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Author Previous Topic: Franklin Junction Layout Progress Topic Next Topic: BN Highline layout construction
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vzjtothalo
Engine Wiper



Posted - 09/02/2014 :  11:04:11 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by wvrr

I bet the pressure really is mounting, Mark, for operations. After hearing about a few more fallen flags in the South Jersey Operations group, there has got to be more pressure on you to fill the void.

Chuck



Who else has gone down and gone down hard, as the model train peddler of note down there would say?



Country: USA | Posts: 145 Go to Top of Page

MarkF
Engineer

Premium Member


Posted - 09/03/2014 :  12:40:04 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Yes Chuck you got it right! Over the past year, four layouts have fallen! While two of them are in the process of being rebuilt, there is a hungry group of operators here that need to be entertained!

Mark

Country: USA | Posts: 13239 Go to Top of Page

MarkF
Engineer

Premium Member


Posted - 09/03/2014 :  8:52:56 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote

I resumed my focus on finishing Northumberland Yard a couple of weeks ago. The problem I had been facing was the layout of the Arrival/Departure tracks. I had a hard time figuring out how to lay out the A&D tracks to maximize length and tie it all together on the west end of the yard along the yard throat.

Then one day I had that Ďah hahí moment! All I needed was a #8 right handed curved turnout! As big a supply of turnouts that I have on hand, I didnít have a #8 right hand curved turnout. Then I look further down the west end of the railroad and there it is. I had used one on the mainline at the far west end of Northumberland where the mainline goes to two tracks. I really didnít need it there as I could shorten the double tracks in front of the yard by about 2í, replace the curved turnout with a straight turnout and use the curved turnout in the yard. Well, if Iím going to rip up that part of the main line, I might as well re-lay the mainline directly in front of the yard and smooth out the sharp S curve I had previously installed. You know what they say; one small project leads to a bigger one!

The first picture shows a view of the west end of the yard, looking east, before the rebuild. You can see how sharp the S curve on the mainline was in front of the yard. You can also see the space between the mainline and the classification yard, which is where the A&D tracks are supposed to go.



Turning around, now looking westbound, this view shows the original layout of the yard entrance. My goal was to try to design a switch ladder arrangement to maximize the length of the A&D tracks as well as smooth out the S curve on the mainline, to not only provide for better functionality, but also to look better!



And a week later, this view, again looking east, shows the A&D tracks installed and the curved turnout in the center of the picture. In addition, you can see the S curve is now smoothed out and more gradual.



In this view looking west, the new flow of the tracks looks and operates much better! This also provides that all the action is directly in front of the yard operator whose desk will be located in the recess in the center of the picture.



So now that the yard is in and operating, itís time to install the switch machines in the yard and the desk and control panel for the yard.

In the meantime, while the classification yard is now done, the engine facility much now be installed. I am lucky in the respect that Northumberland Yard was famous due to the fact that the PRR stored many of their retired steam locomotives at the roundhouse. Therefore, even though I model in the mid-60ís, I can get away with having steam locomotives sitting at the turntable! Now I must interject at this point that it was not my original plan to do this, but I do own several brass PRR steamers that I usually display on a shelf. So Rick and Bruce have both convinced me that I need to provide a space to store steamers since this is what was actually done at the prototype Northumberland.

In this picture, you can see the area I have to work with. Unfortunately, itís not as big as I would like and there just isnít the room to model a full roundhouse, but I saw a neat trick on another layout Iím going to try. As you can see, I have placed the template for the turntable near the backdrop. The roundhouse itself will be approximately halfway around the turntable with part of it being a low relief structure against the backdrop. Modeled with those doors closed, it will give the appearance of a full roundhouse, yet provide more than enough engine storage.



Looking the other direction, you can see the engine facility in relation to the rest of the yard. The diesel shop is in place, and you can see where I have laid out where the service area will be to the left of the turntable.



And as luck would have it, my dear friend Mr. Harsco was visiting a hobby shop in Pennsylvania a couple of weeks ago and happened to locate one of the new Waltherís 130í DCC turntables at a good price! How could I say no?



So this will be the next big project! Time to get out the jigsaw and start cutting a big hole!


Mark

Country: USA | Posts: 13239 Go to Top of Page

jbvb
Fireman

Premium Member


Posted - 09/03/2014 :  10:54:51 PM  Show Profile  Visit jbvb's Homepage  Reply with Quote
I don't know the PRR that well, but I have the idea that Northumberland didn't see much, if any, of the Q-2s and T-1s. If space is tight, it might be worth the extra construction effort to do a 100' or 110' turntable, whatever would accommodate an M-1 with a big tender, or whatever was the longest wheelbase normally used.


Country: USA | Posts: 5140 Go to Top of Page

Steam Nut
Fireman



Posted - 09/04/2014 :  09:38:57 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
I does not know it yet but steam will run on the rail road.


Country: USA | Posts: 1754 Go to Top of Page

sjconrail
Engine Wiper



Posted - 09/04/2014 :  09:42:06 AM  Show Profile  Visit sjconrail's Homepage  Reply with Quote
Looks good Mark. Now, just keep those steamers there for display so the layout can run without incident, ,

Phil



Country: USA | Posts: 299 Go to Top of Page

Dutchman
Administrator

Premium Member


Posted - 09/04/2014 :  09:49:06 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
That is an impressive looking yard, Mark.

I look forward to seeing what you come up with for that roundhouse area.



