Critiques of Layout

Discussion in 'Track Planning' started by kchronister, Mar 12, 2005.

  1. kchronister

    kchronister Member

    Okay, gang - have at it. Here's the details:

    Room is 20' x 36' - layout area is 20'x30' leaving one end "open" - other 3 sides are against the wall.

    I model 1930's-40's era PRR. Emphasis is (heavily) on main-line running. With all due respect to the various focii present in the hobby, I'm a time-tested mainline running guy. Switching and all are nice, but won't keep me occupied for that long.

    I have not put in any detail. What you see here is JUST the mainline, with indications where a city with yard and hidden staging yard would go. The blue tracks are "visible" while the white tracks are a hidden descent to the staging yard. There would be some passing tracks, sidings, branches, etc. added, but not that much.

    Yes, I know the aisles are a bit narrow, but I've tried to keep some "viewing" areas at least 3' wide, but other spots are 24" and even a few squeezes to 18"... C'est la vie.

    So have at it! Tell me your thoughts, suggestions, etc. I'd also LOVE to see layout diagrams for folks with similar size spaces...


    Attached Files:

  2. Ralph

    Ralph's for fun!

    Holy Mackeral!!!! That is going to be some kind of layout! I'm envious of your space...and ambition! You seem to have set the plan well for long mainline runs! Very cool! I believe aisle width becomes more critical if you plan to have other operators join you. If you're lone-wolfing it, who cares about 18 inch ailes, but if others are walking past you to follow their trains it may get to be inconvenient. Still, compromise always happens in layout planning!
  3. Matthyro

    Matthyro Will always be re-membered

    This will be a layout I would love to have for the same reasons you have given kchronister.
    I have similar aisle widths in my 27ft by 11ft. layout and so far no problems. I have had a few visitors but mostly run trains by myself. What scale will this be?
  4. kchronister

    kchronister Member

    It's HO. 22" min radius. I run mostly K4s and a couple x-8-x and all locos have proved perfectly fine on 22. Longer locos wouldn't be relevant in the period for PRR anyhow. Yet another compromise for sake of much running.

    I don't anticipate many guest operators. Visitors will mostly be viewers who can cling to the wider areas.

    In the center, bottom area I might be able to push the lower track closer to the wall (above the track headed down to staging) and create a larger aisle space there... But have to calculate things a little more carefully -- I like to run LOOONNNNNGGG trains and can't afford a heavy grade there to clear under the tracks. That'll boil down to math -- can I work the grades to provide adequate clearance at my max of 1.5%...

  5. hocaboose

    hocaboose New Member

    I would seriously reconsider the 22" radius. While you may not be into bigger/longer steamers now it is always prudent to plan for the future and all of your rolling stock will look better as a result. I have a simpler around the walls/island style layout 17' x 21') but held the minimum mainline radius at 30" (yes I know this is a plan killer!) and have never looked back.

    Don't want to dampen your enthusiam but thought this is something to be considered.

  6. Matthyro

    Matthyro Will always be re-membered

    My curent N gauge layout has a min 20inch radius and I am happy with it. That would translate to around 36inch radius in HO I think. As long as you can live with 22inch radius Kris but I think 24inches would handle just about everything from what I have read.
  7. 60103

    60103 Pooh Bah

    Which one of those bends is Horseshoe Curve? Looks like the lower right corner.
  8. engineshop

    engineshop Member

    I envy the room but I would get rid of one loop. The radius will get bigger and you have more room to put in industries and other scenery items.
  9. MasonJar

    MasonJar It's not rocket surgery

    I think engineshop is on to something... 18" aisles are very tight.. you have to have "passing tracks" for the visitors too! ;)

  10. babydot94513

    babydot94513 Member in training

    Good point - you should have some industries to add to the realism. Perhaps a grain silo?

  11. Tileguy

    Tileguy Member

    If you want an Honest opinion i believe its Too Much!!
    Kinda like me trying to fit the entire GN line from minnesota to the west coast in the same area.
    You have alot of room to do a very good job with 1 division modeling the PRR's best scenic highlights in that one division.
    By doing this you can still have a good mainline run capable of long trains,Eliminate the tight radius making sweeping radius's for those big Northerns(they will make a tight radius but they would look better doing it on 40" minimum 60 would be better)

    Believe it or not,those of us who do not have the kind of room you do just about cringe seeing all that glorius space crammed with track on every inch.If you really want to keep that mainline length, Do it in 2 decks eliminating 2 peninsulas(1 at the top of your plan and one at the bottom) Increase your radius's and you get back the 2 you lost with the upper deck.
    This will make things far more comfortable for you and for viewers.It will give you the same or more mainline run and it will provide you with the opportunity to do a much better job in the long run of modeling your favorite road.

    You will be spending alot of money and alot of time building this.Your chances of enjoying it will dramatically improve if you go to 2 decks,I truly believe that.

    Brutaly honest opinion, but still, it is my opinion only.Please dont take it as anything other than what it is.You asked and I just had to open my big mouth :D

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