. In particular, I wanted to run full length passenger trains, which didn't fit my 4x8 in my 2-bedroom apartment. Unfortunately the "run bosses" of this group, who basically were adult versions of the kids who didn't get to be hall monitors back in junior high, were obsessed with continuous running and didn't allow for any "debug time" when you set up. Long cars with Kadees tend to have problems with roller coaster joints between modules, and they simply didn't tolerate any fiddling.
One guy used Walthers Goo to glue the couplers together on his AHM passenger cars. Another guy - who never built his own layout - displayed a brass locomotive on his module for years and years. It was banned after one trip around the layout, and he had no opportunity to tinker or do even the most basic tuning. And he was ok with that. I had enough of it after just a few shows. That club became obsessed with winning the popular vote / peoples choice award at every show and did some rather psychotic stuff - like setting up in a figure eight with supposedly electronic sensors to prevent T-boning. It didn't.
Kato track on the floor was a big improvement in my life.