My Delima


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Hi Folk's! I would appreciate your opinion on this one. The photo shows my modest yard, two mainline tracks ( center ) and two siding
tracks. At the lower left the track will be extended to a loco maintenance and servicing area, the upper left to the fish plant and harbour area.
My plan was to have a small yard, basically connecting the mainline to two spurs much like a junction that would service the industries on the spurs.
The mainline would be supplying the traffic to and from the area. The trackage to the right is the spur up to the coal mine, the space between is the basis for my question. I have room for some buildings,( Station and Freight shed in photo for an example.) and maybe even a road with the buildings, or I could use ithe area for more tracks to make a bigger yard. Keep in mind most mainline traffic would, or should pass straight through the area.
My question is, if it were you, would you leave it as it is, put in a village or make more tracks for a bigger yard? Your opinion will be appreciated Thanks
Cheers Willis
I subscribe to the "less is more" train of thought. More tracks would be crowded and pretty unrealistic even to the untrained eye.

It looks like a great spot for industry. Perhaps even some that will hide the rear track or at least set up a peekaboo as trains move "thru" the town.

scenery is good. The world is full of it... ;)
Hi Willis:

The thing to remember here is turnout length. Sure, you could add another two tracks, but they'll get progressively shorter too, and therefore less useful.

Also, you've got a nasty "S" curve situation at the bottom right, with that RH turnout coming off a curve.

I've included my take on this below:

1.) Remove the RH turnout to the RH siding, replace with a LH turnout using the main on the diverging route. This eliminates the S curve.

2.) Remove the short RH siding and it's two very model-ish spurs. Move depot closer to tracks.

3.) Lay another LH turnout off the main route of the previous one. From the diverging route of this new turnout, place a straight track over part of where the RH siding used to be, up to the depot. This is now a setout track for the depot, surviving from the days of passenger, or perhaps from M-O-W, or whatever. (It can be used for a team track in modern times.)

4.) Lay a new track from the straight route of this turnout around the back of the depot. Hook this back in where the RH siding used to. This broadly curved track is a common prototype at depots all over the place, and was used primarily for "house track" cars, e.g. boxcars or reefers that were loaded by REA or by the railroad for occasional shippers. You could use it for more of this sort of "occasional" traffic.

5.) Off the house track, beyond the depot, place a small spur. This spur can serve a small industry such as an oil dealer.

The "house track" could be in a gravel area that is also a back road of a small town. City buildings could front on it, or better yet, use the unused back sections of city buildings from other areas to represent the backside of a small town.

Just some ideas based on some prototype observations. Use or don't use whatever you like, and enjoy.

Is delima an eating disorder in teenage girls? Hee hee.

Or is it the Canadian spelling of dilemma?

(Just giving you a hard time) ;)
Hmm! this is the second time, must have forgot to click submit
Or is it the Canadian spelling of dilemma?
Hmm! must be my Cdn. Spelling checker Mike, they do that sometimes :D
Just some ideas based on some prototype observations. Use or don't use whatever you like
I like! I Like! Yes it does look a lot better routed that way, more believable and there is the space to do it. also I think the buildings will fit into the area and look better placed. Your changes look to me, like they will enhance the passenger service ( before it would have had to go through the "S" curve and also the operations of the peddler freight which will service the area will be improved especially shunting. I'll get started on the changes tonight, it's going to be a pain though, as most of the SW machines are under the plywood.
Thanks everyone, I guess the answer to my dilemma is better located track with buildings and scenery.
Cheers Willis
I like ABC's design a lot. He raises some really good points, like the S curve on the mainline and the more prototypical arrangement. I also agree that "less is more" in this case, with less tracks near the station providing a better look.

I would make one small change though. I suggest moving the tank farm or whatever it will be in front of the siding. This does two thinks, it partially hides the cars on that track, which makes it more interesting. It also means that you have room for scenery between the two tracks, as I've shown in the modifed image I attached.
Another side effect of rounding out that track is it makes the "yard" look bigger, since it's wider.

