Dumb Idea #461

Discussion in 'Track Planning' started by billk, Feb 18, 2002.

  1. billk

    billk Active Member

    Here is an idea I've been toying with.

    In the drawing, the wrap-around backdrop, in green, is offset from the edge of the layout by several inches. Behind the backdrop is a staging track, shown as a dotted line. It enters the main layout area via a disguised area in the backdrop.

    The staging track ends in a "cassette" (shown as a rectangle, ala Iain Rice's "Small, Smart and Practical Railroads". This cassette is basically a removable section, enclosed on the sides, and with a coupler at the end so that entire trains, or sections of trains, can be removed and/or replaced en masse. It could possibly overhang the edge of the layout, by maybe up to 1/2 of its length.

    Any comments, questions, suggestions?
  2. Drew1125

    Drew1125 Active Member

    Hi billk!
    I like everything about it except your title! "Dumb" it is not!
    I think one of the most intellegent ways to build a model RR is as a staged scene. After all, that's exactly how we view a real RR. We stand & look at a section of RR, in which the train enters from beyond our field of view, & then leaves out of our field of view...so simple, & so perfect.
    Also, I think the backdrop is one of the most under-appreciated, & therefore under-utilized parts of a model RR.
    I'd love to see how you develop that plan.
  3. Tyson Rayles

    Tyson Rayles Active Member

    Hey Bill, I agree with Charlie, its a good idea if you have the room to get back there and switch out the cassettes.
  4. Sir_Prize

    Sir_Prize Member

    I like it, too. A railroad cassette player!:D
    Take it a bit futher (over engineer), make it "motorized." I recall an MR issue with a fella that had a horizontal idea of what I'm thinking of. You have the cassettes of trains, load'em, hit the button, scroll through five or six and select the one you want to send out/ return it. :D
  5. billk

    billk Active Member

    Thank you for your support. (Where'd that come from - was it Hee Haw?)

    Tyson, it wouldn't take much room at all, especially if you rolled the front edge of the backdrop to make the access a little wider. I'd rig up some kind of pin-in-hole arrangement for alignment, and make the electrical connections at the "wide" end.

    Sir_Prize - Please post full details, photos and plans once you get the juke box worked idea out!
  6. Tyson Rayles

    Tyson Rayles Active Member

    Can those cassettes play some good 60's rock and roll? I remember an article in MR where ther where 3 or 4 cassettes on a rack mounted 1 above the other and you would manually crank the rack up or down till you had the cassette you wanted then drive the train onto the layout. If I can find it I'll let you know.:D
  7. BDC

    BDC Member

    Boy, oh boy. Turntables, cassettes, 8-tracks (feight yards, that is). What about the CD's?? :p

    BTW - Bilk, you're thinking of the Bartyles and James ads with the two older fellows from several years ago.
  8. YakkoWarner

    YakkoWarner Member

    "I'm Frank Bartles, This is Ed James, Thank you for your support"

    A series of commercials in the early eighties for "Bartles' and James'" wine coolers.
  9. billk

    billk Active Member

    Oh, yeah - Bartles and James - duh! BTW, the "cassette" term was Iain Rice's, not mine. Maybe we should change the name to something like a "removable staging track" just to get over the attempts at humor.;)
  10. krskev

    krskev New Member

    I remember seeing something like this in MR a few years back.

    The guy had a staging track that went under the layout and then stub ended in a box.

    As I remember it the boxes were only for 1 car. He had a cabinet under the layout that could hold 100 or so boxes, all were labeled for each car. The boxes were plywood and had sides and top. He had a sliding door at one end of the box and a handle on the top. He was able to put and take cars on and off the layout with out ever handling them by hand.

    I think he was also able to take the whole cabinet to train shows without ever having to worry about packing up the cars. The boxes were just wide and tall enough so the cars would not fall off the tracks in the bottom of the box.

    The boxes also had some type of a guide so when installed on the layout the tracks would line up perfectly.

    Ill look up the issue and let you know.

  11. Drew1125

    Drew1125 Active Member

    How about staging tracks behind a removable backdrop?
  12. Bill Pontin

    Bill Pontin Member

    Hi billk, your idea is great and if I expand on it a bit I may be able to solve my display problems. I do not have the room for a freight yard and I was wondering how I could display some of my rolling stock. If I take your idea and cover the cassette with a removable acrylic channel I would then use the cassette as a display case and put it up on a peg board wall display. Have made many acrylic display cases for the wife's dolls, but do not know if I can make one that long and narrow. "If at first you don't succeed, destroy all evidence you even tried" Should also check the local plastic distributor to see if they have clear acrylic channel or acrylic rectangular tube. (would have to cut out the bottom) In either case will let you know how I make out.

    BillP: rolleyes:
  13. billk

    billk Active Member

    Bill (P) - Don't know if you've seen Rice's book, but his "RST" was made from two aluminum angles fastened down to a piece of plywood. No tracks, the angles were spaced so that they would replace the rails, and the power was fed right to the angles!

    This probably doesn't help with what you're cooking up, except maybe to encourage thinking out of the box. I always thought that a clear round tube would be a cool way display trains, but have never thought it through very far.
    Bill (K)
  14. roryglasgow

    roryglasgow Active Member

    Speaking of cassettes, I checked out a site I found in the current issue of MR. Take a look a the Multi Station! Looks like one of those lottery barrel thingies.



    P.S. - The link above is a temporary link. Their "permanent" link is www.train-safe.com.
  15. Tyson Rayles

    Tyson Rayles Active Member

    Hmmmmmmm, that Multi-Station looks a lot like the old time Gatlin Gun.:cool:
  16. BDC

    BDC Member

    Yeah! Gives a whole new meaning to the phrase "Bullet Train!" :rolleyes:
  17. Tyson Rayles

    Tyson Rayles Active Member

    If you install one on your layout do your trains come out of it with warheads already installed on 'em.:D
  18. Bill Pontin

    Bill Pontin Member

    Rory, thanks for the URL, that is exactly what I had in mind. (Shucks someone else thunk of it already) Little cost prohibitive for my meager modeling budget, will check "Modern Plastics" here in Bridgeport and see if I can at least get the rectangular tubes.
  19. roryglasgow

    roryglasgow Active Member

    Did you actually see a price for the Multi-Station? I imagined that it was expensive, but I didn't see a price. I just thought it was kind of a neat idea.

    To me, though, it is a better idea to use a cassette that moves vertically. That way you don't have to worry about using either a pivoting mechanism to keep the trains upright in the tubes, or a system of locking them down to keep them from falling from the track as the barrel turns. Plus a vertical cassette would take less horizontal space (Z-axis), and would probably fit better with a shelf layout.

    And I've pretty much given up that I'll ever have an original idea. My experience has shown me that someone somewhere has probably already thought about it. But I still contend that there is a very good possibility that I'm the only person named Rory Glasgow in the world. And even if I'm not, then I think that the chances that there's another Rory Llyn Glasgow (with that spelling) are astronomical. So I've got a claim on something, at least! :)

  20. Tyson Rayles

    Tyson Rayles Active Member

    I didn't see prices or specs, I think its in the devolpemental stages. I agree it looks pricey and a vertical one would work better and use less space. I honestly believe they had one in MR and have been looking thru back issues (20 years so far ) but haven't found it yet. :( Glad you have a claim to something, that puts you 1 up on me.:rolleyes:

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