Weird Layout Benchwork Idea

Discussion in 'N / Z Scale Model Trains' started by Agatheron, Nov 13, 2003.

  1. Agatheron

    Agatheron Member

    The advantage of being totally new to the hobby is I can ask really stupid questions and get away with it. :)

    Lack of space, at least for me, is a huge consideration for developing a potential layout in my home. Even adding a 36x80" door to the space in our townhouse will be a negotiation. I've seen the various shelf-layouts that are around, and then it occurred to me that I have potential layout space right in front of me.

    At the moment, we have several IKEA Ivar shelving units serving a multittude of purposes in our humble abode. Much of the larger material is being used at the moment as my modelling hobby workstation for my Games Workshop stuff (wargames miniatures, Fantasy/Sci-Fi). The shelves come in a few different sizes and have different functions.

    The basic shelves I have are 83cmx50cm... about 32" wide by about 19 3/4" deep. There are also shelves that are narrower, being the same width, but only about 12" deep. The system is entirely modular... I'm assuming most of you are familiar with Ikea... The shelves designed for corners have some possibilities being approximately 30"x30" with a small corner cut off of it. There is also a drop leaf table that connects to an existing 32"x19 3/4" shelf and extends a half circle with a 32" radius. The total front-to back space would be about 53".

    What are the possibilitiees of working with something like that to make an N-Scale layout actually happen? Has this been done before? Is this a silly idea? The reason I ask, is that I am looking for space... and I already have a LOT of Ivar stuff...
  2. SD90

    SD90 Active Member

    I have some of those, I think it would work fine for a layout, you would just have to build the benchwork up a couple of inches, so you could wire everything, but it sounds good bench work! I'd also screw them togehter, so thay won't ever move.

  3. roryglasgow

    roryglasgow Active Member

    Basically, any horizontal surface is a potential train layout table. If you can fit it on there, then it'll work!

    The September 2000 issue of Model Railroader featured a layout by a guy in Sweden that was built into some IKEA shelves. It was a small HO switching layout.

    As long as you have about a 2-foot depth, you can even have a continuous-run loop, although the radius will be kinda tight...
  4. Arlaghan

    Arlaghan Member

    Just make sure to get all the dumb questions out of the way now! Otherwise you end up like me... too long into the hobby to get away with it, but too new still to know anything! LOL

    Can't comment on Ikea stuff, but way to go with the Warhammer stuff!!! Go Space Marines! LOL. (Weren't you upset when Starcraft came out for the PC? It's a total rip on the WH40k world!) Ok... to keep this trains related... Planning to have a Eldar Depot station? Or maybe a Squat Weapons Shipping Facility? :D
  5. 60103

    60103 Pooh Bah

    Ivar forever!

    Have you seen the little Welsh cartoon show Ivar the Engine ?
    My layout is built on top of the Ivar. I used L girders along the top with the web outside the shelving. Then I put some sticks for cross braces and laid Homasote on top. I used some bigger sticks and the usual risers to get some elevation differences.
    Comments: putting it on top of the Ivar made it a fairly high layout -- it comes up to my arm and I need a stool to work on the back. If you built it on the shelving you could make it lower.
    Check the level of your floor and add shims under the legs to get it all level, especially if you're in the basement.
    Try taking a shelf out from the middle of the bookcase before you commit to having the layout there.
    (I talked about this on another thread somewhere...)
  6. Agatheron

    Agatheron Member

    I'm an Ork player actually... So probably a Mek Rail Konstruction facility or something like that... I have one Golden Daemon under my belt from 2002. :)

    Anyway, back to trains and Ikea.

    What I was thinking of doing was putting some pink insulation styrofoam on top of the wood itself, so I can actually make sure the shelf "module" edges line up properly. The nice thing is that the Ikea shelves can be set at pretty much any height. I agree that screwing them into place would be rather wise... Ivar shelves are held together entirely by gravity, so there is a bit of a wobble to them...

    Now to come up with a potential track plan. :)

    I should make a correction. The drop leaf table is a half-circle with a 32" DIAMETER, not radius. Although I'm having a tough time finding the drop leaf addition in the online Ivar material... I hope they haven't done away with it!
  7. Agatheron

    Agatheron Member

    Here's a very rough sketch of the Ivar Subdivision :) Given the spacial considerations, I just wanted to know if tracks could fit on reasonable radius curves. The interior curves are 11", where the outside are flextrack at approximatly 12.5" radius.

    I measured out 2 Ivar regular shelf units 19 3/4" deep, 32" wide, plus two corner units on either end. I threw in a reversing loop to add in some more options. It's possible to add a staging area on another shelf connected beyond one of the corners, you can see a track leading off to what could be staging...

    It's a feasible start... I haven't sprung the idea on Sarah yet, but she may be more open to the idea of using space that is already part of my own workshop space for a railroad... :)

    Attached Files:

  8. Urban

    Urban New Member

    Some examples

    This is an N scale layout built using Ivar:

    It's point to point, with a loop in between to increase running distance.

    Text is in Swedish, so I think I should mention he has not used the flat shelves themselves, but built some kind of girders which uses the same mounts as the shelves.

    One in H0:

    This one's only partially built in Ivar. The section that's not built on the shelves has three tracks leaving it: Lowest to a staging yard, Port Wallace in the middle which includes the harbour and Iron Peak on the top shelf. ("Spårplan" means trackplan, so you can follow those links and understand the content even if you don't read Swedish.)
  9. Agatheron

    Agatheron Member

    Okay... so I'm not smoking something and someone has thought of this before. Although I'm not surprised that it's come from the country of that company's origin. :)

    Looking at the N-Scale layout, it's probably more space than I'm looking at, but the radius on one of them seems to be the very tight 9 3/4". However, the person seems to be modelling an earlier period with shorter locomotives. Very cool though.

    The HO set is huge, and appears to be pretty much built flush with the shelving units themselves...

    Maybe I should work on this trackplan some more ;)

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