Thoughts behind the planning of the JGL

Discussion in 'Track Planning' started by Gary Pfeil, Nov 6, 2002.

  1. Gary Pfeil

    Gary Pfeil Active Member

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    Bob, In the first photo the far wall is about 23' away. In the second, the locos are entering a turnback curve on the center peninsula, they are right at the edge of the peninsula. The backdrop seen here is on the shelf portion of the layout along the left wall, it is about 4 to 5 feet from the peninsula.

    As i recall, your layout isn't really a walkaround, although you can of course walk around it. It is an island type witha center operating pit. Backdrops for your layout could be a good topic to post. My first thought is that a backdrop along the interior space would be pleasing when viewed from outside, but an access problem from the inside. Certainly a backdrop painted on the walls around the layout would be nice when viewing from the pit. This is more effective with a high layout, the scene I shot is 60" high!

    Gary
  2. Bob Collins

    Bob Collins Active Member

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    Gary;

    You create some interesting food for thought as I have never, ever considered the large opening/access as a place from which to operate. I have my initial DCC on the left side about half way along the layout (Alexis) and my plan was in the future I would install an additional access directly across from the current one. The cord from the DT 400 is actually long enough that you could duck under and work from the larger access hole, but it really never crossed my mind.

    I will eventally cover the smaller access with something to hide it, but that is a long way down the track for now. Maybe that will be the grand opening, when I drop that access cover into place
    :D

    Bob
  3. Gary Pfeil

    Gary Pfeil Active Member

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    Marty, If you mean the end of the thread, no, I'll continue as long as someone seems to care. And it certainly is nowhere near the end for construction! I am now 5 years into a ten year plan, and think I'm pretty much on schedule. I'm all charged up at the moment, but that is usually the case this time of year, I did virtually nothing all summer. But then I wouldn't have it any other way! The hardest part is not going in to many directions at once. Soon I will have trackage down the middle of Monroe St. I should post some photos of the Dundee branch, being an Erie fan you would like it. Perhaps you are already familiar with it. I should continue with laying the rest of the main after that, but am tempted to paint and install sound in the switcher which will go down the street with the bell going. I have done little modeling of late, spending all my time building a railroad. Time will tell!

    Gary
  4. Gary Pfeil

    Gary Pfeil Active Member

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    Bob, Buy a UR90 and operate in IR mode. The throttle is already set up for it. You should add a UP5 (?) to the face of the pit so you can plug in to select locos. I don't remember well, were there two pits? I am assuming things again, sorry. If you weren't aware, you can daisy chain those plug in panels with six conductor phone cable. Be aware that standard phone cable won't work, I believe it is data cable you need. The difference being the pins the wires are connected to at each end. You will see a lot of people (most) make their own cables. They buy the wire, ends and a crimper. For the few cables you need, I suggest buying them made by Tony's. That's what I do, frankly I don't want to worry about saving acouple bucks and having mysterious problems due to improper crimping. BTW, did you ever get the drop in sound decoder for your 2-8-0? It'll blow your skirt up.
    Gary
  5. Bob Collins

    Bob Collins Active Member

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    Gary;

    I am very much in the same situation you describe. With great weather holding on here at least for a few more days I continue to spend my time doing other things than messing around with my model railroad. I have had some ideas that have come together for me, so I have done some thinking and planning, but nothing more than change over some hornhooks to Kadees on some rolling stock I picked up.

    I find the current situation needs to be thought out very well for me. When I was building benchwork I build benchwork. When it was laying track, that's what I worked on, but now sequencing seems so much more critical as I sure don't want to have to tear something out just because I didn't take the time to figure it all out ahead of time. I actually have all the control equipment just laying on the edge of my bench work. I need to find a permanet home for all that stuff. Like you suggest, I need to figure out now a picture in my mind of what I will do to expand on my DCC. Infrared seems the most likely, but I have that decision yet to make. I am still installing some additional trackage I decided I wanted. That 20' spur down the left side went to nowhere as I decided against the turntable there. I brought that spur around and across the double mainline right under a trestle and I will be able to come back into the middle of the layout with some additional spurs and sidings at a lower level that the mainline. It is hard for me to visualize right now, but I think it offers the possibility for some interesting operations. I see the long spur with the nest of sidings at the end as what will be the branch railroad that will have a name I give it and it will tie in with my preference for UPRR running on the mainlines.

    Many, many hours to go, but when it turns cold I'm sure to get fired up and rolling again.

    No, I have not acquired the sound decoder for my 2-8-0. I'll have to look into it one of these first days. I have made a note about it.

    Many thanks

    Bob
  6. marty w.

    marty w. Member

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    Bob
    Like Gary said- I just purchased another Throttle Panel, UP5 for 15.95 and 20' of premade cord for 4.00 from Tony's Train Xchange.
    I have a Super Chief with the DT400 also.

    Another idea maybe that if you do operate from the center, the wall that is 24" away from the edge of the layout, you could put in scenery only. You could make it out of foam board and make it removable. That way if you ever had to get back there you could.

    I have built a access hatch out of 2" foam board and it seems to work rather well.

    Marty
  7. marty w.

    marty w. Member

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    Gary-
    I'm glad that you will continue. Threads like this are very interesting and helpful to me, anyway.
    It would be great to see the pic's when your done.
    Marty
  8. Bob Collins

    Bob Collins Active Member

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    I too enjoy a thread like this. I not only learn a great deal, but the timing is goo too as it begins to get me fired up for the winter months:D :D

    Although she didn't suggest I go out and buy a couple of BigBoys, my wife is interested enough to ask the other day if I had lost interest. Certainly NOT, but I also know that I have to use my outside time now to get wood hauled and things like that.

