Starting All Over

Discussion in 'Track Planning' started by Cannonball, Jan 8, 2007.

  1. Cannonball

    Cannonball More Trains Than Brains

    After much consideration, I've decided I don't want my trains in our cold, dark basement. It's not a fun place and I have to bend in half every time I want to go down the stairs because of the low clearence. I don't think the atmosphere would be good for trains either. Kinda damp and as I already mentioned, cold.

    Until I can convert my garage into a usable space, this leaves me restricted to a 4x8 layout in either the living room or our bedroom. It will most likely be the living room since I don't think my wife really wants trains taking over our love nest. :rolleyes: :D

    So this is what I've come up with until the day comes when I can build that truly massive layout I've been dreaming of.

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  2. MasonJar

    MasonJar It's not rocket surgery

    Are there any aspects of what you had planned for the basement that you can work on instead of the 4x8?

    I don't think that plan will offer much in the way of operational interest, unless you are a fan of "trains in scenery", in which case please ignore what I said.

    There are lots of alternatives to the 4x8 that actually save more space/fit better into a living room or other space. The myth that the 4x8 is a small layout is just that - a myth. If you need access on all sides (which you will, at the very least during construction) you are looking at an overall space of 8x12 (two feet all around) which is the size of a small bedroom or home office.

    Instead, try a switching layout on a shelf, or a diorama, or build some modules or sections that will fit into your future empire.

    What do you have in mind for the layout? Can you point me to your other discussion(s) on track planning?

  3. CNWman

    CNWman CNW Fan


    :D At least it has the figure 8sign1
  4. Cannonball

    Cannonball More Trains Than Brains

    Shelf and modular layouts are out of the question. No offense to those that like to run them but they are not my thing at all. Too much work for so little running space.

    I did think about doing a switching layout sort of like a railyard for awhile but I like having space where the trains can run continuously as well. I don't want to constantly be running switches to make the train run.

    Truthfully, if I modified this just a bit and added some sidings somehow, it would come pretty close to our shipping and receiving drives at the production plant where I work. they are actually truck docks but no reason they couldn't be made into train tracks for a layout.

    I had this one for a 4x10 but I don't know if I could pull off the same design in 4x8

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  5. oldtanker

    oldtanker Member

    I can understand the clearance problem....our basement was cold and damp then our local heating guy while bidding to put in a new furnace ask me why isn't your basement heated....I told him I didn't want to waste heat in a storage area and the water lines never froze up. He explained to me that the basement was part of the house and we would use less heat heating the whole thing....worked too!

    The best part the basement dried out too!

  6. Cannonball

    Cannonball More Trains Than Brains

    hhhmmm..... If I closed off a couple of unfinished crawl spaces, it would work.
    There is still the problem of the low clearance between the steps and the back of the kitchen wall though. Only 3.5 ft and I have to fold in half or go down backwards leaning on the stairs. It would be tough moving all my stuff down there.

    One added benifit would be the simplcity of doing scenes like this one since my basement walls aready look like those mountains. :D

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  7. hiscopilot

    hiscopilot Member

    i think if that track plan satisfies your model desire within the restrictions you have, then you are on your way... as long as you are enjoying it, right? ;)
  8. Cannonball

    Cannonball More Trains Than Brains

    Very true. ;)
    This is similar to what we used to run on our Dad's old pool table when we were kids. I don't know why we always set it up there since we had a full basement to experiment with but it was always on the pool table. Kinda nostalgic for me. :D
  9. MasonJar

    MasonJar It's not rocket surgery

    That's ok. There are so many different aspects and ways to enjoy this hobby, we don't all have to be the same...!

    What I was suggesting is that you forgo the continuous running :eek: for a while until the garage is ready. You can always work on structures, rolling stock, etc, etc until you can get a loop constructed. You could put that long stretch of track across the back of your plan on a shelf and incorporate it later into the full table.

    As Fred often says: "My thoughts, your choices".

  10. Cannonball

    Cannonball More Trains Than Brains

    I know but I just can't wrap my head around that concept. :(
    The Lionel Layout is just too ingrained in me I guess. ;)
  11. jetrock

    jetrock Member

    If you are modeling O-27 then a continuous loop is probably more your thing anyhow. Quite frankly, even though I am a shelf-layout guy, if you are modeling O-27 you're probably more into the fun of it than going for hardcore realism and operations--which is fine, it's supposed to be fun one way or the other.

    Heating the basement isn't a bad suggestion, though: I'm getting ready to do the sealing-up part, filling gaps and cracks, and then it will be time to insulate and finish the walls and install tighter doors. Then when I replace this $&%*#@ electric heat-pump central heat system I will add a vent or two into my basement train room, to keep things cooler in summer and warmer in winter.

    If you're doing a layout for a smaller space than you had originally planned, focus on your favorite part of railroading! Also, if you plan on later refinishing your basement or garage, consider making your "temporary" layout small enough (or modular enough) that you can get it out the door easily when you can make it part of a bigger layout!
  12. Cannonball

    Cannonball More Trains Than Brains

    That part won't be a problem. It's going to be mounted on folding table legs so when and if the time comes to move it, all I have to do is fold up the legs and slide it out the door sideways. :D
  13. Cannonball

    Cannonball More Trains Than Brains

    New Idea. (Yeah, I know. Too close to the edge. Got that covered, so no need to worry. ;) )

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  14. Cannonball

    Cannonball More Trains Than Brains

    Or this perhaps.....

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  15. Cannonball

    Cannonball More Trains Than Brains

    Holy cats..... Why didn't I see this before?
    Two loops to accomidate two trains and room for a few sidings or even incorporating the Crazy 8.....

    I'm a freakin' genius.
    (Sorry for the hacked up MS Paint work but I don't have RTS on my work computer. :( )

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