Subscriber & Member Login

Login, or register today to interact in our online community, comment on articles, receive our newsletter, manage your account online and more!

Design a dbl-deck layout for installation in its own Hand-House shed

7852 views
97 replies
1 rating 2 rating 3 rating 4 rating 5 rating
  • Member since
    November, 2006
  • From: Northeast
  • 693 posts
Posted by GraniteRailroader on Sunday, September 03, 2017 10:37 PM

I'll spend some time drawing tomorrow and give you an idea on paper.

This space reserved for SpaceMouse's future presidential candidacy advertisements

  • Member since
    February, 2009
  • 531 posts
Posted by railandsail on Monday, September 04, 2017 5:46 PM

East to West theme, and Diesel-Steam transistion era

 

 

I have a strong preference for steam engines, but have collected lots of diesels as well. So lets say I will model that transition era were both were utilized. I am also not a strict time frame person that feels a need to model any particular era. I just like the looks of model trains, particularly the highly detailed ones that have come out over the past 15 years.

 

I found myself liking those big C&O, B&O, NW steam locos, but also some of the Santa Fe ones. I just couldn't resist a number of those Santa Fe diesels with their marvelous paint schemes that harkened back to when I was a kid. So on my first major layout (the Atlas plan "Central Midland") I ran all of these different lines. I would explain that my railroad went from the east coast to the west coast,...Baltimore to California.

 

I'm imagining doing something similar with this new layout,....the lower deck level will be the 'Baltimore' theme, progressing up thru the mountains of Appalachian mountains (coal county) to the upper layer western mountains supporting logging trains, and finally to a Santa Fe train station on the upper level. Since I have recently decreased the size of that peninsula, I'm not so sure I'll be able to do those Appalachian mountains ( maybe I should put those in that new oval peninsula loop ??).

 

At the moment I don't anticipate that the upper deck will have any individual loops of track on it, but rather will have a perimeter track only. There will be a turnout at the upper level of the helix that will permit the train to go either way around that perimeter of the shed, and will allow the train to go back down the helix in a forward manner.

 

There are at least two scenes/structures I have planned for that upper level.
1) Santa Fe train station. I'm imaging this station (or condensed version) .... ....sitting on the upper deck over one of those two big blobs at the entrance to the shed. I want to surround it with a number of the Santa Fe engines I have (F7 sets, DL109 set, E6, and a steamer), and some SF passenger cars from Walthers.

 

I would like this scene over on the left side blob, so it is not directly over the Balt city scene.

 

I would also like to have a condensed container port on this upper level. I have a lot of containers and container cars that need to be 'justified' on my layout. I'm thinking the newer big style container cranes and their ship can be painted onto the background. Then the straddle type loader and the smaller container movers can be in the foreground working amongst the stacked containers, and loading railcars bound for the east coast

 

I figure there will need to be a fair depth to this scene to have the container cars being loaded, and of course some sort of thru line for the passenger train. My thoughts are this scene needs to be located over the deep decked turntable loop, and/or over that wide freight yard scene down below.

Those are the only ideas I have at the moment. I really need to be able to look thru that huge collection of materials I extracted from the magazines for years ( I literally cut up hundreds of mags, and filed them away). But all of that material is in my cargo trailer.

  • Member since
    February, 2009
  • 531 posts
Posted by railandsail on Tuesday, September 05, 2017 9:38 AM

City Backdrop & Steel Scene

I was just going back thru some photos and postings I had made about my old Atlas #29  Central Midland layout and ran across this .....
 

City Scene Backdrop
This could be the most exciting scene of all. My plan was to make this a city scene of Baltimore, an industrial city, home of the nations first railroad, and home of the famous B&O. There would be two distinctive images I thought I would include; 1) the infamous ‘Bromo Selzer’ tower*, and 2) the Mt Royal train station**. The train station in particular, as I had no room on the layout for a model station. I imagine it could be painted onto the backdrop, and include a dbl track portion that would appear to join the actual mainlines over in the back corner of the layout.

There are lighting techniques, layering techniques with poster board materials, and thin single-sided plastic structures that could make this city scene come alive, even in its very ‘flat presentation’. I have some sample illustrations.

Coal was, and is very much a part of Baltimore’s history along with steel and railroads. I had thought it could be possible to paint a coal fired power plant or steel mill onto a portion of this city scene down on the lower left hand side near the roundhouse area. Maybe add a large pile of coal alone with a string of coal cars waiting to be unloaded. If the layout were spaced out a bit from this wall/backdrop, it might be possible to insert one or two ‘fake’ sidings with coal cars and/or B&O passenger cars in waiting.