    Someone mentioned pictures. I looked at my layout and it really is a big mess:rolleyes: :rolleyes: I have all sort of stuff stashed any place there is room!! Don't think I'll be taking any pictures for a spell, unless, of course, you run a contest for the larges mess!

    I want to look into what I can do with a cantilever (sp) to extend my benchwork. It would sure save a lot of time and space. Just need to decide whether weight is a problem and I can't really see how it would be.

    Bob
  9. jon-monon

    jon-monon Active Member

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    I also foller this thread with great interset. Let's keep it up!:p :p :p
  10. Gary Pfeil

    Gary Pfeil Active Member

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    Marty, I got a scanner today (free, can't beat that!) so I'm posting one photo of the Erie's Dundee branch, in the town of Garfield (will be the Garfield branch on the JGL) I'll post more when I get back from vacation next week. And sometime down the road, photos of the model.

    Attached Files:

  11. marty w.

    marty w. Member

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    Gary
    Thanks for the pic.
    Is that track still in use today?
    BTW- I think I remember Garfield, I do remember the Passaic River bridge at Garfield though. I grew up in Rutherford. Moved out here in 1970. Use to spend alot of time down and along the tracks at Rutherford. Remember walking to Paul's Hobby shop in E. Rutherford. Our family visits back are just too short for any railfanning. Sorry for rambling.
    Have a great vacation!
    Thanks,
    Marty
  12. Gary Pfeil

    Gary Pfeil Active Member

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    Marty, I believe it is still in use. It's been a few years since I was down there. Photos are from 1980. This one is the bridge across the Passaic which I will be modeling. It is curved although this shot doesn't make it apparent. It has since been replaced with a concrete and steel bridge. Ugly. Mine will be shorter, only have space for about five bents. Too bad, but what are you going to do? The road bridge behind will be modeled as well.

    Attached Files:

  13. Gary Pfeil

    Gary Pfeil Active Member

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    Compromise

    In the above post I mentioned that I have to reduce the length of the bridge to fit my space. We all face this type of dilemma when we try to model prototypes. In a previous post I talked about my approach to modeling the NYC. In the future I intend to model specific trains accurately and run them on a schedule I have from 1950. I also mentioned that the scenes they ran thru would not be in correct order, or even in one case be on the same line. But I hope to make each chosen scene accurate so that when photographed it will represent that scene well. One of my favorite scenes is the cut at Sputen Dyvil. I hope it will be recognizable! I have (or will be taking) an extreme amount of modelers license here. In real life, the four tracl main runs along the east bank of the Hudson River. North by compass is West by Timetable. Trains coming into NYC are running south along the river. The four tracks become six a couple miles before Spuyten Dyvil. Two continue straight and cross the Harlem River (the boundary between Manhatten and the Bronx). The four mains narrow to two as they round the bens there. They pass the station and go thru the cut, then go back to four trracks. There is a wye there which was used only by freights from the Harlem division to the West Side freight line. While I would love to model this scene accurately, it alone would fill my basement. So, the six tracks become four, but most importantly, the wye is omitted. I reaaly would like to be able to represent the freights to and from the Harlem Division, but the trackage required would destroy the scenic effect of the cut. I had to decide which was most important to me. I could have the wye at the expense of the cut and swingbridge. I decided that I had enough operational possibilities already and decided to go with the cut. It still will be significantly different in other ways. It will be pretty much a mirror image, my NYC bound trains will curve right instead of left. Meaning Manhatten is on the Jersey side of the river. The station will be much closer to the swingbridge than it should be, again out of space considerations. I can only hope that when built it will resemble its prototype. I've attached a photo of the station, this is what you will see on my layout as trains come out of the staging area representing Grand Central. Trains will come thru the cut from staging (the cut is on the east side of the station in actuality and will be on my layout as well) and pass the station, then join the two tracks from the West side line (which cross over on that swingbridge). The thing is the photo was taken facing west, not east! So the components are juggled a bit but I think will work ok. I have to go get some work done today or it will be a wasted opportunity, more later.

    Attached Files:

  14. Matt Probst

    Matt Probst Member

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    Splendid planning Gary! Would love to see a full track-plan similar to what's in featured mrrs magazine article. This thread reads better than most of the mag articles anyway!
    Thanks for sharing!

    Matt--Hershey, Pa.
  15. marty w.

    marty w. Member

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    Yea- That's the bridge.
    Thanks for the pic.
    Marty
  16. MCL_RDG

    MCL_RDG Member

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    Outstanding!

    Outstanding!

    Gary, I had no doubt about your skills and visions in conceiving and building the JGL. Now, to see it even this remotely (via the Inet) makes me <Perk>.

    Of course "stories" have filtered to me thru a mutual friend who shall remain nameless (Blake) about progress of the JGL. Here's to continued success and growth.


    I'm enjoying the read of your post.

    Best regards,


    Mark
  17. MilesWestern

    MilesWestern Active Member

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    So where's that progress! I demand more fun to read long stories, photos, and progress! It's too good NOT to be left alone. :D
  18. steamhead

    steamhead Active Member

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    It sure is good to see something "from the past"....I know you've kept this work going since I've seen other threads here at one time or another. How 'bout an update..??

    Great work...BTW....
  19. MilesWestern

    MilesWestern Active Member

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    Gary! Please continue posting, your material is TOO GOOD to be left alone.