Track plan concept

Discussion in 'Track Planning' started by Papa Bear, May 12, 2005.

  1. Papa Bear

    Papa Bear Member

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    This plan was inspired by the track arrangement in Troy, Alabama where the CSX and Conecuh Valley interchange. Until a few years ago, these lines actually crossed at grade. The diamonds were replaced by two turnouts.

    In this plan, the mainline trains travels clockwise around the loop. The inner loop track is the interchange with the short line and crosses the mainline at the crossing at the bottom of the picture. The branchline engine is parked at the lower right. In a typical day's run, it crosses the mainline, picks up cars from the interchange track, and then switches the industries on the left side.

    The plan is drawn for N scale, 36" X 72" using Kato Unitrack. There's plenty of room for scenery, buildings, and more spurs.

    Attached Files:

  2. Russ Bellinis

    Russ Bellinis Active Member

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    I model in ho scale so I'm not sure how much train you can put in 2 feet in n. If you made the layout 7 feet long, you could curve the track around the mainline to allow more clearance for a longer train in the switching portion of the layout. On the other hand, 2 feet may be enough for any train you would want to switch. I've found that some switching puzzle type layouts are fun, but if you are restricted to a locomotive and 2 or 3 cars it isn't nearly as much fun as a layout that allows you to work a train with 10 cars.
  3. Tileguy

    Tileguy Member

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    Russ, FYI in the future.You can figure 3" per car (40'er) aprox.with engine 2' of track will give you a 6 car train with some room. 7 cars with a small switcher is possible with some shorter cars like beer can tanks in the consist.50 footers eat up track quickly.ore cars with MT's you might even make 11 cars.9 maybe with rapido's.Rapido's on a 21' ore car look like crap.Modern day quads pinned together look good if your modeling 70's +
    MT's or accumates for older.
    Layouts with Small trains(10-12 cars) should have 4' yard tracks as an absolute minimum.6' looks way better however and 10' should be considered a minimum for anything that would approach realistic appearances for modern railroading and unit trains in a division point yard.(i'd take 16' if I had the room.Now thats a Yard thats really going to look right!!! ;) )
    In N we can get away with some pretty tight radius's but the longer the train,the bigger the radius should be.In N,unit train modern layouts look best with radius's of 20" plus while layouts running primarily small engines , small consists and 40' cars can get away with almost 1/2 of that and still look pretty good.
    21' ore cars can take tight radius's even in unit train size,but consider whats pulling that ore drag.If its a big yellowstone or some MU'd SD9's.The bigger the better :)
  4. Russ Bellinis

    Russ Bellinis Active Member

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    The layout looks good. If you are pulling out empties and spotting loads or vice versa, it would be helpful to have a run around track off the bottom of the branch as a place to park the leaving cars and a place to get around the pulled cars to spot the new ones.
  5. Papa Bear

    Papa Bear Member

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    Thanks, Russ and Tileguy. Russ, I've been thinking about your suggestions and am revising the plan. Many rail-served industries do take several cars at a time and that's something I would like to do here - make industries that look like they need rail service. I'm thinking of a plastics manufacturer and a grain elevator or feed mill that would take several covered hoppers. I would like to keep the 15 degree crossing since I have one and think it would add some interest. If I can work in a runaround track, I'll try and have both facing and trailing point spurs. If not, I'll keep them all trailing point or do like the prototype sometimes does and use two engines.
  6. Tileguy

    Tileguy Member

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    Just a thought for you, With a little grade work you could do something like this.I know its just scribbles , but it gives you an idea at least :)

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  7. jetrock

    jetrock Member

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    The only downside is that the only way to do a runaround move is to go entirely around the outside loop--although ordinarily with your three spurs you wouldn't have to worry about that, all the switching is done in one direction. It is interesting as a compact plan--run around the loop, then pull off and do switching. A spur in the upper right hand corner, or other spurs off the loop, would provide some to & from interest--moving cars from the loop to the branch line and back for a flow of traffic.
  8. Russ Bellinis

    Russ Bellinis Active Member

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    I think you hav room for a run around track between the spur on the bottom and the edge of the table. If it would go too close to the edge to put a spur there, can you squeeze an extra 2-3 inches of space onto the width? If the layout you drew fits 3' x 6', can you fit one 3' 3" x 6'?
  9. Papa Bear

    Papa Bear Member

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    Another way

    I hadn't looked at this plan in a while, but today, I started thinking, "What about a switching layout?" Here's a plan that will allow you to do the basic interchange movements on an 8" X 72" shelf (which will be 4 square feet, the maximum size for a micro layout). The mainline enters from the upper left and exits to the right. The shortline enters from the lower left. Scenery on the left side would be "downtown" buildings while the right side would be houses and trees. The main problem I see is having enough length on the tail tracks, although you could use cassettes or fold-down sections. This could also be part of the original 36" X 72" plan. More industries could probably be worked in, but this is just a start.

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  10. shortliner

    shortliner Member

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    PapaBear - the Micro still has the same problem of lack of runaround(and you have facing and trailing switches), but if you replace the diamond with a double slip....
    Shortliner(Jack)away up here in the Highlands
  11. shortliner

    shortliner Member

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    PapaBear - email me at chacmool at lineone dot net - I have some layouts that may fill your requirements for switching
    Shortliner(Jack)away up here in the Highlands