My last table was down in my brother's basement, we built it together, stirdy as anything, but it seemed too high, I'm guessing around 5 ft high or so. It was a basic donut design, dimensions 9x12 ft. My brother said he wanted it that high so we could duck under fairly easily (this did turn out to be a plus), and he also wanted to be almost eye level with the trains when sitting on a stool encircled by the table. There was about 3 ft wide open space in the center of the donut for operations.
The table was beautifully built by both of us, especially for beginners with very little experience in carpentry, however for HO scale, this just seemed to high for me. I am about 6 ft tall so although I could still see over the table quite well, something about it just didn't seem natural.
The donut design works very well for people like me who have limited space, but you really do have to build those things high in order to duck under, and even there you still bump your head really hard sometimes.
When I was a kid, going over my parent's friends' house, the father there had an HO table built for him and his kids. If I remember correctly, it was about 3ft high, standard 4x8 table, of course at the age of 8 or 9, this seems just fine. But I'm a fairly tall, full grown adult now, so I guess this height would certainly be too low, considering its just for me, I don't have any kids.
Anyway, any suggestions?
Btw, how do you feel about the donut design? I prefer an L shaped configuration myself, but I don't know how to work 30' or larger radius into that. Still, the design looks more like a train table to me. Any ideas?
As AtlanticCentral/Sheldon pointed out in another thread, I'm stuck somewhere between Hi-rail and HO, and I almost prefer a blend of the two. I want to pack a lot of action into a medium sized room, running realistic engines, and developing nice scenery. But I prefer to have fun running trains on something that looks like a railroad to the average person, I care much less about rail height, I'm no rivet counter, I like bells and whistles, crossing flashers, mixing that kind of stuff into a medium sized table, I don't care for prototypical operations like most people in HO do.