Trains.com

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!

How big is too big for an N scale table

1249 views
15 replies
1 rating 2 rating 3 rating 4 rating 5 rating
  • Member since
    September 2003
  • From: Southeast Texas
  • 5,385 posts
Posted by mobilman44 on Thursday, September 22, 2022 6:00 AM

For what its worth....

In my experience, having two 11x15 "round the room" layouts, 36 inches was the max reachable distance.  That said, I had 2 carpet covered cubes that I would stand on to reach the furthest 8-10 inches.

For the corners, which were beyond comfortable reach, I made certain the trackage was "perfect" (no turnouts) and the out of reach scenery was done before doing reachable scenery.  This worked out great, and stood the test of time.

I'm not saying this was ideal, but to get the set up I wanted, this was what I did.

ENJOY  !

 

Mobilman44

 

Living in southeast Texas, formerly modeling the "postwar" Santa Fe and Illinois Central 

  • Member since
    September 2022
  • From: Idaho
  • 33 posts
Posted by OERRFailRanner on Monday, September 19, 2022 9:55 AM

DonRicardo

How far can you reach and still work on your layout?

I am only able to reach about 2 - 3 feet at the max. I figured I can put a L sape layout big enough for a loop and a yard section

  • Member since
    February 2018
  • From: Flyover Country
  • 4,495 posts
Posted by York1 on Sunday, September 18, 2022 1:11 PM

ndbprr
My wife asked me how big a basement I wanted when we retired.  I told her 10,000 square feet should be adequate. I got 1000 square feet.

 

This is good advice for anyone needing to budget for the next year.  Ask for ten times the amount you need, and they'll feel they're doing you a favor giving a tenth.

Just make sure you use all 1,000, or it will slowly be appropriated for other uses.

York1 John       

  • Member since
    September 2002
  • 7,359 posts
Posted by ndbprr on Sunday, September 18, 2022 8:24 AM

My wife asked me how big a basement I wanted when we retired.  I told her 10,000 square feet should be adequate. I got 1000 square feet.

  • Member since
    February 2018
  • From: Flyover Country
  • 4,495 posts
Posted by York1 on Saturday, September 17, 2022 4:07 PM

DonRicardo and OERRFailR...

Each week Kevin (or others) starts the thread Weekend Photo Fun on this forum.

It's a perfect place to put pictures of your layout.  Nothing needs to be finished or perfect.  We love all pictures of anything to do with layouts.

Some of the expert modelers post there and will inspire you to work on your layout!

York1 John       

  • Member since
    August 2022
  • From: New England (Cape Cod)
  • 54 posts
Posted by DonRicardo on Saturday, September 17, 2022 3:23 PM

I am building a new layout and will post pics for you as soon as I start the buidings.

Check out ScaleModelPlans.com

 

  • Member since
    January 2017
  • From: Southern Florida Gulf Coast
  • 16,549 posts
Posted by SeeYou190 on Saturday, September 17, 2022 10:02 AM

DonRicardo
I do not spend $30.00/$70.00 on buildings, I make my own from cardstock. I have a rotaru cutter for that which enables me to also cut ouw window and door trim, I use Testors window maker to fill in the window panes, and end up with very decent looking buildings, sized to fit where I want them and with out that plastically look.

I would love to see pictures of these projects if you want to share.

-Kevin

Living the dream and happily modeling my STRATTON AND GILLETTE Railroad in HO scale. The SGRR is a freelanced Class A railroad as it would have appeared on Tuesday, August 3rd, 1954, in my personal fantasy world of plausible nonsense.

  • Member since
    August 2022
  • From: New England (Cape Cod)
  • 54 posts
Posted by DonRicardo on Saturday, September 17, 2022 6:51 AM

How far can you reach and still work on your layout?

I am building an n scale layout now, on 1x3x8 longitudinals with 43 inch cross braces. It is a modified old Atlas plan (N-17) widened and elongated to make it less compacted.

At 43 inches wide, it gives a 22 inch reach from either side, with 19", 17" and 15" radii, all switchws filled in with flex track. That depth allows you to work your layout without dropping the old tummy onto your work! (over-reaching)

This is based on the Conway Scenic RR in New Hampshire, with Boston and Maine locomotives. (B&M originally owned the trackage, as did the Maine Central)

 

The tracks are on 2 inch foam insulation board. (look at Batman's benchwork) It will feature the Saco River, cut right into the foam base, you do not need deep cuts to form streams, creeks, or rivers.

I do not spend $30.00/$70.00 on buildings, I make my own from cardstock. I have a rotaru cutter for that which enables me to also cut ouw window and door trim, I use Testors window maker to fill in the window panes, and end up with very decent looking buildings, sized to fit where I want them and with out that plastically look.

