track plans needed

Discussion in 'Track Planning' started by 13Mtrainer, Mar 26, 2005.

  1. 13Mtrainer

    13Mtrainer Member

    track plan options needed

    hi everyone:wave: ,

    i have started a 8' by 8' layout i have a yard on the out side of a mainline that goes around the layouts edges. i also have a small mountain on the right side. i have a small 7' by 7 1/2' space on the inside. i was going to put a steel mill with 3 or 4 tracks going to it. and a small lumber yard with 2 or 3 track to it too. and a scrap yard with 3 or 4 tracks to it with a fully operantion crane also. but i do not know if this is what i want to do so if anyone can show me some other ideas this would really help me. it can not be really hard but money is not a problem. i am in HO scale. thanks in advance for your help.:thumb:
  2. MasonJar

    MasonJar It's not rocket surgery

    I would suggest that what you need to do is more research into the industries (and whatever else - like location, scenery, etc) you would like to model. For me, that was the biggest help in coming up with a track plan. When you understand how the railway(s) came to be, and how they served the industries, a plan may suggest itself to you.

    For example - I really wanted to model small town Ontario in the 1920s and 1930s. For the most part, and regardless of industry, the RR wanted to keep costs low, while increasing income. So many of the industries of the day (which may have began in the mid-late 1800s) were given one choice - locate near the railline, and pay for the privilige, or no service...! As a result, my plan is a single main line, with a run-around on one side, and a trailing point siding on the other. Each has multiple industries on it. (Maybe a bit boring to some, but interesting to me because it is more or less true to life.)

    Hope that helps.

  3. 13Mtrainer

    13Mtrainer Member

    thank you very much MasonJar i have been waiting some time for help on this subject. i plan on modeling the Pittsburg steel mills. with a scap yard to supply it. i aslo have a mountain so i plan on puting in a small coal mill.
  4. MasonJar

    MasonJar It's not rocket surgery

    Well, I would start there... see what it takes for a railway to service a steel mill, and a coal mine. You will also need some sort of interchange if you do not model the mine, as a single scrap yard will not be able to meet the demand of even a small mill.

    What era are you thinking? Steam or diesel?

  5. 13Mtrainer

    13Mtrainer Member

    hello MasonJar,
    i am modeling the diesel era. i am not excatly prototipical because i would like to see some steam on my layout through. again this is my first layout so i am experimenting to see what i like. So i am going to run both eras. so do you think you could post pictures of your layout. thanks for posting

  6. LIRR

    LIRR Member

    Books my good man, "Mid sized and manangeable track plans" "48 track plans from model railroader" are great starting points

    I recommend the Mid sized one, Iain rice makes some good plans. If I recall theres a steel mill plan in there.
  7. MasonJar

    MasonJar It's not rocket surgery


    Maybe you can hit the local library for info on the steel mill. Sometimes libraries will have yearly reports that might contain useful info, or put you on to some other source. You can also look for histories of the area you want to model - there can be photos, and usually bigger/more important businesses are mentioned. Also look up the railroad(s) you are interested in, starting with a web site.

    If you can get a ride, perhaps a "field trip" to the sites you like is possible. You might even be able to arrange a tour or two if you explain up front what you are doing. (No tresspassing...! Post 9/11 it is just not a good idea to sneak around with a camera!).

    Unfortunately, no pictures of my layout yet - although I am working on the buildings. I have to wait until it warms up to work on the benchwork in the garage... not heated!

    Good luck!

  8. 13Mtrainer

    13Mtrainer Member

    thank you so much guys,

    i live far from the steel mills but i visit family there often. i will see what i can do with the tours.
  9. MasonJar

    MasonJar It's not rocket surgery

    Good luck 13! If you have any more questions, or just want to bounce around some ideas, don't be afraid to post!


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