Free-mo Meets

Please see the coming events page for our future plans. We hope to see you at one of the events.

Mt. Cheam Lions Hobby Show - Chilliwack BC, October 2019

In October, we attended the annual Mt. Cheam Lions Hobby Show in Chilliwack BC. We were joined by Lindsay from Abbotsford with his Slocan/Clayburn modules, by Dave and Liam from Roberts Creek with their Dog River module set, and by Dan, Stewart and Bob from Victoria with their Gantlet and Galapo Loop modules.

Unfortunately, the Lions Club has decided this was the last event they will sponsor. Perhaps some other groupr will step in to fill the void.

7th Annual BC Free-mo Meet - Chilliwack BC, June 2019

For the 7th year, in mid-June we arranged a multi-group, multi-operator Free-mo layout at Heritage Park in Chilliwack. We were joined by groups/operators from Inland Washington Free-mo in Spokane, Idaho Free-mo from Moscow, Calgary Free-mo, Cariboo Free-mo from BC, as well as individuals from Roberts Creek, Chilliwack, Abbotsford, Mission, and Maple Ridge, BC and two others from Tacoma, WA. We designed and built a layout of some 133 feet by 93 feet, containing 4 return loops and 56 modules, several of which were multi-sectional. We also enjoyed a Sunday morning operating session, designed by Chris, on the 517 feet of benchwork; a new record for us!

James of Skeena Pacific shot and edited these videos for your enjoyment:
BC Free-mo Layout
BC Free-mo Layout
BC Free-mo Layout
BC Free-mo Layout

Mt. Cheam Lions Hobby Show - Chilliwack BC, October 2018

In October, we attended the annual Mt. Cheam Lions Hobby Show in Chilliwack BC. We were joined by Brent from Chilliwack with his Woodbine module set, by Lindsay from Abbotsford with his Slocan/Clayburn modules, by Dave and Liam from Roberts Creek with their Dog River module set, by Greg from Burnaby with his Crow Mountain module set and Anxiety Loop, and by Mark, Dan, Stewart and John from Victoria with their Gantlet and Galapo Loop modules.

James of Skeena Pacific shot and edited these videos for your enjoyment:
Coldslap Free-mo Layout
Coldslap Free-mo Layout
Coldslap Free-mo Layout

Alberta Free-mo - Big Valley AB, August 2018

In August most of us attended the Alberta Free-mo 2018 event. It was their 15th Anniversary, and we were happy to provide our modules to assist in creating a massive layout of some 1124 benchwork feet. As usual, the Alberta group hosted a wonderful event, providing us with an enjoyable experience.

Harry Spouthern shot and edited this video for your enjoyment:
2018 Alberta Free-mo Layout

Nick Marshall shot and edited this video for your enjoyment:
2018 Alberta Free-mo Layout

6th Annual BC Free-mo Meet - Chilliwack BC, June 2018

Once again in mid-June we arranged a multi-group, multi-operator Free-mo layout at Heritage Park in Chilliwack. We were joined by groups/operators from Inland Washington Free-mo in Spokane, Idaho Free-mo from Moscow, Calgary Free-mo, Cariboo Free-mo from BC, as well as individuals from Roberts Creek, Chilliwack, Abbotsford and Maple Ridge, BC and a first-timer from Kent, WA. We designed and built a layout of some 115 feet by 89 feet, containing 4 return loops and 53 modules, several of which were multi-sectional. We also enjoyed a Sunday morning operating session, designed by Chris, on the 398 feet of benchwork.

James of Skeena Pacific shot and edited these videos for your enjoyment:
BC Free-mo Layout
BC Free-mo Layout

Mt. Cheam Lions Hobby Show - Chilliwack BC, October 2017

In October, we attended the annual Mt. Cheam Lions Hobby Show in Chilliwack BC. We were joined by Nick from Langley with his Nick's Curve module and by Greg from Maple Ridge with his 2-section Crow Mountain module set.

