Track plan thoughts needed

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jubylives

New Member
Hi. Long time lurker first post I think.:confused: Anyway I'm gonna be tearing to old layout down and building another in a different room of the house. The room is kinda odd but this is what I've managed to come up with. I'm using Pelle Seoberg's layout as inspiriation for mine. First I'll list what I think I have to have.
1. As broad of curves as possible especially on the visible parts of the layout.
2. I want a long stretch of visible track to see most fo the train in one shot.
3. I do not want too much track. I don't want it to look like a spider web.
4. It has to accomdate modern 6 axle locos double stack and 89' auto carriers.
5. Last would be a double track main line.

Here are drawings of the main and upper level. The lower level is the same as the main but with a passing siding somewhere and will be entirely hidden under the layout. Let me know of any questions and suggestions. Note this is only a rough sketch and is completely open to change.

Jeremy

Hopefully the files show up.:eek:
 

IronBeltKen

Lazy Daydreamer
It looks like you have a pretty clear idea of what you want - that's a good start.

I still need a few questions answered before I can offer any meaningful advice/ideas though:

1. What scale are you modeling (N,HO,O,...)?

2. I couldn't figure out the dimensions in your drawing. Could you maybe pencil-in some general measurements, such as the total length and width of the layout room, so I'll know what size area you are working with?

3. I appreciate your wanting to avoid a 'spaghetti bowl' track plan, but will you have any lineside industries? Simply watching trains go 'round and round can get boring after awhile...

4. You mentioned there is a lower level that is "the same as the main" level but entirely hidden; have you thought about how you can reach any trains on that level in case of derailment, stalling or other malfunction? You'll need at least enough vertical clearance to fit an arm/hand in there without knocking over any other trains in the same space. This, in turn, will require you to figure out how to minimize the grade between the two levels.

I'll be running 89-footers on my HO scale layout too, so I know how demanding they are as far as curves and level track. Good luck!
 

jubylives

New Member
Thanks for the response. I'm doing HO and the measurements of the overall room is 7' 6" X 16' 11". I work for a wood truss manufacturing company and everything we do is in 16ths. Forgot to remember that. That is why there is a zero at the end of the measurements. The entrance to the room is on the left of that little wall which used to be the stairway upstairs.

The open area should be 3' 6" by around 8'. That should give ample room for two people. The sides of the layout are 2' deep and I have thought about making the inside space only 3 feet wide and use the 6 inches on the right side to allow for some industries for switching. I haven't decided yet on which to use. I do have a meat packing plant and grain elevator but i don't know yet. If I had to choose I would keep the elevator. I've also toyed with having a basic yard to hold the trains and use the upper area for a town with some potential customers.

My current layout has a lower level and I allowed 8 inches of clearance. With a layout size of 8X9 that made for a hair raising grade. So yea I have that accounted for. The main reason for the lower level is to have the trains pass by the "viewing" area down under the layout out of view, back up and into the "viewing area. I figured that with a double track main would create longer spaces of time between trains.

Hopefully this answers your questions. I look forward to any suggestions I can get. I haven't seen too many layouts around this size to get ideas from so I'm kinda shooting from the hip.

Thanks,
Jeremy
 

SpaceMouse

Fun Lover
The first thing I thought of when I saw you plans were the grades. How can you get from one level to the next hand be able to reach to the back of the lower level.

I understand what you are trying to do with the lower level in terms of longer mainline runs. However, wouldn't that effect be better handled with staging rather than a lower level? A train would go to staging, stop, and a new train would come either continue or return the oposite direction and service the same or different industries, or be broken down in the yard.
 

IronBeltKen

Lazy Daydreamer
OK, now that I know you're doing HO in a [roughly] 7ft by 16ft area, I can visualize what you want. But one thing that would be really useful is if you could use a graphical editor [even MS-Paint will work] to make a slightly more-detailed version of your proposed track plan. It would be even better if you had some type of track planning software [such as XtrkCAD] to do that.
This way, I and the others can take what you have and add to it and/or rearrange it, sort of like we've been doing with zeis96's layout plan.

I made up a 17ft by 8ft empty grid that you can use as a starting point (see attachment below), I would've put in some track too, if I had more time, but I had to take my son to school. Hope this helps...
 
Last edited by a moderator:

CBCNSfan

Registered Member
Staff member
I'm confused :confused: (normal for me) but is there another level below the main level drawing? It would appear to me to be that way. 2. You indicate there will be a tunnel at the top of the drawing, are you suggesting a lot of hidden track along the right side? Your requirements for your layout are very similar to what I used to develope mine, but the top level on mine will hold most of the industry.

Willis
 

jubylives

New Member
Total of three levels. Lower is going to have some staging but will be mainly for the main line trains to keep running but disappear for a while. I like having the loop as opposed to end to end. I have 4 kids who run the train more then I do. The grades between the levels should be managable as what I already have is probably double what this will have. The very top level is still up for debate. I thought about a staging track or two and some switching up there too. The main level is gonna be the "stage" per say. This is where I want to have the ability to see an entire train in one shot.

I don't require lots of switching as I am more into making the models and building the layout. I do some but I am going more for a mainline running then anything else and I think the space don't allow me to have a lot of both. Hope the makes sense.

Jeremy
 

CBCNSfan

Registered Member
Staff member
OK! you already know what you want in operation I guess that isn't a whole lot of switching.
To me the worst thing hapening on a layout is a train chasing it's caboose ( my opinion only) and I went to lenghts to make that almost impossible on mine.
For the sake of interest (not necessarily for the young ones) on the lower level left side of drawing, alongside each mainline I'd put another track or even more. You would have the possibility of having four trains on the layout. That way you wouldnt have the same two trains passing each other all the time. You could also have two going East and Two going in the West direction. Just an idea.
Willis
 




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