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1980s freight yard structures

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  • Member since
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1980s freight yard structures
Posted by kasskaboose on Wednesday, January 19, 2011 7:28 AM

I bought the Walthers Cornerstone engine house, 933-3007, for my small freight yard set in the 1980s.  Is that too old for the layout?  The description says that it's still used today.

Besides that and the Sanding tower and dry house, 933-3182, what other structures to include?  I thought about a gantry crane, but open to other ideas.  I don't have enough space for adding the large warehouses often seen on large yards.

Thanks,

Lee

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  • From: Dearborn Station
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Posted by richhotrain on Wednesday, January 19, 2011 8:16 AM

That is the 2-stall engine house which would still be fairly common in the 1980's, although they weren't building them anymore once the steam era came to an end in the late 1950's.

The sanding tower and dry house would be appropriate because diesels use sand as well.

Water towers and coaling towers would be a thing of the past so forget those. 

You could add a back shop or a car shop or a machine shop.

Rich

Alton Junction

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  • From: Omaha, NE
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Posted by dehusman on Wednesday, January 19, 2011 8:56 AM

kasskaboose

I bought the Walthers Cornerstone engine house, 933-3007, for my small freight yard set in the 1980s.  Is that too old for the layout?  The description says that it's still used today.

For a 1980's small freight yard, the vast majority would have just a track with a flat area next to them and maybe a small shed or a fenced in area with supplies in it.   That's it, no buildings, nuttin.

Fuel and sand would be delivered by truck.  Inspections would be done at the big yard.

  Besides that and the Sanding tower and dry house, 933-3182, what other structures to include? 

I would keep the towers and lose the drying shed and bin.  Sand would be delivered by truck, blown into the towers.  At most keep the drying shed for a tool shed or air compressor house.  You could even kep the sand bin but make it overgrown with weeds.

If the yard has a team track, you might put a gantry crane over the team track. 

The yard would need a yard office for the clerks and yardmaster (NOT a tower, just a one story frame structure.)  The crews would need a locker room, bathroom and place to mark lists, wait for instructions.  If there was a mechanical department they would need an office and possibly a storeroom for supplies.  The MofW gan would need a small office and store room for supplies.  Any combination of the above could be combined into what used to be the passenger depot, typically the yard office taking one half and the MofW taking the other half (usually the side with the baggage /freight portion).

You could also add a loading dock or end loading ramp.  1980's some of the storage sheds/offices could be containers.  Another option is not to model the  building, model the foundation.  So instead of an engine house, just model the concrete floor and the foundation under the walls, with no building on top of the slab.  Same with the depot.  Just a foundation, with maybe a loading dock remaining, all the offices and storage moved to metal buildings or containers.

Dave H. Painted side goes up. My website : wnbranch.com

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Posted by chutton01 on Wednesday, January 19, 2011 9:33 AM

kasskaboose, is it possible you want to model a small engine terminal rather than a small freight yard - as has been mentioned, by the 1980s most small freight yards (as opposed to huge yards which may have an attached engine servicing area) would be rather barren of in-use structures (why pay maintainance and taxes on unneeded structures) except for repurposed buildings used for storage, and trailer/pre-fab offices and storage containers. Other buildings would usually be torn down, or left to rot on their on.

Do you have any sort of prototype of the era in mind?

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Posted by Eric97123 on Wednesday, January 19, 2011 12:24 PM

I would recommend using using Google Maps or Bing maps which as a good birds eye view and take a look at some present day rail yards.  There will be some updates since the 80's but I think you could get an idea of what kind of buildings and structures are around.

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Posted by odave on Wednesday, January 19, 2011 2:54 PM

I second the Google & Bing Maps suggestion, they are powerful tools for us modelers. While not exactly a "small" yard, here's an example for you: CN's Torrey Yard in Flint, MI

I think that the brick engine house you have would be fine in the 1980s with age appropriate weathering.  And maybe "brick up" a few windows.  In real life. GTW used their steam era roundhouse in Pontiac well into the 1990s.  You will also see abandoned concrete coaling towers here and there even today, since the cost of tearing them down can be prohibitive.  It's up to you if you want to devote precious space to an abandoned structure, but it would add a splash of history to your layout.

Good luck!

--O'Dave
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  • From: Hillsboro, Oregon
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Posted by Eric97123 on Wednesday, January 19, 2011 3:02 PM

That is a great yard Odave.  Just east of the yard is a stub end staging yard that looks like it is plucked right from a MRR layout, 5 tracks that holds 6 to 10 box cars each.  Big Smile

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Posted by ClinchValleySD40 on Wednesday, January 19, 2011 7:09 PM

As Dave H says, not much needed for a "small" yard, especially loco facilities.   I'm using this as a yard office

and this for MOW shed

 

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Posted by West Coast S on Wednesday, January 19, 2011 8:37 PM

You could re-purpose the engine house, brick over or reduce the large openings and use it as a combination stores/offices, perhaps for the mechnical department.  

Until it was condemed in recent years and removed, my neighbor had a abandoned SP 50,000ga water tank on his property, I have the slab of the ajoining 8 stall engine house complete with filled in servicing pits and plenty of nasty critters that crawl about the grounds! So yes you could keep a water tank, less all the iron, either active for storage or disused. 

Dave

 

Dave 

SP the way it was in S scale

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