Yes, still applicable for my new layout,...Balt cityscape in that right hand blob, and steel blast furnance in that left hand blob.

  • Member since
    February, 2009
  • 531 posts
Posted by railandsail on Tuesday, September 05, 2017 6:12 PM

Look what I found today as I was looking for steel mill related images. I just had to make a note of it here so I would remember to look at it again

http://baltimoreandohiomodelrailroad.com/steel_mill.html

I know this sounds and looks awfully ambitious to include a steel scene on my relatively small layout, but I'm thinking the only actual structure I would include would be the blast furnace itself. The rest would exist on the painted backdrop, somewhat like this photo from that site...

  • Member since
    November, 2006
  • From: Northeast
  • 693 posts
Posted by GraniteRailroader on Tuesday, September 05, 2017 9:04 PM

I haven't had time to sit down and draft out any ideas - work and family have taken priority, especially with having already put in twenty two hours since Monday at 0500.

Seeing your latest druthers makes me wonder - do you have a written down list that you've compiled of what you truely would like to see? You're ideas and locales are all over the US, and if you make those druthers into the givens (IE: What you will NOT change, what you CAN'T change, and what isn't possible to change) you're going to end up with multiple large scenes and structures literally on top of each other, with no room for transitions.

It's your model railroad, so if you want to see a container port/facility next to a stucco three story station in the Alleghany mountains of Pennsylvania while the City of Baltimore shines it's lights on you through the smog of a blast furnace, than have at it. If it were me - I'd narrow my focus down to specific things that interest me more than the others. Passengers, Coal, Blast Furnace, Baltimore, sounds like you could proto-lance Baltimore to Western Pennsylvania, maybe a fictional branch of the PRR? Adding in the South West, and being able to fit vastly different locales and geography is going to end up as a hodge podge of scenes that don't flow together.

I'd reconsider the idea of a No-Lix, around-the-wall type layout. With a bench depth of 28"-30", excluding the "blobs" in the corners by the door, you could easily transition from scenes that were vertically seperated 6-8"  at various points around the layout. If you narrowed the depth of the scene, concealing at least one of the "layers" behind a backdrop or beneith the other, a peninsula --MIGHT-- be doable... 11 foot wide space, with a portion that is on 12" deep shelves leaves you 9 feet open in the middle. Subtract two 30" aisles, and you're left with four feet. Kind of tight if you wanted to have it make a 180* curve in the middle, but perhaps it's a solution to add in your blast furnace scene, with a vertical backdrop that conceals a container port on the other side.

There are plenty of options out there, but you need to really re-evaluate what your priorites and what your major wishes for this to be are.

For what it's worth, I'd go back through Cuyama's posts and really attempt to understand his feedback to the folks who are posting plans and asking for advice. His design feedback is spot on, and if money were no object I'd be asking for him to help me implement a new design.

This space reserved for SpaceMouse's future presidential candidacy advertisements

  • Member since
    February, 2009
  • 531 posts
Posted by railandsail on Wednesday, September 06, 2017 8:37 AM

GraniteRailroader

Seeing your latest druthers makes me wonder - do you have a written down list that you've compiled of what you truely would like to see? You're ideas and locales are all over the US, and if you make those druthers into the givens (IE: What you will NOT change, what you CAN'T change, and what isn't possible to change) you're going to end up with multiple large scenes and structures literally on top of each other, with no room for transitions.

Lets see if I can answer your concerns/suggestions in as brief a manner as I can. Perhaps it is best that you understand that some of these 'ideas' for scenes/structures I am coming up with, are a result of what I might call 'brain-storming'. I am thinking 'out loud' on this forum about POSSIBILTIES.

I have over the years collected up so many different structures, both built and still as kits, that I am trying to figure out just what I am going to be able to include, and what not. There is another recent discussion on this forum,...
http://cs.trains.com/mrr/f/11/t/264878.aspx?page=1

that concerns itself with this  same dilemma about number of structures verses spacing between them.

