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Missing Footprint -- MR May 2018

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Missing Footprint -- MR May 2018
Posted by cuyama on Sunday, April 15, 2018 7:03 PM

Lance Mindheim’s article in the May 2018 Model Railroader dealt with an important topic -- the layout footprint -- or the path the main line takes around the room, which in turn defines the benchwork shape.

One shape missing from the article is John Armstrong’s favorite spiral peninsula. Here’s a simple example:

As can be seen, this compares very favorably with the shapes that were discussed in the article, with a longer overall run, linear run, and tangent length. The “back track" shown here in blue could be ramps down to staging, or the track could be scenicked and used as another pass around the space.

Squarish spaces with a door in the center of one of the walls can be a bit tricky to use efficiently, so Lance set himself a challenge in choosing this room. It was an interesting article, and this example of the “missing” spiral footprint shows the wisdom of Armstrong’s suggestion to try it in many situations.

Byron

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Posted by hon30critter on Sunday, April 15, 2018 7:25 PM

Hi Byron:

That's pretty much what we came up with for the club's new layout. It's not running quite yet, but everybody seems to be pleased with the concept. The peninsula is wide enough for the track to go around twice. We will have about 500' of track when it is done. The layout is 25' x 20':

Dave

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Posted by maxman on Sunday, April 15, 2018 7:53 PM

cuyama
One shape missing from the article is John Armstrong’s favorite spiral peninsula.

Looks very similar to the around the walls with peninsula plan that was shown.

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Posted by cuyama on Sunday, April 15, 2018 7:58 PM

maxman
Looks very similar to the around the walls with peninsula plan that was shown

Actually quite different. The spiral penisnula I showed is fully walk-in, has less total curvature, and has a significantly longer run.

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Posted by cuyama on Sunday, April 15, 2018 7:59 PM

hon30critter
That's pretty much what we came up with for the club's new layout. It's not running quite yet, but everybody seems to be pleased with the concept.

Yep, spirals are great and almost always worth a try. Your layout looks like a good approach in the space.

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Posted by hon30critter on Sunday, April 15, 2018 8:20 PM

cuyama
Your layout looks like a good approach in the space.

Thank you. Coming from you I will take that as quite a compliment.

I do see the differences between your track plan with several long straights and our club's where there are almost no straight sections along the south wall and on the peninsula. There are two long straight sections, one on the west wall (note that I am using our layout's actual compass orientation, not the diagram previously posted) and one on the north wall. Both are mostly double tracked but they will be in the background so the visual effect won't be quite as good.

Dave

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Posted by rrinker on Monday, April 16, 2018 6:51 AM

 It's the little things - I wonder how many noticed? Like how in the lower right, the fascia is curved to follow the track, but in the lower left, it's at an angle to give room for a scene between the track and the edge.

 In the end, this is also how my plan is coming along, with two differences. First, the wall at the top in the equivalent space in my basement is an invisible wall, set back to allow room for the entry from the lower front door and garage. I don't want to build a physical wall because with access, it is allowing me to add a branch line operated from the entryway space. And my penninsula adds another turn towards what would be the right in the pictured outline, the stair location precludes just having it come off at an angle directly to the far corner of the room.

 And every time I look at it again after not staring at it for a while, I think of something else. I just saw a way I can add a sneak off on the lower level to have single level continuous run for display purposes. For operations, the connecting turnout gets marked out of service.

 I do have the same issue of not having quite as many straight areas, because along one wall I have to swing out past the mechanicals, but that allows me to use a very large radius mostly cosmetic (but it does serve a purpose) curve.

 It's amazing how often Armstrong's basic G shows up in plans and layouts. The man really was a genius ahead of his time. 

                           --Randy

 


Modeling the Reading Railroad in the 1950's

 

Visit my web site at www.readingeastpenn.com for construction updates, DCC Info, and more.

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Posted by bearman on Monday, April 16, 2018 8:15 AM

The only question I have about both the footprint that Byron has presented and at least one of Lance's fooprints (feetprints?) is reach.  Quite frankly it is something that I fouled up, in a big way, on my second layout which ultimately caused me to scrap the entire project halfway through and start over again, although there were other problems with that layout design.  Specifically it appears that there could be reach issues in each corner, assumng the red rectangle represents the rooms walls.

Bear "It's all about having fun."

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Posted by cuyama on Monday, April 16, 2018 9:30 AM

bearman
The only question I have about both the footprint that Byron has presented and at least one of Lance's fooprints (feetprints?) is reach.

Yes, some sort of access hatch would be needed in the upper-right-hand corner of my sketch. Except for that, I believe that all of the track is within 30 inches of the aisle. The broad minimum radius chosen for the original article means that any “blob” (turnback curve) placed in a corner will have access challenges.

But note that with careful design, one can arrange so that there are no turnouts or other elements in those areas, minimizing the need for access. It’s always about trade-offs.

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Posted by bearman on Monday, April 16, 2018 9:47 AM

Fair enough, Byron.  I admit I am biased when it comes to reach issues as I tried to indicate in my original post.  Yeah, it is about tradeoffs, the requirements and 

And, at the risk of being slightly off topic, I can envision a marvelous yard along one of the straight lengths in the penninsula.  I like yards.

Bear "It's all about having fun."

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Posted by Colorado Ray on Monday, April 16, 2018 11:18 PM

I think if we look at Byron's signature we can see why he likes the spiral peninsula!

Ray 

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