Bruce

Modeling the railroads of the Jersey Highlands in HO and the logging railroads of Pennsylvania in HOn3

Country: USA | Posts: 29724 Go to Top of Page

sjconrail
Engine Wiper



Posted - 09/04/2014 :  09:52:32 AM  Show Profile  Visit sjconrail's Homepage  Reply with Quote
I just realized that design is like a thinned version of Sayre on the CL&W,

Phil



Country: USA | Posts: 299 Go to Top of Page

MarkF
Engineer

Premium Member


Posted - 09/04/2014 :  10:42:15 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Thanks guys! I'm not sure exactly what locomotives were stored at Northumberland near the end, but there were quite a few.

Bruce, keep your socks on! A steam powered railfan special may occasionally grace the rails, but I don't see any steam in regular service! As Phil said, we are looking for incident free operations!


Mark

Edited by - MarkF on 09/04/2014 10:43:50 AM

Country: USA | Posts: 13239 Go to Top of Page

Brunton
Engine Wiper



Posted - 09/04/2014 :  7:03:34 PM  Show Profile  Visit Brunton's Homepage  Reply with Quote
Impressive looking yard, Mark!

Enjoy installing that turntable. Mine went in easily enough, but you need to watch out when programming it. The instructions are pretty cryptic! I think they're written in the WWII U-boat enigma codes or something!



Edited by - Brunton on 09/04/2014 7:04:33 PM

Country: USA | Posts: 486 Go to Top of Page

SNCF_Fan
Section Hand

Posted - 09/04/2014 :  7:47:37 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
That is some seriously smooth flowing trackwork Mark, very nice to say the least. Too bad you didnít have another 4 or 5 inches of benchwork width to add another A/D track or two but nevertheless this should work very well. JBVBís comments regarding the turntable size in terms of space allocation and appropriate bridge length for the locomotives being used are very wise. Even if you keep the pit centre in the same place a smaller turntable would allow a bit more roundhouse depth at the backdrop.

Is this going to be a stub ended yard or do you plan to put a ladder at the east end of the yard for all or at least a portion of the bowl tracks?

Looking forward to seeing more progress!

Thanks and Cheers



Carl

carl.lindon@videotron.ca
Gatineau, Quebec.

Country: Canada | Posts: 50 Go to Top of Page

Steam Nut
Fireman



Posted - 09/04/2014 :  9:54:38 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Incident free operations with steam engines, May I remind you who has worked on your steam loco's, Hmmmmmmm!


Country: USA | Posts: 1754 Go to Top of Page

MarkF
Engineer

Premium Member


Posted - 09/04/2014 :  10:27:32 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Thanks for the feedback guys!

Carl, the yard is stub ended. I just don't have the length to do a double ended yard, but this will work. And yes, it would be nice to have a couple of more tracks, but as it is, the yard is 30" wide and I didn't want to get any wider. The 12 classification tracks, along with the two A&D tracks should fit the bill!

As for the engine facility, I am still in the planning stages, moving things around and trying different ideas. Funny, as big as this layout is, there just is never enough room, is there? But looking things over and laying out tracks from the turntable, even with the dummy tracks near the backdrop, I will have more than enough storage for locos. I'd rather have the extra space for the service area, etc. But I'm still open to ideas and suggestions, so keep them coming!

And yes Bruce, your right. Ok, maybe some day. No promises though.


Mark

Country: USA | Posts: 13239 Go to Top of Page

jbvb
Fireman

Premium Member


Posted - 09/05/2014 :  07:46:24 AM  Show Profile  Visit jbvb's Homepage  Reply with Quote
In the 'better to find out early on' category, beg or borrow a moderately picky steam engine and a few full-size passenger cars to try out your track as soon as you get power connected, but before you ballast it. At least half the things it finds will turn out to be issues if left till you're running full-sized diesel-hauled freights.


Country: USA | Posts: 5140 Go to Top of Page

MarkF
Engineer

Premium Member


Posted - 09/17/2014 :  11:27:59 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
It's been a couple of weeks since my last update, and I've been making steady progress. Now that the track work in Northumberland Yard is complete, Iíve begun the process of installing the control panel, switch machines and associated wiring in the yard so I can get the yard operating. In addition, Iíve been playing with a couple of various arrangements for the engine facility, taking into consideration some of the ideas you guys have presented above. I think Iíve arrived at an arrangement I like, but still playing with some ideas.

In addition, I am now going back to the various switching areas and installing the various industrial spurs. Most of these are just being laid in loosely so I can get operating, and I will later go back and begin mocking up structures and various scenes, at which time the track work will be laid in more permanently. I know that once I get operating, I will most likely make changes here and there to the various areas to create fun switching areas, accommodate building ideas, scenery, etc. My goal right now though is to get operating so that I can work out any track work or operational kinks in the railroad.

The fun part of this stage is that once I get an area installed and wired, I get to play! I am methodically checking track work, turnouts, etc. to ensure everything runs smoothly before I move on to the next area. But at least I get to play!

With that being said, I now find myself now quickly approaching the operational stage of the railroad and accordingly, devoting more and more time to starting the process of getting the paperwork squared away as well. While all of my car cards are printed out and ready to go, I had thought that I would be able to use all of the waybills from my previous layout. I recently went through them all and ended up throwing out about 3/4 of them! While I am modeling the same area and towns, I have made enough changes to industries, towns, etc. that most of the waybills could not be used on this layout. So I am now beginning the boring task of printing out new waybills for the layout. Since I have figured out that this layout will have a capacity of nearly 400 freight cars, I will need at least 400 waybills! So that process is now underway as well. I usually do this at night while I am sitting in front of the TV and usually generate 8-16 a night on the average.

So yes guys, we are getting there! Operations are coming soon!


Mark

Country: USA | Posts: 13239 Go to Top of Page
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