James of Skeena Pacific shot and edited these videos for your enjoyment:
Coldslap Free-mo Layout
Coldslap Free-mo Layout
Coldslap Free-mo Layout

5th Annual BC Free-mo Meet - Chilliwack BC, June 2017

Once again in mid-June we arranged a multi-group, multi-operator Free-mo layout at Heritage Park in Chilliwack. We were joined by groups/operators from Inland Washington Free-mo in Spokane, Idaho Free-mo from Moscow, Calgary Free-mo, Cariboo Free-mo from BC, as well as individuals from Roberts Creek, Chilliwack, Abbotsford and Maple Ridge. We designed and built a layout of some 87 feet by 86 feet, containing 42 modules, several of which were multi-sectional. We enjoyed playing with trains on the 327 feet of track.

Mt. Cheam Lions Hobby Show - Chilliwack BC, October 2016

In October, we attended the annual Mt. Cheam Lions Hobby Show in Chilliwack BC. We were joined by Brent from Chilliwack with his 6-section, U-shaped module set, and by Bill from Chilliwack with his 2-section Stevens Point module set.

Western Canada Free-mo Meet - Salmon Arm BC, June 2016

In mid-June we were fortunate enough to arrange a multi-group, multi-operator Free-mo layout at the Shaw Centre in Salmon Arm, in conjunction with the PNR annual meet. We were joined by groups/operators from Inland Washington Free-mo in Spokane, Idaho Free-mo from Moscow, Calgary Free-mo, Cariboo Free-mo from BC, Vernon BC, Sechelt BC, as well as individuals from Chilliwack BC. We designed and built a layout of some 150 feet by 62 feet, containing 45 modules many of which were multi-sectional. It took a mere 9 hours to set up on the Friday preceding the public show. We proceeded to entertain visitors for the next 2 days, while we enjoyed playing with trains on the 426 feet of track.

Harry Southern of Southawk Productions edited this video shot by Les Kobes for your enjoyment:
Western Canada Free-mo Layout

Greg Mostardi of West Coast Rails shot this video for your enjoyment:
Free-mo Layout in Salmon Arm

Larry Sloan of Kent WA shot this video for your enjoyment:
Free-mo Layout

Finally, Leo DeGroot shot this 42 minute video for your enjoyment:
Free-mo Layout


Spring Model Train Show - Spokane WA, March 2016

In October 2015 a few of us travelled to Spokane to encourage the local train club to embrace the Free-mo concept. Did they ever! In only five months they whipped up two triple track loops and nine other (mostly double track) modules, several with switching opportunites. The modules were well constructed and met all the current Free-mo standards. Given the very fast build, the group had little scenery attached, but they have plans to do so soon. An excellent beginning, indeed!

Mt. Cheam Lions Hobby Show - Chilliwack BC, October 2015

In October, we attended the annual Mt. Cheam Lions Hobby Show in Chilliwack BC. Dave Bonser from Roberts Creek, Herb Fischer from Vernon, and Bill Bal from Chilliwack, all contributed to a great layout, that won the People's Choice Award for group layouts.

Fall Model Train Show - Spokane WA, October 2015

In October, two of our members attended the Fall Model Train Show in Spokane. We were joined by Frank from Idaho with his two moidule set. Some members of the River City Model Railroad Club had seen Free-mo in action elsewhere, and had their interest piqued. We were invited to the Spring event to set up a small layout to highlight the design and benefits of Free-mo with a view to generating more interest among the club members. We were also able to attach the first few modules constructed by River City to test their workmanship, and they passed inspection. They were well on their way to success. Apparently we did succeed, as evidenced by the subsequent construction efforts by the Inland Washington Free-mo group.

National Train Show - Portland OR, August 2015

In August most of the Coldslap Free-mo group travelled to Portland to partake of the annual NMRA convention. We had arranged to join our modules with those from California, Oregon, and Minnesota, to fill a 60 x 100 foot allotment of floor space. The layout went together and performed well, with only a few minor glitches.

Our layout as a whole won the First Place Group Module award, plus several other individuals won NMRA Awards.

