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T O P I C    R E V I E W
Glen Haasdyk Posted - 09/20/2020 : 10:47:38 PM
After working on my layout for 15 years, I'm thinking a tearing it down and starting over. I've started to realize the track plan's limitations and I think I can do better.

15   L A T E S T    R E P L I E S    (Newest First)
Glen Haasdyk Posted - 11/23/2020 : 9:21:17 PM
I'll see what my friend and I come up with.

I Completed a loop around the layout yesterday. If I had wired it I would be running trains already. Instead I started to clean up the larger city section and sort out where to place the track going to the future enginehouse, yard and industrial area.

I'm going with a pair of turnouts off the main, with a crossing so the tracks have plenty of room to swing over to the other side. I placed my station near the drop gate, just before the first turnout. I figure I can put the three-way switch on the drop gate, and have the enginehouse on the other side. My city will be behind the station and crossing with an industrial/ yard on the opposite end.

I plan to make a harbour edge scene at the opposite end from the station, with the yard and industrial area between it and the main. I hope to have a larger yard with more car storage this way than with the old layout.
MarcusF Posted - 11/23/2020 : 08:49:48 AM
The simplest way to protect the gate is to power the track in the gate, and have a 1-2' dead section either side of the gate that is powered from the gate when it's raised. That can be done a number of ways - sliding rail joiners from the gate section to the rest of the layout, contacts on each end of the gate, or using micro switches that are open when the gate is open, and closed when the gate is up.
Glen Haasdyk Posted - 11/23/2020 : 01:04:44 AM
I've had a number of suggestions about the safety of trains when the gate is lowered. I don't want an unfortunate accident with a train taking the proverbial swan-dive but wiring isn't my forte either. I had enlisted the help of a friend with the wiring and we'll come up with something I'm sure. If nothing else I'll see how to cut the power to the layout if the gate is open since I can't see the layout being workable with it down anyway
Glen Haasdyk Posted - 11/22/2020 : 12:59:34 AM

I made some decent progress over the past week.

I laid quite a bit of track, starting with the drop gate.

I had to add a second deadbolt lock to the one side to get just a bit better alignment. After that I ran a couple cars across with no problems.

After that I laid the track down the passing siding, through the 30" radius curve on the other end and through the other turnouts. I've continued to solder the track together around the curves to make sure the rails stay together while curving the flextrack. I haven't laid the other straight mainline track yet as I'm not sure where I'm going to put the turnouts to go into the yard/ industrial sidings/ enginehouse quite yet.

I also cut and installed the upper benchwork that bridges the stamp mill to the logging area. This is the last piece of major benchwork if you don't include the future sawmill addition. I'll probably take my jig saw and contour the front edge so I can use it as a scenery form later.

I did take some time off tracklaying to build a shelf under the benchwork that will hold my NCE command station and power supply. I'm also been using a 7/8" hole saw to drill wiring holes in the benchwork cross members. On my last layout I zip-tied, taped and used various methods for holding my wiring up. This time I want it to look a bit more organized and neater and I think it's better to drill these holes now that later when I'm farther along with wiring.
MarcusF Posted - 11/16/2020 : 1:03:03 PM
Glenn, geography would suggest I haven't had the pleasure. The DoubleHeaders tour is a layout tour in the Kitchener-Waterlook region that's been going on for I'd guess over 30 years or so, and has had up to 60 layouts some years. Your first layout pictures twigged some memories from days gone by, as did your name. I'm getting to the age where everyone I meet looks like someone I've met. ;)
Progress is looking good!
Michael M Posted - 11/15/2020 : 11:36:33 PM

That right hand switch coming out of the curve leading up to the gate looks like it could cause a 'S' curve. Something you want to avoid.

With that swing-down gate you may want to consider installing something to keep trains from taking a nosedive to the floor below because you "forgot" the gate was open. Maybe some insulated track sections with a safety switch that kills the power when the gate is open?

Michael Hohn Posted - 11/15/2020 : 10:55:57 PM
Good looking trackwork, Glen.
Glen Haasdyk Posted - 11/15/2020 : 7:46:02 PM
That's an interesting concept. But I have no intention of putting anything on the drop-gate with the exception of track and ground cover. That and I would have no place to put a roll-out piece like you have suggested.

I was away for a few days on a small trip but today I started to lay some track:

I started with the 24" radius end. I'm using all peco flex track that takes a bit of work to get it around corners but it will curve nicely if you are patient with it. Unlike Atlas track there isn't one track that slides easily so I did solder the joints in the curve.

I'm using recycled Peco turnouts both salvaged off my previous layout and given to me from another modeler who switched his entire layout to code 83. I had to refurbish the turnouts a bit due to insulating cuts made into them when my friend's layout was converted to DCC. I had to do something similar when I converted my former layout as well.

After. I had to cut the ties back a bit and add new track nail holes in them all. They are still pretty much intact, just a bit shorter.

