Our Layout (Info and pics to share as goes up)

Discussion in 'HO Scale Model Trains' started by grandpacoyote, Dec 16, 2006.

  1. grandpacoyote

    grandpacoyote Member

    Our Layout (Info & pics to share) Update 01/07/07

    Hello again gang, long time no see.

    It's been awhile so I thought I'd start a thread for our Layout info and do a massive update.

    As some of you know by now, my OL and I've been fooling around with a layout plan for close to a year now and getting our train room ready to start building the layout.

    I'd like to thank all those who have contributed so much in previous posts; I could never have made it this far without you all, you are a great bunch of guys and gals. However I owe a special thanks to Texas Zephyr and SpaceMouse, two gentle and patient gentlemen without whom all this would have all been for naught.

    So here it is; I am looking for any and all feedback from as many folks as I can find. I find that the feedback of others helps me more than anything else and I sincerely welcome any all comments, criticisms or suggestions. I do my best to respond to anyone that takes the time and has the fortitude to look over this madness.

    Here is the Layout's basic information –

    The Route-

    • The route lies somewhere between mileposts 206.1 and 230.0, roughly between Chambers and Adamana

    • As the following image shows the grade westward between Pinta and Adamana is steadily down leveling off eventually at the Winslow Yard.

    • Due to current space limitations I am using a fictional town - Piedmont Arizona (not to be confused with Piedmont in South Western AZ. that became a ghost town in the late 1930's) as a showcase for the various elements that I desire on the layout such as a typical 1950’s Drive In Theater, Cattle pens serviced by the line, etc.
    • Piedmont lies along the route mentioned above somewhere between Pinta and Adamana inside Apache county.

    Our Space-

    Spare Bedroom
    • I am currently using a spare bedroom in our house for the layout room. The total space of the room is 11'7 1/4" x 16'4 3/4", however an area of 8'10 1.2" x 2'5 1/4" is taken up by an internal closet.


    • Closet can not be removed or its doorways altered. Doors can be removed from the closet and small hole can be made in closet wall closest to bedroom wall for track to pass through.
    • Lift out/Pullout areas are ok but there can be no duck unders.
    • Outer walls of bedroom can not be breached. Room is bordered by bathrooms on two sides, living room and outside on other two walls.
    • Ability to have Continuous running.
    • No under layout staging.
    • AT&SF Mainline.
    • HO Scale.
    • Minimum mainline radius: 26".
    • Maximum mainline grade 3%.
    • The layout will be built and maintained primarily by myself and my wife.
    • Layout will be operated by me and my wife.
    • Bench work must be freestanding and in movable sections.
    • Layout height should be around 50". Some areas can go somewhat higher, gorges or river areas can go lower.
    • Double deck could be acceptable if it could be done without the use of a helix.
    • Fairly large scenic areas to showcase the region.
    • Drive In theater model on layout.
    • Layout Sound
    • Fully working/automated signals, lights and lighted buildings.
    • An Immediate "feel" of the 1950's.
    • Enjoyable operations for myself and my wife.
    The Original Sketch
    • After a lot of failed attempts at trying to make a suitable trackpack for our space my friend Texas Zephyr sent me this rough sketch it was from this that everything came together.

    Track Plan Info
    1. Scale: HO
    2. Name: Route 66 Railway.
    3. Locale: Northern Arizona, AT&SF Mainline alongside Route 66 between Pinta and Holbrook AZ. (Set in the fictional town of Piedmont, AZ)
    4. Period: 1953, late spring to early summer.
    5. Prototype: Atchison, Topeka, and Santa Fe Railroad Company.
    6. Layout Height: Starting at 50".
    7. Track: Code 83.
    8. Total # of Turnouts: 37
    9. Turnouts:
      • 8 - #5 on Industry Spurs
      • 21 - #6 on mainline, leads off to industry tracks, passing sidings, etc.
      • 5 - #6 ½ curved leading to Staging, left arm of Staging pinwheel ladder, at either end passing siding below Cattle Wye, on lead into L
      • 1 - #7 curved on right arm of Staging pinwheel ladder
      • 2 - #7 ½ curved on Corner Crossovers
    10. Curve Radii: 28" outside mainline, 26" inside mainline, some curves much broader in other areas - broadest curves in plan 72" and 84"
    11. Outer Loop: Eastbound Traffic, Right handed (clockwise) running.
    12. Inner Loop: Westbound Traffic, Left handed (counter-clockwise) running.
    13. Industries:
      • A – Scrap Yard
      • B – Fuel Oil Supplier
      • C – Shipping Warehouse
      • D – Bolt and Screw Factory
      • E – Station
      • F – Concrete Plant
      • G – Oil Field/Oil Tanks
      • H – Freight House & Team Track
      • I – Stock Pens (cattle)
      • Ia – Stock Pens (sheep and pigs)
      • J – Agricultural Co Op
      • K – Gravel Company
    14. Points of Interest:
      • G-2: Town of Piedmont
      • J-4: Blue Moon Drive In
      • A-5 to B-5: Dead Wash and Dead Wash Bridges
      • A-4 & A-7: Ranches

