Starting Over

Discussion in 'Track Planning' started by Hoss, Dec 29, 2003.

  1. Hoss

    Hoss Member

    Well, after all of the trouble I recently went through tearing down my old garage layout, designing a new track plan to come inside the house, building the new benchwork and starting on the subroadbed...I decided to take it back to the garage.

    For those of you who may remember the other layout, I just never could seem to get everything I wanted into the space I had and I never could settle on a track plan that I liked.

    The track plan below is a new one that I've come up with that I hope to begin construction on this week (took the week off for Christmas and New Year's).

    Most of the vital information is shown on the drawing, so I won't give any more details unless you have questions.

    I left plenty of room for scenery, and I currently have seven industry tracks (some of which have not yet been assigned an industry). I will have a large grain elevator and a flood loader for coal. You should be able to find those pretty easy. I will probably have a power plant and a lumber yard somewhere and the rest are still up for grabs.

    This will be a combination of both city and rural areas, with the city area being primarily around the "north" end of the yard and yard lead tracks.

    Okay...I've said enough. Have at it.


  2. Agatheron

    Agatheron Member

    So what's happening with all the lovely benchwork from your other layout? I understand things being what they are in terms of what works best and what you have space for. I must admit to a certain amount of envy that you can put a layout in your garage at all. Even if I had a garage to work with, short of heating it during the winter months, I wouldn't be comfortable doing so with the ever present threat of the Canadian Winter... unless I lived in Vancouver... :)

    Looks like a lot of opportunities on this layout... mainline running, industry, and a decent amount of switching. Would you be operating this from the inside of the loop, or are you going to put a lot of scenic barriers around the inside to give the illusion of a multitude of scenes? Regardless of which I look forward to seeing this one evolve as the last one did...
  3. Hoss

    Hoss Member

    Regarding the "old" benchwork, well, it won't go to waste. I'll dismantle it and use every piece of it and then some in building the new benchwork.

    I would much rather have the layout indoors, but the simple fact is I would rather have it in the garage and have what I want than have it in the house and always wish I could have made it bigger. In Texas it's the summer that's tough. The winter isn't so bad, especially if you've got a good space heater to warm the area while you're working / playing.

    I decided to go with a single main instead of the double main. Despite that, I think there will be plenty of operating opportunities. That's what I was shooting for at least.

    I plan to operate from the inside of the loop. I didn't really want to go to a duckunder, but I can deal with it. An alternate operating area would be just to the left of the coal flood loading area, although the operator in this location would pretty much be limited to operating the coal trains.

    HOPEFULLY this one won't evolve nearly as much as the last one did. I kind of like it the way it is. I'm just checking and double checking and asking for opinions on track planning no-no's that I may have overlooked.

  4. Hoss

    Hoss Member

    Here's a variation of the same plan which increases the main line distance.

    See below or go HERE for the full size version.


    What do y'all think??
  5. Russ Bellinis

    Russ Bellinis Active Member

    Is the layout going to have to share garage space with anything else, or is the garage going to be a dedicated layout room? If a dedicated layout room, can you close and seal the garage door shut, and enter from another door? Do you have a window in the garage? I ask these questions to make you think of some ways to make the garage a more comfortable place for a layout. If the walls of the garage are open studs, put in insulation and drywall it. If you can seal the garage door shut, it will help keep heat and cold out. If you have a window in the garage, put in a correctly sized "window shaker" air conditioner unit to make it more livable in the summer heat. Properly sealed and insulated, your garage can be as comfortable as any room in the house.
  6. jon-monon

    jon-monon Active Member

    I was just wondering the other day, what ever happened to that big dude in the 10 gallon hat? :D :D :D I guess you were back at the ole drawin' board, eh?

