Above: A selection of images from Members.
CaneSIG 'members' are individuals who have contributed materials to the web site, regardless of whether they belong to the NMRA or other affiliated groups. This page features those small scale modellers who've either supplied information on their own models or been spotted by the coordinator. Individuals are listed in alphabetic order.
Other 'members' have provided prototype photos, drawings, etc., and their contributions are credited on the image, drawing, article, etc.
CaneSIG is a free resource for modellers of the world's sugar cane railways. Please contact the Coordinator if you have resources that you would like to share.
Materials have been provided by modellers and enthusiasts for the personal use of other modellers only. Please do not abuse this privilege; contact the copyright holders for any other use.
Bill is a Californian who models Hawaiian practice with a freelance portable On30 layout which is still (2012) under construction
Bill's layout is portable and folds lengthwise into an aluminum box 2' x 6' when closed (folded), opening out into a 4' x 6' layout. The interior of the box is constructed of dense (hard) blue foam such as is used in construction. Most buildings, palm trees and everything that isn't too tall are permanently attached, however the backdrop is removed for closing.
Bill indicates the project was started (1) to learn new modelling techniques and (2) to design a container that would be light yet strong enough to support the layout.
Ron models in a number of scale/gauge combinations but is probably
best known for his 1:48 scale Queensland models (including QR wagons, locomotives, etc.), eg: scratchbuilt Moreton Mill
4 ton cane bin and Sugar Valley, Ron's On24 (aka On2) 1:48 scale layout based on Moreton Mill practice (photographed at the Brisbane Train Show 2009):
4. [Cane is pickled couch grass, see Handbook series for details].
Tim provides a number of large scale models through Tootle Engineering (see Large Scale/Garden page) but also builds in other scales as shown by this 8mm Decauville model. Check the Tootle Engineering web site (still www.tootleng.com in January 2016) for current details.
John Burgess: John authored a number of articles for Narrow Gauge Down Under magazine in its early days and scratchbuilt O-16.5 (7mm scale) models of Moreton Mill locomotives and rolling stock including Sandy (photo right, Malcolm Moore, now owned by Lynn Zelmer).
Paul has contributed an article on building Caribbean style 4 wheel
cane wagons quickly in 009 (pdf file).
Bob Dow's modelling clinic presentations (Modelling the Railways of Queensland conventions) and his 1990s line of cane equipment (bins, locos and shire wagons) drew a number of modellers into 009 and Queensland shire/sugar cane modelling. His plans for a 009 Jenbach diesel provided the inspiration for the detailed Handbook article (pdf file).
Bob's layout, 'Dowmont' is 009 scale, ie 4mm to the foot operating on 9mm gauge track, and was an exhibition layout before being expanded and installed in his home. His clinics included instructions for making cane bins, the Jenbach diesel and a Fowler-type steam locomotive ( 1 - 2 ).
Other photos: Kit-bashed diesel locomotives: 1 - 2 - 3;'Dowmont' layout (Dowmont town 1. 2 and Eda Valley (layout extension) 1 - 2). Note the radius of the return loop on the Eda Valley end of his layout; with OO9/HOn30 it's possible to get a lot of operation in a small space.
Download AMRM magazine article of 1997 describing how to scratchbuild OO9 cane bins.
Wallaville, the layout, is HOn2.5 (9mm track gauge, aka HOn30) and realistically models the small out depot about 30 km from Bundaberg's Bingera Sugar Mill.
The 6.4m layout is basically an oval with the out depot visible to the public and a through staging yard behind. Carl Millington provided a number of the models on the layout.
Photos: Lincoln (right in photo) and Carl operating the layout at the 2005 Brisbane Train Show; interpretive details; and out depot overview. Note location of sand tower and diesel fueling facility. Queenslander house (used as office) is to the right of the fueling facility, with the bridge over river and highway further to the right. The back side staging allows several trains to be operated through the front scene.
Loco storage pen behind ex-QR station building; the near track is both a through line for empties and the
loco maintenance area.
Diesel fueling is done on the same track further to the right (loco is one of the Queensland-built Eimcos).
Harvestor scene, from
other side, and close-ups:
2 (with bogie loco). 0-6-0 DH and
navvy wagon from container; and
bogie loco shifting empties.
Paul is a recent convert to HOn30 with a preference for industrial systems. While he doesn't yet model sugar cane railways he's interested in them and is quite proficient at kitbashing Clever Models card models, including the Ford 'critter' and dump wagon in the photo.
"I am [currently] building a small mini layout around a brickyard; all of the structures will be made of paper and card designed from some paper models from Clever and on the net. I do not draw any of the graphics; I do a cut and paste version of things found on the web to come up with different versions of models. Some are extensive cut and paste projects others are not as involved.