And now that the one curve is in, and checked with both a rail car and an NMRA gauge. I was able to re-install the HOn3 section above it. Now All I need to add is the joining piece between the stamp mill and the narrow gauge.
pulpyskipper Posted - 11/12/2020 : 11:15:59 AM
The only thing I noticed, Glen, about your swing down section, is when it is in the down position, and you walk through the opening, there is a good chance you will knock into whatever buildings or scenery, you will have located on it. Hence, you will have to keep everything flat, without anything of any height.
Over the years, I had many openings, like yours, and I always had mine, just slide out. They were on, little dollies, with ball casters, and I just unhooked the alignment latches, and unplugged the electric, and rolled the whole unit out of the way. Most of them had tall buildings and large trees on them! On one layout, I had four sections like that, that slid out, so I could get around the inside. I would have them all parked on the other side of the room! I even had a three foot mountain, located in the middle of the layout, that I would go under the bench, lift the mountain up and hang it from the ceiling, while I did my work. Then unhook it and lower it back into place, on the way out! Just a few thoughts I wanted to share with you.
Glen Haasdyk Posted - 11/11/2020 : 8:48:23 PM
I have a couple days off so I put the first one to good use today:

I laid all the cork roadbed for the mainline and passing sidings. I first laid the mainline then fitted the sidings in. It's been a long time since I did this so I went online to figure out the spacing between the tracks. A few sites said that I could get away with 2" between track centers but I decided 2 1/2" would look a bit better and give a bit more breathing room. I checked it with some spare pieces of track and a couple cars.

The end of the city's siding with the stamp mill spur. before track laying I'll have to bevel/slope the roadbed to the plywood. I also placed a few turnouts loosely on the mainline to gauge where to add the yards and city sidings. Still working that out but the cork gives me a good visual reference for what I can do.

I also have a much better idea of what the sawmill end looks like. I also will be sloping the cork down to the plywood for the sawmill spur. I also noticed that the cork has some rough and uneven edges. I'm going to run my mini sander over them to smooth it out.

looking toward the future logging line. I need to get the track laid on this end before I can re-attach my HOn3 branch above it. Then I can also extend the upper line past the stamp mill and to the logging camp.

I'm going to add a second deadbolt to the drop gate. I need to lift one side up about 1/16" to get the perfect alignment for track.
I'm thinking of adding an enginehouse on the opposite side of the gate, but not using the turntable. a friend gave me a peco three-way turnout that I'd use instead.
Glen Haasdyk Posted - 11/11/2020 : 02:00:31 AM
Thanks for your Help everyone, I think I figured it out:

I separated the two turnouts with a length of straight track by at least the length of an 85' passenger car. Keep in mind that I'm using peco medium turnouts on the main and passing sidings (approximately #5's) I think this should fix any problem.
Now I've turned my attention to the passing siding on the other side of the layout:

The main line through here is a straight line so I used a string to mark the center line for roadbed laying. I had initially thought that I could put my station on the outside of the main and run the passing siding on the inside. Turns out there wasn't enough room for the station but there was room for the passing track so I'm going to swap the two around:

this will give me something similar to the other side.

This will also give my the exit from the passing siding to the stamp mill/logging branchline.

Hi Marcus. I don't think we have met before. don't remember a Layout tour. And we're on opposite sides of the country!
jbvb Posted - 11/10/2020 : 8:44:30 PM
With S-curves, a lot depends on the speed of the trains and the sort of equipment in use. Glen's proposal would probably work OK with 40 foot or shorter freight cars and B-B diesels up to GP-7/F-unit size at 20 scale MPH. It would give trouble for longer cars and locos due to coupler misalignment. The ride might be rough enough to cause derailments at 40 SMPH.
Michael Hohn Posted - 11/10/2020 : 8:34:39 PM

Turns out, Mark has a point. You want to avoid the S created by your original configuration.

I like the new arrangement, in part because the mainline goes straight through and the track to the sawmill is on the diverging route, more prototypical.

mark_dalrymple Posted - 11/10/2020 : 7:59:52 PM
Hi Glen.

Firstly - I'm far from an expert in this area - perhaps someone who is can chime in.

In answer to your three questions - yes, maybe and yes. Where ever you have two curves in opposing directions meeting, they create an S-curve. This is a danger area for derailments, especially with longer equipment. Between these two opposing curves you should attempt to have a tangent (straight piece of track) at least equal to the longest piece of equipment you intend to run. With turnouts (points) the larger the radius of the curve of the turnout the less of a problem you will have. It appears to me that you have an S-curve coming into the passing siding, and then another directly after where the curve of the two turnouts meet. I would suggest a straight piece of track between the two opposing curves coming into your passing siding, and then a reworking of your passing siding, perhaps by using a curved turnout. You can print out templates from the link below.


Hope this helps a bit. If you search 'S-curves in model railroading' you should find plenty of discussions, problem solving etc, by people far more knowledgeable in this area than me.

Cheers, Mark.
MarcusF Posted - 11/10/2020 : 10:03:29 AM
Looking good! Glen, your name rings a bell - were you ever part of the Double Headers layout tour?

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