The HO Scale St. Paul Central......

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Old 97

Hogger
After reading the thread "Taking the E-Z Way" by ABCRAGHEAD,
I thought the membership here would find this interesting.

The 1999 July issue of Model Railroader featured a 4x8 HO Scale layout
plan for the St.Paul Central.
The layout was designed for use with the Atlas True-track system.

This plan featured a small fictional short line serving the Minnesota communities in the late first generation diesal era (1965).

Some on-line customers included a Brewery,wharehouse,lumberyard, and a grain elevator.

The plan also called for the use of a styrofoam backdrop/divider.
I thought it to be a rather fun looking layout to build one of these days.
I like the idea of using true-track and other products like it.
As it would eliminate a multitude of headaches encountered with the typical flex track we use to build our empires.

Just thought I would bring it up for discussion. :)
 

CBCNSfan

Registered Member
Staff member
Just thought I would bring it up for discussion
Well OK! but first I'll have to dig out my copy of that MR issue. Just might get some ideas for my own layout here.
Cheers Willis
 

Old 97

Hogger
CBCNSfan said:
Just might get some ideas for my own layout here.
Cheers Willis
Yes sir!
That's what I love about back issues.
Always something you wanted to try but got sidetracked. :D :D
 

CBCNSfan

Registered Member
Staff member
Ok! got my copy out and I must say it's worth anyones time to look at these magazines. How to do it's for a working coal loader, scratch built buildings and detailing flextrack.
i suggest we have a look at the 4X8 platform (table) construction. I honestly don't believe I'd do it exactly like that. The supporting joists are installed flat side against the styrofoam. A 1" by anything board doesn't have all that much strength on it's side. I believe I'd make a sort of a "U" channel 1X2's on edge with the 1X4 between. Then I'd use folding metal legsets. I also believe I'd like a little support for the botton edges of the styrofoam. The cost of the extra support will add to the weight but I believe it would be worth it.
Next:
 

Old 97

Hogger
Painting..........

CBCNSfan said:
HELLO!! anyone interested?? :confused:
Cheers Willis

Well, actually.......

I've been toying with the idea of painting some e-z track to see how it would look.
So far my thought process has brought me to masking off the rails with tape or coating them with a layer of oil and then spraying everything with a rust brown paint.
Then going back with a light grey to paint the "ballast".
I would aim for the outer edges of the track and any overspray would appear like ballast on the ties I think.

My "Dad" has been using some Life-like Power lock track as a test track of sorts and I really like the way it looks and performs.
Recently, I ran a couple of 0-4-0 steamers on his track and they ran a thousand times better than they do on their home rails.

So the more I think about it, I may actually build this St. Paul Central. :D
 

CBCNSfan

Registered Member
Staff member
So far my thought process has brought me to masking off the rails with tape or coating them with a layer of oil and then spraying everything with a rust brown paint.
Then going back with a light grey to paint the "ballast".
Hmm! I didn't know what E-Z track looked like, but after a Google search I do believe I have some from a trainset in the basement. I'll have a look at it, then guess at what way I'd paint it. I'm not to enthusiastic about the oil though. :D
Cheers Willis
 

Old 97

Hogger
CBCNSfan said:
I'm not to enthusiastic about the oil though. :D
Willis,
The oil on the rails trick is not my own.
I read about it some time back in Model Railroader magazine.
When using oil on the rails to paint them, you only need to use a thin film applied by your finger tip.
Then you just wipe off the tops of the rail when your done.
You are left with shiny rails and prototype looking track.

Mike. :)
 

CBCNSfan

Registered Member
Staff member
From what I looked at I'm not overly impressed with. It's going to take some work to make that stuff sort of realistic looking. I'm also some what concerned with it being hollow underneath, this could increase the noise level.
As for painting it, why not glue some fine gravel (ballast) and sand to it before painting, it will help remove the uniform shape of the plastic road bed. The layout isn't all that big so my preference would be to hand paint rather than spray. This way it would be easier to get gradual changes in color and have non-uniformity not only in shape but in color as well.
Cheers Willis
 

Old 97

Hogger
Willis,

You have a good idea or two on how to paint that type of track.
As for the track being "hollow", I think if that stuff was to be put down a
sheet of Homasote, the noise level would be even less.
Right now, I've been running trains on it with the track just being set up on a sheet of plywood.
I haven't noticed it being overly noisy and the track produces a nice "clickety-clack" as the wheels ride on the rails. :D

Mike.
 

CBCNSfan

Registered Member
Staff member
Have you tried laying out the track as it is on the plans? Spurs generaly are not as high Roadbed built up) as on the mainline have you thought of this aspect yet?
Cheers Willis
 

Old 97

Hogger
CBCNSfan said:
Spurs generaly are not as high Roadbed built up) as on the mainline have you thought of this aspect yet?
Cheers Willis
Willis,

Yep!
That thought has come to my mind and I believe the designer of this
particular plan has used the specified track for all spurs as shown in the drawing.
But, if a person wants a "proto" look to the railroad, Life-like does
produce adapters that will allow the use of flex track with the power-lock
track.

As for laying out the track as per the drawing, the answer is no.
I'm still in the "research" stage of it.

Mike. :)
 
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CBCNSfan

Registered Member
Staff member
I'm still in the "research" stage of it.
Huh! how much research you gotta do, it's all pretty well done for you in the article.
if a person wants a "proto" look to the railroad, Life-like does
produce adapters that will allow the use of flex track with the power-lock
track.
In regard to adapters, unless you have a lot of money you don't have any other use for, I'd stay with the power-lock and just use filler pieces to build up the terrain. I'll post a picture later. IF your power-lock track is the same as what I have then getting flextrack of the same metal will be difficult indeed. One thing you don't want is different types of metal in your trackage.
Cheers Willis
 

Old 97

Hogger
CBCNSfan said:
Huh! how much research you gotta do, it's all pretty well done for you in the article.
Cheers Willis
Willis,

Well...........

You're right. :D

The "research" that I'm doing involves the following:

1) Available space here at the NY&W Headquarters for another layout.

2) Availibility of the Atlas True Track system and how it compares to Life-likes
Power-lock system.

3) Developing a system of painting track that is easy and looks prototypical.

4) What types of rolling stock will run on this small of a layout.

5) What type of small steamer would run best with a passenger car
or two on this layout.

6) I know this is a small layout, but I might want to wire it in blocks or isolate
a siding or two to store the steamer and passenger car.

7) Is a fiddle yard something I would want on this layout??
Looking at the lower left hand corner of the "drawing", there is a length of straight track that runs almost to the edge of the board.

8) What industries would I eliminate or exchange to suit my needs and interests.

9) Would there be enough available real estate here for future expansion
utilizing the length of straight track mentioned in #7?

10) Would I be able to elevate the 22" radius at the right end of the drawing to give me a small incline for this layout?
Would I want a small incline?

There are more questions and thoughts that I have in regards to this layout,
but that is the beauty of this hobby.

I'm having fun just talking and dreaming of building another layout.
I recently bought the 2005 Walthers catalog and it helps to have a "purpose"
when flipping through the pages of rolling stock,engines, industries and so on. :D :D


Mike. :D
 
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