"The loco hood is of my design but the cab is an extensive modification of the [Clever] steeple cab. The color is also from the steeple cab. The frame is the one used on the box cab loco. The dump car uses the same frame modified and the parts are from the gondola."
The late Jim Fainges was the source of many of the Queensland locomotive, rollingstock and structure drawings on the web site. All are accessible from the Image Collection link on the home page. Note that many were created by extrapolating from photographs and dimensions may not be totally accurate.
More recently Jim modified an HO Bachmann Climax with a commercial cab conversion kit to get a smooth operating On30 model (photo above).
Fabrice models On30 Queensland sugar cane models in France: loco shed in progress
5; Bachmann Gas Mechanical mechanism with a Backwoods Miniature superstructure kit,
side view with navvy flat,
side view with RJ Models Moreton 4 ton cane bin and delightful palm trees (kits from
Hart of the South Models). Micro-layout
Keith creates 3D models in a number of scales, including two HO scale (HOn30) locomotives designed to fit on commercial N scale chassis. If you have access to a 3D printer they are available for free download from his web site (E.M.Baldwin DH 22B Locomotive: https://www.madram.net/3d/#baldwin22, EIMCO 40 Tonne Locomotive: https://www.madram.net/3d/#eimco40t) under the Creative Commons license. [Offsite link correct 26/1/2023]
Selected images from his web site:
4 (Moreton Bin),
5 (Buderim Tramway),
6 (Mapleton Tramway),
7 (QR Red Fred),
8 (QR Station),
9 (QR Station),
10 (QR Goods Shed),
11 (Queenslander Cottage, front),
12 (Queenslander Cottage, rear).
Don got excellent results using Yarra Valley grass to model sugar cane fields (Model Handbook, pdf file). He also experimented with etched brass, initially using Roco underframes, to fabricate HOn30 cane bins. Photos: Yarra grass (1 - 2 - 3 - 4 - 5 - 6); etched brass bins (1 - 2 - 3 - 4 - 5).
Update June 2016: Don is selling his HOn30 cane railway collection intended for a sugar mill/town layout. He would obviously prefer to sell to a single buyer, rather than in bits and pieces. Contact him direct for details: don @ donfraser.com.au (without the spaces). Included are his representations of Moreton Mill's
Image links to the [YouTube] video version of a clinic Dave presented to the Model Railroad EXPO. "It shows sugar cane plantations, how they work and why they fasinate me as a railroad modeler. I also show how I make sugar cane plants and other vegitation for an HOn30 railroad." Published on YouTube, Feb 25, 2017.
John Henshaw's narrow gauge (HOn30) Tooleybuc Sugar Tramway provided an entry back into railway modelling (c 2009) after a 15 year break. As he indicates in an e-mail:
"Carl Arendt's site about Micro Layouts... prompted me to break away, albeit temporarily, from my English style layout and take up his cubic challenge - a micro layout 500mmx500mmx500mm. In this case it will be... well, already is... 'Tooleybuc Sugar Tramway'."
"I've built the base (from surfboard foam), built the mill, two bridges and timber retaining walls. My next step is to cover the foam with a thin screed of plaster, detailing as I go, then give the track base a final sand, background track colour and lay the track (Shinohara with 150mm nominal radius points)."
John has also provided information for a Handbook article on
making palm trees (pdf file).
Hans Hammarsten of Sweden has never visited the cane fields but is quite interested in modelling industrial railways, including a small banana plantation in Hn15 (1/24th on 16.5 mm track) and an 009 sugar cane train.
Steve designs and builds Queensland prototype models using 3d modelling techniques. His Facebook page [http://www.facebook.com/queenslandrailwayminiatures/] describes his progress, and when completed the models are available from his Shapeways page [http://www.shapeways.com/shops/queensland-railway-miniatures].
Jim Hutchinson is another Queenslander with a long history of helping modellers build realistic Queensland prototype models, including contributions to AMRM (Australian Model Railway Magazine) and the Modelling the Railways of Queensland Conventions.
He has made several contributions to the
Handbook series, and the photo above shows one of his HO scale loco sheds (Qunaba Mill). His freelance HO
loco shed diorama c2000 (right) is an excellent example of Qld cane modelling (ignore navigation tip in image, details are on Handbook page).
Toby's On30 cane bin models (Moreton Mill's bin design) are available for purchase through Shapeways and show what can be done with 3D modelling on the computer. He also has plans to produce Bundaberg Jenbach and Baldwin locomotives in both HOn30 and On30.