I am one of those folks who likes to have lots of structures/scenes that the trains can run thru. I believe you might discern this if you look thru my planning on my original layout, the Central Midland by John Armstrong. I bought this layout with a track plan already determined, so it was just my job to see where I might add on 'what structures', 'what scenes'. I added a LOT of items as I collected them, Some would say too much, but I was rather happy with what I was coming up with. Of couse it was a bit easier as I was working with the track plan already in place, so it was just a matter as to how I might add to it. this new planning is a bit more difficult as I don't have things sitting there right in front of me, and I am trying to creat a track plan along with a structure/scene plan.
If you want to see that Atlas plan #29 I was building, and a good number of photos I am recreating it over on this forum discussion as it got 'photo edited' by some software change made on that forum.

the Central Midland by John Armstrong for Atlas track plans



GraniteRailroader
It's your model railroad, so if you want to see a container port/facility next to a stucco three story station in the Alleghany mountains of Pennsylvania while the City of Baltimore shines it's lights on you through the smog of a blast furnace, than have at it. If it were me - I'd narrow my focus down to specific things that interest me more than the others. Passengers, Coal, Blast Furnace, Baltimore, sounds like you could proto-lance Baltimore to Western Pennsylvania, maybe a fictional branch of the PRR? Adding in the South West, and being able to fit vastly different locales and geography is going to end up as a hodge podge of scenes that don't flow together.

I'm going to see if I can blend it together, but yes I may have some industries etc together in close proximity. I am trying to keep the west coast specific scenes on the upper deck, and the east coast on the lower deck. The middle of the country can have any number of different industries.

GraniteRailroader
I'd reconsider the idea of a No-Lix, around-the-wall type layout. With a bench depth of 28"-30", excluding the "blobs" in the corners by the door, you could easily transition from scenes that were vertically seperated 6-8"  at various points around the layout. If you narrowed the depth of the scene, concealing at least one of the "layers" behind a backdrop or beneith the other, a peninsula --MIGHT-- be doable... 11 foot wide space, with a portion that is on 12" deep shelves leaves you 9 feet open in the middle. Subtract two 30" aisles, and you're left with four feet. Kind of tight if you wanted to have it make a 180* curve in the middle, but perhaps it's a solution to add in your blast furnace scene, with a vertical backdrop that conceals a container port on the other side.

Since I can fit my helix on the outside of the shed, I am definitely NOT inclined to consider a 'no-lix'

 

  • Member since
    February, 2009
  • 531 posts
Posted by railandsail on Wednesday, September 06, 2017 8:48 AM

BTW that one site I referenced above has some really nice photos by 'doctorwayne'
http://cs.trains.com/mrr/f/11/t/264878.aspx?page=1

  • Member since
    February, 2009
  • 531 posts
Posted by railandsail on Monday, September 11, 2017 8:54 AM

DCC Electrical Wiring tip

I just ran across this portion of a posting by Randy that I need to remember when I go to wiring my new layout.

rrinker
....excerpt

It did all work the first show after this - other than no provision being made for the common wire between the command station, boosters, and circuit breakers. No one believed me that this was required, but all issues disappeared when they finally decided to "humor" me and ran a wire temporarily. After that show and before next one, an additional line got added to each section's wiring harness to carry the common wire. Again done without ever stting the whole thing up - there's just no way to do it in the available space.

  • Member since
    February, 2009
  • 531 posts
Posted by railandsail on Tuesday, September 12, 2017 1:45 PM

Turntable Loop & City Backgrd

Just did this quick little sketch, Haven't worked out details of the freight yard yet.

 I suspect I will have only the front face of a roundhouse with perhaps a dwg of the remainder of it on the backdrop. Just don't have room for whole structure.. Perhaps some photos or cut off ends of tenders in the doorways of that roundhouse.

What I really want in that scene is some display tracks for some of my steam collection, some caboose(s), and steam services like this.....

 

 

And a thin city scene backdrop something like a cross between these two photos....

 

 

 

  • Member since
    February, 2009
  • 531 posts
Posted by railandsail on Friday, September 15, 2017 2:23 PM

Lots of Good Reference Material

Just visited your web site Alan.
http://www.lkorailroad.com/

Some VERY good sources of info on building a layout. For instance this bit on different density foams...

http://www.lkorailroad.com/foam-education/

  • Member since
    February, 2009
  • 531 posts
Posted by railandsail on Friday, September 29, 2017 10:13 AM

Latest Thoughts on Track Plan & Step Ladder Access

I finally arrived back home & getting ready to re-evaluate some of my thoughts on my layout design. I have accepted the criticism I have received on my 'too-narrow aisles', thus revising my center peninsula size. I've reduced its size and projection quite a bit, ie the most recent edition...

 

I have yet to decide on the exact track plans (both mains and spurs). I'm still looking for suggestions to complete the mainlines that I have partially sketched in.

My new cardboard mock-ups give me a nice big 'open space' in the center of the room that will allow for a small working bench installation inside the shed.

