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Author Previous Topic: Wreckers Reef shelf layout Part 2 Topic Next Topic: ďThe  Original Kittom Lumber Co.
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Frank Palmer
Fireman



Posted - 02/22/2016 :  10:45:00 AM  Show Profile  Visit Frank Palmer's Homepage  Reply with Quote
Kumard, I really like the short curved track joining the main to the trolley line, nice touch. Are you sure you want the mainline switches to be right at the left and right edges of the module? I would think some lead would be easier to join modules.

Overall, you got and interesting track plan and youíre absolutely right, let it set for a week. Who knows what subtle changes youíll make.



Country: USA | Posts: 3660 Go to Top of Page

AaronV
New Hire

Posted - 02/22/2016 :  3:46:02 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
I am a fairly new member of rr line forums and I just wanted to chime in with how much I like your concept of setting and era and your planÖI too am a traction fan (though itís not going to be incorporated into my current layout) and love the idea of the Soo Line / traction junction. The traction fan in me was a little saddened when you indicated that you were going to model the traction line as abandoned / now served by Soo switchers, though I agree that prototypically it was likely that the traction line had stopped operating by the time of your modeling era. So itís exciting to hear that youíre thinking about now still including an active traction line.

I donít know if you need any more prototype ideas or inspiration (if you are like me, you already have more than a lifetime worth of prototype plans, notes and photos filed away) but I wonder if there are any relevant prototype example settings to be found in Iowa? I donít know a lot about the Iowa railroading scene, but my understanding is that some of the Iowa interurbans / electric lines hung on a lot longer than in most other places, especially providing freight service. I think there is still at least one active electric interurban-type railroad in Iowa providing freight service. I know youíre not modeling Iowa, but if I understand correctly youíre modeling Minnesota or North Dakota which are not too far away, and maybe there is something from a prototype junction or terminal in Iowa that could be relevantÖ

Thanks for documenting how you are doing 1:1 scale track planning and testing out ideas, that seems like a great way to refine concepts.

I also liked how you mention being inspired by English / European exhibition layouts. Iím in the U.S. and Iíve never seen a European model railroad or exhibition in person, but through the wonders of the Internet, I feel like Iíve been able to vicariously experience a bit of the UK / European expo circuit over the last few years. I love to look at photos and layouts from shows like the Warley UK show, the ExpoNG shows in the UK, the Expometrique / Railexpo show near Paris, and the Ontraxs show in the Netherlands. Some of those layouts blow me away, and they do seem like an art form to me.

Iíve started my first layout, and am documenting the layout build in a thread in the Model Railroad Construction section. I just put up a series of posts about making tabletop benchwork out of foamcore, which may be of interest to those working with foamcore. In my case, I made my tabletop structure out of a grid of foamcore beams, with a foamcore surface. Iíve liked working with foamcore, though it was definitely time consuming, and I donít know if I would do it again the same way.

Here is the link:

http://www.railroad-line.com/forum/topic.asp?TOPIC_ID=46707&whichpage=3

The layout is 5 feet by about 4 feet. I actually thought about putting the build thread in this Micro / Mini Layout section, but I wasnít sure at that size if it still qualified as a Mini layout, so I parked it in the Construction section.

I'll be following your progress with interest..

Aaron V.



Country: | Posts: 46 Go to Top of Page

kumard
Engine Wiper

Posted - 02/25/2016 :  4:31:49 PM  Show Profile  Visit kumard's Homepage  Reply with Quote
I have a quick moment to respond to messages, I'm buried with work right now.

Rob >> The rear track looks a lot better than originally planned and I really like your choice to eliminate the long tangent track. Also like the idea of adding the car barn. It's coming together very nicely! >> I hope eliminating the tangent track works. It's a small detail but allows me get rid of that long straight. The plan as originally envisaged ended up being quite conventional and I think the adding the curves disguises the straightforwardness of the design. The car barn (that's the name I was looking for) will be a place I can really have fun adding details.

Michael >> Next time I'm in a store that has the Elmers foam board I'm going to take a look at it. You have my curiosity up. >> Try it out. It will need supporting with ply underneath but it's a good work surface for a model

Frank >> Are you sure you want the mainline switches to be right at the left and right edges of the module? I would think some lead would be easier to join modules.. >> You are right and I intend to bring them in away from the edges. That loop is too long and needs shortening. I'm away this weekend so it's going to have to wait another week before I can get to it.

AaronV >> Thanks for the long message. Full of interesting comments. I'll have more time next week to reply in detail. I'll check out your thread in the meantime.


http://thedepotonline.com/

Edited by - kumard on 02/25/2016 9:10:52 PM

Country: USA | Posts: 350 Go to Top of Page

kumard
Engine Wiper

Posted - 03/02/2016 :  12:57:30 AM  Show Profile  Visit kumard's Homepage  Reply with Quote
Hi Aaron,

I have a some time to respond to your message.

