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Why staging areas?

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Why staging areas?
Posted by Anonymous on Thursday, March 14, 2002 1:11 PM
Yep, from the inquisitive mind of Wolverine...

I have seen and heard a lot of talk about staging area track? What is this, and what is it used for? Next, how would I add this to my layout if I have already maxxed out my space usage?

Thanks in advance.

-Wolv33
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Posted by Anonymous on Thursday, March 14, 2002 1:43 PM
Its a sort of hidden, "off-the-scene" area where trains can be made up and taken apart manually, with track(s) leading onto the main, visible part of the layout. If you have already maxed out your space usage, adding a staging area might be pretty hard, though without a layout diagram who knows? You might be able to make one under your current layout.
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Posted by Anonymous on Thursday, March 14, 2002 6:15 PM
Hi Bill,

Whoah!!! UNDER?????? Now that doesnt seem too realistic, and how in the world would one do that?

Thanks again.

-Wolv33
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Posted by Anonymous on Thursday, March 14, 2002 6:30 PM
Staging yards are not exactly protypical to begin with. Essentially it can be put under the layout by constructing a lower level and connecting it to the main line with either a helix or some other elongated path.
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Posted by Anonymous on Thursday, March 14, 2002 7:48 PM
Yow may be able to build a portable staging area that can be removed from your layout when not in use...I'm about to begin to add one to my layout on the backside of a mountain out of "public" view that when not in use will be taken off and stored underneith
Good luck
Matt
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Posted by Anonymous on Friday, March 15, 2002 5:01 AM
I think the original question has not yet been answered. Briefly, staging tracks (one track or a whole yard) are really a representation of "the rest of the world", not just a place to store trains.
The whole idea is that staging areas represent destinations beyond the modelled portion of the layout. They are a very useful addition to any layout on which prototypical operation is intended.
Have a look at John Armstrong's book "Track Planning for Realistic Operation" or Bruce Chubb's "How to Operate Your Model Railroad" to get some additional information. There have also been many articles in MR and RMC about using staging for operation.
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Posted by Anonymous on Friday, March 15, 2002 7:21 AM
Wolv - As some of the other guys indicated, it's not intended to be realistic - that's why it's "off-stage". One of the responders said something about a removable staging area, which might be a simpler solution than "under". There's a thread dealing with a version of this at http://www.the-gauge.com/forums/showthread.php?s=&threadid=1536
Basically the idea was to have a backdrop (or sidedrop) set in a few inches from the edge of the layout, and run a track through the backdrop to the edge of the layout, and then use "cassettes"
(as defined by Iain Rice in one of his layout books) to connect to the track at the edge.
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Posted by Anonymous on Friday, March 15, 2002 12:26 PM
FYI the March 2002 issue of RailModel Journal which I received last night has great article on this topic with suggested staging yard configurations for various size layouts.
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Posted by Anonymous on Friday, March 15, 2002 9:23 PM
Hey Jim,

Are you JUST NOW getting the March issue, or did you mean the issue for the month of March? I have already got the April issue-it came earlier this week.

I will look into that. Although, my question still stands-WHY staging yards. Not how to make them or anything, but WHY have them? I have a large railyard in my layout design. Why couldn't I use that to make up the trains-isnt that what it is intended for? Thanks again guys.

-Wolv33
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Posted by Anonymous on Friday, March 15, 2002 9:27 PM
Thanks Bill. I will look that up.

Lovely, now what are cassettes? Hnmmmmm... All this new terminology. LOL!

Of course, I could probably bore you guys to death with all the computer and networking terminology I know. Hahahaha...

Ummm, be sure to read my post after Jim's.

Thanks.

-Wolv33
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Posted by Anonymous on Friday, March 15, 2002 9:49 PM
Wolv,
Staging yards or tracks connecting to one or both ends of your RR give you a way to simulate trains coming onto your RR from the "rest of the world".
For example, my RR is set in western North Carolina. I'm currently building a staging yard which will simulate the Southern Rwy leading into my RR. Another staging yard, yet to be built, will simulate the L&N RR coming into my RR from the other direction. Both will store and generate trains to run through the layout, some of which will pass by a sub-division point yard and some of which will be worked and reclassified in the yard. Hope this helps.
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Posted by Anonymous on Friday, March 15, 2002 11:08 PM
Wolv33 - "Cassette" was Iain Rice's term -- I was a little relictant to use it, it seems to cause a thread to degenerate into silly-land (see the thread I referenced, for example). Anyway, what it is is just a section onto which you can run some cars, or a whole train, or whatever, and then remove it from the layout. And then maybe plug in a different cassette with different cars on it. It's a good way to represent the rest of the world. The Iain Rice book I got the idea from is Small, Smart and Practical Track Plans, from Kalmbach.
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Posted by Anonymous on Saturday, March 16, 2002 7:09 PM
An other way to look at them is...During operating sessions, Many modelers will set up trains well in advance and to simulate that the train has come from somewere, ventured though my layout, and has gone to another somewere far away. basically it came, it ventured, and it went, only to be seen the one time in the session. Yes it may have stopped on the layout, dropped off a couple cars, and left or disapears into the staging yard for me to worry about later. They are just a convience so I don't have to keep taking the trains off the track. Yards are for doing yard things, Staging yards are for hiding the train until you are ready for it. let me know if I answered the question.........Jamie
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Posted by Anonymous on Sunday, March 17, 2002 9:49 PM
I think I finally got you guys. LOL

So, a staging yard is basically a non-essential piece or array of track that simulates real-world operation (ex. a train using another Road's line to get to their destination)...

Hmmmmmm... Never thought about running a couple of other roads on the layout. I was mainly interested in the five main roads that ran in my area, where I used to live. Actually 3 not 5-some just changed their names-CB&Q/BN/BNSF, Rock Island, and Amtrak... I guess I could add a couple UP trains, and a CP train, because I have seen those go through my old town too.

Interesting idea to the say the least. Thanks for explaining it.

-Wolv33

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