        N.B.: Lift out/Pullout area to inner area is highlighted in Yellow on the plan below.
    Current Layout Plan-


    Experience and Influences-

    Previous Experience
    • This is my first experience at track planning, layout design or in building a model railroad. I have previously built a few military models and some dioramas and have recently built and detailed a few model structures and done some small detailing engine and kit rolling stock work.
    • My primary influence remains that of Frank Ellison, but I have also found great inspiration and guidance from the works of John Armstrong, Iain Rice, George Selios and the great pals I have made on the various model railroading forums.
    End & Contact Information-

    I have attempted to put in any information that might be needed for critiques, however I have no doubt left out something of importance. If you need any further information please feel free to ask and I will get it up ASAP. I apologize for the size of the various pictures and the length of the post, thanks to anyone who waded this far through.

    I can also be contacted off site via email.

  2. grandpacoyote

    grandpacoyote Member

    Attached Files:

  3. grandpacoyote

    grandpacoyote Member

    The Great Train Room Remodel

    Here are some pics of our big remodeling project: Turning a Spare Bedroom into a Train Room.

    The room became free now that the nest is empty and so we set off to fix it up as a fairly comfortable space for the layout.

    First thing was to pull out the ancient carpeting and lay down wood flooring, then we painted and finished the room (yes I know that's backwards it's a long story) with new outlets etc.

    Here's the room "Before" Don't you just love that carpeting and paint scheme? My OL called that color "Cathouse Red" ;)





  4. grandpacoyote

    grandpacoyote Member

    The Great Train Room Remodel II

    Here are the after pics of the the new Pergo Flooring.





    Whew what a relief that was! Now on to the walls!!
  5. grandpacoyote

    grandpacoyote Member

    The Great Train Room Remodel III

    Well with the floors done it was on to fix the walls and forever be rid of the terrible Cathouse Red...

    The OL and I decided that we would do the room in a two tone scheme with an earth tone on the bottom and a sky blue on the top and that we could then come in later and white brush this blue to make a functional backdrop.

    Here it is on going :





  6. grandpacoyote

    grandpacoyote Member

    The Great Train Room Remodel III a

    and here it is done with all the taping and finishing and cutting in done and the new art deco style face plates put on:





  7. grandpacoyote

    grandpacoyote Member

    The Benchwork I

    With the room done the OL and I took the plunge and got to the bench work - Now I couldn't nail a fencepost to the side of a barn so we looked around and did some investigating and finally settled on Mianne Benchwork.

    It was a joy to work with them Dealing with Mr. Foley at Mianne Benchwork was a breeze.

    He helped work out a custom kit for our needs using as much of their standards kits as he could - to help keep the price down - and got an estimate out to me fast as can be. Once we settled up on cost he and his folks had the stuff tooled out and shipped to me quick.

    It came in four c.48 lbs boxes and went together like dream with only two screwdrivers, a level and elbow grease.

    As for total price... well for c.122 odd square feet of benchwork at 48" height and shipping and handling for c.200 lbs. of materials it cost me a grand total of $1315.00.

