History & Welcome

Welcome to the Move It On Railroad or MIO System. The MIO model railroad is owned, built and operated by Radford “Rad” Jones, Oakland Township, Michigan. I hope you enjoy your trip on the MIO System.

RJones Feb 2010 web smaller

        Rad Jones

Rad is a member of the National Model Railroad Association (NMRA), the North Central Region – Division 8 of the NMRA and Stoney Creek Model Railroad Club.  Rad is a retired special agent of the US Secret Service and gives presentation on the history of Presidential train travel and other related model railroad activities.

 The Move It On (MIO) Railroad System, A New York Central Railroad Connector, is a freelanced layout with some locations and towns built after actual locations.  The layout is  a 90-foot shelf/peninsular N Scale model railroad with  549.5 feet of  track or  99.4 Scale Miles (SMILES) of track.  Smiles are based on a 6:1 Fast Clock and using a formula of  one scale mile equaling 5.5 feet.   Track footage was measured using an ENM Tapeless Measure.  It has 262 feet of main line track and five yards; Pontiac Yard (passenger and freight, Chicago passenger yard, Flint Yard, Lexington Yard and Ft. Harrison Special Operations Military Base Yard.  The layout is built for operations and operating session are held every several months.

Construction started in 1965 with the layout (4 by 8 ft.) going through 7 cross country moves.  Expansion into its current configuration began in 1997.  In 2004 a water leak in the house, due to a broken washing machine hose, destroyed approximately 2/3’s of the layout.  With help from members of the Stoney Creek Model Railroad Club, the layout was soon repaired and in operation.  The layout is DCC (NCE Systems) and is designed for operating sessions with walk around wireless throttles.  Train crews use switch lists and train movements are controlled by a central dispatcher located on the 4th floor of the MIO Headquarters in Pontiac (see photographs below).  Train crews use switch lists and switch car for car.  Operations are done at a leisure pace with plenty of conversation and comradely.

The MIO System’s logo is; “The Community’s Link to Outside Markets” as  it provides service to nine (9) communities, including the Lazy J Ranch, Blake TOFC (Trailer on Flat Car) Yard and Fort Harrison Special Operations Military  Base. It depicts a Midwest section of the United States in the 1960’s – 70”s period.  it is based loosely on the New York Central and includes towns, which hold special memories or significance. As an agent with the U.S. Secret Service many of these towns were visited during investigative road trips or during Presidential security advance work.  Others are located in and around Rad’s hometown of Waldron, Hillsdale County, Michigan.  Other nearby towns to Waldron which are modeled are:  Hudson, Hillsdale, and Morenci.  Industries and shops are named for friends and family members. The MIO System contains three divisions and one military division:

  • Hillsdale Division
  • Pontiac Division
  • Cleveland Division
  • Ft.Harris Special Operations Base

The website provides historical photographs and history of some of the towns and locations modeled.  Also included are photographs of models built and located in the towns on the layout.  In some cases they have been modeled after the buildings and geographic settings of those locations.  In other locations “modeler’s license” has been taken.  The hobby of model railroad has brought me hours of relaxing entertainment, meeting of many fellow modelers and friends, and a time away from the many sometimes unpleasant experiences of a long law enforcement career.

Following are dimensions of the layout.



MIO System Distances









8.0 (43.6)

6.3 (34.6)

11.9 (65.3)







1.9 (10.5)

0.7 (4.1)




3.2 (17.6)
Total Division



9.9 (54.1)

7.0 (38.7)

35.3 (194.5)


In 1950 social scientist visionary Alex Toffler, forecast that America would move from an industrial to service society.  Rad Jones, MIO System president, after reading Toffler’s book was able to purchase track and engine/car facilities from various railroads in the Midwest with the idea of selling railroad services in the future.  He decided to call his company the Move It On Railroad System (MIO) since the business objective was to move freight and passengers for various railroads for a fee.  Total Service is the MIO motto.  The MIO System provides mainline and supporting services to a number of railroad systems and communities.  MIO is the Communities’ Link to Outside Markets.”

You can contact me at jonesrad36@gmail.com

Rad Jones