So itís exciting to hear that youíre thinking about now still including an active traction line. >> Yes I've been trying to figure out a way to feature traction on the layout without it being a 'traction layout'. The idea that the tracks remained in place after the original traction company went out of business was one way to add something of the flavor of traction. So many traction companies had gone by the early to mid-sixties - especially in small towns - that it would be unrealistic of me to add a fully functional traction component. However I know that several traction companies converted to freight-only by the sixties (e.g. the Illinois Terminal and the Sacramento Northern) so I felt that I could therefore realistically model important elements such as the electric freight locomotives and possibly the catenary. Other traction features to be modeled would include track embedded in paving stones on the road surface, a brick car barn, a disused depot platform and a right-of-way that disappears behind some buildings. I'm currently designing the plan around these traction features.

I wonder if there are any relevant prototype example settings to be found in Iowa?...my understanding is that some of the Iowa interurbans / electric lines hung on a lot longer than in most other places, especially providing freight service. >> I'll check my research sources for Iowa. I have plenty of examples to draw upon from around the country. I'll be modelling freight but not passenger (except for the odd fan special). As I mentioned above there are plenty of examples of freight electric traction that survived into the seventies.

Thanks for documenting how you are doing 1:1 scale track planning and testing out ideas, that seems like a great way to refine concepts. >> Yes plenty more planning ahead. The plan will gradually morph into the layout. Iím adding buildings this weekend.

I also liked how you mention being inspired by English / European exhibition layouts. >> The internet is a great way to keep up with the British/continental scene. They have a lot to offer in the way of inspiration. Nevertheless Iím firmly a US prototype modeler and will try to convert what I can to US practice. Itís been nearly 30 years since I went to a model show in the UK. Itís something Iíll try to do next time Iím over there.

Iíve started my first layout, and am documenting the layout build in a thread in the Model Railroad Construction section. I just put up a series of posts about making tabletop benchwork out of foamcore, which may be of interest to those working with foamcore. In my case, I made my tabletop structure out of a grid of foamcore beams, with a foamcore surface. Iíve liked working with foamcore, though it was definitely time consuming, and I donít know if I would do it again the same way. >> I really like foamcore. However I may use a shallow cork surface on top of Ĺ inch foamcore base as the foamcore has a tendency to pit and break if pushed too hard. Cork absorbs sound as well.

Iíve started my first layout >> Iíve bookmarked your thread and will follow progress. I'll be greatly interested in how things develop.


http://thedepotonline.com/

Edited by - kumard on 03/02/2016 12:59:45 AM

Country: USA | Posts: 350 Go to Top of Page

vwrabbit
New Hire

Posted - 03/10/2016 :  10:55:04 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Looking forward to this. I've been following The Depot for quite a while now and it's fantastic! This should be just as good or better! Can't wait to see how this turns out!


Country: USA | Posts: 13 Go to Top of Page

kumard
Engine Wiper

Posted - 03/10/2016 :  11:35:52 PM  Show Profile  Visit kumard's Homepage  Reply with Quote
Tim/vwrabbit >> Looking forward to this. I've been following The Depot for quite a while now and it's fantastic! This should be just as good or better! Can't wait to see how this turns out! >> Thanks Tim. I'll be publishing more progress this weekend. I have had several weekends away and then I had to unexpectedly work several weekends in row so things have suddenly slowed down. I can't do anything in the week because I work from 9am to 8pm every weekday except Friday - I have the sad life of a web developer/computer programmer - money is good but the hours are terrible (eg. it's nearly 9pm right now and I'm still at my desk). However I'm nearly back to having weekends free again. I'll post an update tomorrow showing the first of the cardboard planning buildings and some changes to the plan.

http://thedepotonline.com/

Edited by - kumard on 03/10/2016 11:43:07 PM

Country: USA | Posts: 350 Go to Top of Page

vwrabbit
New Hire

Posted - 03/12/2016 :  1:06:42 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
I know how much time a developer can spend a week in overtime. I'm a software engineer, but luckily it's for a transit agency and the high demand of deadlines is not there.

Hopefully you can find more time the next coming weekends to get some work done and relax with modeling. I need to spend a little time every day to de-stress.

Did you have any major influences in why you chose to do these little modules instead of a bigger layout? I'm torn between a good sized folded dog bone vs a bunch of modules.

Tim



Country: USA | Posts: 13 Go to Top of Page

kumard
Engine Wiper

Posted - 03/12/2016 :  11:21:36 PM  Show Profile  Visit kumard's Homepage  Reply with Quote
I know how much time a developer can spend a week in overtime. I'm a software engineer, but luckily it's for a transit agency and the high demand of deadlines is not there. >> Non-stop deadlines for me and unpredictable ones too with daily emergencies thrown in as well!