 

(still hard to get a photo shot that depicts the openness that is now created by this smaller peninsula)

 

Interestingly I already had in my possession a special step ladder that will allow me to climb a couple of steps and reach over to the back sides of the upper deck tracks. Turns out it just does just fit under the bottom deck at 40 inches off the floor. And it has a built in 'handle' that can be used to grip or lean against when accessing that upper deck. 
I just have to make sure I build the lower deck shelf high enough to accept this ladder.

 

 

 

I'm currently evaluating whether to build the lower deck shelf of plywood, foam, or a sandwich structure of those 2 materials.

  • Member since
    November, 2006
  • From: Northeast
  • 693 posts
Posted by GraniteRailroader on Friday, September 29, 2017 5:30 PM

Spent fifteen minutes in XtrakCad to do this real quick...

No matter how you slice it, adding in the ladder where you have pictured in the curves is going to be a problematic section of track. To get what you've pictured, you're going to be using #4 switches at best, or if you go larger, having longer stretches of tangent track where cars won't clear.... and then you have to start making the curve to the narrowed benchwork. As pictured, you have 9 tracks that will run parralel at some some point, unless they are incredibly short and join back together within two feet, maybe three if you're lucky. At that point, you're wasting real estate.

You're at the 8 foot mark, in terms of how long the loop becomes before you even start adding a ladder to bring the tracks back together.

Having the turntable service more then 5 of 6 tracks just isn't going to be practical. You're going to find that you won't have the room to store any of your larger power on the shortened tracks.

Potential solutions that will help:

- Don't double track the return loop.

- Plan for a handful of tracks off the turntable, plus the mocked up roundhouse.

- Three our four yard tracks at most, plus the single main in each direction, for a total of six tracks.

-Relocate the yard and turntable entirely, narrowing the peninsula to 24-30 inches at most. Turntable at the end, with yard tracks occupying 18" or so, with another 6-12" wide section for locomotive servicing. Your yard could have a "wye" to connect to the double track mainline.

 

 

This space reserved for SpaceMouse's future presidential candidacy advertisements

  • Member since
    February, 2009
  • 531 posts
Posted by railandsail on Saturday, September 30, 2017 5:57 PM

Thanks for that wake up call GraniteRail. I did recently discover that I undersized the did of the turntable,..and possible a few other errors from having losey tools while I was on vacation.

It has been suggested on another forum that I do some full scale paper templates on the track plan. I will give that a try in some of those 'tight areas' such as the turntable/double loop area.

When I significanly reduced the length of the center peninsula, I did plan on making that freight yard area bigger in depth (perhaps greater than you have shown?)

  • Member since
    August, 2006
  • 1,120 posts
Posted by trainnut1250 on Saturday, September 30, 2017 6:19 PM

railandsail



It has been suggested on another forum that I do some full scale paper templates on the track plan. I will give that a try in some of those 'tight areas' such as the turntable/double loop area.

 

Brian

 

Yes this is a good idea.

 

Stuff you probably don’t want to hear - IMHO - Your space is too small for the type of layout you are designing. 12’ is too narrow to fit turn back loops and a peninsula without making compromises to the aisle width and curve radii that you might regret later. You will get much more bang for your buck if you lose the loops – all of them. The two turn back loops don’t fit tin the space easily. They make your scenes along the walls too short. Loops are hard to scenic and they limit your possibilities – for example, your TT and tracks won’t fit in the space you have put them (you will see this when you draw the design accurately),

 

My suggestion is to make the design an around the room design with no turn back loops. This will give you more area for you scenes along the wall and eliminate the tight squeeze at the room entrance and allow you to keep a bigger curve radius. Plan for three scenes on the bottom and three scenes on the top. Limit your selection of goodies to include to just six scenes.

 

Redraw the plan using a track template or a computer program that will accurately draw out the design.

 

My two cents,

 

Guy

 

see stuff at: the Willoughby Line Site

  • Member since
    February, 2009
  • 531 posts
Posted by railandsail on Saturday, September 30, 2017 10:58 PM

GraniteRailroader

Spent fifteen minutes in XtrakCad to do this real quick...

 

When I made the center peninsula much shorter than original, I intended to make that lower deck with the railyard much deeper. For instance at the 7' horizontal marker of yours, my drawing indicates a shelf depth of 33",...then necking down to 21-22" from the wall.

I drew my TT to small in diameter. You have corrected that, but you have placed it incorrectly. Its center should be 22" from the end of the shed, and 24" from the side wall.

  • Member since
    February, 2009
  • 531 posts
Posted by railandsail on Saturday, September 30, 2017 11:13 PM

trainnut1250
.....

