4197Weekend HSS`s and great company! (Part 2)
- May 2, 2001The HSS's begin!
Saturday began early with an eager group (well at least half of it
was) to set off on our HSS expedition. The first stop was at Westend
Toronto Trains owned by Klaus Sorge. WTT is a 100% Märklin shop
located in a shared space with Klaus Marine. So if we still had
money left over after our train shopping we could pick up a speed
boat or a new outboard motor!
Traffic was reasonable for a Saturday morning and we arrived 5
minutes after openning. I had Terry pose in front of the shop for
The shop is attractive and cozy (translation = not very big but has
lots to see). Unfortunately Klaus was off work but his son, I
assume, provided attentive service and conversation. The Z selection
is modest but WTT will order anything Märklin but only Märklin.
I learned the hard way when I asked to order 5 packages of MTL 902
coupler conversions. The answer was swift and to the point: WTT
already has enough work dealing with Märklin, they don't need
another manufacturer, or words to that effect!
Our purchases were modest as well...Terry always buys something on
principle to encourage hobby shops (I don't recall what he got) and I
picked up 3 strips of HO cork roadbed which will be the base of my Z
hand laid track project and a set of Merten Z scale dogs. I figured
that I could use 5-6 of them painted as wolves surrounding a hiker in
From WTT we turned the car around and headed off to John's Trains and
Hobbies on Danforth Ave, Toronto. The trip took longer than I had
expected since I always take the subway to get there (normally a 20
minute trip from my apartment) but the car took 40 minutes in stop
and go traffic. We enjoyed passing through the numerous cultural
communities on our way to the shop.
Terry had already heard of John's and the mysterious "Randy" who is
the master of everything 'Z' in the store. Randy was busy with other
business but we had fun testing 'experienced' Z locos with Hoerst on
the 'time-saver' test track.
One thing caught Terry's eye...a loco presentation track in stainless
steel and aluminum. The rack had rollers that held the drivers of
locos for stationary operation. The STT company makes these test
racks in every scale including Z. In addition, it is possible to
attach a cam to one of the rollers and get an authentic scale speed
reading from an accessory electronic speed gauge.
I have already mentioned in a previous post that John's had 2
turntables and 2 roundhouses. They also had a transfer table and a
good selection of track components. John's is a Märklin only shop,
no Micro-Trains. They will ship anywhere so call them with your wish
lists, they just might have what you are looking for.
Randy finally came by to say hello and to ring up our purchases. I
think Terry picked up some Preiser figures and I was able to keep my
wallet in my pocket (doesn't happen often, I can assure you)!
We said goodbye to Hoerst, Randy, Heidi (the co-owner)after trooping
to the store washroom, one after the other, not all at once, and
prepared to make our way to lunch and our next HSS.
Stay tuned for Part 3 of the Great Toronto HSS expedition...
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