Hopefully you can find more time the next coming weekends to get some work done and relax with modeling. I need to spend a little time every day to de-stress. >> The hobby is an essential part of getting away from screens so I try to get to it in any spare moment.

Did you have any major influences in why you chose to do these little modules instead of a bigger layout? I'm torn between a good sized folded dog bone vs a bunch of modules. >> Yes. The first reason is space and the second is time. As we discussed I only get around four or five hours at most on the weekends for the hobby so to get something finished within a reasonable amount of time it needs to be small. Most of the layouts I've admired in the past have been on the small scale with a focus on details rather than operation. On the other hand my favorite model railroad of all time - the Virginian and Ohio by Allen McClelland (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Virginian_and_Ohio) - was a large layout, but that was one to admire not to emulate.

Another layout I really admire is the Logansport and Indiana Northern by Tom Johnson (http://model-railroad-hobbyist.com/node/8934) and if I even if had more space I probably would opt for a similar shelf layout. I really like the challenges of working within small spaces. As you can see from The Depot it is possible to model wide open spaces within a small area.


http://thedepotonline.com/

Edited by - kumard on 03/13/2016 12:19:30 AM

Country: USA | Posts: 350 Go to Top of Page

kumard
Engine Wiper

Posted - 03/13/2016 :  12:12:19 AM  Show Profile  Visit kumard's Homepage  Reply with Quote
So I managed to get some time this week to make small changes to the track plan mostly changing track lengths or turnout angles. I laid new areas of paper over the old and cut away where I wanted to retain the original drawing. I then drew on the new piece of paper and taped it down when done.

Firstly I elongated the east end track before it splits. I like the idea of single track at this point opposite the station building and an unconventional split halfway along the platform.


Secondly I eased the sharp angles of the traction track leading to the car barn.


I'm not sure I'll keep them at this new angle since I really like the quirkiness of the original angles. However it resulted in an expected complication in the track work. The space restriction led to me accidentally drawing a three point turnout. I was going to redraw it into something simpler (two separated turnouts) but then I thought why not meet the challenge and try to build one. I'll have to build it on my desk use copper-plated ties but since they will be hidden beneath ground it there is no need to worry about losing the grain effect of wooden ties.


So here's the revised plan. More track plan changes may be on the way but I want to get some buildings on the plan before any further changes.


To get a feel for space I started with the car barn. I used a glue gun and some sheets of cardboard. I'm going to redo it since the first thing I noticed is that is was too big: more like an O scale building than HO. I placed a locomotive near it to figure out clearances and realized that the structure needs to be shrunk a little bit.


After that I put in (what are to be) a couple of depot office buildings.


I'll keep adding more to the plan this week. I'm trying to speed things up and will try to do an hour each evening this week.



http://thedepotonline.com/

Edited by - kumard on 03/13/2016 6:18:04 PM

Country: USA | Posts: 350 Go to Top of Page

Frank Palmer
Fireman



Posted - 03/13/2016 :  10:42:29 AM  Show Profile  Visit Frank Palmer's Homepage  Reply with Quote
Kumar, did you leave yourself any room for buildings? The realtor wonít make much money selling lots on this project; it looks like 90% RR Right-of-Way. The switching possibilities are ďendlessĒ. What is going in the large open area upper left? This is going to take you some time.

Iím looking forward to seeing you build the 3-point switch. I'm such a chicken I used all commercial rail and switches.



Edited by - Frank Palmer on 03/13/2016 10:43:21 AM

Country: USA | Posts: 3660 Go to Top of Page

kumard
Engine Wiper

Posted - 03/13/2016 :  2:20:44 PM  Show Profile  Visit kumard's Homepage  Reply with Quote
Hi Frank.

Did you leave yourself any room for buildings? The realtor wonít make much money selling lots on this project; it looks like 90% RR Right-of-Way. The switching possibilities are ďendlessĒ. >> Yes I'm concerned about the building situation too. There are three approaches and they will probably be combined:

1. More buildings - less track.
2. Buildings against the backdrop - you know, where just the fronts are modeled (what is the word for that?).
3. Buildings on the photo backdrop - most of the rest of the town will be modeled here and mostly just the roofs and antennas - lots of antennas.

I'm stopping making any changes to the plan until I have added a few more cardboard buildings so I can see how to balance these three approaches. These kinds of challenges are part of the fun of working in such a small space.

What is going in the large open area upper left? >> Townhouse fronts with a road running alongside the track.

This is going to take you some time. >> I'm going to try to do a little each weeknight this week to speed things up.

