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Would a layout without selective compression be boring?

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Would a layout without selective compression be boring?
Posted by msrrkevin on Saturday, November 11, 2017 9:02 PM

So even if one had oodles of space - would a layout built to exact scale be boring?

Just think - you'd have fewer industries, fewer sidings, fewer details, and boring things like parking lots would be more boring and take up even more space...

- Kevin

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Posted by "JaBear" on Saturday, November 11, 2017 9:32 PM
Hmm As your premise is not space restricted, and providing it was nicely modelled, I don’t think it would necessarily be boring.
 
But “impractical” does immediately spring to mind!!
Cheers, the Bear.Smile

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Posted by MisterBeasley on Saturday, November 11, 2017 9:40 PM

I would think you'd have just as many industries, but they'd just be further apart.  You'd just have more room for scenery, be it railroad-related or not.

You would need a lot of Super Trees.

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Posted by mbinsewi on Saturday, November 11, 2017 10:02 PM

msrrkevin

So even if one had oodles of space - would a layout built to exact scale be boring?

Just think - you'd have fewer industries, fewer sidings, fewer details, and boring things like parking lots would be more boring and take up even more space...

 

Why do you ask, or think that would be boring ?  You'd have alot more scenery to do, but if you talk about "oodles of space", you could have more industries, such as an industrial switching layout/industrial park, so, you wouldn't have fewer industries, you could have more!  along with scenic country areas.  I don't think you'd have "fewer details".

Just remember as you design this, you need to have access to your switching areas, and, the trains running through all of this "built to exact scale" scenery.

Mike.

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Posted by Doughless on Saturday, November 11, 2017 10:14 PM

Yes.  Too much distance to travel would be boring, IMO.

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Posted by IRONROOSTER on Saturday, November 11, 2017 10:39 PM

For the most part yes.  Most railroads have miles of uneventful track.  Assuming you are running at scale speeds, spending 15 minutes or more getting from one station to the next would get boring after the first one or two.

Paul

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Posted by Ray Dunakin on Saturday, November 11, 2017 10:56 PM

I'd say it really depends on what you're modeling. Something like Bingham Canyon during the 1920s-1930s would have tons of cool stuff to model in a relatively small, confined space -- multiple levels of track, lots of bridges, and tons of interesting structures.

There are other mining or industrial railroads that could be modeled in their entirety and still have lots of interesting track, scenery and structures.

Or you could model just a specific section of a modern railroad.

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Posted by dehusman on Saturday, November 11, 2017 11:11 PM

Having worked on a real railroad, yep.  Remember it might take a train 8-12 hours to go between terminals and that most trains a railroad runs are through freights.

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Posted by Sir Madog on Sunday, November 12, 2017 12:05 AM

Yes, it will be boring and no, it won´t!

Whether a layout will be boring (I assume you mean either boring to operate or boring to look at), finally depends on the setting of your choice. Now, if you go for Australia, something like this:

certainly might be called boring, while modeling the Albula line in Switzerland, a narrow gauge line in the Swiss Alps, which winds its way up to the Albula pass is definitively more thrilling (and so would be a model of the Durango & Silverton RR):

   Ulrich     

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Posted by SeeYou190 on Sunday, November 12, 2017 1:41 AM

Well, your biggest problem (literally) is going to be turnouts. The biggest we can get commercially is #10, but that is pretty small in the real world.

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Mainline running with no compression would be boring.

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An ISL with no compression would be amazing. The urban scenery would be overwhelming.

.

-Kevin

.

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Posted by BATMAN on Sunday, November 12, 2017 1:44 AM

I always thought it would be kind of neat to model the Canadian Pacific Railroad from Vancouver to Calgary through the Rockies to scale. I have about three scale miles of track to simulate the same thing.

To do it to scale, it would be about ten real miles in length and what do I look like a Mailman or a model railroader. Of course, if I did model ten real life miles and wanted to follow my train as it went, I would take a dog along and kill two birds with one stone. Then again if the train was traveling at scale speed and we were following it along and we wanted our daily walk, we would have to start before we finished each day.ConfusedIndifferentLaugh

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Posted by Sir Madog on Sunday, November 12, 2017 1:44 AM

SeeYou190
Well, your biggest problem (literally) is going to be turnouts. The biggest we can get commercially is #10, but that is pretty small in the real world.

With unlimited funds available, you´d just have some one make prototypical switches for you, so that is no problem at all.

SeeYou190
Mainline running with no compression would be boring.

Why?

   Ulrich     

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Posted by Jimmy_Braum on Sunday, November 12, 2017 6:01 AM

About the lack of industry, I plan to protolance mine. Actual railroad, but businesses will be backdated so they become rail served. 

(My Model Railroad, My Rules) 

These are the opinions of a 26 year old, from the east end of, and modeling, the same section of the Wheeling and Lake Erie railway.  As well as a freelanced road (Austinville and Dynamite City railroad).

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Posted by dragonriversteel on Sunday, November 12, 2017 7:25 AM

Selective compression. Yup, been there done that. 

About ten years ago. I scratch built a huge steel mill Basic Oxygen Furnace for my layout. It measured 4'L x 4'W x 3'H. Which took up quite a bit of space even though it was compressed.

Lessons learned then will be applied to my new layout. Selective compression can work but you need to know your real estate limitations. Mine was built around the massive structure. Mistake number one.

