Modular Plan - help required

Discussion in 'Track Planning' started by MasonJar, Jun 15, 2004.

  1. MasonJar

    MasonJar It's not rocket surgery

    Hi all,

    I am now looking for ideas to incorporate a roundhouse and steam servicing facility on a Free-mo style module (actually probably two - 2x4 foot modules). I need a 90 foot turntable, and would like a 3+ stall roundhouse. Also to be included:

    - MOW/wreck train track
    - inbound and outbound tracks
    - outdoor service tracks with overhead steam supply
    - sand, water, coaling and ashpit
    - machine shop/mechanical room on the side or end of the roundhouse

    The premise of the free-mo modules is a centred, single mainline. This only has to be true at the ends of the modules where they mate with others (i.e. does not have to be true between my two modules, as long as they always "travel together".

    Let me know what you think - either written or with a drawing...

    Thanks :)

  2. Russ Bellinis

    Russ Bellinis Active Member

    What scale are you modeling in? In ho, you would need something quite a bit bigger than 2x4 to get the turn table and roundhouse in. The 90 foot turntable will eat up just over 11" in ho scale just for the bridge. When you add approach and trailing tracks plus the roundhouse, you run out of space on a 2x4. You will need a 3x4 at least in ho I would think.
  3. Will_annand

    Will_annand Active Member

    Andrew, I found this in an issue of RMC.

    Attached Files:

    • Yard.jpg
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  4. MasonJar

    MasonJar It's not rocket surgery

    Hi guys,

    Thanks for the input.

    Russ - This is for HO scale. I can go only slightly wider, since I am restricted by a) module standards - the ends must be 2 feet wide, and you can only expand in the middle of the module to about 30 inches, and b) I can't get anything wider than about 30" in the car anyway.

    Bob Boudreau did a 13 stall roundhouse on a 2 foot wide module, which is in part my inspiration for this project. See: I would like my servicing to be a bit less "backwoods".

    Will - Thanks! I had forgotten about that diagram. I think I have a copy of it somewhere at home.

  5. 60103

    60103 Pooh Bah

    check out the Peco turntable -- 12" diameter, plastic, hand operated but could be powered.
    Latest issue of Model Rail (Brit mag) has a fiddle yard on a peninsula with a turntable at one end. But I think you'll be wanting a through track somewhere -- and not going across the turntable bridge.
  6. Russ Bellinis

    Russ Bellinis Active Member

    Bob Boudreau's roundhouse only had a couple of full stalls. The rest were chopped off like background flats.
  7. MasonJar

    MasonJar It's not rocket surgery


    I don't mind not having full stalls all 'round, as long as a few are servicable. It may allow me (if I wanted more work) to do a detailed interior, visible through the cut-off part of the building...


    Thanks for the heads-up on the Peco turntable - I had not heard about that one.

    Please keep the comments and suggestions coming!

  8. Will_annand

    Will_annand Active Member

    You could always scratchbuild the turntable. Cut out a pit and mount it below the table, take N scale track and make a tight radius circle, mount N Scale trucks on either end of the turntable bridge and run a spindle down the center of the bridge to either a manual belt driven crank or a small motor.
  9. MasonJar

    MasonJar It's not rocket surgery

    Hi Will,

    While I have a few articles on scratchbuilding turntables, I think I am better off with a commercial product, as this will be required to perform reliably ;) during modular set-ups. I do like the idea of manual control, as the new Walther's index TT is over CAN$450 :eek:

  10. Russ Bellinis

    Russ Bellinis Active Member

    I haven't seen the Peco turntable. Is it in a pit, or on the surface like Atlas? If I was using a table like an Atlas, I would put the Atlas table at the bottom of a pit and scratch build a bridge to go over the top of the Atlas tracks. You would get a reliable working turntable that looks good too.
  11. Pitchwife

    Pitchwife Dreamer

    One suggestion for your partial stalls would be to take the shell of a defunct engine, chop off the front and mount it in a partial stall giving the impression of depth.
  12. MasonJar

    MasonJar It's not rocket surgery

    Can anyone tell me what the prototype is for the Atlas "surface" turntable? What time period was this type of table in use, and where? Or does it even have a prototype?

    Thanks Russ and Clark for the additional ideas. I have an old Atlas TT for my home layout that I might modify as Russ suggested if the surface-type proves too much of a stretch for "reality"... ;)

  13. Will_annand

    Will_annand Active Member

    In my research, ALL the turntables had pits.

    Another idea I have seen is to use the cheaper Walthers, unpowered pit type turntable and mount it on top of the cheap Atlas powered flat turntable.

    The Atlas indexed power unit turns the table, but what is seen is a nice pit style turntable.

    The Atlas powered unit would be $46.50 US (Walthers online price) for the HO or $37.00 US for N Scale.

    The Walthers turntable is $39.98 US for HO and $24.95 US for N Scale.

    That would put the combined Atlas Walthers unit at only $86.48 US for HO or $61.95 US for N Scale.

    Also, Heljan has an HO turntable for $32.98 US and Peco has an N Scale for $24.99 US.

    Using the Heljan unit, the combined is only $79.48 US for HO.
  14. MasonJar

    MasonJar It's not rocket surgery

    Thanks for all the research Will! I will have to look those up. I know that our club prefers Peco switches, so I wonder if they'd have a preference for th Peco TT (does it come in HO?)?

  15. Tileguy

    Tileguy Member

    Andrew, If you are interested i have and would consider selling you
    1-Atlas turntable/Walthers turntable Kit+ all hardware for completing the indexed combo described above.
    2-The motorizing kit
    3-Walthers roundhouse 6 stall kit partially constructed(main wall sections and a few doors only)

    I am changing plans and eliminating my turntable/roundhouse idea.I was going to list on ebay but would rather help out a fellow gauger if we can come to an agreement on terms.
    If you are interested, PM me with your phone number and email address.Long distance doesnt cost me on my cell so i can call you if your interested.

    We can have you set up in no time at all :)
  16. 60103

    60103 Pooh Bah

    I think the closest to the Atlas TT are in museums where they built a cover at ground level that rotated with the TT. That was to keep the public from falling in.
    The Peco TT comes in 16.5mm and 9mm. The 16.5mm is 12" long while the 9mm is much shorter. (Try the BRMNA website for dealers' addresses.) The Peco TT comes with a wiring system that reverses the polarity as it turns.
  17. Pitchwife

    Pitchwife Dreamer

    That sounds like a great idea Russ. I have an Atlas turntable and hadn't really given it much thought. One question, how deep is the pit on a turntable?

  18. couldn't you use a 'Deck-Girder' bridge glued right on top of the Atlas TT?
  19. Will_annand

    Will_annand Active Member

    Clark, I have an N Scale turntable, I am not sure of the manufacturer as it was given to me.
    The pit on that one is 8 feet deep.
  20. Russ Bellinis

    Russ Bellinis Active Member

    I hadn't thought of that, but is sounds like a great idea. Solder wires connecting the original turntable tracks to the track on the deck girder bridge, and you can use the turntable's wiring to power the track.

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