Model railroad hobby is just the ticket for Basin Electric employee

Working for Basin Electric, Micheal Farley, Basin Electric senior fleet administrator, has learned many new things about coal-generated electricity, which goes hand-in-hand with his hobby of model railroading.

It’s not every day a person’s job and hobby intersect.

But, that’s the case for Micheal Farley, Basin Electric senior fleet administrator, who previously worked as a training coordinator at Transmission System Maintenance (TSM) in Mandan. Before he started working at TSM in 2013, he’d already had a good understanding of Basin Electric’s facilities, thanks to his hobby of model railroading.

For the past five years, Farley has been working on his third permanent model train layout, which will resemble the 1970s branch line in North Dakota that went north out of Mandan, to Stanton, then through Zap, Golden Valley, and Killdeer.

“I chose this part of the country because it was close to where I lived so I could go do the research if I wanted. It also offered a nice mix of some back country branch line. Then from Beulah on east it was busy with coal traffic to the power plants,” Farley says.

Working for Basin Electric, Farley has learned many new things about coal-generated electricity, which goes hand-in-hand with railroading. “It’s neat to know more about the energy industry, and knowing that the railroad needs to exist to service it.”

Looking at his model railroad, one will notice a few iconic landmarks representing North Dakota’s energy industry. Along one line, Farley has included the Beulah (ND) TSM shop.

Complete with a bucket truck, Farley incorporated the Basin Electric’s Beulah TSM shop, circa the 1970s, into his model of the Burlington Northern Yellowstone Division railroad line.

“It’s always fun to incorporate things that are somehow connected to you,” Farley says, who plans to also include transmission lines, a substation, and a power plant on his model.

With more than three decades of railroad modeling under his belt, Farley credits his dad for getting him hooked on the hobby. “It was a way for us to spend time together as father and son, and we still spend time together working on each other’s model railroads,” he says.

So, how will Farley know when he’s done with his model railroad of the Burlington Northern Yellowstone Division?

“When you’re too old to work on it,” he says with a laugh.

Follow the progress of Farley’s model railroad on his Facebook page, Burlington Northern Yellowstone Division Model Railroad.

Comments

  1. Nice article Micheal Farley!

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: