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VinnyV123

Member
Hi all,

I am just starting to really get to the point in my layout that takes creativity, patience, and money (as if a have all of that), but you all know it a scenery. I'm a teen who uses my own money for my layout, and I'm too young to be employed. So I'm worried that I'll put something up and I won't like it or it will engulf other parts of my layout. I'm just basically scared. I attached a document pdf of what I want my layout to resemble. Please comment and post ANY concerns. I will need all the feedback I can get. This is my first layout, which is in n scale.:eek::confused::(
 

timlange3

Member
Young = time + no money, old = no time + money, so don't feel too bad! :)

Mine sometimes goes a year without a change (or even operating).

Do a little bit and see how you like it. Use mockups, such are cardboard buildings, crumpled newspaper hills, to get a feel for how things will layout.
 

Selector

Well-Known Member
Buy good quality items when they have to roll reliably, and get decent track, but you don't need to spend a lot on track. Then, your best friend is your imagination. As the gentleman above advises, play a bit with different track plans. Put them together, even on a floor if you have to for the space required, and see how it works. Teach yourself what your path is in the hobby.

Avoid permanency for the time being because as a young person, you are at the most fluid and demanding point of your life. There are many interests competing for your time, and more are coming. You can build some kits as you can afford them, maybe even some mini-dioramas that are not expensive to build, but which take time, patience, and detailing, and they can later be set into the surface of a more complete layout when that makes sense to construct.
 

waltr

Member
Also, read through threads on the forum here for ideas. There are quite a few postings on how to use found materials (from your yard, street, woods, etc) to do scenery.
 

TrinityJayOne

N gauge fan
I just posted this in a different thread, might as well chuck it in here as well!
I'll also add here some nice N scale (and general MRR) resources that you may not be aware of-

-SCARM, an excellent layout planning program that's very simple to use, can create a simple 3D render of your plan, and is completely free.

-A bunch of helpful conversion charts (for calculating things like the scale speed of a train)

-"Spookshow", quite possibly the greatest N resource on the web. If someone has produced a locomotive in N, chances are Mark has written a review on it. Absolutely invaluable when buying used locos to make sure you're buying the right version.

Have you considered using a modular system? It's basically where you create a scene on a small table of standardised dimensions with the tracks meeting the edges at a spcific points, then multiple modules are connected together to form a layout. I'm currently working on a larger layout that is sort of modular (built on two 2x1m HCDs) but am also gaining an interest in T-Trak, which is a smaller version of the popular American N-Trak. It uses modules about 1ft square (or a multiple of that, eg- 1'x2' is a 'double') and Kato Unitrack running a double mainline. Here's a good example image showing a range of modules following the standard, such as a double straight, a double corner (180° instead of just 90°) and a triple straight with a yard.

T-Trakexample.jpg


I like this standard in particular because of how small the modules can be, making them very portable. Plus unlike larger systems, each module is not a table because they're intended to sit on an existing one, making construction a lot simpler. It also means you can setup a layout pretty much anywhere with a flat surface. You'll also note that the image above bears a strong resemblence to the layout you've pictured. :) Your layout really lends itself to a modular design and I think it's something you could be interested in.
 

otiscnj

Well-Known Member
I got into model railroading when I was in Middle School. things cost a lot less then, and there wasn't all the variety as now. My only funds were a small allowance from teh parents, and an odd job here and there, during the Summer. now, relatively speaking, I have the money, but no time, as others have said.

you might look at the various books of trackplans (Atlas, Kalmbach, Carstens, etc, Peco), for ideas. Even though you might only have a small layout to start, at some point, if things change, you can expand it, if you plan for it, in the begining(like an eventual 2nd door?). Rome, as they say, wasn't built in a day.
 

VinnyV123

Member
I got into model railroading when I was in Middle School. things cost a lot less then, and there wasn't all the variety as now. My only funds were a small allowance from teh parents, and an odd job here and there, during the Summer. now, relatively speaking, I have the money, but no time, as others have said.

you might look at the various books of trackplans (Atlas, Kalmbach, Carstens, etc, Peco), for ideas. Even though you might only have a small layout to start, at some point, if things change, you can expand it, if you plan for it, in the begining(like an eventual 2nd door?). Rome, as they say, wasn't built in a day.

Your story is one in the same with my own. I already have the bulk of the track, and I got the yard yesterday. I use Kato Unitrack, because it is easy to buy, as they have many ad-on sets. And to all the other comments, all of them mean a lot! Thanks!
 

Cjcrescent

Master Mechanic
I'm surprised that no one has mentioned this yet. If you are lacking on creativity in your track planning, get you John Armstrong's book, "Track Planning for Realistic Operations" and if in Scenery, I would get any book by Dave Frary. Both will get you going on the correct path, and show you things in a different light than you've seen them before. These two authors along with Paul Mallery have written what should be called the Bibles of the hobby. One track planning, one scenery, one track and bridge work.
 

claymore1977

Espee Fan
Reading through the thread, I'm a bit confused. Do you have a layout or are you still planning? (I can't hit youtube.com from work.)

I suppose the overall question for your layout is: What do you want to do with it? Drive trains in circles and watch them? Grab a throttle and switch out the industry? A bit of both?
 
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scroggin

Member
Looking at the video clip it seems to me that your trackwork is done well, everything was running well. So you have got the basics right the part the needs to be done right is.

Scenery is the part where you can experiment and it doesn't matter if you make stuffups. If you don't like scenery its easy to rip it up and change it. Scenery doesn't have to be expensive either, the kind of materials you can use are as wide as your imagination and a lot of things you can use cost nothing. I would do the scenery one section at a time, that way the things that turn out good can be included in the next section and when you are finished you can always go back and redo the first part.
 

bwells

Member
Vinny: What about changing the leads from your turnouts as wide as you can and placing buildings for switching operations? Look at your hand, your fingers are nice and parallel but if you spread them as wide as possible and stick a factory or such between them, you can do switching. You could still have the outer main for the Amtrak and use the inner loop for switching to different industries.
 

Cjcrescent

Master Mechanic
I would also add some crossovers onto the other side of the layout. This will facilitate the trains being able to pass one another as needed, because it now gives you more than 2 separated loops, it also turns those loops into passing sidings.

I would also add, as bwells said, more spurs to the inside loop for switching opportunities. It also wouldn't hurt to add a few to the outside as well. I can tell you from personal experience that eventually, just watching the trains run around in a circle and not doing much, will become very boring after a while.

By adding the opportunity for some switching, and giving your trains a reason for running, you'll find the layout keeps your interest high. With this layout however, you'll find it a great learning experience. It will teach you woodworking, electrical, landscaping, artistry, all in one fell swoop. It will also teach you how to deal with the mistakes you'll make, and if you're like most of us, you'll make plenty. It will teach you what works and what doesn't, and that can be invaluable on your next layout. I know that you'll eventually build another, and the next one will be a little easier to design, and because of what you learned with this one, it will be easier to build.
 




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