Harry Southern of Southawk Productions (and one of the Coldslap Free-mo group) shot this video for your enjoyment:

NTS 2015 Free-mo Layout and show

Larry Sloan of Kent WA (a Free-mo fan) shot this video for your enjoyment:

NTS 2015 Free-mo Layout and show

Third Annual BC Free-mo Meet - Chilliwack BC, June 2015

The weekend of June 12 through 14, Coldslap Free-mo hosted the Third Annual BC Free-mo Meet at Heritage Park in Chilliwack. Friends from Calgary, Vernon, Roberts Creek, Quesnel, Williams Lake and Moscow, Idaho joined with us to create a roughly U-shaped layout, in a loop-to-loop design. Saturday evening we once again enjoyed a catered dinner of lasagna and Caesar salad. After we had consumed our fill, we returned to the layout to enjoy an operating session designed by Chris Reid and Dave Bonser. The balance of the weekend was free-run time, of which there was ample. As always, we were sad when 4:00PM Sunday arrived, and it was time to knock down and head home.

Nick Marshall shot and edited two videos for your enjoyment:
2015 BC Free-mo Meet - Part One
2015 BC Free-mo Meet - Part Two

Mt. Cheam Lions Hobby Show - Chilliwack BC, October 2014

In October, we attended the annual Mt. Cheam Lions Hobby Show in Chilliwack BC. Dave Bonser from Roberts Creek, Herb Fischer from Vernon, and Bill Bal from Chilliwack, all contributed to a great layout, that won the People's Choice Award for group layouts.

Second Annual BC Free-mo Meet - Chilliwack BC, June 2014

The weekend of June 20 through 22, Coldslap Free-mo hosted the Second Annual BC Free-mo Meet at Heritage Park in Chilliwack. Friends from Calgary, Vernon, Roberts Creek, Parksville, North Vancouver, and Moscow, Idaho joined with us to create a roughly U-shaped layout, in a point-to-loop design. Unfortunately a 4-man group of modellers were not able to make it down from the northern portion of BC, so the layout was smaller than we had hoped. But, we had the luxury of some 15,000 square feet to play with, so made as much use of it as possible. Saturday evening we enjoyed a catered dinner of lasagna and Caesar salad, followed by a custom made "train cake" created by a local baker. After we had consumed our fill, we returned to the layout to enjoy an operating session designed by Chris Reid and Dave Bonser. The balance of the weekend was free-run time, of which there was ample. As always, we were sad when 4:00PM Sunday arrived, and it was time to knock down and head home.

We plan to sponsor the Third Annual Meet June 12 to 14, 2015, so keep checking this site for updates.

Harry Southern of Southawk Productions shot and edited two videos for your enjoyment:
2014 BC Free-mo Meet - Part One
2014 BC Free-mo Meet - Part Two

Supertrain - Calgary AB, April 2014

In April, we joined with some of the Calgary Free-mo group to create a joint layout for Supertrain. About 260 feet of benchwork provided us with hours of entertainment, as well as entertaining some 12,000 public visitors. The weatherman was more kind than he was in April 2008. Only a slight dusting of snow accomplanied the slightly below zero temperatures. Nontheless, we did enjoy ourselves and all returned home safely.

Harry Southern of Southawk Productions shot and edited a video for your enjoyment:
2014 Supertrain joint Free-mo layout

Mt. Cheam Lions Hobby Show - Chilliwack BC, October 2013

In October, we attended the annual Mt. Cheam Lions Hobby Show in Chilliwack BC. The two-day show was, of course, a great success. We were joined by Dave Bonser from Roberts Creek, Herb Fischer from Vernon, and Bill Bal from Chilliwack. A wonderful time was had by all.

Alberta Free-mo - Big Valley AB, August 2013

In August Jamea and Larry attended the Alberta Free-mo 2013 event. We connected several of our personal modules into the large layout. As usual, the Alberta group hosted a wonderful event, providing us with a very enjoyable experience.

First Annual BC Free-mo Meet - Chilliwack BC, June 2013

This inaugural Meet was held in Chilliwack, June 21st to 23rd, at Tourism Chilliwack's Heritage Park otherwise known as the "Red Barns". It was a super weekend of running trains, trains and more trains not to mention a tremendous amount of fun with wonderful camaraderie added to the mix. The area rented and utilized for the Free-mo layout measured 100' x 150' and proved to be just perfect.

