design idea for a logging/mining layout

Discussion in 'Track Planning' started by Myowngod, Aug 17, 2011.

  1. Myowngod

    Myowngod Member

    Hey everyone,
    It's been a long time since I have posted.
    But good news... I have acquired a new area to build a layout. The room will be approximately 14'x15', with a 3'x20' staging/reverse loop area. I have yet to even stud out the walls, so I have a long way to go before running trains.:D

    I have been designing a 2 deck layout, HO scale, that will represent a logging and coaling region in Pennsylvania somewhere (open for suggestions). The era is going to be in the 1920-30's I want a narrow gauge feel to the layout but use standard HO track code 83. Mainly for ease of construction. Not sure if I want to get into hand laying track yet for the narrow gauge, or even buy a whole new fleet of engines and rolling stock to operate on this layout. So I'm sticking with HO.
    Here is a CAD drawn of the blank room. The 1' thick GREY walls are cynderblock and the yellow walls will be wood stud walls.

    Klaiss logging RR room only.jpg

    I have this layout available in XtrkCAD if anyone wants to critique or fool around with it.
    Below is the first level. The main yard/town area is on the left side of the layout. I will operate this as a point to point RR, but I have put reversing loops on both upper and lower deck. Although I won't be able to run trains from one end to the other because of a switchback section half way around the plan.

    Klaiss logging RR2.jpg

    The center peninsula is going to be a sawmill kit from SeirraWest. "Twin Mills at Deer Creek"[/URL]
    The feel I'm going for is similar to layout this guy built. Degulbeef & Cradding Railroad[/URL] I really like the terrain and the coloration he capture.
    Here is the upper level. It starts in the upper right corner at 20" above the lower deck and wraps around clockwise up to 24" on the upper left corner. This deck will be the higher logging and mining camps up the mountains.

    Klaiss logging RR4.jpg

    If anyone has any suggestion on the track plan, PLEASE speak up. I am very flexible to make any improvements to better the operation. And again if you want the CAD file I can send it to you.
    Thank so much.
  2. Bill Nelson

    Bill Nelson Well-Known Member

    After a quick study, I like it. I am in the middle of track planning as well, as I am considering replacing 2/3rds of my 20 year old logging railroad to try to use my odd space more efficiently, get a longer run, and lessen the ruling grade so my 2-4-4-2's can get more excersize.

    I used to use code 70 on the main and code 55 on sidings for looks, but you loose a lot of conductivity on the smaller railhead footprint, so on my changes I will use code 83 for the main and code 70 on the sidings, it won't look as backwoodsy, but it will be worthwhile for better track conductivity.

    post your progress, we would love to have more activity over in the logging, mining and industrial area.

    Bill Nelson
  3. Bill Nelson

    Bill Nelson Well-Known Member

    How do you get between levels?

    Bill Nelson
  4. Myowngod

    Myowngod Member

    If you see the switchback track in the lower left corner, that starts to rise the grade to the second level. The track heads up(north) , once it goes through the block wall(thick grey line) it makes a right turn and goes along the top of the plan. It makes another right turn(upper right) and heads back into the main layout area.

    In actuality I have almost scrapped this plan because of the duck under to get into the room. I will post the new plan later tonight. A much easier walk-in design. My back was hurting just looking at the old plan.:mrgreen:
  5. Bill Nelson

    Bill Nelson Well-Known Member

    I heartily endorse avoiding duckunders. they are a pain to start with, and get worse as you age. On the layout that I had when I was in high school, I had a couple hinged drop out sections in place of duckunders, and they worked flawlessly.

    What are you looking at as a minimum radius, and maximum grade. My current valley division has 21 inch radius minimums, and a 3.3% ruling grade . My mountain division is geared locomotive only territory with 18 inch minimum radius, and a ruling grade of 8.5%

    as a result trains on the mountain are usually less than 8 cars. Over the years I have found myself wanting to run my rod locomotives longer distances, and to have longer trains, so I am
    considering a massive rebuild with most of the rr built to my current valley division standards.

    Bill Nelson
  6. Myowngod

    Myowngod Member

    New Walk-in Design

    Here is the new walk-in design I have come up with. This should make it a lot easier on my back.:thumb:
    First level
    Klaiss logging RR Walk in.jpg

    Second Level
    Klaiss logging RR Walk in 2.jpg

    I have most of the grade at 2.5%or less , But I was wondering if increasing it to 3 or 4% on the switchback would be a problem? The extra height I gain would be helpful in between the to decks. The radii is 22" or greater. On the first level (middle left side near the dimension 13'9") I was trying to squeeze a small yard in or engine service area. Any thoughts would be appreciated.
  7. Bill Nelson

    Bill Nelson Well-Known Member


    the grade you can get away with will depend heavily on your motive power. I have a lot of old brass geared power, much of it modified with extra lead weight. small rod locomotives will be severely limited with grades over 3%.

    the tightness of curves adds a lot of drag, so curves and grade must be considered together. You may want to mock up a section of track, with your curvature and test it at several different grades to test your locomotives, and see what you can live with.

    The larger deck separation is nice. My redesign is attempting to use a helix, but they eat a whole lot of space.

    Bill Nelson

Share This Page