The two turn back loops don’t fit tin the space easily. They make your scenes along the walls too short. Loops are hard to scenic and they limit your possibilities – for example, your TT and tracks won’t fit in the space you have put them (you will see this when you draw the design accurately)

My two cents,

Guy

 

Did you see this ealier posting of mine?

Lone Pine & Tonopah

I spoke previously of 2 layout plans that were very interesting to me to review in my effort to arrive at a combo of two. That second layout was the Lone Pine & Tonopah. The dwg I have on file came from a Nov 1993 issue of Model Railroader mag. I believe he has since made a number of changes to this original design.

Lone_Pine_amp_Tonopah_RR_750.jpg

No matter, as I would seek to make a number of changes as well to it in order for it to scale down to fit my shed. Its more the concept I would be looking at. I have mentioned that I might be looking at the Balt/east coast theme for the lower level of my layout. With that in mind I would be interested in that roundhouse scene and city backdrop being located somewhat similar on that right hand side 'blob' of my layout as one enters the layout. I have a goodly number of real nice steam engines I would like to be 'on display' in that roundtable scene (with more on the outdoor tracks than inside any roundhouse). I had a similar 'display of steam' on my old Central Midland layout.

I figure my lower level in that area would have to neck down much more to give aisle clearance. So my railyard tracks would have to be perhaps half in number to those he has. And my city backdrop would have to be just a single layer of very thinly sectioned buildings, and a good painted backdrop. I would still like to have that circular mainline going around the roundtable facility and 'under' the city. I would also like to have that mainline join with the one that would cross the shed's door opening via a nice lift-out bridge (Chesapeake Bay Bridge or whatever).

Turntable_City_Freight_Yard_side_of_layout.jpg

  • Member since
    November, 2006
  • From: Northeast
  • 693 posts
Posted by GraniteRailroader on Sunday, October 01, 2017 6:24 AM

Good morning,

It's hard to see on your drawing where your depth measurements are. I've got a couple ideas for you but they're going to take some time to flesh out.

I threw the turntable down just so you could get an idea of what the size is.

Is the turnback loop abso-looply necessary, if you're going to have the ability for a continuous run? Eliminating the loop and making it into a normal curve to bridge over the door way would give you considerably more real estate for the yard and turntable - including giving you the option to have the full size roundhouse.

This space reserved for SpaceMouse's future presidential candidacy advertisements

  • Member since
    November, 2013
  • From: various locations
  • 1,937 posts
Posted by BMMECNYC on Sunday, October 01, 2017 7:47 AM

railandsail

SMART software view

On another forum a gentleman Phil was so gracious to give me this view he created with what I think was SMART.

 

 

I had another play around with it. There is nothing wrong with the software I'm using to plan it. Problem is the track plan is tight,real tight. Would work semi ok with smaller engines. I used Peco #6 turnouts or curved Peco #7. Expect for the port area. nothing would work expect Atlas #4. Distances  i.e CTC are Centre track to Centre track distance. You would need to allow for edges of benchwork and overhang on loco's.

I would change the placement of the yard, as suggested. But end of the day its your track plan. You will be the one building it and living with it. There are  issues with some grade separations. As highlighted by red circles.Also, there isnt much spare space for buildings scenery as well. Phil

 

I say it proves I can fit that plan into my shed, albeit with some narrower aisles than many would utilize.

Brian

 

Phil pointed this out:  the two red circles.  The distance between the turnout and the point were the tracks cross is insuficient to make clearance for a train underneath in HO scale.  The one on the left will be around a 14% grade (calculated a rise over run of 3.5"/24").  Splitting the difference with a 7% grade still may not work well, and you will want to leave verticle transistions between the starts and stops of grades.

The right hand one looks like it is about 11%.  Still a somewhat troublesome 5.5% once you split the grade.

Im guessing by further posts that you have modified your plan somewhat to shorten your peninsula.  

There is no scale reference on this drawing (squares) so I cannot say for sure, but it looks like the yard tracks on the right are not spaced far enough apart for two cars to sit on the tracks next to each other.  Adequate spacing is shown for parallel tracks on the right hand side of the plan just below the double crossover piece.  Another quick observation: with 24" radius curves, and even with locomotives that hinge in the middle (this actually exacerbates the problem in some cases), you may have a side swipe issues with the boiler and the cab swinging out (depending on which direction your locomotive is going) at this spot (the point 1-2feet below the double crossover).  

I have about the same space to work with and have had these problems crop up in my track planning software (most software will let you place track right next to each other with no consideration of centerline track spacing). 

