First Layout-Corner Shelf Switching Plan

Discussion in 'Track Planning' started by Omaha Road Man, Jan 21, 2007.

  1. Omaha Road Man

    Omaha Road Man New Member

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    Hey everyone, first post here, great site.

    After many years of armchair model railroading I've just about wore out all my books/model railroad magazines from reading them so much, so I decided its time to start my first layout. I live in an apartment and don't a lot of room for a layout, the space I've chose is going to be above my computer desk actually (will be just below eye level).

    Using XTrack Cad I've designed a corner shelf layout featuring two major industries-a paper mill and a tire plant-and a third smaller industry. I've tried to design the layout so that I will be able to incorporate it into a future layout if I want. The layout era will be set in the early 50's, so 40' boxcars are what the sidings were designed for. One area of concern for me is the too industrial sidings highlighted in pink which have very small radiuses-15" I believe. This is hard to avoid given the space available and what I mean to fit there. Since these are just industry sidings I figured I could get away with it. I'll be running an SD7 on this layout so if it can't handle those curves please let me know.

    This isn't the first design I've worked on, actually, this is pretty close to complete in my mind. I've got the sidings lengths and turnout locations pretty close to optimized for the space available. I'm not really looking for major design change advice (but don't let that stop you from giving it :)) I'm primarily posting the plan to let those with more experience look at it and tell me if there are any major problems-operational or otherwise-that I missed.

    [​IMG]

    Thanks in advance for your help.
  2. Omaha Road Man

    Omaha Road Man New Member

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    After some reconsideration I adjusted the two industrial sidings to have 18" radiuses.
  3. Nomad

    Nomad Active Member

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    Omaha, one thing is buging me about your plan. I assume you will bring loads out of, say the papermill. What happens to your train when it gets to the other end of tha track at the 0' mark? It looks like it's stuck there. I see no run around or any way to turn the train.

    Anyhow, welcome to the gauge. There's a great bunch of people here.

    Loren
  4. Omaha Road Man

    Omaha Road Man New Member

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    Grewsome, thank you for commenting on my track plan, I appreciate the input. One thing I like about XTrack is the ability to run trains on the layout you designed so you can test these sorts of things. The track I think you are talking about, the end of the main on the 'south' end of the layout, is 22.2" long after the end of the switch. This is enough for a diesel loco, a 50' flat car, and a 40' box car. This will of course make switching the paper mill a bit of a challenge, but a little bit of switching challenge isn't always a bad thing :). Additionaly I'm seriously considering adding an extension at this end of the layout for staging tracks, so if I wanted I could use that for switching too.

    Sorry if I misunderstood your comment and thank you again.
  5. RailRon

    RailRon Active Member

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    Omaha, I see another problem which could be serious:

    If I understand you right, you intend to install your layout like a bookshelf around the corner of your room. Now what happens if a car derails in the corner?

    As I see it, when you have to grab that car in the tyre plant you have to reach 4ft into that corner at least - and this even roughly at eye level! For me this looks almost impossible to do. And believe me: Cars always derail where they are hardest to reach! :curse:

    As a rule of thumb a layout should be designed with no track further than 3ft away from the nearest aisle.

    Ron
  6. Omaha Road Man

    Omaha Road Man New Member

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    Ron, I had noticed that problem. I was considering putting the layout at shoulder level/keeping a small stepladder handy to deal with those occasional derailments. How much success do you think I'd have with those solutions?

    I've also done a quick revision on the plan. The curve in the corner represents the 3' radius from the corner of the benchwork. I shortened the sidings and was mildly surprised to see I still got the track capaccities I was looking for. How does this look to you:
    [​IMG]
  7. RailRon

    RailRon Active Member

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    Omaha, this curved backdrop could solve the problem indeed. As long as you still have track enough for your planned switching operations this should be fine.

    BTW, a curved backdrop also looks better than a sharp corner.

    Ron
  8. Nomad

    Nomad Active Member

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    Omaha, that's one of the things I like about xtrk too. It's the only program I use for track planning. Anyhow, it sounds like you have this all thought out. Good luck and enjoy this great hobby.

    Loren
  9. Omaha Road Man

    Omaha Road Man New Member

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    Thanks for the input guys. It's probably going to be a while before I can start any sort of construction due to time/financial constraints, but in the meantime I can keep fiddling with track plans, build/detail rolling stock, and perhaps start on a few structures.
  10. Omaha Road Man

    Omaha Road Man New Member

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    Thought I'd just let you guys know I had one more track plan revision. In this version I cleaned up the tracks in the paper mill and 'industry c' areas (industry c will likely be a grain elevator now, not sure yet though). I also curved the industry lead to give it enough length for three 40' cars and a GP7 (just barely). Finally I adjusted the runaround track so it is closer to the main, giving it a bit tighter radius (just over 20") but a smother look and greater length).

    Overall I'm pretty happy with the plan, even though it will probably be months before I can do any actual layout building. I suppose I can keep myself busy with buildings/rolling stock.

    As alway, any feedback positive or otherwise is welcome.

    [​IMG]
  11. Russ Bellinis

    Russ Bellinis Active Member

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    It looks great. Get to building it looks like a lot of fun!