 

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Posted by BRAKIE on Sunday, November 12, 2017 7:42 AM

A uncompress industrial lead with all the  trimmings and many rail and non-rail served industries would be IMHO paradise on earth but,running between terminal A and terminal B would be quite boring.

When can we start building this Mother of all ISLs? Stick out tongue

Larry

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Posted by snjroy on Sunday, November 12, 2017 7:55 AM

Boring to operate? Probably. Boring to build? Not for those who superdetail their stuff. 

Simon

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Posted by NittanyLion on Sunday, November 12, 2017 9:50 AM

I would find the sprawling Washington Union Station layout I'd build way more interesting than the small industrial layout that it only took a few sessions to "solve" all scenarios. 

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Posted by msrrkevin on Sunday, November 12, 2017 9:51 AM

I think if your entire layout was one big steel mill, to scale, that would be cool.  But even if I had industries one mile apart, that's some 60 feet in HO! 

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Posted by angelob6660 on Sunday, November 12, 2017 10:12 AM

I designed a very compressed layout which included a tunnel, junction, bridge, and one industry with a small city surrounded by a huge hill.

The scenery is filled with pine trees with a single mainline with one passing track. 

I like it very much but it need 1-2 more industries but it would hard to place without losing something.

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Posted by mlehman on Sunday, November 12, 2017 10:28 AM

As several have noted, choose the right protoype and it won't be boring.

One thing it would be in most cases is pretty good exercise.

Mike Lehman

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Posted by SeeYou190 on Sunday, November 12, 2017 11:24 AM

OK, I did some quick research work with google maps on the local railroad company, the SEMINOLE GULF RAILWAY. Note: They are SGLR, not to be confused with my SGRR, The STRATTON AND GILLETTE came along 10 years earlier.

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The train's run into town goes by a spur to Raymond Building Supply in North Fort Myers. From there the mainline crosses the Calloosahatchee River on a trestle with a Bascule section to clear the Intercoastal Waterway. Then the main runs down 1.4 miles of backyards along Palm Beach Boulevard. It then turns Southwest and goes through almost another half mile of backyard in Dunbar.

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The tracks go past a few rail served industries, The Fort Myers Newspress, Miller Brands Distributing, AmeriGas Propane, and Garden Street Metal Recycling. Then it goes down Metropolitan Parkway to the yard and service terminal. The yard is double ended, four tracks, and almost 1.5 miles long.

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If my calculations are correct, this would require a length of over 350 actual real world feet to model.

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You could have staging on both ends, North to the CSX interchange, South to Railhead Industrial Park. If you want to model the run to Railhead, that would require and additional 900 feet of mainline run. Look at about 2,000 feet of track to reach the CSX interchange in Punta Gorda.

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The run down Palm Beach Boulevard would require you to build over 500 residences, just for those close to the track. Modeling the art-deco "Styland" men's store and "Imaginarium" complex where the tracks cross Martin Luther King Boulevard might be a lifetime project all in its own. The bridge across the Caloosahatchee would be about 75 feet long, and you would need to include the 8 lane Interstate 75 bridge that runs parallel beacuse it is such a prominent part of the scene, but it would be about 15 feet away uncompressed.

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So, without Railhead Park and the CSX interchange, you are still looking about 600 or so actual feet of track to serve 5 industries, and an army of help just to sloppily model all the structures.

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At this point I would have to say you are not model railroading anymore. You are building an insane model of a city, and just including the train. The trains would be so insignificant they would look like an afterthought in the whole project.

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Yes, that sounds boring.

.

-Kevin

.

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Posted by Sir Madog on Sunday, November 12, 2017 11:49 AM

SeeYou190
Yes, that sounds boring.

Others may find it thrilling!

Boring or not boring is a question of personal preference and/or attitude. Isn´t it a wonderful hobby? There is something in it for just everyone!

   Ulrich     

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Posted by dknelson on Monday, November 13, 2017 12:00 PM

I think a layout without any compression would be pretty darn surprising even to the owner.  We've all gotten so used to our trains being the "right" size and to scale but our hardwood trees being pretty stunted, our roads and streets and sidewalks being narrow (would you want to drive at posted speed limits on the streets on your layout?) and curving too sharply, our railroad rights of way being too narrow, our utility line poles being closer together, and our structures being either compressed or just smallish prototypes, that I suspect we'd think the trains were wrong if nothing was compressed -- that it would look like we are using HO trains on an S scale or even O scale layout!    

Even structures, which take rather well to true selective compression, often are not just smaller in overall size but also squeeze down the hights of each floor, so it isn't just that we have a 3 story version of a 4 story building, but the 3 floors we do have are compressed in height versus the first 3 floors of the prototype.  Stated another way, regardless of deliberate compression in length and width and height, many HO buildings are likely 1/8" scale or smaller in major verticle dimensions, just with full size doors (and often even those are small). 

Not all of our compression is selective (if I understand that word "selective" to convey "thoughtfully considered and calculated to look plausible").  Our curves are not selectively compressed, they tend to be forced on us by the reality of our space.  Ditto for turnouts; if the prototype would use a #20 turnout and we use a #6, that isn't because we have thoughtfully calculated that in context that #6 will look about as large and as smooth as the #20 does on the prototype.  Rather it is because we lack the space to use, say, a #12 or #14 which would be genuine selective compression for a #20 -- again, if I correctly understand the meaning of what is intended with the word selective

Dave Nelson

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