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Commander, I see in your layout drawing, that you have at least 2 'reverse loop'
situations. A reverse loop occurs when a train arrives on a track, goes around
a loop, and comes back on the same track but going the other way. This is a
normal layout feature, but does require a special 'reverse loop' controller
for each instance.

A reverse loop is an electrical situation....the right rail may never touch
the left rail, that would result in a short circuit. This results when a turnout
creates a loop than comes back to the same track which would be
an electrical short circuit. Therefore, there must be
a buffer to avoid this, it is a section of track insulated from the
layout main DCC bus. It is powered through
a device called a reverse loop controller. It has the capability of reversing the phase (polarity)
of the iso section to match the main, thus avoidiing a short..It is fully
automatic and once installed requires no operator attention. More about this
when you get closer to a final track plan.

You can avoid the 'reverse loop' situation by running a double track
main line at the end of which the train coming in on track 1 goes around
a loop and goes back the other way on track 2.

One other idea for your consideration when designing
your track plan is passing sidings. With DCC you can
run train A Eastbound on a track while on that same track train B can
run Westbound. A single track main line, such as you have in
your drawing, would need passing sidings so that Train A can stop
and wait for Train B to pass going the other way. This is common
on real railroads. Each siding should be long enuf to hold the
longest train your your system.

Don
 

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Discussion Starter · #62 ·
The term "switchback" is used on hiking trails in somewhat the fashion you're describing above. The trail runs sort of straight in one direction, then usually makes a sharp 180 degree turn and then goes straight again but back in the opposite direction. It climbs pretty steeply throughout its length.

In railroad terms, a "switchback" sort of performs the same steep climbing maneuver, but without the curves. Instead of a 180 degree curve at the end of each straight section, the railroad uses a "turnout" or "switch". The train runs forward up the first section of straight (or possibly curved) track grade, Then it passes through the turnout and stops. The turnout's points are then thrown to the other position, which lines them up with the next section of track, which is also steep, and lets the train climb even higher, to the next turnout, where the back & forth routine is repeated. Going back to the hiking trail example, the train's movements would be like you walking forward up the first gradient, then walking backward up the next section, then forward again. Crazy way to hike, but necessary for trains.

What I think you're explaining that you meant by "switchback" is a series of straight grades with turns at each end joining one part of the overall grade to the next part. In Highway planning these are sometimes called "switchback curves" so you're not that far off in that sense. Interstate 5 in the Barstow, Calif. area has a fairly dangerous set of switchback curves, on a steep grade known as "the grapevine." Many big rigs have had accidents there.

A potential big problem with your "switchback curve grade" scheme is size. It takes a little over 4' of width for a 180 degree turn with 22" radius track. So those alternate direction "switchback curves" are going to be very big and project out across the room like a coiled snake striking out at something. Sounds a bit impractical to me.\
I have a suggestion to help you. Go on Amazon and order a copy of the book, "Getting Started in Model Railroading" by Jeff Wilson. It covers all the aspects of building a first layout in simple text, and many color photos. I think it will help you get a better grasp of what's practical to build.

Don't sweat not knowing all the terms & techniques of model railroading. Its complicated, and you're new, and nobody, no matter how experienced actually knows it all. When you encounter a term you're not familiar with, try looking it up in the file attached below.
Traction Fan
OK
That makes sense!
Thank you fir the explanation, the patience, and the guidance.
I will have to experiment with this stuff and get that book you mentioned!
Thank you!
 

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Had to add just one more ! :
If, IF you were to go with open grid or L girder benchwork you could have whole bench free standing so that door will never be a problem, layout not against the wall / aisle way all around..
DCC (if you are not already aware) has a 'daisy chained' plug-in-panels system..
You're plugged in one panel..As train continues on, you unplug (will not affect train's movement) and plug into next one, and next one, etc.. walking along following your train.. Or, remain in one panel only, if you wish.
But main throttle (such as an NCE 'PowerCab') can't do this..You must purchase auxiliary 'PowerProCab(s)' for the activity I describe.
 

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Discussion Starter · #64 ·
Commander, I see in your layout drawing, that you have at least 2 'reverse loop'
situations. A reverse loop occurs when a train arrives on a track, goes around
a loop, and comes back on the same track but going the other way. This is a
normal layout feature, but does require a special 'reverse loop' controller
for each instance.