Search for "australian-model-trains" at shapeways.com/. The bin shown is "On30 Cane Bin (GZLR4GUDY) by tobiasrk01".
Jay explained how he scratchbuilt his 7mm model of Moreton Mill's Coolum (B-B DH) using styrene in a
Handbook series articles. When comparing this with the Badger Bits commercial brass model assembled by Rob Nesbitt (below) consider the number of hours involved in scratchbuilding a single model and developing a viable kit.
There appear to be very few Cuban prototype model railways, although there is a fair bit of information on their equipment and operations. Available resources include include books by Eatwell, Hungrywolf and Rollinson; a commercial CD of photos and maps from Images of Rail; clinic notes by Ray Walter in the 6th Australian Narrow Gauge Convention book; and several overseas videos.
Cuba Libre, from the Sixth Australian Narrow Gauge Convention (Sydney 2003 is an unfinished 0n30 display layout based on contemporary narrow gauge sugar cane lines in Cuba, featuring Cuban architecture and atmosphere. Modelling by Ray Walter and Claus Kleinhapl, who visited Cuba on a railfan trip.
Cuban cane wagons are steel, timber and mesh superstructures on a flat car type underframe with locomotives and equipment generally following US practice in early years. More recent motive power was often Russian sourced.
This HOe Indonesian Sugar Cane Railway layout has over 3000 sugar cane stalks, mill buildings and both sugar cane and rice paddies, plus a well designed backdrop.
Started in 2010, a weigh station and a sugar refinery plant have since been added, also more trees and sugar cane stalks (now 3000 plus). All buildings are made from 1/16" styrene with roofs, made from K&S corrugated copper roofing.
This is a manual layout, ie turnouts are wire in tube operated connected to toggle switches wired to the frogs. Locomotives are controlled by Lenz DCC system. Locomotive #1 has a power storage unit built in for smoother running. Locomotive #2 still has to be modified to look identical to #1.
Buildings do not have an interior yet with the exception of the boiler house, which is partially done.
The backdrop was custom designed by Jack's sons to give this small layout a feeling of grandeur. The working unloading facility needs some more engineering in order to get the unloaded cane inside the mill.
Future plans include making a bagasse processing plant, some small storage buildings, an lot more trees and scenery, and extending the track to create a continuous loop from the cane fields to the mill.
mill panorama -
layout panorama -
mill buildings -
rice paddies, palms, etc. -
almost ready to harvest cane -
loaded cane cars -
roughly 3000 cane stalks. YouTube
video of the layout early 2012 (~4 minutes). Jack's Handbook article:
Sugar Cane using Wire Armatures describes how he models his cane stalks/fields and includes earlier photos of his layout.
George Marsh's 009 Sunshine Sugar layout at the 1998 Modelling the Railways of Queensland Convention with typical small steam and diesel locos hauling 4 ton cane bins, cane harvestor and related truck haulage of bulk sugar. Photos:
Stefan Matthaeus, a German modeller, is building a steam-era H0e scale layout of the sugarmill Olean in Situbondo, East-Java. The project name is 'PG Oleankecil' as it had to be to downscaled from 7 meters length to 3,6 meters to fit into his room. Construction images may be with his blog (2006 link: http://www.schmalspur-modell.at/viewtopic.php?search_id=496029457&t=1568", apparently still active January 2016).
Working in the sugar industry, with good access to photograph and measure sugar cane railway locomotives and rolling stock, Carl's modelling has consistently improved. This page shows some of his earlier modelling. He subsequently moved to the Mackay area, where he works for QR and continues to model. His models have appeared at national modelling conventions and at the Brisbane Show on Lincoln Driver's display layout, Wallaville (see above).
As Carl indicated c 2000: "I model in HOn2.5, using commercially available kits, like Chivers & Far North Hobbies, together with scratch & kit bashed models. Most of the cane bins are Bob Dow models. I also model QR in HOn3.5, so there will be a drawbridge & diamond crossing somewhere on the layout."
Photos: 1997 layout - 1998 layout; 2000 locomotive fleet photo (most still need some details added/removed) - listing; scratch built HOn2.5 Isis Mill tampe 1 - 2; c 2005 loco fleet 1 - 2; Isis Mill: D2 & BV2 - D6 & BV5 - D9 & ballast wagon - D10 & BV10 - D11 & BV11; Bundaberg Sugar: Bli Bli & cane bin - Tamper; c 2008 Model building: Isis mill prototypes, the poison sprayer (1 - 2 - with D6 - with D11) - ballast hopper and rail welding shed.
Of the 2008 models Carl says, "All were made from my own patterns and castings. The shed and poison tank still require a hit with the airbrush".
