what makes for good switching operation???

Discussion in 'HO Scale Model Trains' started by wickman, May 16, 2006.

  1. wickman

    wickman Member

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    Hi Folks
    I'm lookin for input for switching operation connect the industries sort of
    thing.
    my plan is an around the wall in HO scale with an under bench 2.5% decline to staging yard.
    I will soon need to work on the main bench plan I have the plan 90% complete it was done in xtrkcad I pretty much have my diarammas where they have to go on the plan and all other rail related foot prints in place. The issue I'm having is
    although all the main line works fine for me its the switching operation that I'm
    having brain aches with basicly I just need to connect the industries
    with rail and I'm wandering what makes a good switching operation ?
    As I said this plan is done in xtrkcad sw if anyone would like to attempt to or
    have ideas to make this into a good busy industrial switching operation. Or do
    some doodleing as a jpg plan file.
    I'm posting all the structures that i have avail just so you can get the feel for which rail has to go in which direction hopefully this isn't too confusing
    Lynn
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    here is a more animated pic with structures labeled\numbered
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    the mountain the staging decline goes into
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    14 & 15 [​IMG]
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  2. Ralph

    Ralph Remember...it's for fun!

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    Hi Lynn,

    What I think I see on your track plan are passing sidings near your industrial area spurs that will allow locomotives to run around cars as needed when they are set out or picked up. That seems like a good design to me.
    Ralph
  3. wickman

    wickman Member

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    Thanks Ralph
    It is a pretty good setup as it is as I said though the industries have to be connected even with a bit of a puzzle would be nice.I think more of the question of someone who understands model railroad plan designing what do they try to achieve when doing the switching operation. I can easily just run a track to each industry but would it run smoothly and interact with each other ? There are some very good modelers who truely have a grip on what is needed :D
  4. webmaster

    webmaster Member

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    This is the key phrase Wickman. You need to remember that what we all do is re-create the world in miniature. Therefor you first need to look at the terrain, then ask yourself why would the industries be there? Who are they serving? Would the industries interact with each other or not?

    Also you need to take into consideration the size of the business. Would the railroad serve a small factory that has only 10 employees and only manages to fill a semi once a week with it's goods? Probably not.

    When you think in this way, it all comes together. Just remember the KISS principle. :thumb:

    Hope this helps.
  5. wickman

    wickman Member

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    very good points I never thought of it that way before The bigger the industry the more room it would need for cars. So I take it any main industry like a sawmill is going to need 2 sidings one for cars being loaded and un loaded and one to hold the cars
  6. webmaster

    webmaster Member

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    Well that depends on how hard you plan to work your little plastic people :D

    Nice dioramas by the way.
  7. wickman

    wickman Member

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    I'm going to ask a real dumb question here
    What is a team track and all those other fancy names they give to differnet types of tracks for switching?:confused:
  8. doctorwayne

    doctorwayne Active Member

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    A team track is a place that allows industries that don't have direct rail access to ship and receive by rail. It can be as simple as a siding with a road beside it, or can have a ramp (for unloading vehicles or machinery), or an overhead crane for large or heavy items. The name derives from the teams of horses that pulled the drays used to haul goods to and from the area.
    Here are a few pictures of my teamtrack at Dunnville. The ramp is scratchbuilt from styrene, the conveyors are from Walthers, and the small overhead crane is a modified kit from Kibri.

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    This is a similar ramp at another location.

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    Wayne
  9. wickman

    wickman Member

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    :wave: Thanks Wayne that helps alot I sure would like to see more of your layout do you have a site?
  10. doctorwayne

    doctorwayne Active Member

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    No website, but there are lots of layout pictures in the Photography Forum. They extend as far back as page 12, I think: I just went through them all today, to make sure that the pictures are still showing up. Just look for threads started by doctorwayne. Cn nutbar, a very close friend, also has several threads in the same forum featuring some of his locos on my layout.

    Wayne
  11. wickman

    wickman Member

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    well this is what I've come up with so far I'm going to try to consentrate on one are of the plan at a time and run a train thru each area I want to make sure I have an area to drop off cars as well as an area to load and unload all in the same area of industries
    Any and all suggestions are more than welcome even from the guys that don't think they can help ;)
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  12. doctorwayne

    doctorwayne Active Member

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    Try to avoid having too many industries that have to be reached via a switchback, especially if you also have industries located on the switchback itself. A couple can provide a lot of extra operation, but having to move and respot too many cars, too many times, quickly becomes tedious. If you go to Page 8 in the Photography Forum, and click on the thread "Extra 727 East", there's an account of one train working over a division, and doing some switching along the way. Not as straightforward as it sounds.

    Wayne
  13. wickman

    wickman Member

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    :wave: Is this better ? Feel free to edit the plan it sure sounds like you know what your taking about
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  14. doctorwayne

    doctorwayne Active Member

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    I noticed only one switchback area on your plan, and that shouldn't be a problem. I was actually referring to my own layout, where there are two such areas. One of them is not too much of a problem, but the other involves an LCL warehouse, with a fairly high turnover of cars. This could become tedious, as the area is also a junction.
    Your layout, from what I could see, won't have this type of problem.

    Wayne
  15. steamhead

    steamhead Active Member

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    Hi,

    All who've responded have good points. My humble contributions is, whatever your track plan ends up being, make sure your tracwork is GOOOD! Nothing spoils the fun of switching than having locos/cars derailing. Good n' slow switching is a real thrill; don't spoil it by having your rolling stock jumping the tracks! Also, keep the track CLEAN!! My "Track Guard" (on eBay now) can do that for you effortlessly.

    Good luck!!

    Gus (LC&P).
  16. wickman

    wickman Member

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    this is far as I've gotten since last post I got rid of the double slip for now as I'm having a hard time working it into the left lower end and actually I'm having a bit of a time working those spurs to the sidings.But the new sidings in the left lower leg do work out much better I can now do car switching without interfering with the main line. I made the sidings long enuff to hold 12 cars so a whole train can pass each other if need be. And as you can see in the left upper corner the freight depot now has a yard to store and shuffle cars around not sure if the can be referred to as a team track or not. On the right side off the siding I gave stuffy's brewery a spur.
    I do have a brand new double slip if any one has any suggestions where it can be utilized. As well as I sure would appreciate any suggestions. :)
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  17. wickman

    wickman Member

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    I did some deiting on the plan
    Does this look better I added a 3 way turnout and removed one siding I'm sure it only has the one reverse loop now in the left leg at least I think there's only one and it still has the main line free
    Please comment ...advice
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  18. wickman

    wickman Member

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    Bin meaning to post this upto date plan :oops:
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  19. SandΦMan

    SandΦMan New Member

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    what program are you using to create those blue prints?
  20. wickman

    wickman Member

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    that would be xtracad :wave: