WELCOME TO 2015 O SCALE WEST / S WEST 10!

Thank you for visiting!


Quick Details for the 2015 Meet:

WHEN:
The Next OSW (O SCALE WEST) is Feb 5-7, 2015.
Click here for more info.

WHERE:
The Hyatt Regency Santa Clara (San Francisco area).
Rooms are $116 + tax 1-4 occupancy
OSW is in the well lit 25000 sf carpeted ballroom.
Click here for more info.

HOW MUCH:
Family Registration for the entire meet is $30.
30" x 72" tables are $40.
Note: prices increase after December 31.
Walk up on Saturday and get in for $20.
Click here for more info.

HOW TO REGISTER (ATTEND):
Download the registration form
Fill it in on your screen, print, mail or bring to the meet.
Click here for more info.

The following links to jump you directly to information.

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IMPORTANT! NO MORE HARD COPY LAYOUT MAPS AND NEWSLETTERS!

If you have attended previous O Scale West meets, you received could pick it up the layout visits map packet which contains the layout visits schedule and maps to the layouts.

You also received newsletters in the Spring that wrapped up the previous meet, and in the fall a newsletter that described the upcoming meet. Both newsletters included a registration form for the upcoming meet.

The map packet will no longer be provided!

Newsletters will no longer be mailed, they can be downloaded from this web site. A registration form will be mailed in the months before the upcoming meet!

In place of the hard copy (paper) layout map packets OSW will provide at the meet a single sheet of paper that lists all the open layouts, the days and hours they are open, and their address.

NO HARDCOPY (PAPER) MAPS WILL BE AVAILABLE AT O SCALE WEST!

In liew of a paper map, you must use a road navigation GPS which you have to provide. To get to the layouts, you will have to enter the address of the layout that is on the sheet of paper provided by OSW into your road navigation GPS so the GPS can direct to that address.

As before, to help you plan your layout visits in advance of arriving at OSW, this web site be updated before the meet to show which layouts are open on which days, but without the address information.

Call Rod see Contact if you have any questions.


DON OLSEN

Don passed away August 8, 2014. Since the early days of OSW Don created and ran the movies program, one of the popular events at OSW. Don would show and narrate rare footage of western railroads, sometimes offering a preview of upcoming releases from Catenary Productions. Don retired from the program a few years ago; we were pleased to see him at most of the subsequent OSW meets. He was a wonderful individual and will be missed.

Mike O'Connell provided an obituary and a portrait of Don. Thank you Mike!



WHAT IS O SCALE WEST?

OSW is a gathering of those who are interested in scale model railroading using two scales, one is O which is 1/48 size, and and the other is S which is 1/64 size.

Compared to O gauge toy trains such as Lionel, 2-rail O scale trains are accurately proportioned, are finely detailed including wheels and couplers closer, and in some cases, exact miniature reproductions of the real thing. All that fine detail means they can be fragile and must be handled carefully, e.g., they are adult toys, not children's toys (although many adults enjoy Lionel trains). 2-rail O scale models run on accurate 2-rail track like the real thing, not the 3-rail track used by Lionel.

The comparison of S scale toy trains to S gauge (American Flyer) trains is about the same as the comparison of 2-rail O scale trains to Lionel described above, except that both S scale and S gauge trains run on more accurate 2-rail track, but the rail size of S scale track is not oversize as is the rail on S gauge track.

At OSW you will find about 200 hotel-size tables containing O and S scale equipment (locomotives, cars, buildings, track) that is being sold by individuals and manufacturers, and in some cases, exhibited for the enjoyment of the attendees.

In addition to the manufacturer's displays and items for sale mentioned directly above, OSW also offers a slate of clinics, many very craft-oriented, some of which are repeated to give folks a chance to attend all clinics of interest.

OSW also includes free drive yourself tours of home and club layouts. The number of layouts varies from year to year, with 30 being a good estimate. Some layouts are S scale, and some are world-class HO scale layouts that are well known from articles about them in the model railroading press.

PHOTOS OF THE MEET DISPLAY AND SALES AREA

To view photos of the 2012 meet sales and display area CLICK HERE. These photos are typical of the OSW meets.

The photos are about 100K in size, so the page should load without too much delay if you have a fast connection to the Internet. If your connection is slow, you might want to go get a cup of coffee while the page is downloading.

THE UPCOMING O SCALE WEST

The meet dates are February 5 - 7, 2015. The days for those dates are Thursday through Saturday. The exhibit/sales area is open Friday February 7 9AM - 5PM and February 8 9AM - 5PM. Thursday is when visiting layouts move in and set up, and when most of the exhibitors move in and set up. Individuals can also register or if pre-registered, pick up their registration packet, so they can get in the doors promptly at 9AM Friday. OSW also offers unusual railroad-oriented movies of interest Thursday night.

If there is time (the days leading up to the meet can be very hectic) OSW will post the daily schedule for the meet, including clinics, and the layout visits schedule (the on-line version does not include address information which is contained in the free hard copy map packets available at the meet.)

Download the complete schedule for the meet HERE. View the layout visits schedule HERE.

HOW MUCH

Current costs are $30 for individual registrations, $35 after December 31. $20 Saturday-only walk up rate. 30" x 72" tables are $40 each, $45 after December 31. Hotel rooms at the host hotel are $116 plus tax per night, 1-4 occupancy.

Costs may change if our cost to put on the meet changes, so register early to lock in your cost.

WHERE

OSW 2015 will be held at the Hyatt Regency Santa Clara in Santa Clara, CA (San Francisco Bay Area). The Hyatt is located at 5101 Great American Parkway in Santa Clara. OSW has obtained a special room rate of $116 plus tax per night; the rate is fixed for any occupancy 1 up to 4. You can register for lodging at the Hyatt by telephone or on-line. By telephone, call 888.421.1442, be sure to ask for the O Scale West rate.

To register for a hotel room on-line, go to The Hyatt Web Site Page for OSW. Note: the $116 rate is available for the dates Feb. 4 through Feb. 9; the rate for rooms outside that date range may cost more than $116 per night. Reservations must be made by January 15, 2015.

Renting a room at the Hyatt Regency is NOT required in order to attend OSW.

Note: OSW contracts with the hotel for the facilities it uses. The contract amount is a sliding scale based upon the number of hotel rooms OSW attendees rent. The more rooms rented the lower the cost of the facilities to OSW and as a direct result, the lower the cost of admission and tables to the OSW attendees and vendors. If you stay in a hotel during your time at OSW, it helps keep the meet costs low if you stay at the Hyat Regency Santa Clara.

HOW TO ATTEND (REGISTER)

You must register (fill out a form and pay the registration fee) in order to get you a badge that gets you in the door. You don't have to pre-register to attend OSW. You can walk up during the meet and register. The advantage to pre-registration is that badges for you and your party will be pre-printed, and if you specify the O or S scale on your registration, you will be categorized appropriately enabling us to track registrants by scale if needed. If you rent tables you must pre-register. Pre-registration closes as of mail received on February 1, 2015; table renters must pre-register by January 15, 2015, although we can accommodate renters after that date with inconvenience for both the late renter and OSW.

Methods of Registering

Note that registration fees and table rental fees may increase after December 31, 2013. You will save yourself some money by pre-registering before then.

FOR MORE INFORMATION

Please CLICK HERE for a general description of OSW and the OSW meet activities, and for information on geting to the meet if you travel by air or by Amtrak.

Please CLICK HERE for a detailed description of the 2015 OSW meet (note, not yet updated for 2015, you will see info for the 2014 meet).

DOWNLOADS

The following downloads will be made available when they are ready:
  • The 2014 Meet Wrap Up Newsletter
  • Registration Form
  • Clinics Schedule and Daily Meet Schedule
  • Contest Entry Forms
  • The Pre-meet Newsletter

    Links to download the daily schedule, and layout visits schedule overview will be provided when each download becomes available. Note that a hard copy of the daily schedule is in your registration packet, and that hard copies of the layout maps which are available for pickup at the meet contain the address information that is not contained in the schedule overview. Also note that the information you download may have changed at the time of the meet; if changes have occurred and there is time before the meet, those changes will be announced here. It is good idea to verify your plans against the hard copies available at the meet in case there wasn't time to announce changes here.

    COLLECTIONS AND ESTATES

    If we know about them in advance, we will place the information about these sales in this section. The information below is provided by the sellers. All O Scale West does is publish it below in order to make that information available to the OSW community. OSW does not edit the information the sellers provide and is not responsible for claims or offers the seller might make in the information they provided to OSW.

    While no hard information has been provided by the sellers who are registered for OSW, rumor has it that some collections and estates will be sold at OSW.

    UPDATES

    This section is updated if previously published meet detail or schedule information has changed.

    SAN FRANCISCO CITY & ALCATRAZ COMBO TOUR

    Currently (Dec, 2013) the Hyatt Regency has an exhibit in the lobby titled Alcatraz: Life on the Rock which includes items borrowed from the prison for the exhibit; examples are the secure entrance to a cell block, and a shaft that was used for a successful escape from a cell. There is also a photo exhibit titled Alcatraz: The Last Day.

    It is not known if the lobby exhibit will be ongoing during OSW 2015. Check back here if you are interested.

    The tour comprises a two hour visit to Alcatraz Island (weather permitting) followed by a lunch break, then a three and one half hour tour of San Francisco. The tours depart from the Hyatt Regency. The tours are operated by Gray Line Tours in conjunction with an organization dedicated to preserving the history of Alcatraz. The tours depart by bus on Saturdays only; the cost is $99 for adults, $97 for seniors, and $66 for Children. Reservations are recommended. To place a reservation, contact Gray Line at 408-963-0377 or on the web at Gray Line where you can purchase tickets on line and view more information. Other combination tours may be available - check the Gray Line web site.


    News on Changes in the OSW Meet

    OSW is changing! Read on, and if you have ideas and thoughts about the changes that you want to share with us, please get them to us by email, phone, or letter.

    Less Paper

    We have been very fortunate over the years to have the generosity of Palo Alto Research Center (PARC) in getting our printing done at a nominal cost. Because of changes at PARC, we no longer have use of this great resource. This means that from now on OSW will have to pay for printed material we distribute at the meets.

    Here is a summary of what we printed and handed out free at previous OSWs:

    1. The layout visits maps comprise about 6000 sheets of colored printing. On a non-negotiated, e.g., walk-in basis, Fedex Office charges $1.25 per two-sided sheet for colored printing. Thus the maps alone could cost us $7500 to print. We would have to increase the registration fee by about $15 per registration to cover just that increased cost! Unfair for those who don't use the layout visit maps because their cost would increase by $15 with no change in what they receive.
    2. Registration packets, not counting the envelope which we need anyway, include the contest ballot, the survey, the clinic schedule, and several other special items for the registrant's information. While those items that are colored are printed several per sheet then cut apart, there is still a printing cost there. It would require an increase in the registration fee of about a dollar to cover the printing of those items.
      It is our understanding that many attendees, after claiming their registration packet and donning their badge, just throw the packet away. What we printed was just wasted.

    To keep costs down, we have to make some changes in how much printed material we produce and distribute for no charge at OSW. As long as we're making changes, we're going to make big ones. In keeping with what most other organizations in the country now do, we are shifting some of the work to our customers. The changes will be:

    1. Layout visit map packets will no longer be provided. We already put the layout visit schedule up on this web site before the meet, but for the security of the layout owners no address and contact information is provided on line. OSW will provide at the meet a sheet of paper that gives the address and contact information for the layout owners. The attendee will then, having determined from the schedule on this site which layouts they want to visit, put the address information into a road navigation GPS which they will have to provide and which would then guide them to each layout. Don't forget to put the meet location in the GPS also as Home, so that you can get back to the meet location after visiting your last layout. Also don't forget, if you are renting a car while at the meet, to get one that includes a GPS.
    2. The clinics and meet schedule will no longer be provided. The clinics and meet daily schedules have always been available on this site before the meet. Attendees who want a hard copy of that information can print a personal copy; the monitors around the entrance to the ballroom will display both schedules on a rotating basis, and clinics will be announced over the ballroom PA system.

    Meet Location after 2015

    You may have noticed the new football stadium that was under construction across the street and down a bit from the hotel. This will be the new home of the San Francisco 49ers team. In 2016 Super Bowl 50 will be held at that stadium on the usual OSW weekend of Feb 5 - 6 (the game is on the 7th). As a result hotels and event facilities in the San Francisco area are already sold out for before and including that weekend. The result is that OSW has to be held at some other time in 2016.

    We have met with the Hyatt Regency sales people in order to present our schedule options so that they can see what dates they can offer. Our preference is to have OSW as soon after the Super Bowl weekend as possible in order to give people as much of a time gap as possible between OSW and the Chicago March Meet. At this writing we are still in discussions with the hotel. When there is real news on this you will be able to read it here.

    Please, tell us what you think about the above changes!

    THANK YOU!

    TO CONTACT O SCALE WEST

    Interested in learning more about 2-rail O scale? Please visit the O Scale Kings web pages.

    These web pages were designed and implemented by Rod Miller.