If I had the room, I would do an around the wall shelf layout, but unfortunately that isn't the case,

Good luck on your build and enjoy yourself.

  • Member since
    January 2017
  • From: Southern Florida Gulf Coast
  • 16,549 posts
Posted by SeeYou190 on Friday, September 16, 2022 5:16 PM

STRATTON AND GILLETTE layout number one was an N scale layout built on a door measuring 30" by 80".

There were never any problems from using a door. All my turnouts were Atlas with the switch machines on top the layout.

-Kevin

Living the dream and happily modeling my STRATTON AND GILLETTE Railroad in HO scale. The SGRR is a freelanced Class A railroad as it would have appeared on Tuesday, August 3rd, 1954, in my personal fantasy world of plausible nonsense.

  • Member since
    July 2006
  • From: North Dakota
  • 9,385 posts
Posted by BroadwayLion on Friday, September 16, 2022 1:33 PM

You are asking me? hehehe...

NOTHING is too big for a railroad, says the LION with 14 scale miles of track!

The Route of the Broadway Lion The Largest Subway Layout in North Dakota.

Here there be cats.                                LIONS with CAMERAS

  • Member since
    February 2002
  • From: Mpls/St.Paul
  • 13,123 posts
Posted by wjstix on Friday, September 16, 2022 1:11 PM

An alternative would be an around-the-walls layout. In N-scale, just using 12" to 24" wide shelves would provide plenty of space for track and buildings, and allow for a backdrop behind the shelf. You can widen out out to 36" at each end of the layout to allow for 15" radius loops for continous running - a "dogbone" or "waterwings" layout design.

Be sure and check out Kato Unitrack too.

https://katousa.com/n-unitrack/

 

Stix
  • Member since
    September 2022
  • From: Idaho
  • 33 posts
Posted by OERRFailRanner on Wednesday, September 14, 2022 3:40 PM

Thanks for the reccomendations! I will put these into effect when designing and building my layout. I will also post photos on here when i get to the door layout!

  • Member since
    September 2022
  • From: Idaho
  • 33 posts
Posted by OERRFailRanner on Wednesday, September 14, 2022 3:38 PM

thanks for the reccomendations! I will happily post photos on here when i get to my door, in which i will get to eventually.

  • Member since
    February 2018
  • From: Flyover Country
  • 4,495 posts
Posted by York1 on Wednesday, September 14, 2022 3:15 PM

OERRFailRanner
i have cam up with the idea of using a dual track loop on a hollow door and add on a yard for operations ... I was wondering, would this be too big for a table layout? If any of yall ask for room size, its about 14x12 with bedroom items.

 

I have an N layout in a bedroom (although there's no bed in there at the present time).

My table is L-shaped, and is 36 inches wide.  That is probably too wide for me except that I mounted the table on wheels so that if needed, the entire table can be pulled away from the wall and I can go behind it.

The hardest part to reach is the corner of the L.

I see no problem with your door layout size.  Enjoy building it, and if you can, we'd love to see pictures of your progress.  Many of us like seeing photos of work in progress.

 

York1 John       

  • Member since
    August 2011
  • From: A Comfy Cave, New Zealand
  • 5,506 posts
Posted by "JaBear" on Wednesday, September 14, 2022 3:05 PM
While I’m not an N scale modeller, my observation is that good things have been done on a door.
However, to answer your question How big is too big for an N scale table, one of my considerations for any layout design is reach/depth. While it depends on layout height, I’ll use 36 inches, though I prefer 30 inches for track depth. Further depth may be added for scenery, though as most scenery is added after the tracks have been laid, it depends on the individual as to what they’re prepared to work over.
 
½ My 2 Cents Cheers, the Bear Smile

"One difference between pessimists and optimists is that while pessimists are more often right, optimists have far more fun."

  • Member since
    September 2022
  • From: Idaho
  • 33 posts
How big is too big for an N scale table
Posted by OERRFailRanner on Wednesday, September 14, 2022 10:28 AM

Hello, 

I have been looking at different track plans and i have cam up with the idea of using a dual track loop on a hollow door and add on a yard for operations (based off of the Pennsylvania RR Juniata Division track plan). I was wondering, would this be too big for a table layout? If any of yall ask for room size, its about 14x12 with bedroom items.

Thank you!

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!

Users Online

There are no community member online

Search the Community

ADVERTISEMENT
ADVERTISEMENT
ADVERTISEMENT
Model Railroader Newsletter See all
Sign up for our FREE e-newsletter and get model railroad news in your inbox!