    I too have been exiled to the confines of my garage for all my hobbies. :cry: :cry: :cry:

    I say take out the pink loop and add in a modified version of Fredaville Terminal and call it a dun thin! :D :D :D

    It looks good Hoss.:cool: :cool: :cool:
  7. csxengineer

    csxengineer Member


    I was really inspired by your last layout / benchwork, now what am I going to do?!! lol. Seriously, I just dismantled a 10' x 8' square layout because the duck under made my head hurt, was claustrophbic feeling, and didn't allow visitors to use layout comfortably. I like the idea of larger radius curves, but the openness of your last layout as an "L" is working great in my garage. It's 10' x 11' "L" and it really helps in the fact that my storage space underneath is so accessable. When I am complete, I will add on later, but for now, I am content. Put down the sledgehammer. Trust me.
  8. Hoss

    Hoss Member

    Unfortunately, the layout has to share the garage with my wife's car, so there's no sealing the door shut. There is also no window, but you can enter the garage through the door going into the house without opening the big door. Also, the garage is insulated and finished already, so I don't have to worry about that. A space heater warms the area nicely in the winter. In the summer you can open the garage door and turn fans on but that's about it.
  9. Hoss

    Hoss Member

    Jon, I've been around...but just lurking and seeing what others were up to because I haven't been making much progress on the now "old" layout.

    Progress was made today though, and I'll start a separate thread on that in the N scale forum.

    CSXEngineer, the sledge hammer already did it's damage. ;) Maybe we should have just traded layouts??
  10. Russ Bellinis

    Russ Bellinis Active Member

    Is there a place on an exterior wall of the garage where you could cut out and frame a hole to fit a "window shaker?" That woulld probably make it a lot more comfortable in the summer, to say nothing of problems you may have with rail shrinking and stretching with temp changes.
  11. Hoss

    Hoss Member

    Not really...not without cutting a hole in the brick too. It could be done of course, but I'm not sure how well it would work or what it would do for the resale value of my house.

    I plan to deal with the expansion/contraction problems by leaving gaps in the straight sections for this to occur. I am also considering installing a large exhaust fan in the ceiling of the garage. Turning that on would suck the hot air out of the garage and blow it out through the attic...which would be beneficial from an energy standpoint anyway.
  12. Hoss

    Hoss Member

    Now...just to make things TOTALLY confusing I went and added a branch line going to a helix which will then take trains down to a big staging yard.

    The lower part where the helix is and the flood loader is all looks like a heaping mass of confusion, but if you follow the tracks and note their elevations (in red) above the deck then you can probably figure out what's going on. you confused. :D


    Mini Version:
  13. Hoss

    Hoss Member

    This is what I had in mind for scenery....

  14. Tileguy

    Tileguy Member

    Shane, I see a great layout but have 1 concern.I do not see any ability to reverse the direction of your trains.Perhaps i missed it?
    With the size and scope of what you are proposing here the ability to reverse direction is something i think you will regret in the end.Nothing quite like a cornfield meet to get the blood going ;)
    If you were to eventually want to develop operations for this layout(and there is a ton of operating interest to be had on this layout) the ability to run east and west trains will add an entirely new dimension to the layout.If you are going to use DCC this is a fairly easy task to accomplish initially.It is a bit more difficult in DC but certainly doable.You could easily have 4 operators and perhaps more the way you have this laid out.
    Just a thought:)
  15. Hoss

    Hoss Member

    You know, I kept waiting for someone to point that out but nobody ever did. A few things:

    - The branch line you see will go to a helix, which will go to a lower level with staging, which will be a long double ended yard with a a reversing loop at one end. So, trains that leave the layout on the branchline headed "south" will always come back onto the layout headed "north". So..."southbound" trains can be turned around underneath the layout. However, this only lets me turn around trains that are headed south.

    - With that said, before I made plans for the helix and lower level staging, I had planned to "turn trains around" by running the engines around the train either in the yard or on the passing sidings. This will work well as basically all of my big mainline trains will contain multiple unit consists. Having these tail to tail will make it easy to turn a train around....even though TECHNICALLY the locos would just be moving from one end to the other and reversing the direction of the train.

    - I will definitely be using DCC. I actually purchased the Lenz Set 100 last March when I was beginning work on my first N scale endeavor. Hehehe...this will actually be the third time I have started on a layout. My wife says that she thinks I just enjoy building the benchwork and dismantling it only to build benchwork for another layout (which I'm starting to believe myself). This one is a go though.

    - With DCC, I can see four people operating on this layout easily...although most of the time it will just be lonely ole' me.

    Thanks for your comments.

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