Curved yard....

Discussion in 'Track Planning' started by seanm, Dec 26, 2004.

  1. seanm

    seanm Member

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    ... I LOVE the look of a curved or bent yard. In my current working layout plan, I have included this feature. NOW I realized something. Will I be able to couple up to cars on the curved portion? Maybe not!!

    I am working in n-scale and will be using mostly MT truck mounted couplers. The radius used in the yard is about 22"... Will I be able to couple? I don;t have any track up yet so I can't test. Anyone have a 22" radius they could test for me?

    Here is the current yard plan

    [​IMG]
  2. Tyson Rayles

    Tyson Rayles Active Member

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    Mine would couple about 75% of the time on a 13" radius so I would think it wouldn't be a problem.
  3. 60103

    60103 Pooh Bah

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    Sean: a bigger problem is uncoupling on the curve.
    The magazine tests showed that coupling was generally reliable on a curve. It should be easier with truck mounted couplers, but there could be problems if you mix them with body-mounts.
  4. kchronister

    kchronister Member

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    I have notable problems coupling on curves - I'm largely kadee couplers, body mounted.

    Looking at your design, I'd say the "top" end of your yard is fine - most of your coupling/uncoupling will occur in straight areas anyway. The bottom might be more difficult, as you go into curves very close to your ladder...
  5. cyb0rg

    cyb0rg New Member

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    At the risk of sounding newbish...

    That seems like an awful lot of yard for that layout, or is there a second level extending from that loop on the top right?

    [EDIT] Note to self: Spelling skills rapidly deteriorate after midnight.
  6. siderod

    siderod Member

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    I must agree with cyb0rg...that does seem like an awful lot of yard for a layout of that size. I would understand if there was another level, but with only 1, it seems like half your layout, or more, is a yard.
  7. seanm

    seanm Member

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    Good point! :thumb:

    Yes, there is another level! The second level has more industries some hidden staging and an interchange, so I think the yard may be a little big, but I like yard operations. One thing I may eliminate is the second yard lead and run around. That may be a bit excessive.

    Here is a "draft" of the second level. I have made a few changes in this level that do not appear in this picture, but for the most part it is the same. I change the industry tracks on the right to add some more interest there and added one more staging track on the left.


    [​IMG]
  8. cyb0rg

    cyb0rg New Member

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    Sweet layout! [​IMG]

    I did some testing for you. My grandfather has a lot of leftover track, including about 300ft of flex track. I took the measurements and laid down a bunch of 22" curves, similar to your setup.

    I should note that this track is probably over 20 years old, and obviously isn't cemented down. I did measure the radius carefully, though I had everything laid in less than an hour. The locos used for testing are also 20+ years old, but still in working order. All rolling stock had the standard couplers, truck mounted. And one final note before I list my results: I haven't ran a model train like this for at least 10 years. I've done some recent tinkering with my HO set, but nothing in N scale. Here are my results:

    I figured 50 attempts would give accurate data. I started with an empty loco, backed in and coupled 1 car. Pulled out, backed in and picked up 2 cars, then 3, etc. I did that until I had a length of 25. I did this twice.

    There were 4 uncouplings. 1 was due to a broken coupler, so I didn't count that one and took the reefer out of circulation. So that's 4 out of 50 attempts or an 8% error rate. Given my skill level and all of the other things, I felt like it was a successful experiment.

    This doesn't mean much coming from a newbie, but I'd say if you like the look of a curved yard, then go for it. At least in my limited experience and tests, you won't have a problem with uncouplings.
  9. seanm

    seanm Member

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    Thanks! This will be in n-scale, but I am pretty sure it will be at least OK. Meybe not optimal, but I like the look so much I don;t really want to change it.