Check out the newly re-worked RP-7 (formerly S-7) from the NMRA. 

https://www.nmra.org/index-nmra-standards-and-recommended-practices

You may find that RP 7.1, 7.2, 7.3. and TN 7 very useful in avoiding clearance issues.

Rule 108: In case of doubt or uncertainty, the safe course must be taken.
  • Member since
    February, 2009
  • 531 posts
Posted by railandsail on Sunday, October 01, 2017 10:57 AM

BMMECNYC

Phil pointed this out:  the two red circles.  The distance between the turnout and the point were the tracks cross is insuficient to make clearance for a train underneath in HO scale.  The one on the left will be around a 14% grade (calculated a rise over run of 3.5"/24").  Splitting the difference with a 7% grade still may not work well, and you will want to leave vertical transistions between the starts and stops of grade

The right hand one looks like it is about 11%.  Still a somewhat troublesome 5.5% once you split the grade.

You are correct about the vertical clearance problems at those circled spots. That was my original plan that I have now abandoned, and I mistakenly utilized a 1" rise/fall per 24" travel span, rather than a 48" travel span.

BMMECNYC
I'm guessing by further posts that you have modified your plan somewhat to shorten your peninsula.


Yes I shorten the center peninsula quite a bit, and concurrently figured I could make portions of the two side shelves wider down near those two loops (blobs) at the entrance.

I also corrected my grade allowances to be 1" for each 24" of travel distance. 

BMMECNYC
There is no scale reference on this drawing (squares) so I cannot say for sure, but it looks like the yard tracks on the right are not spaced far enough apart for two cars to sit on the tracks next to each other.  I have about the same space to work with and have had these problems crop up in my track planning software (most software will let you place track right next to each other with no consideration of centerline track spacing).


I did not realize this. I thought the software track programs would surely include this as a problem area?

 

BMMECNYC
Adequate spacing is shown for parallel tracks on the right hand side of the plan just below the double crossover piece. Another quick observation: with 24" radius curves, and even with locomotives that hinge in the middle (this actually exacerbates the problem in some cases), you may have a side swipe issues with the boiler and the cab swinging out (depending on which direction your locomotive is going) at this spot (the point 1-2feet below the double crossover).

I think those cross overs are too tight. I just quickly sketched them in to try and visulize how the trains might tranverse the layout.

 

 

  • Member since
    August, 2006
  • 1,120 posts
Posted by trainnut1250 on Sunday, October 01, 2017 11:51 AM

railandsail

 

 
trainnut1250
.....

The two turn back loops don’t fit tin the space easily. They make your scenes along the walls too short. Loops are hard to scenic and they limit your possibilities – for example, your TT and tracks won’t fit in the space you have put them (you will see this when you draw the design accurately)

My two cents,

Guy

 

 

Did you see this ealier posting of mine?

Lone Pine & Tonopah

I spoke previously of 2 layout plans that were very interesting to me to review in my effort to arrive at a combo of two. That second layout was the Lone Pine & Tonopah. The dwg I have on file came from a Nov 1993 issue of Model Railroader mag. I believe he has since made a number of changes to this original design.

Lone_Pine_amp_Tonopah_RR_750.jpg

No matter, as I would seek to make a number of changes as well to it in order for it to scale down to fit my shed. Its more the concept I would be looking at. I have mentioned that I might be looking at the Balt/east coast theme for the lower level of my layout. With that in mind I would be interested in that roundhouse scene and city backdrop being located somewhat similar on that right hand side 'blob' of my layout as one enters the layout. I have a goodly number of real nice steam engines I would like to be 'on display' in that roundtable scene (with more on the outdoor tracks than inside any roundhouse). I had a similar 'display of steam' on my old Central Midland layout.

I figure my lower level in that area would have to neck down much more to give aisle clearance. So my railyard tracks would have to be perhaps half in number to those he has. And my city backdrop would have to be just a single layer of very thinly sectioned buildings, and a good painted backdrop. I would still like to have that circular mainline going around the roundtable facility and 'under' the city. I would also like to have that mainline join with the one that would cross the shed's door opening via a nice lift-out bridge (Chesapeake Bay Bridge or whatever).

Turntable_City_Freight_Yard_side_of_layout.jpg

q

 

yes I saw this... I've also seen all the other iterations to try and fit this plan into your space... IMHO - they don't work because your space is too small. the tonopah layout is designed for a 500 sq ft space that is 18.5 feet across... it won't fit into a space that is 196 sq ft and only 12 feet across Your space is so much smaller (less than half) that maybe you should be looking at other options - like around the room no loops.