A reverse loop is an electrical situation....the right rail may never touch
the left rail, that would result in a short circuit. This results when a turnout
creates a loop than comes back to the same track which would be
an electrical short circuit. Therefore, there must be
a buffer to avoid this, it is a section of track insulated from the
layout main DCC bus. It is powered through
a device called a reverse loop controller. It has the capability of reversing the phase (polarity)
of the iso section to match the main, thus avoidiing a short..It is fully
automatic and once installed requires no operator attention. More about this
when you get closer to a final track plan.

You can avoid the 'reverse loop' situation by running a double track
main line at the end of which the train coming in on track 1 goes around
a loop and goes back the other way on track 2.

One other idea for your consideration when designing
your track plan is passing sidings. With DCC you can
run train A Eastbound on a track while on that same track train B can
run Westbound. A single track main line, such as you have in
your drawing, would need passing sidings so that Train A can stop
and wait for Train B to pass going the other way. This is common
on real railroads. Each siding should be long enuf to hold the
longest train your your system.

Don
Wow! I did not know that about the tracks touching!
I did not think about the passing sidings at all! I will add that to my layout!
Thank you!
 

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Discussion Starter · #65 ·
Had to add just one more ! :

1) If, IF you were to go with open grid or L girder benchwork you could have whole bench free standing so that door will never be a problem, layout not against the wall / aisle way all around..
DCC (if you are not already aware) has a 'daisy chained' plug-in-panels system..
You're plugged in one panel..As train continues on, you unplug (will not affect train's movement) and plug into next one, and next one, etc.. walking along following your train.. Or, remain in one panel only, if you wish.
But main throttle (such as an NCE 'PowerCab' can't do this..You must purchase auxiliary (in NCE) 'Pro Cab(s)' for the activity I describe.
I am planning to rest the surface boards on cabinets with support legs in the back.
I had not thought about a walk-around but that may be something.
My current setup is planned on a set of boards that will equal about 5’x16’, so when I go back into work I will check out if this is possible.
I do kind of like a background though.
 

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Discussion Starter · #66 ·
I was reading that a big boy locomotive needs a minimum of a 22” track curve. Pretty sure that’s what I used for my layout design. Do you guys think that’s ok or is that minimum not really reliable?
 

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I was reading that a big boy locomotive needs a minimum of a 22” track curve. Pretty sure that’s what I used for my layout design. Do you guys think that’s ok or is that minimum not really reliable?
I would go bigger if you can, and with the giant space you have, that shouldn't be a problem. The manufacturer tends to give the Minimum radius curve a locomotive can possibly get around. The radius where it will stay on the track reliably is usually a good deal larger. Kato, the manufacturer of my N-scale, 2-8-2 Mikado locomotives, said they should use a minimum radius of 11" I found by testing that 16" radius curves were the radius that actually worked reliably. So for an HO-scale big boy you might go with 30" radius curves. The loco will look better on the wider curve, and should stay on the track reliably with that size curve.

Traction Fan
 

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With a free-standing bench you keep wall of room blank and paint it sky blue with wisps of clouds.. There's your 'background' if that's what you meant..You still have Mtns./ hills, their backs flat fascia board where right up to edge..But if track is closest to edge, anywhere, then Mtns/hills are behind track as usual...
One of the oldest and largest MRR clubs, the Pasadena MRRC (check YT vids) is complete walk around perimeter with walls the way I describe..I think the effect is even better than the more common 'backdrop-on-bench-rear' type..

btw. This club has converted to DCC..Those banks of analog control panels with operators sitting at them is history..

I think in the end you'll be happier with it free standing; the freedom of movement it affords...
If a 'U' shape, of course you walk in the middle as well..No swing bridges, no grades to go over doors..No duck unders..
'Open grid' affords this and is easier than may look to you.
It's a horizontal grid of 1X4s with 2x3 legs..You make a perimeter(s) and fill it in with cross members, yellow glued and screwed...Risers and sub-roadbed (jig sawed 0.5" ply) on top..
Dat's all...
 

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Discussion Starter · #69 ·
I would go bigger if you can, and with the giant space you have, that shouldn't be a problem. The manufacturer tends to give the Minimum radius curve a locomotive can possibly get around. The radius where it will stay on the track reliably is usually a good deal larger. Kato, the manufacturer of my N-scale, 2-8-2 Mikado locomotives, said they should use a minimum radius of 11" I found by testing that 16" radius curves were the radius that actually worked reliably. So for an HO-scale big boy you might go with 30" radius curves. The loco will look better on the wider curve, and should stay on the track reliably with that size curve.