I agree with Bob's idea on where to place that industry, too.
We're left with one last problem...

Our revised plan cuts off access to the REA building in the foreground. We can do two things.

1) Be prototypical, close the REA office and tell them "ship by truck!"

2) Move spur ABC shows to the other side of the station, same concept as you have now, simply on the opposite end of the station. Then put in a turnout on this end that serves the express building. I'd move the express building towards the viewer a bit, if you have room there.
So, if we try that approach, it looks something like this. (Hopefully a bit smoother, drawing with a mouse isn't my strong point). The muddy brown streak at the right is a quick attempt at a dirt road. It would serve the truck loading dock on the back of the REA building as well as accessing the station.
The curvature at the farther end of the yard won't be pretty for a stock turnout.

An alternative that would preserve the looks of the first option, and keep the REA around.
LOL, well guess we'll have to settle this soon cuz I lifted all that misplaced track and turnouts :D. Yep you are correct the further end of the yard was getting a bit dicey, I positioned a right to the repositioned spur and left to back of station and tank farm, #6 Atlas TO's and it looked all right but the little station had to be moved toward the bottom end leaving a longer run to the Tank farm? the bottom end looks like it will work fine no matter which track layout I use. There seems to be lots of room for positioning the freight station, BTW, what's a REA?
I'll take the camera down with me this time.
Cheers Willis
The building in the foreground has a sign for "Railway Express Agency", or "REA". REA was sort of the UPS or FedEx of it's day.
CB&CNSfan said:
I positioned a right to the repositioned spur and left to back of station and tank farm, #6 Atlas TO's and it looked all right but the little station had to be moved toward the bottom end leaving a longer run to the Tank farm?

Yes, you're both right it does change the geometry of the yard. I anticipated that, and mentioned it in my reply. If you look closely at my 2nd image, you'll see that I moved the station closer to the viewer. (compare it's position to the engine on the left track, which is in the same place in both shots.

ABC's option will work too, and it was actually my first thought. What I didn't like about it was that we were trying to not have too much track clutter on the right side, and that second track was taking up a lot of room.

Either one will work, and you can decide which one looks better in person.
Heh... yeah it's pretty easy from here, with a nice desktop drawing program... the big question is what fits in 3D? :-D
I would not put any more tracks there. I like to keep the track/scenery ratio low. Too much track and it looks like a spaghetti bowl. Some kind of scenery block between the tracks at the front of the layout and the rear would be good to seperate them. Something that partially blocks the view of the rear tracks, like a stand of trees or buildings.

Youse guys made me bwake my wailwoad!!

Ah! well all's well that ends well. Ended up taking out that whole curve track power drop wires, and my nice ballast. all gone. There was no way that the #6 was going to fit into the existing track smoothly. I've a few pics including the area for the REA
( thank's ABC)I wouldn't have figured that one out since I've new signs planned for it.
Anyway the pics show the turnout in place but a lot of work to do yet before I can even try it.
Cheers Willis
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I wish you luck Willis! As I read in a Model Railroader magazine last night, "Model railroading is fun, remember?"
"Model railroading is fun, remember?"
Hi Nate, don't know about the fun part, but I do enjoy the challenges of the construction phases. It didn't look like that #6 was going to fit smoothly into that curve at all. I spent a couple of hours trying, before tearing out about 6 ft. of track and starting over. Getting it installed so that it looks and operates smoothly gives me a great sense of acomplishment. ( have to be careful I don't break my arm patting myself on the back) :D and this evening I'll install the SW machine and connect the open ends back to the mainline.
Cheers Willis
Hi all, well it looks like most of the cutting and fitting is done. Here's a few pic's of the re routed track. Again my thanks for the advice, I see many more interesting operational possibilities now than before. Passenger trains will remain on the mainline tracks in front of the station. An express train could drop off cars, and operating the locals could prove more a more prototypical type of shunting. Photos are kind of poor but all is visible.
Cheers Willis