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The main purpose of SlimRail has always been to promote the hobby of model railroading by displaying in modules at public events where people can see what the hobby of model railroading is all about. The primary focus is modeling the character, history and flavor of Colorado Narrow Gauge Steam Railroads.

In about 1981, four of us in the Pikes Peak Division would meet in a round robin group to help with layouts, work on models and sometimes watch a video. At one of those meetings, someone suggested the we should have a module group like a Division in Denver. So we started trying to decide what that would be. Two people were standard gauge modelers and two were narrow gauge. We went to a show in Denver to see what it was all about. That is where we saw our first modular layout. We discussed this and what ours would be like if we were to start a module group. One of the drawbacks of what we saw was the fact the it was a pit style, and therefore had four corners. That meant that we would have to build eight modules just to get started. And what if a person who had a corner left? Then a new one would have to be built. We also did not care for the fact that all the operators were inside the pit. After several discussions, we decided to model only narrow gauge, have a linear style layout where we could have more contact with the public and to build the spiral ends which would belong to the group.

The first time we set up the modules in public was at the Pikes Peak Division meeting in 1982 and at Buckingham Mall on the Presidents Day weekend of the same year.

SlimRail was formed as an opportunity to operate narrow gauge equipment. It was originally only HOn3, but in 1994 an On3 division was added. SlimRail standards are based on the presentation of high quality model building and train display presented in a format designed to fit in the limited space of a module and relatively easy to transport. Getting the display to shows and simplicity of operation is a higher priority than operations realism. The intent is that the simplicity of construction and use will encourage others to participate. Come and see us at at our next show setup.

See the ride the cab video taken at the 2017 Narrow Gauge Convention.

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