Organized by the members of Coldslap Free-mo, the initial stages of planning commenced in early 2012 with everything finally coming together near year's end. A call, meanwhile, went out to various Free-mo model railroaders resulting in 24 attending consisting of 5 members from Calgary Free-mo, 4 members from the Cariboo Free-mo, 2 from Sechelt Free-mo, 1 from North Vancouver, 1 from Abbotsford, 1 from Vernon, 1 from Idaho and 7 from the host Coldslap Free-mo. Along with them came 37 modules/module sets.

Thursday, June 20th, saw a number of the modules dropped off at the Red Barns in the evening.

Friday, the 21st, was used to unpack the modules and set up the layout, which was in the form of a lazy "U" with a loop on each end and a spur line off one of the inner sides. Also, positioned on each side was a Yard. By Friday evening the layout was up and operational with some Free-mo'ers running trains into the late evening or the early morning hours (2 am) of Saturday.

Saturday, the 22nd, was all about running more trains and run they did starting at 8 am whether they were steam or diesel, freight or passenger. As food tends to be essential, a break was taken to hold a barbeque at 5 pm but no sooner had the food been consumed when it was back to the trains and a well-planned operating session. Once again trains ran late into the evening.

Sunday, it was more continuous action when suddenly it was 4 pm with the crews at the end of their runs and out of time - the taxis were waiting track-side. Sadly, the layout had to be dismantled and the modules packed up. Goodbyes were said along with such comments as "What a weekend!", or "See you in Big Valley, Alberta this coming August 16th - 18th for the 10th Annual Alberta Free-mo Meet" along with, "See you back in Chilliwack here at the Red Barns, June 20th - 22nd, next year [2014]".

A number of expressions of thanks are necessary: to Tourism Chilliwack & Heritage Park for having such an excellent facility we were able to rent and to do so at a reasonable price; to all those attending this Meet from far and near; and, to Larry and Lori Sebelley for playing such a lead role in organizing this First Annual BC Free-mo Meet. In addition a very special thank you must go to the Calgary Free-mo'ers who came to Chilliwack needing to travel via Edmonton because of Highway #1 closures near Canmore and between Banff and Golden. What an exceptional display of commitment to attend the Meet as well as dedication to model railroading!

This was indeed a most enjoyable fun-filled weekend and while it was not a public show as such, many friends and family members did drop by to say hi.

Frank Wilhelm used his GoPro camera to film a trip around the layout and Harry Southern of Southawk Productions edited the video for your enjoyment:
First Annual BC Free-mo Meet

Mt. Cheam Lions Hobby Show - Chilliwack BC, October 2012

In October, we attended the annual Mt. Cheam Lions Hobby Show in Chilliwack BC. The two-day show was, as always, a great success. We were joined by Dave and Liam Bonser from Roberts Creek. We had a great time, particularly with the ad-hoc switchlists prepared by Chris Reid.

Alberta Free-mo - Big Valley AB, August 2012

In August a few of us attended the Alberta Free-mo 2012 event. We connected several of our personal modules into the large layout. As usual, the Alberta group hosted a wonderful event, providing us with an enjoyable experience.

Goldpan Express 2012 - Quesnel BC, April 2012

In April, we particpated in the annual 7th Division Convention, this year held in Quesnel. The attached public model railroad show included several portable layouts highlighted by a joint-venture Free-mo layout. We joined the large group of northern operators from the Cariboo Free-mo group to create an enjoyable layout. The show ran Friday afternoon and all day Saturday.

National Train Show - Sacramento CA, July 2011

In July we made the trek south to California to partake of the annual NMRA convention. After the week of learning new skills, viewing models, and enjoying tours, we turned our focus to the National Train Show. We had arranged to join our modules with those from California and Kansas, to form a 40 x 80 foot "W" shaped layout. We took Coldslap Yard, Double H Loop, Cormel, and Packer's Pond with us. The plan called for these modules to stay together, creating a distinct grouping leading to one loop on one leg of the layout. We also took Vanville, which ended up at the farthest point of the layout, at the very end of one of the "W" legs. Although it was a bit lonely out there, the people at Vanville witnessed a lot of switching action, much to the delight of the attendent railfans.

