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? A modified Virginia layout

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  • Member since
    December 2004
  • From: Pa.
  • 3,361 posts
? A modified Virginia layout
Posted by DigitalGriffin on Saturday, January 27, 2024 11:31 AM

Has anybody ever modeled a modified mrr's VGN?   I'm thinking a lot more can be done with it if it's 1 foot wider and 2 feet longer.

Don - Specializing in layout DC->DCC conversions

Modeling C&O transition era and steel industries There's Nothing Like Big Steam!

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    November 2013
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Posted by snjroy on Sunday, January 28, 2024 7:17 AM

Hi there. Are you referring to the Virginian? I believe the original plan was a 4x8. There is a modified plan on the MRR site with an extension:

https://www.trains.com/mrr/how-to/track-plan-database/the-virginian/

Sure, you can do more things with a 5x10. At my age, my arms are not long enough to model anything beyond 2 feet of reach Smile.

Simon

  • Member since
    December 2016
  • 168 posts
Posted by speedybee on Sunday, January 28, 2024 1:06 PM

I like a good 4x8 layout, but that is not a good one. To name just a couple of its several shortcomings, the yard has no lead at all, so trying to switch the yard will block the mainline. And there's no passing track, so you can only run one train at a time on the mainline, and you can't even switch the yard while you do it.

You can do enough good things in just a 4x8 (if you start with a better design) that I don't think there'd be much point in making a 5x10. If your room is big enough for a 5x10, you may as well do an around-the-walls or a 4x8 with future around-the-walls extensions. Assuming you're OK with 18" curves.

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Posted by kasskaboose on Sunday, January 28, 2024 2:16 PM

The layout screams issues (regardless of size).  It does not seem capable of providing a lot of operational joy.

Perhaps shift the yard, which faces NW to W.  Additionally,  remove the tracks behind the yard to only have attention dedicated there.  As someone already mentioned, adding a turnout from the yard to the inner track (near the curve) makes the layout a bit less congested and problematic.

Just my thoughts!

  • Member since
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  • From: Heart of Georgia
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Posted by Doughless on Tuesday, January 30, 2024 7:50 AM

I think for operating one train, the Virginian offers operating potential, as described in the series.  Taking the hoppers from the mine and the truck dump, down to the marshalling yard, then onto the mainline to an imaginary interchange.

My personal tastes wouldn't want to try to run two trains on a 4 x 8, so I think they designed it with a single train in mind, IMO.

Making it bigger would defintiely help.  Options:

Add a double track off the yard and around the loop for a yard lead, (which is likely how the prototype would design it).  I probably still would not run another train around the small loop.

Enhance the interchange track to actually drop cars and pick up others.

Widen the mountain scenic barrier a few inches.

Lengthen the yard probably at least a foot.

Maybe move the big mine to the end of the branch instead of in the middle of the run to have a longer run with a longer train.

Maybe add another small industry to switch something other than coal hoppers.

Also, if you had the space, the 5 x 10 could be shoved close to one long wall (providing 2 feet of access) so that the branch itself could be extended along another wall  or two. The entire layout is designed to take cars from the branch line down to the marshalling yard and then to interchange, so having a longer branch line along the wall(s) with the big mine at the end would be interesting, IMO. 

- Douglas

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Posted by snjroy on Wednesday, January 31, 2024 10:42 AM

I think that the David Popp modification ( https://www.trains.com/mrr/how-to/track-plan-database/the-virginian/ ) is very appealing from an operational perspective. It's also easier to work with in terms of width than a 5X10. But instead of adding a second mining operation, I would go for another industry to add variety, something like a lumber operation, or something more modern like a chemical plant.

Simon

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