Steam and Diesel Film Footage
Of CN & CP Trains From 1973

Prototype and Model Trains Ride The Rails

This video is a copy of a black and white 16 mm film shot by Joseph Levy and me in 1973 around Montreal, Quebec, Canada for our own amusement. It was taken with a 16mm Bolex camera and edited into A & B rolls in my basement.

I remember cutting it and hanging it with clothespins on a line I'd stretched across the room. The syncing was done on a manual 4-gang syncronizer. I couldn't afford fancy equipment. I did pay to have the final optical soundtrack added at a commerical production house.

This film includes both vintage prototype CN and CP steam and diesel footage including the CN Turbotrain, a steam excursion (behind 302), and some freight trains as well as model trains. Now that Rapido Trains has released a scale model of the Turbotrain you might enjoy seeing the real thing. It began operating in Canada in 1968 and ran until the early '80s. I fondly remember the bar car for the six hour trip to Toronto. I staggered off at Union Station in Toronto a few times!

The prototype footage was largely taken near Dorval station where both the CN and CP lines parallel each other. The steam excursion was photographed between the Mercier Bridge and Delson, Quebec on the other side of the St. Lawrence from Montreal. I think this was late 1968 or early 1969. I don't recall the exact dates.

Those of you who remember International Hobby on Ste. Catherine Street will remember the brass showcase and Gordon Teel of Juneco models. He appears briefly in the film. Also interviewed in the film was friend Brian Clark who passed away several years ago. He had some wonderful brass locomotives I used to drool over. And yes, that's me with the beard doing the interviews and voice track. Remember the prices of brass locomotives in 1968? The market for scale brass locomotives isn't as robust as it used to be now that the detail level of plastic has become so excellent.  

DCC has also affected the interest in brass steam and diesel models due to the cost and difficulty of conversion. Joseph converted the film to a DVD a few years ago and he rediscovered the DVD recently 

I've probably broken a few copyright laws by posting this film on YouTube but I can't remove the music from the audio track, so I hope I will be forgiven in order for train lovers to see this vintage footage of steam and diesel trains from a bygone era.

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