Traction Fan

OK thanks!
Maybe what I’ll do is make the red track for the big boy and the green one for smaller locos. Or screw it and redo both! Thank you for letting me know!
 

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Discussion Starter · #70 ·
With a free-standing bench you keep wall of room blank and paint it sky blue with wisps of clouds.. There's your 'background' if that's what you meant..You still have Mtns./ hills, their backs flat fascia board where right up to edge..But if track is closest to edge, anywhere, then Mtns/hills are behind track as usual...
One of the oldest and largest MRR clubs, the Pasadena MRRC (check YT vids) is complete walk around perimeter with walls the way I describe..I think the effect is even better than the more common 'backdrop-on-bench-rear' type..

btw. This club has converted to DCC..Those banks of analog control panels with operators sitting at them is history..

I think in the end you'll be happier with it free standing; the freedom of movement it affords...
If a 'U' shape, of course you walk in the middle as well..No swing bridges, no grades to go over doors..No duck unders..
'Open grid' affords this and is easier than may look to you.
It's a horizontal grid of 1X4s with 2x3 legs..You make a perimeter(s) and fill it in with cross members, yellow glued and screwed...Risers and sub-roadbed (jig sawed 0.5" ply) on top..
Dat's all...
That’s a great point about the open grid! Even a small walk space behind would serve. And it helps in making it at least somewhat removable should the need arise!
I can put up a large canvas ( I have several in rolls a good eight feet tall) and paint the sky in them!
Now I have to come up with the funds for it all!

Thank you!!!
Now I better crank up the snack sales!!! That big boy alone is pricey!
 

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Here is my initial design for now. It's two areas that connect behind my desk. The railroad that juts out at the NW section will be where there is a swinging bridge on a "door" which will allow the train to continue on to the other areas. I am going to continue designing those other areas, but focus on building this part for now. I think I've designed it to be able to self contain the engines and two tracks on a long "dog bone" loop with switches to move to the other areas later.

The green track will be pretty flat and more or less ground level. The red track will be about 6 or 8" up on cliffs, bridges, etc.

Please let me know if you have any suggestions or foresee any issues.

Thanks! View attachment 567850


Biggest issue I am having right now is with RailModeller Pro doing some weird stuff, or maybe me not knowing I am screwing up.

1. Giving me very steep grade numbers when I set up a climb or drop, but when I check it online I get the 2-3% I want.
2. Trying to adjust track elevation but getting a message that the tracks are in different sections. I have checked that they are connected over and over and don't see any sign of not connected or anything else, but keep getting the same message. Driving me NUTS!!! Contacted tech support and awaiting a reply.

Well, that's it for now and thanks again to all!
Your plan shows about 20 turnouts, (@ $20-$30 each) and also has, in my opinion, way too much track in general. Those are two of the most common newbie mistakes.
Drawing & dreaming in far more expensive turnouts than they need (or can afford $$$$$) and trying to fill the table with track. Just about everybody does this when they are new. My advice is to keep it simple, and "less is more." The simpler any layout is, the easier it is to build, the less it costs, and the more realistic it looks. Look at the real, full-size railroad track in your area. Is it laid out in loops? Are there multiple turnouts that feed into super-short stub tracks that could barely hold a single freight car? I think you will find that a real railroad's "track plan" is very simple indeed.
The track that goes behind the fridge and desk is going to be a cleaning and train rescue problem, unless the fridge and desk can be moved out to let you get in behind them. You might look into those low-level furniture moving slide gadgets.

Traction Fan
 

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Discussion Starter · #72 ·
Your plan shows about 20 turnouts, (@ $20-$30 each) and also has, in my opinion, way too much track in general. Those are two of the most common newbie mistakes.
Drawing & dreaming in far more expensive turnouts than they need (or can afford $$$$$) and trying to fill the table with track. Just about everybody does this when they are new. My advice is to keep it simple, and "less is more." The simpler any layout is, the easier it is to build, the less it costs, and the more realistic it looks. Look at the real, full-size railroad track in your area. Is it laid out in loops? Are there multiple turnouts that feed into super-short stub tracks that could barely hold a single freight car? I think you will find that a real railroad's "track plan" is very simple indeed.
The track that goes behind the fridge and desk is going to be a cleaning and train rescue problem, unless the fridge and desk can be moved out to let you get in behind them. You might look into those low-level furniture moving slide gadgets.