You do have the space for a nice layout. Just not the one you were envisioning. I would decide what elements you can borrow from the tonopah and the other plan (don't include the loops) and try to incorporate them into an around the walls design.

your mileage may vary,

Guy

see stuff at: the Willoughby Line Site

  • Member since
    February, 2009
  • 531 posts
Posted by railandsail on Sunday, October 01, 2017 3:22 PM

Thin City Backdrop
Not the reference material I saved from long time ago (haven't found that yet), but something I just found today that will come in handy as I will be using this thin hardboard as a backdrop all around my layout

http://www.sumidacrossing.org/LayoutConstruction/BackdropConstruction/

...and this
http://www.pghtrainfanatic.com/index.php/store/building-flats/

 

...or these

 

 

 

  • Member since
    February, 2002
  • From: Reading, PA
  • 23,627 posts
Posted by rrinker on Sunday, October 01, 2017 4:39 PM

 The thing is, the LP&T has 6 feet more width than you doo. That's tough to overcome just by splitting out 2 or 3 yard tracks - that doesn't even reduce things by 6 inches.

                     --Randy

 


Modeling the Reading Railroad in the 1950's

 

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

  • Member since
    February, 2009
  • 531 posts
Posted by railandsail on Sunday, October 01, 2017 8:47 PM

I had no plans on 'reducing' that LP&T track plan down so it could fit into my shed. Rather I was interested on borrowing some ideas from it, ie the city, turntable, yard scene. My city scene would likely be 1/8 as deep as that one on LP&T, plus the reduction in the yard width.

  • Member since
    August, 2006
  • 1,120 posts
Posted by trainnut1250 on Sunday, October 01, 2017 10:51 PM

railandsail
 
GraniteRailroader

Spent fifteen minutes in XtrakCad to do this real quick...

 

 

 

 

 

railandsail
 

 

 

 

 

I’m not sure that your last post with photos makes your case. That scene is huge. It is at least 25’ long to my eye. If the point is the building flats - that is just rearranging deck chairs. As Randy points out, you don’t get enough width savings to matter...

 

Let’s look at the above diagram to see if I can make my point. We are looking at the amount of available space for a scene.

 

As it is in the drawing: Start by driving your imaginary train along the back wall of the scene towards the blob end of the bench work. After you make the run around the loop, it takes 8’ feet of run to come back to straight (add in the necessary curve to bring it back to parallel with the layout edge). Now you run in a scene for roughly four feet before you have to start the curves on the other end of the bench work to get back to go around the room.

 

The scene length without curves is roughly four feet, not a very large scene. Basically the whole wall is the loop with a small straight section. This is great if you want to model loops. The reason the Tonopah plan works is because there is an 18’ run on straight after the loops. Your plan/s can’t shrink the loop that much so to make it fit, so the straight has to be significantly shortened, making the scene a big loop.

 

The loops cause one other design constraint- they force the track on the back wall all the way to the back edge of the scene and they force the front track all the way to the front edge around the blob. Also notice how the front track limits your possibilities by defining the front edge with a train track. In addition, the area in the loop is pretty tight for HO. You will have to do all kinds of contortions to fit some track in the loops that works convincingly from a scenic point of view.

 

Now lose the blob and loop. Drive your train towards the blob. You see that you will have 11 feet to build a scene before you hit the turn to go across the doorway. Much more room to do something cool. No front track to define the scene, no loop to further constrain the design. You can move the main track to the center of the scene, to the back, to the front – it doesn’t matter....

 

At this point I don’t want to be discouraging to you. I am trying to help out. I feel that you would have a more successful layout that would be fun to build and operate if you come to grips with your space limitations. I don’t want to push too hard, just want to make sure that you have heard from all sides and that those watching this thread understand the issues with the space you have and the design you are choosing.

My two cents,

 

Guy

 

see stuff at: the Willoughby Line Site

  • Member since
    February, 2009
  • 531 posts
Posted by railandsail on Monday, October 02, 2017 8:13 AM

trainnut1250
I’m not sure that your last post with photos makes your case. That scene is huge. It is at least 25’ long to my eye. If the point is the building flats - that is just rearranging deck chairs. As Randy points out, you don’t get enough width savings to matter...


Those photos were only meant to depict the 'flatness' that the city scene could be made. I'm guess mine will be all of 6" deep off the backdrop, and will be approx 1/2 to 1/3 the length of that 15' foot sidewall. BTW I can NOT fit in a full roundhouse, and do not see why I should. I will just use the front face of the roundhouse and perhaps 2-3" inches of its front face. The remainder will be somehow painted into the background.

 

trainnut1250
Let’s look at the above diagram to see if I can make my point. We are looking at the amount of available space for a scene.

