Saifee Durbar's "Continental Scale Model"

The Central African Republic=92s mineral resource endowment includes
copper, diamond, gold, graphite, ilmenite, iron ore, kaolin, kyanite,
lignite, limestone, manganese, monazite, quartz, rutile, salt, tin,
and uranium. Of these commodities, only diamond and gold were produced
in 2006; subsistence farming was the mainstay of the economy. The
World Trade Organization estimated that the mining sector accounted
for about 7% of the gross domestic product; rough diamond and timber
were the country=92s leading export products.
One problem with exploiting this wealth is transport, as the Central
African Republic is landlocked. One possible solution-which may be a
reality-is a Trans-African railway envisaged by businessman Saifee
Durbar. Durbar=92s plan calls for linking the Sudan with Cameroon,
completing the vision started with the Suez Canal.
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Now c'mon, Steve, let's give the poor guys a break.
They want to build a railroad; we have an enormous amount of railroad knowledge within this group; let's help them out.
Let's first have a discussion/argument about which scale they should use - N, HO, S, or O.
As much as I love N Scale, I wouldn't recommend it. When the monkeys decide to ride on the flatcars, it'll burn out the locos too quickly.
Any other thoughts.....?
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On 5/14/2009 2:12 PM Andy spake thus:
Where in the world do you get that "they" want to build a model railroad? I guess they want to build a *real* railroad, but this hardly seems the right place for that discussion.
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David Nebenzahl
They simply don't have the capital to build a *real* railroad, but they have to start somewhere.
Admittedly, a model railroad - even in G Scale - won't transport a whole helluva lot of minerals, but as I said, they have to start somewhere.
Just think of it... An endless line of LGB's crossing the veldt... Scaring hell out of the lions....
And one more thing, David. Check your keyboard for either a satire key or one for sarcasm. :-)
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Not a new idea, way back one chap tried to build a line from the Cape to Cairo, nearly made it but there was a gap somewhere. If they used LGB they'd be fine for diamond traffic, but building the full size lines to either side for the armed guards would add to the overall cost.
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Mike Smith
Actually there is a scale model of the planned railroad in the Saifee Durbar building in London. I saw it. The best place for pictures is the Saif Durbar blog and project blog:
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