# how to calculate and create an incline

Discussion in 'HO Scale Model Trains' started by Kevinkrey, Jan 4, 2008.

1. ### KevinkreyMember

I want to raise the track 2 inches and have about 4 feet, the 4 feet can go a little bigger. I will not be moving anything heavy up the hill and have sufficiant motive power. What should I do to create the incline?
2. ### pgandwActive Member

It looks like you have plywood under the foam, so the cookie cutter should work and give you nice smooth vertical transitions automatically.

Cut through both the plywood and foam on either side of the track the whole length of the incline so that the track is on a "tongue" of plywood and foam. Hopefully, you can now bend the tongue upwards - it may take some force with the rigidity of the plywood and foam combined.. Use some scrap lumber to support the tongue at the new elevation, and perhaps every 16-24" in between.

Hope this helps
3. ### KevinkreyMember

I dont have a solid piece of benchwork out where the incline is. There is a set of "stairs" in the benchwork to create a downhill slope to my ore dock, alowing the ore dock to be only 2" above the layout, but still 10" tall. I have since glued up some styrofoam to carve out a ramp.
4. ### pgandwActive Member

Kevin

Most of the folks who tried to carve an incline into the foam reported being pretty frustrated. Getting a smooth vertical rise and keeping the roadbed flat across the incline was not easy with foam. After their best carving attempt, the foam would be turned over to regain the finished surface on top. Then the incline could be shimmed from underneath to make it exactly the right grade, and flat across.

The Woodland Scenics Inclines are generally considered a much easier answer.

Another possibility would be to recess the foam incline slightly, and glue a strip of 1/8" or 1/4" plywood on top. The plywood would better span any carving imperfections than your track will. The plywood will also give you smooth vertical transitions, which prevent longer rolling stock from bottom or top-centering at the ends of the incline. Accidental uncouplings due to coupler over/under-ride are another issue when the vertical transitions
are insufficient.

Hope it works out for you. You are doing a magnificent job with your layout.
5. ### KevinkreyMember

I sure hope it works too. But the more I look at it, the carpentry was not well thought out. But it will still work, I like carving foam and I think that part should do fairly smooth. But thanks for the nice words, I now want to go work some more, I think I will.

6. ### KevinkreyMember

Well, it didnt work.sign1sign1sign1

Guess its to the LHS to look at what WS has to offer. But wait, just realized, I have some 1/8" hardboard, that might make a nice incline if it works. I can even cut out the curve I will need at the top of the incline with it.
7. ### KevinkreyMember

Too much?

Does this liook to big. The engines can puse cars up it fine, and the transition on the bottom was just fine, and let mr tell you, my tunnel motors are FUSSY about the track, but this was no problem, I might be able to raise the ore dock height now, and rebuild that section of benchwork (even though I just built it and used my last piece of wood building it:cry. I might have some scrap in th garage:ideaIve always wanted to use the egg guy) .

But anyway, here are 2 pics of the incline, dont know what happened to the second one, but the layout is way down there and Im way up here and lazy, so no new pic, hope it doesnt make ya dizzypeasoup.

File size:
113.5 KB
Views:
10
File size:
114.6 KB
Views:
10
8. ### KevinkreyMember

I think it looks too unrealisticly steep and besides, taconite pellets are spilling out of the cars on their way up! I think Ill tone it down a notch.​
9. ### rogerwActive Member

ya that looks slap crazy steep.
10. ### tettersRail Spiking Fool!

Yeah...I got tired just looking at it!

sign1sign1sign1
11. ### KevinkreyMember

At that rate, if I give the train enough speed, the ore cars will jump the gap over to the ore dock, but wait, then how would I get them down?
12. ### KevinkreyMember

This look better? I tried again. Dont be confused, both pics were taken from oppisite sides, the second one better shows the incline.

File size:
113.5 KB
Views:
8
File size:
114.7 KB
Views:
9
13. ### KevinkreyMember

Here is what the first three feet of incline looks. This should workout fine.

Acctually I think it worked out great, the train Gods were quite impressed and visited, hence the bright light in the final pic, or that might be my flourescent light?

File size:
114.5 KB
Views:
7
File size:
113 KB
Views:
9
File size:
117.1 KB
Views:
9
14. ### rogerwActive Member

kevin that looks alot better. what is the differance?
15. ### KevinkreyMember

I was just trying to raise the incline to much in a short distance. Its still not perfect, but I can live with this.
16. ### Russ BellinisActive Member

How heavy is taconite? How full does the DMIR load the ore cars? Back in 1969 or 1970 I worked at Kaiser Steel's Eagle Mountain Iron Mine. They would crush he ore coming out of the mine and separate the ore from the rock. Then the ore was sent through the pelletizing plant. When it came out of the plant it was in little balls that looked just like rabbit pellets and was about the same size as rabbit pellets. Since it was just about pure iron, it was heavy. As I remember the ore cars which were the same as the MDC models you have without the side board extensions were fully loaded when the load appeared to be about 1/4-1/2 full. If they tried to fill the cars, they would be overloaded.
17. ### KevinkreyMember

Russ, ore cars can hold a lot more taconite than ore because the taconite pellets are a lot less dense. When taconite became big in the 70's, the DMIR began giving their cars 19.5" side extensions to be more profitable, but the tac plant workers began filling the cars beyond ther weight limits and then the extensions, like on my Walthers cars were cut to 9.5" and that remains the current size.