    So in the end for a fellow with absolutely no carpentry skill or tools needed to cut my own wood was it worth it -for me-... You bet your sweet bippy it was! [​IMG]

    I'd do it again in a New York City minute with no regrets.

    and here it is:





  8. grandpacoyote

    grandpacoyote Member

    The Benchwork II

    After the benchwork went in we started the process of adding the tabletop/sub roadbed.
    We're covering the benchwork 1/4" Birch and then will be putting 2" of foam on top of that.

    The modeling you see around some edges was a test for an idea the OL thought up, after we have the fascia installed (which will be Masonite I believe) then we will be running wooden ceiling molding pieces along the bottom edge of it after they are stained to give it a nice over all look.

    Here it is :





  9. Thoroughbreed

    Thoroughbreed Member

    That is some great looking benchwork!!!! The walls and the floor look 100% better!!! You've been real busy. Keep us updated with more pics.
  10. zedob

    zedob Member

    Wow, that was a pretty intense room before you painted it. The Mianne bW is some nice stuff. I've seen it at a show it it is well made. All nice and straight and not a bad price for what you get.

    Nice presentation. Which CAD program did you use?
  11. Herc Driver

    Herc Driver Active Member

    Hey that's great progress...this is like a tutorial on how to start a layout from the ground up. Terrific work!
  12. santafewillie

    santafewillie Member

    No wonder it's been so long since you last posted, that room has come a long way. The benchwork looks fantastic, I had not heard of Mianne before. Great photo documentation as well, I'm sure many of the newbies here will appreciate it. I will contact you by PM soon.
  13. oldtanker

    oldtanker Member

    That is great looking bench work. I don't know I kinda liked the red:D

  14. jr switch

    jr switch Member

    Can't wait to see where you go from here with such a well thought out start on your layout. Great job on the whole room.--------John R
  15. Triplex

    Triplex Active Member

    Wow. That's the most thoroughly planned layout I've ever seen on any forum.

    I like the general look of the track plan. It manages a good quantity of track without looking too crowded to be the West. I can just imagine 50s architecture here, the googie signs and all. I think you're definitely going to satisfy your goals.

    Ow. Those red walls were terrible. They look so much better now.
  16. Amrap1

    Amrap1 Member

    Very nice Coyote! Keep us updated on the progress!

  17. Cannonball

    Cannonball More Trains Than Brains

    Ecellent work!
    I have to say the new room looks 100% better than it did before the remodeling. I like the colors you picked even if it weren't for a train room. :)
  18. Ralph

    Ralph Remember...it's for fun!

    Looking great! Nice work reclaiming that oddly decorated room. Your color choices will work out well for the layout! I'm really impressed by the 3-D images. They really convey a sense of what the layout will look like. Looking forward to updates!
  19. Russ Bellinis

    Russ Bellinis Active Member

    It looks great. In looking at the 3d drawings of the proposed track plan/benchwork, I presume the access section is the darker yellow section in front of the closet where you have the 2 track main with a crossover and 2 more tracks coming off to the inside going to an industry? If I have it right, I would suggest that you make that a swing in gate. If it was cut on a diagonal at the 2 track end, and a heavy duty gate hinge or door hinge put in the inside of the layout where the straight bench meets the diagonal. You could just cut your tracks at a diagonal at the joint, and it would swing out of the way for a pass through. If you put a small dead bolt latch on the inside of the layout at the opposite end of the gate from the hinge, you can then lock the gate in place while operating from the inside of the layout. Finally, hook up an isolation block at least 2-3 feet long on all tracks to either side of the gate that go dead whenever the gate is open to keep trains from diving to the floor.

    The other comment/question I have concerns the staging yard in the closet. Did you leave plenty of space between the benchwork and the closet for you to get in to work that staging yard? Looking at the track plan, those last two sidings to the outside of the staging yard are awefully short. You would only have room for a locomotive and a couple of cars, maybe even less on them. If you need a bit more space to move around in in the closet, eliminating those two tracks and narrowing the benchwork accordingly won't make any difference to the operation of the layout.
  20. grandpacoyote

    grandpacoyote Member


    Thanks, the benchwork went together like a snap and it is very sturdy. We've had absolutely no problems yet with any expansion or contraction with it; it was well worth the cost.

    I'll post up more pics and info as soon as we have some, we will be going this week to pick up the foam I think.



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