Traction Fan

Again, thank you!
Some great points I didn’t even think of!
I will re-assess the plan.
The fridge is on wheels and moves very easily.
I will, however, do something about access behind desk.
I have a cabinet there at the moment, but may move it to allow for free access to, and view of, the track.
Or, I may cut into the cabinet and let the tracks travel through it.
 

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Discussion Starter · #73 ·
Thanks to everyone for your patience and your guidance!
I look forward to your posts each day!
I am currently rearranging the room.
Should start building the platforms in mid October, maybe sooner, and go from there. I will continue to post updates.
Thank!!!
 

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That’s a great point about the open grid! Even a small walk space behind would serve. And it helps in making it at least somewhat removable should the need arise!
I can put up a large canvas ( I have several in rolls a good eight feet tall) and paint the sky in them!
Now I have to come up with the funds for it all!

Thank you!!!
Now I better crank up the snack sales!!! That big boy alone is pricey!
Telltale gives good advice regarding a floating U table. It's movable, and allows for the operator to reach in from either side, effectively doubling the width of a table before it becomes too onerous of a reach should you need to clean track or correct a derailment.

Here is a very rough draft of my layout printed 1:1 scale and set out ony table. This is made from four 5.5' x 4.5' tables. This is N Gauge. I did this just so I could get a feel how my collection of structures will fit into the village on the East side of the river, which runs north/south in the center. You can see a couple barges there.
Table Interior design Building Floor Urban design

Table World Urban design Floor Flooring

Road surface Asphalt Rectangle Urban design Floor


I'm going to leave seams in the base layer of foam board so if needed, I can break down the layout into the four different tables. Each table is an old modular desk... A 66"x30" desk and a 66"x24" return. I just connected them into a large rectangle rather than a desk with a return.I got them free when the company I work with was going to toss them. They are on metal legs with casters.
 

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PS

What would you recommend for the turnouts that hold extra cars; how long should those be at least?
The "turnouts" themselves don't hold any cars. Remember "turnout" is the model railroader's name for what real railroads call a "switch." They wouldn't "spot" (park) a car on a switch, since the switch points couldn't be aligned for the other route through the turnout/switch with a car sitting on it.

I think you're asking about how long "sidings" or "yard tracks" should be. Well, the answer to that would be "As long as they need to be." That may sound flippant, but its true. Seriously, railroads (real or model) usually install sidings to serve one, or more, customers. Manufacturers, warehouses, mines, smelters, power plants, or any industry that ships their products and/or raw materials, by rail.
The location of the customer's building, and the amount of freight car traffic that customer ships, determine how many, and how long, the necessary siding(s) will be. Some sidings, at large industrial customers, may be owned & maintained by the customer. Some large industries even have their own switching locomotives. However, most sidings serving customers were installed by the railroad, in order to get the customer's business.

Another common type of siding is a "passing siding." These are owned by the railroad, and used to let its trains pass each other. The length desired in this case would be the length of the longest train likely to be run.

Some model railroaders prefer to call the first (customer serving) type of siding a "spur" as it typically only has a turnout at one end. They reserve the name "siding" for the second (passing) siding, which has turnouts at both ends. This is a technicality, and I only mention it because you may encounter the terms "spur" & "siding" in your research or planning.

"Yard tracks" are a different mater. They are owned, and operated, by the railroad company, and their purpose is to accept, sort, and ship out, freight cars. In the first & third operations the cars are usually in a train. Some will go to one city, and others to different points along the railroad. They need to be sorted into new trains headed for those destinations. Yards also have some tracks used for refueling, and otherwise servicing, locomotives, and repairing cars. There are huge major yards, and quite small yards too. Real railroads exist to make a profit. They don't build, or buy, anything they don't need, & have plans for using.

Some people have told you that you're "jumping all over the place" with your questions and plans. That is not a good way to try building a railroad, and I think its going to end up disappointing you.

There are two main schools of thought on planning a model railroad.

The first, and most popular, is to look at lots of published track plans, and pick one. (A variation on this same method is to pick parts of several different published plans, and combine them.)
The resulting layout will typically have lots of track & turnouts arraigned in geometric patterns, like ovals & figure eights. There will likely be alternate routes that both go from place 'A' to place 'B' for no rational reason. There are also likely to be several tunnels that the trains can pop in and out of. Nothing about this plan will resemble anything a real railroad would ever build, but the folks who build them may not know that, or care about it if they do happen to know. Their layout is all about watching trains run along the various routes available, and realism is not a factor. This is a perfectly OK option, and many model railroads are built this way.

