Cape Breton & Central Nova Scotia Railway


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Here are some pics of my layout. It is my Freelanced version of the CB&CNS Railway. set back in time to the
late 70's and is in an around the room layout with a peninsula in the center. The layout dimensions overall
are 18.1' x 15.5'. The peninsula is 16' x 9' and contains six staging loops below the top level. The operation
of this layout will be from mainline trains delivering and picking up revenue cars for the area. These revenue
cars will be switched and handled by road switchers to service the local industries. The main revenue for this
branch of the CB&CNS will be coal hauled from the mine to the power plant. These industries are located on
the top of the peninsula. In addition there will be a harbour wih a fish processing plant, a sawmill industry on
the opposite side of the room.
I've been building this layout for the past three years, and though it looks like fairly slow going on my part, it
really isn't because all the locomotive power has to be custom made from other models. I hope you enjoy the
tour, which I'll try to keep updated as more of the layout is completed. More information about my layout is
available at my website
Enjoy!! the tour

To get an idea of my planned operation. we will start at one of the lower staging loops. The locomotive in
this tour will be CB&CNS 2003 John Galt a MLW C630M


We will follow number 2003 with its consist as it leaves a staging loop and enters the layout from the tunnel
then crossing Barney's River and then starting up the difficult grades in front and to the West.


This is the area of difficult grades mentioned as you can see far from finished. The upper road is the Spur to
the power plant


Continuing up the grade we come to Sutherland's River. This area of bridges is actually a gate for entry
to the layout asiles. You can also see part of the staging loops and the power plant in and on the peninsula


After crossing Sutherland's River there is a choice of routes to follow. For the Little Harbour Yard there is the
inner and outer tracks, there also is routing for the Coal Mine Spur, for this part of the tour 2003 will be
taking the outside tracks


The other entrance to the yard from the West also has the choice of tracks to be selected only inner and
outer tracks can be chosen


While we were following 2003, another MLW C630 number 2034 Sir Conan Doyle had left the upper staging
area, and is travelling Eastward


Here we see number 2034 entering Little Harbour from below the overpass for the meet in the yard with
number 2003


A short stop will be required if there is an interchange of revenue cars
between local, East or West deliverys


All yard switching will be done by the local road switchers assigned to Little Harbour area. Completed
switchers shown are GP18 CB&CNS 4700 Gerard MacNeil and MLW RS18 3675 Sir Charles Tupper


If and when switching as required is completed the two C630's will couple up to their respective consists and
continue their journey, CB&CNS 2003 will continue to the West, to the staging area vacated by CB&CNS 2034
as will 2034 continue Eastward and fill the staging area vacated by 2003

Hope you now have an idea of how the mainline will be operated. It may be a little while before I finish a tour
of the local switchers duties on the spur lines.

Cheers Willis
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Those wires scare me...

CBNS cerainly isn't that beautifull today with the standarized CN rolling stock.:(
Those wires scare me...
LOL, well yes there is quite a few, but it's not all that complicated. Remember the mainline operation can be run from one location and two throttles are required East and West. To add to that we have two sets of reversing loops, then there's the buss wires for the mainline plus the buss wires for the spurs and the wiring for all the twin coil turnout machines. To cut to the chase Just about all wiring to the layout goes down that side because of the gate, in fact the wiring to the bridges on the gate go down that side and around the room to power the bridge track. The wires are seperated (different feed through holes) so I can easily identify them.
CBCNSfan said:
Are you kidding, it took me all night to clean enough of it up...
Looks like my old, old layout. Great minds think alike! Lookin good there. Really likin' that river crossing.
Looks like my old, old layout.
Hmmm! would that be before, or after the cleanup? :D :D
LOL, thanks NWR #200, would you have some photos of your old layout? It would be interesting to compare notes.

In the 70s, the CB&CNS was a CN branch, right?
Close, but nope! no prize :D
Hi Matthew, welcome aboard. The CB&CNSR was incorporated in the early 90's when the line from Truro NS to Sydney NS was purchased from CN by Railtex of Texas. CN run this portion of it's operations close to into the ground and abandoment, probably trying to do the same as they did in NFLD and PEI. However while the coal mines remained operational the line also was marginally profitable. I chose the 70's as a more active time frame for the layout, Freelance and fictional. Check my web page in the signature

Thanks for the info. I was just WAY over there this summer, and enjoyed the maritimes immensly. Unfortunately, Newfoundland was the only provinc I didn'r visit this year.
I saw a lot of the abandoned railways in PEI, and thought that there must not have been much traffic, even on the mainline. Was I right?
Unfortunatly I don't. It was kinda my first layout I did, though it never got close to looking finished, all I really had was a 3% grade up to a log reload, that came down to a 6 track yard, where a branch took off to a papermill and lumber mill. It was the best a 12 year old kid could come up with. So the past 6 years I've just been armchair modeling :D
all I really had was a 3% grade up to a log reload, that came down to a 6 track yard, where a branch took off to a papermill and lumber mill.
Hi Seth, sound's pretty good to me, too bad about no pics though. Actually it reminds me of what I plan to do in one area of the layout, but without the yard just a spur. I plan a lumber woods camp and rail service to the mill. My plans are to use a re geared Athearn Hustler (when I get the gears) made into some kind of critter, the grade is over 5% though but with only two flats it should be OK.

Nice Job Willis. Scenary coming along nicely.
I appreciate the wiring as that was what i faced when I had a five throttle set up for conventional wiring.
Hi Bob,& Jim and thanks for the kind words. I guess I sort of flip flop between locos and scenery. I feel a brain storm coming on to finish that side of the layout but I have to build a logging loco first, If that works I'll slip back into the scenery phase to finish it.
This weekend I begin the finishing stages of another road switcher.
I had a five throttle set up
Gee I thought mine was bad enough with a dual MRC and a home brew walk around. I don't want to talk about that one :D
I seen an Atlas snap relay under the bench that for some reason I didn't think was doing anything effective. I thought I'd use it as a reverse for the walkaround, and the walkaround worked great untill I tried to run trains on the mainline. It was a couple of days before that became possible :D I'm not sure yet but I believe it's function was supposed to be to diconnect the Dual throttles and loops and connect the walkaround to the mainline and yard for switching. DCC would be the answer but too expensive to equip 20 plus locos, power stations and reverser units on my limited mad money.