My Current Track Plan: Aerial Views

Discussion in 'Track Planning' started by jetrock, Nov 26, 2006.

  1. jetrock

    jetrock Member

    I took advantage of a recent move to photograph my shelf layout. It consists of two modules, 6 feet wide. Scale is HO, minimum radius 12", turnouts are Peco "Setrack" tight-radius turnouts roughly equivalent to a #3 turnout.
    Yard area:
    Industrial area:
    Operation is by wheel report. The layout will expand in both directions, eventually to fill a 11x24 foot room.
  2. sumpter250

    sumpter250 multiscale modelbuilder

    I have to ask, have you had any problems with the 12" radius curves, and any of your rolling stock?
  3. TruckLover

    TruckLover Mack CH613 & 53' Trailer

    I was thinking the same thing, but hey, if your happy with it, that's cool because it is your railroad. How long of cars do you use, up to 40'? My guess is that you won't have any bigger 6 axle diesels and instead smaller ones like the geeps and switchers.

    It looks cool, Im liking it so far:thumb: :thumb: :thumb: :thumb: :thumb:
  4. jetrock

    jetrock Member

    12" "curves" is kind of a misnomer. As you can see, there is only one curve on the entire layout, an industrial spur. I use 40 and 50 foot cars (mostly 40 foot) and motive power is a pair of 44-ton GE switchers and an S1, with occasional appearances by an SW7, a GE 70-tonner, and for those really heavy-duty situations I use my heaviest motive power, a GP-9. All but the Geep can take the 12" curve, at least when run carefully, and since it is a switching spur and not the mainline it isn't used for high or even moderate speed traffic. I model a line called the Sacramento Northern, and the largest power they ever owned was the aforementioned Geep and a couple of F-units, neither of which were used on this stretch of track, which was exclusively the territory of small switching locomotives during the diesel era of 1953-1966.

    As the layout progresses and I hang trolley wire overhead, I will start using boxcab and steeplecab electric locomotives on the layout, which are usable on curves even sharper than 12" radius. This will allow me to model 1947-1953, years when the earlier small diesels shared the rails with electric freight motors.

    The only problems with the 12" curves weren't due to the track itself, but due to the street surface, currently 1/8" foamcore and .020" styrene. The foamcore tends to buckle a bit with extreme changes in temperature, which were unavoidable in my old garage. One of my future plans is to replace this street surface with a more sturdy and less temperature-sensitive street surface of Durham's Water Putty.
  5. Russ Bellinis

    Russ Bellinis Active Member

    It looks good to me. I think with your choice of prototype, you can not only maximise the size of the layout by the use of small radius curvs, but the small equipment your prototype ran will look good on tight curves as well. By the way, what the prototype would do if they had to switch a siding that was too tight for the locomotive that was doing the work (the gp9 on 12 inch radius) would be to use enough empty cars between the locomotive and the car(s) being spotted to serve as a handle to keep the locomotive from having to use the tight radius. They did the same thing in barge operations where they want to load a barge with cars, but the barge won't handle the loco's weight.
  6. sumpter250

    sumpter250 multiscale modelbuilder

    :cool: :thumb: :cool:
    even more:cool: The Sacrament Northern is not one of the more popular roads to model, especially in the overhead years. This should be interesting to watch, and might even encourage more electric/interurban modeling.:thumb:
  7. jetrock

    jetrock Member

    Russ Bellinis: That's basically how I spot cars on the 12" curve. Using cars to reach spotted cars in that fashion was also a common practice on electric lines where spurs were occasionally not electrified. The SN used a car ferry (called the Ramon) but generally didn't need transfer cabeese or anything--the Ramon was beefy enough to hold the locomotives, which were relatively lightweight (steeplecabs in the 60 ton range.) I don't think I will be modeling that part of the SN, though.

    sumpter250: I live in Sacramento so much of what I am modeling are places I know in person, I'm just turning back the time dial a half-century or so. Promoting electric/interurban modeling is definitely on my long-term agenda!

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