Once again, to the credit of the Free-mo design, and following the specifications to the letter, the layout performed essentially flawlessly from the moment of its construction. It went together well, and was a joy to operate upon.

Our American friends were fabulous hosts, and we are looking forward to running with them again in Portland in 2015.

Harry Southern of Southawk Productions (and one of the Coldslap Free-mo group) shot these videos for your enjoyment:

NTS 2011 Free-mo Layout Part One
NTS 2011 Free-mo Layout Part Two
NTS 2011 Free-mo Layout Part Three
NTS 2011 Free-mo Layout Part Four
NTS 2011 Free-mo Layout Part Five
NTS 2011 Free-mo Layout Part Six

Private Run - Chilliwack BC, January 2011

In January we rented 1/2 of one floor of Heritage Park in Chilliwack, to hold a private run session. Most of the Chilliwack Free-mo module owners attended. We set up the layout on Friday evening, and played all day Saturday and Sunday. One club member took advantage of the opportunity to set up his multi-section module in one corner, to do extensive construction work. The event was deemed a success, such that we are considering holding similar events several times a year. If we proceed with the plan, we will invite other Free-mo module owners to join us for the weekend. It may even develop into an annual BC Free-mo meet!

Mt. Cheam Lions Hobby Show - Chilliwack BC, October 2010

In October, we once again attended the annual Mt. Cheam Lions Hobby Show in Chilliwack BC. The two-day show was, as always, a great success.

Alberta Free-mo - Big Valley AB, August 2010

Unfortunately most of our group missed the 2009 event, however some of us managed to attend the Alberta Free-mo 2010 event. We connected our group's yard plus several of our individual modules into the even larger layout.

Shuswap Rails 2010 - Salmon Arm BC, April 2010

In April, we particpated in the annual 7th Division Convention, this year held in Salmon Arm, sponsored by the Salmon Arm Model Railway Club. The attached public model railroad show included several portable layouts highlighted by a joint-venture Free-mo layout. We joined with 3 modules and operators from the Cariboo Free-mo group to create some 133 feet of benchwork. The show ran Friday afternoon and all day Saturday, entertaining more than 1,100 public visitors.

Mt. Cheam Lions Hobby Show - Chilliwack BC, October 2009

In October, we attended the Mt. Cheam Lions Hobby Show in Chilliwack BC. The two-day show was, as always, a great success.

Mt. Cheam Lions Hobby Show - Chilliwack BC, October 2008

In October, we attended the Mt. Cheam Lions Hobby Show in Chilliwack BC. The two-day show was, once again, another success.

Alberta Free-mo - Big Valley AB, August 2008

Now essentially an annual event, we attended the Alberta Free-mo 2008. Again this year we connected our group's yard plus several of our individual modules into the even larger layout. The layout was slightly smaller than usual, however over 490 feet of benchwork provided us with ample opportunity to play.

Chilliwack Interchange 2008 - Chilliwack BC, June 2008

In June, we hosted the annual PNR Convention. The attached public model railroad show included many portable layouts including a joint-venture Free-mo layout. We joined with the Alberta Free-mo group and several independent modellers to create a layout. Some 390 feet of benchwork provided many hours of entertainment, as well as entertaining many public visitors.

Supertrain - Calgary AB, April 2008

In April, we joined with the Alberta Free-mo group to create a layout for Supertrain. Over 300 feet of benchwork provided us with many hours of entertainment, as well as entertaining many public visitors. Unfortunately, the weatherman did not cooperate with us. He decided it would be funny to dump a blizzard on Alberta on Easter weekend. Nontheless, we did enjoy ourselves and all returned home safely.

Mt. Cheam Lions Hobby Show - Chilliwack BC, October 2007

In October, we attended the Mt. Cheam Lions Hobby Show in Chilliwack BC. The two-day show was another success, enjoyed by all of us.

Alberta Free-mo - Big Valley AB, August 2007

In August, we attended the Alberta Free-mo 2007 event. Again this year we connected our group's yard plus several of our individual modules into the even larger layout. Over 500 feet of benchwork provided us with many hours of entertainment.