Rob is an all round modeller, assembling etched brass kit locomotives on behalf of the manufacturer, building sugar and shire equipment in several scales, writing reviews for Narrow Gauge Downunder magazine, and assisting with a Canberra area model group.
His current (2018) project is an HO NSW layout based in Wagga Wagga, including the branch line to Tumbarumka. See his Building Wagga blog for details.
Following a visit to Fiji Steve undertook to develop a Fijian-based exhibition layout in just 12 weeks for the 2013 Australian Narrow Gauge Convention. The Modelling Basics Handbook 37 introduces the On30 layout and its construction.
Diger's Pabrik Gula Jairuba HOe layout is based on sugar cane harvesting in Java, Indonesia. Diger was featured in The S Scale Resource August/September 2018 with layout details and photos.
A 3mm =1 ft South Pacific Island layout exhibited in the UK by the late Frank Saunders. Images downloaded from the Micro Layout Design Gallery (http://www.carendt.com/microplans Continuous/single level) 19/03/03.
Shannon is a Western Australian scratchbuilding Queensland cane with Tully Mill livery in HOn2.5 (using plastic card).
Ten tonne bogie cane bin,
Current loco fleet,
Baldwin with brake wagon,
Clyde with 6 wheel brake van.
Rusty is not a modeller per se, but he and his wife had The Roundhouse hobby shop in Brisbane, as well as Hanovale Castings and RJ Models, and have always supported modelling Queensland prototype.
Factory assembled prototype
2 for Hanovale Castings/Berg's Hobbies On30 Bundy Fowler 0-6-2T kit. Photos c Mar 03, kit delivered mid-2003. Delivered kit (photo right) as professionally assembled by The Model Works Australia.
Greg 'models' in two scales: OO9 as described here and 12" = 1' on the Durundur Railway, the Australian Narrow Gauge Railway Museum at Woodford, where Greg is responsible for trackwork and related infrastructure.
It's easier to lay track for our scale models than it is on the prototype, but it helps that some individuals feel a responsibility to maintain our heritage railways as well.
Greg's weed sprayers (left on Bob Dow's 'Dowmont' layout) and other models inspired my modelling, particularly his use of commercial wagon chassis kits for freelance HOn30 navvy wagons. His slide collection and other technical information provides a significant portion of the CaneSIG image collection and inspires us all.
The engine shed in Haruhiko Suga's sugar cane module was first exhibited in 2005, with the branch line subsequently added. Modelled after Dutch-built Asian sugar mills, the setting is on an island in Japan. Rollingstock is freelance, with some Bob Dow kits (Queensland prototype cane bin kits no longer available), and Australian millet broom straw for the sugar cane.
Perhaps of most interest, the cane trucks are hauled out of the field on temporary tracks using bullocks ('cow trains').
Jeroen is a Dutch modeller, Jeroen van der Schaaf, who experiments with the use of
rapid prototyping techniques (link downloads a Handbook article) to scratchbuild HOn30 wholestick cane trucks over a Roco HOe chassis. His blog (www.koala-creek.net/, inactive since 2012 at January 2016) has further details, including that an addition to his family in 2012 has slowed his modelling efforts.
The photo above shows an operational O scale bin as built built by Marc Witten from one of Jim Fainges' free downloadable card kits. He printed three copies of the bin onto light card. The first forms the basic kit, with the floor and top reinforced with artist's mount board. The framing and related parts were cut out from the second copy and overlaid onto first for a three dimensional appearance.
The small brackets and corner plates, etc., were cut out from the third print, then overlaid on the second print after touching up all cut edges with a felt tip pen. He cast a chassis from whitemetal and added that to the base.
The card was coated with 50/50 pva glue/water which stiffened it and made it durable.
Capricorn Sugar Rail Museum, an On30 micro-layout built to promote the hobby and demonstrate construction techniques.
Lynn also promotes CaneSIG and Queensland's rail heritage through displays at conventions, exhibitions, etc., including two HOn30 dioramas for the Australian Narrow Gauge Railway Museum Society (Woodford, see left and right thumbnails) -- 2003 NMRA Convention (Toronto) -- 2007
History Expo, Rockhampton -- 2007 Narrow Gauge Convention
(A4 poster, pdf) --
Brisbane Train Shows -- 2011 Rockhampton Scale Modelers Assn Exhibition
(1st prize, diorama) --2011
Narrow Gauge Convention -- and 2011
rail heritage promotion.
Copyright © A C Lynn Zelmer or the contributor as appropriate. Last updated: 26 January 2023 [lz]; e-mail: Lynn @ ZelmerOz.com