Track plan to review

Discussion in 'Track Planning' started by Shaummy, Mar 18, 2003.

  1. Shaummy

    Shaummy New Member


    I have begun constructing this in HO. I just found this place, so give it a look and see if there is anything that looks incorrect.

    The outside loop is approx. 6" higher than the inside loop on the left side and the grade comes down the right side on all of the tracks. The yard is at the lowest level as well as the right side of the layout.

    Hope this works

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  2. Russ Bellinis

    Russ Bellinis Active Member

    I'm not sure of your operational goal. A "folded dogbone" inside another "folded dogbone" will allow you to run two trains continuously if that is the goal. For switching industries, the two "dogbones" take up so much space that you don't have room for enough industries. The same goes for scenery, in my opinion, I think if you eliminated the inside "dogbone" you would "open" the track plan up for a higher ratio of scenery to track, and leave more room for industries for your railroad to service. If one end is 6" higher than the rest, but the yard is at 0 elevation, you will have an awful steep grade from the yard to the right loop. One modification that might be interresting is to eliminate the inside "dogbone" and then put the yard and yard lead off of the inside of the walk in. Then on the right side do a "Tehachapie" loop to gain elevation with a less severe grade. Depending on era and modeling interest, you might even have some room on that right side to do a logging/mining branch up into a mountain.
    If you run a shay up a logging or mining branch, you could go with a 6% grade or even a little more and be prototypical! "The Logger" tourist logging railroad out side of Yosemite has one piece of track that their shay climbs a 14% grade!
  3. TR-Flyer

    TR-Flyer Member

    I'd add a couple of sidings on your loops, to give yourself some destinations outbound from your main yard. Also would add a reverse loop, tried to show one at the left end of your main yard area. I think you need to be able to reverse your trains, in both directions, to provide out and back action on a continuous loop layout like this one. I think you can work out the grades, especially if you keep the rear track elevated above all the others and then run some of your end loops through tunnels. Like the way your dogbones interconnect. I like continuous running layouts and yard operations. This one looks like fun.


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  4. cidchase

    cidchase Active Member

    Hi Shaummy,
    I like Ted's reverse loop and siding, the siding could possibly
    extend longer around the curve.

    If you put a crossover between tracks 2 & 3 instead of the two
    separate turnouts, one train can traverse the entire layout continuously without changing any switches, should you desire it.
    :) :)
  5. Shaummy

    Shaummy New Member


    You really hit it on the head there. My goal is to do a lot of continuous running with 2-3 trains. My scenery ideas although not very complete were to have "town" on the right side of the layout where the tracks are all at the same height with a 2 track crossing in the middle of town.

    On the higher left side of the layout I envisioned either a mountain that would cover the inner loop and support the upper loop to break up the dogbone look.

    Also I thought that a stream or small lake could be inserted into the bottom left loop, so that is why no tracks were put there...however you guys have a good point there.

    As for turning trains...My thinking (which could be way off) was to stage a train on the Arrival/Departure/yard lead and use the branch line to "runaround" the train to depart in either direction. This of course only works if I double head the Locos, which would fit in anyway with the grade on the layout.

    The track that extends down from the yard through the crossing is my engine maintenance facility. It consists of three platforms for the workers and can handle 4 engines at once.

    Finally I guess I should have included the size of the trackage you are looking at...the length is about 22 feet long, and it ends up being about 10 feet wide. It seems to give me enough length to reach sufficient grade on both ends.

    Russ, the yard and the whole right side of the layout is essentially the same height, so pulling the trains out to the right is not much of an issue, however the yard lead is at somewhat of an incline so if I "runaround" a train that is waiting there, it could get interesting.

    Thanks again for all your input...keep it coming!!!!

  6. rockislandmike

    rockislandmike Active Member

    There's a new book out by TOny Koester (sp??) that you may wanna take a look at. It talks about "operating" trains instead of just running 'em, and gives a very quick outline of how to do it - no mess no fuss, for starters.

    It brought up a VERY good point. You'll soon get tired of running trains around and around and around, but if you have some operations planned into your layout, it'll be new every time (and still let you run them round and round for open houses and/or to impress your family).

    Basetically, I'd agree with the other comments about adding some more industries. It also adds more visual interest along the way.

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