Iím looking forward to seeing you build the 3-point switch. I'm such a chicken I used all commercial rail and switches. >> I'm a little apprehensive but then then I felt the same way about hand-laying the track on the Depot and that just about worked out fine. With small layouts one has the time to devote to these kinds of challenges should one so desire! Luckily there are plenty of resources online to turn to while I work through that little project

Here is a rather ornate car barn but I do like the round cupola thingy. Mine is going to be in brick but I might try to grab some features of this to add to my little version.



http://thedepotonline.com/

Edited by - kumard on 03/13/2016 6:27:39 PM

Country: USA | Posts: 350 Go to Top of Page

kumard
Engine Wiper

Posted - 03/20/2016 :  4:23:01 PM  Show Profile  Visit kumard's Homepage  Reply with Quote
Time has really started to open up for me again and I have been able to spend more time on the planning of The Town. My schedule for starting the benchwork/framework has been thrown out the window in favor of getting as much of the planning done before starting.

I spent this week thinking about the car barn and trying to figure out how I was going to go about planning its design. The rectangular carboard box that was the current version was not really helping me think about space, the scale and the design of the car barn and its surrounding area. I decided to start sketching the design and hoped to gradually let the sketches morph into the building.

Here are my initial sketches based on the pictures above. I intended to start with a sketch and then draw out accurately a plan on paper which would then be cut out and stuck to cardboard. All the pieces would then be glued together and hey presto a nice looking 3d wireframe of the car barn.



The sketch was incredibly time-consuming and messy to create. I decided that I needed an easier way to do it. I remembered a sketch program from a few years ago that I had played around with. I wasn't keen on learning new software but I figured that this would really be helpful and save me a lot of time. It is called SketchUp by Google. They have a very expensive ($700) pro version but they also have a simpler free version. In just a few minutes I was able to 'sketch up' the front of the car bar. It is a simpler design than my drawing but I figured I could add more details later as I improved my software skills. Right now I just wanted to see if this was going to help or hinder me.



I very quickly figured out how to render the building with a brick skin and windows and then how to print out at 3.5mm to the foot. Once I had printed out the drawing I cut it out and pasted it on to a cardboard backing.



After spending some time reading the help files and also watching videos the other sides came together fairly quickly. It was not an entirely frustration-free experience but I really enjoyed working with the program and look forward to spending my evenings this week playing around with it.

NOTE: THIS VERSION IS JUST DEMO (made from cardboard). The final version will be made from plasticard or basswood, will be painted/colored, and will most likely look very different from this. I'm evolving the design over the next week or so.


The next day I watched a video on how to create complex roofs and threw this together in about 5 minutes:



SketchUp proved to be a fantastic tool for this kind of planning. I can add more features to the buildings as I find more interesting features in the real world (see below). It will also provide me with all the dimensions, angles and scale information that I will need when creating the final model. I have yet to decide on building materials (card, basswood or plasticard) but whichever way I go I'll be able to print out plans to build from using SketchUp.


http://thedepotonline.com/

Edited by - kumard on 03/21/2016 1:52:20 PM

Country: USA | Posts: 350 Go to Top of Page

Shady Pine
New Hire



Posted - 03/20/2016 :  4:30:25 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
This is turning into a charmer I can see it already..


Country: USA | Posts: 27 Go to Top of Page

kumard
Engine Wiper

Posted - 03/20/2016 :  4:56:52 PM  Show Profile  Visit kumard's Homepage  Reply with Quote
On my daily travels I'm always looking for interesting buildings that I can model or use in some way in my modelling activities. I came across these buildings in the Presidio (an old military base) in San Francisco. They actually look like old car barns for San Francisco's now defunct trolley car network. I'll have to do some research and see what history they contain (Actually they are ex-cavalry stables: http://www.nps.gov/prsf/planyourvisit/cavalry-stables-and-pet-cemetery.htm) but for now I took some pictures and made a note of their features.



I really like the vaulted roof extension and may try to add that to my SketchUp drawing of the car barn. Other features I made a note of are:
* Elevated doorways
* Bricked up doorways
* Gutters and drains
* External electrical equipment
* Crane beam jutting out the the roof extension
* Window grills
* Brick coloring, weathering and staining

Another set of features I would really like to model are weathered and battered ground surfaces. Found some interesting ones by this same structure. I'm going to give some thought as to how best to model this kind of feature.



http://thedepotonline.com/

Edited by - kumard on 03/20/2016 5:47:17 PM

Country: USA | Posts: 350 Go to Top of Page

Frank Palmer
Fireman



Posted - 03/20/2016 :  5:11:00 PM  Show Profile  Visit Frank Palmer's Homepage  Reply with Quote
You better hurry, you've only got 29 days left on the free trial of Sketch Up.


Edited by - Frank Palmer on 03/20/2016 5:11:17 PM

Country: USA | Posts: 3660 Go to Top of Page
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