Treasure Valley Express - Boise ID, August 2007

We attended the PNR annual convention hosted by the 3rd Division. We set up only our own modules, had fun, and presented the concept to the audience. With any luck enough interest was generated to encourage some Free-mo activity in Eastern Washington and Idaho.

Pacific Rails 2007 - Victoria BC, May 2007

In May, we attended Pacific Rails 2007 in Victoria BC. The show was in conjuction with the 2007 national CARM meet held over the Victoria Day weekend at the Univesity of Victoria. There we connected to one module from the Pacific Northwest and two new modules from Victoria. The two new modules under construction will depict the freight facilities at Squamish BC, and will provide a much-needed return loop with staging tracks. Reports since the show indicate that much interest was garnered for the Free-mo concept, as all the attendees saw the value of a layout capable of holding operating sessions. We are hoping that more modules will be constructed, and will join in the fun.

PNW RPM - Bellingham WA, April 2007

In April, we attended the PNW RPM meet in Bellingham WA, where we connected to a several modules from the Pacific Northwest. Check out Bill Schaumburg's "Editor's Notebook" column starting on page 112 of the July 2007 edition of Railroad Model Craftsman for an excellent story.

United Northwest Show - Monroe WA, February 2007

In February, we attended the United Northwest Show in Monroe WA, where we connected to a several modules from the Pacific Northwest.

Mt. Cheam Lions Hobby Show - Chilliwack BC, October 2006

In October, we attended the Mt. Cheam Lions Hobby Show in Chilliwack BC, where we connected to a corner module built by a gentleman from Port Townsend, WA. The two-day show was another success, enjoyed by all of us. It seems we forgot to take any pictures.

Alberta Free-mo - Big Valley AB, August 2006

In August, we attended the Alberta Free-mo 2006 event. We connected our group's yard plus several of our individual modules into the very large layout. A fabulous time was had by all; running trains and socialising with the group. We will certainly be going next year. Next year's event will be the weekend of August 18-19, 2007.

PNW RPM - Bellingham WA, May 2006

In May, we attended the PNW RPM show in Bellingham WA, where we connected to several other Free-mo modules owned by the northwest Washington participants. Much progress had been made by all. We did have some technical difficulties, but were able to work around them for the day. Below is a drawing of the joint layout. Some 16 modules created about 85 linear feet of layout in a point-to-point configuration. We are looking forward to 2007, and hope the meet can be expanded to two days. A few photos follow, but the entire event can be viewed at PNW RPM Photos.

Vernon Spring Meet - Vernon BC, April 2006

In April, we attended the 7th Division Spring Meet in Vernon BC, where we set up a point-to-point layout consisting of CMRC Free-mo modules. Much interest was generated, and many questions were fielded.

Trains 2005 - Burnaby BC, November 2005

In November, we attended the Trains 2005 show in Burnaby BC, where we again connected to the NMRA-style layout from Vancouver.

Mt. Cheam Lions Show - Chilliwack BC, October 2005

In October, we attended the Mt. Cheam Lions Hobby Show in Chilliwack BC, where we connected to a much larger version of the NMRA-style layout from Vancouver. The Free-mo group enjoyed running on the larger layout, and the Vancouver group enjoyed operating on our yard.

Lynden Lions Show - Lynden WA, September 2005

In September we took the yard to Lynden WA to participate there in the show. We connected to some modules built by a gentleman from Port Townsend WA, and to a small version of an NMRA-style layout from the Vancouver area.

PNW RPM - Bellingham WA, June 2005

Our official unveiling took place in June 2005 at the "Rails by the Bay" RPM meet in Bellingham WA. We took and set up the yard in its incomplete state in order to generate interest among Pacific Northwest modellers for the Free-mo concept. All were very impressed with what we had accomplished in only 3 short months. Many expressed their desire to construct modules of their own. One gentleman brought one (VERY NICE!) module with a bridge over a creek bed, which we managed to attach to one end of our yard. It certainly provided a beautiful scene on which some of these photographs were shot.