 

As it is in the drawing: Start by driving your imaginary train along the back wall of the scene towards the blob end of the bench work. After you make the run around the loop, it takes 8’ feet of run to come back to straight (add in the necessary curve to bring it back to parallel 

The loops cause one other design constraint- they force the track on the back wall all the way to the back edge of the scene and they force the front track all the way to the front edge around the blob. Also notice how the front track limits your possibilities by defining the front edge with a train track. In addition, the area in the loop is pretty tight for HO. You will have to do all kinds of contortions to fit some track in the loops that works convincingly from a scenic point of view.


First off that drawing by GraniteRailroader is not accurate with my latest shelf dimensions. Shelf/deck will be considerable wider/deeper at its midpoint. 

 

 

trainnut1250
At this point I don’t want to be discouraging to you. I am trying to help out. I feel that you would have a more successful layout that would be fun to build and operate if you come to grips with your space limitations. I don’t want to push too hard, just want to make sure that you have heard from all sides and that those watching this thread understand the issues with the space you have and the design you are choosing.

My two cents,

Guy


I try to be appreciative of all suggestions, even while resisting some. BTW i am going to reconsider that second inside loop of track around the turntable.

 

And in support of my loops,... look what these computer track plans came up with.....

 

 

 

 

...an early sketch I had made (each of those square blocks on the graph paper is 3" inches)

 

 

 

 

  • Member since
    February, 2009
  • 531 posts
Posted by railandsail on Monday, October 02, 2017 8:30 AM

 

trainnut1250..."In addition, the area in the loop is pretty tight for HO. You will have to do all kinds of contortions to fit some track in the loops that works convincingly from a scenic point of view."

 

I did fit quite a bit into this relatively small loop on my old Atlas 'central midland' layout.
http://model-railroad-hobbyist.com/node/31007

 

 
 
  • Member since
    November, 2006
  • From: Northeast
  • 693 posts
Posted by GraniteRailroader on Monday, October 02, 2017 1:11 PM


First off that drawing by GraniteRailroader is not accurate with my latest shelf dimensions. Shelf/deck will be considerable wider/deeper at its midpoint

Can you post one of your drawings with what you feel are your measurements?

With so few measurements in the latest version its nearly impossible to judge what the benchwork size is without having to guess or extrapolate rough sizes based on other elements.

This space reserved for SpaceMouse's future presidential candidacy advertisements

  • Member since
    February, 2002
  • From: Reading, PA
  • 23,627 posts
Posted by rrinker on Monday, October 02, 2017 4:29 PM

 Any chance you can upgrade the shed to the next size? 14' of width instead of 12' will allow sections of 18" wide benchwork to pass by a 60" penninsula blob, enough for at least 27" radius turnback curves, and still have 3' aisles on either side.

                                --Randy

 


Modeling the Reading Railroad in the 1950's

 

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

  • Member since
    February, 2009
  • 531 posts
Posted by railandsail on Monday, October 02, 2017 8:52 PM

GraniteRailroader

Can you post one of your drawings with what you feel are your measurements

With so few measurements in the latest version its nearly impossible to judge what the benchwork size is without having to guess or extrapolate rough sizes based on other elements.

I'll do that in the next day or so. Tomorrow I have to go get some stuff I will be using to build the layout. And I have to spend some time on some flooding we have around here do to recent rain from hurricane, then 2 more days of heavy rain. Grow is saturated. Our street is like a river.

  • Member since
    February, 2009
  • 531 posts
Posted by railandsail on Monday, October 02, 2017 9:00 PM

rrinker

Any chance you can upgrade the shed to the next size? 14' of width instead of 12' will allow sections of 18" wide benchwork to pass by a 60" penninsula blob, enough for at least 27" radius turnback curves, and still have 3' aisles on either side.

                                --Randy


How I wish. I had to move all 5 of my carport supports out 1 foot to get that 12 foot shed in. No way I could have done more.

 

 

Pretty tight fit as it was. You can see some of the new footers I had to pour for the carpost columns.

The good thing about being mostly under the carport roof is that the shed is reasonable cool inside,...along with a thorough insulation job, a ceiling fan, and an AC unit that is not shown in these early photos.

Subscriber & Member Login

Login, or register today to interact in our online community, comment on articles, receive our newsletter, manage your account online and more!
Popular on ModelRailroader.com
Model Railroader Newsletter See all
Sign up for our FREE e-newsletter and get model railroad news in your inbox!
ADVERTISEMENT
ADVERTISEMENT

Search the Community

ADVERTISEMENT
Find us on Facebook