The second method is to start, not with plans of model railroads, but rather to start by researching some real railroads, and looking for a small part of one that offers some interesting operating possibilities. Trains are put together in a yard based on what they need to haul where. They then go out onto the main line and deliver loaded cars to the customers who are scheduled to get them. The train my pick up empty cars from the same customers too. Everything on the layout has a purpose that is based on what the real railroad being modeled did. Now this is advanced model railroading, and not for everyone. I am working on my seventh layout, and it was researched for years, then planned & re-planned many times. However, my first six layouts were simple clones of published track plans with all the non-realistic stuff mentioned in method one.

You are new to this.
I've got more than 50 years of experience. (Not all of it good 😄)

I think, at this point, you should not be planning, let alone preparing to build. I think you should be reading that book I recommended, and the files I sent you, plus any other Pre-organized, by somebody with experience, research. Instead, you seem to be hopping here, there, and everywhere, in cyberspace, encountering little nuggets of oddball information, and dreaming about somehow throwing them all into a magic digital "melting pot" of track planning software, that will disgorge a finished, elaborate, track plan for a large layout. Now I've never used track planning software. Maybe it can actually do that, maybe it can't. I don't know. My layouts were all planned with pencil & paper.
If you read my files already, you will have encountered something I call "The 3-'S' method." Make your layout Small, Simple, and Sectional. I will add that since its your first layout, use a published track plan for now. You can always add on to it later.

Traction Fan
 

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Discussion Starter · #77 ·
Telltale gives good advice regarding a floating U table. It's movable, and allows for the operator to reach in from either side, effectively doubling the width of a table before it becomes too onerous of a reach should you need to clean track or correct a derailment.

Here is a very rough draft of my layout printed 1:1 scale and set out ony table. This is made from four 5.5' x 4.5' tables. This is N Gauge. I did this just so I could get a feel how my collection of structures will fit into the village on the East side of the river, which runs north/south in the center. You can see a couple barges there.
View attachment 567966
View attachment 567967
View attachment 567968

I'm going to leave seams in the base layer of foam board so if needed, I can break down the layout into the four different tables. Each table is an old modular desk... A 66"x30" desk and a 66"x24" return. I just connected them into a large rectangle rather than a desk with a return.I got them free when the company I work with was going to toss them. They are on metal legs with casters.
That is really a great way to do it! Gonna look awesome!
 

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Discussion Starter · #78 ·
The "turnouts" themselves don't hold any cars. Remember "turnout" is the model railroader's name for what real railroads call a "switch." They wouldn't "spot" (park) a car on a switch, since the switch points couldn't be aligned for the other route through the turnout/switch with a car sitting on it.

I think you're asking about how long "sidings" or "yard tracks" should be. Well, the answer to that would be "As long as they need to be." That may sound flippant, but its true. Seriously, railroads (real or model) usually install sidings to serve one, or more, customers. Manufacturers, warehouses, mines, smelters, power plants, or any industry that ships their products and/or raw materials, by rail.
The location of the customer's building, and the amount of freight car traffic that customer ships, determine how many, and how long, the necessary siding(s) will be. Some sidings, at large industrial customers, may be owned & maintained by the customer. Some large industries even have their own switching locomotives. However, most sidings serving customers were installed by the railroad, in order to get the customer's business.

Another common type of siding is a "passing siding." These are owned by the railroad, and used to let its trains pass each other. The length desired in this case would be the length of the longest train likely to be run.

Some model railroaders prefer to call the first (customer serving) type of siding a "spur" as it typically only has a turnout at one end. They reserve the name "siding" for the second (passing) siding, which has turnouts at both ends. This is a technicality, and I only mention it because you may encounter the terms "spur" & "siding" in your research or planning.

"Yard tracks" are a different mater. They are owned, and operated, by the railroad company, and their purpose is to accept, sort, and ship out, freight cars. In the first & third operations the cars are usually in a train. Some will go to one city, and others to different points along the railroad. They need to be sorted into new trains headed for those destinations. Yards also have some tracks used for refueling, and otherwise servicing, locomotives, and repairing cars. There are huge major yards, and quite small yards too. Real railroads exist to make a profit. They don't build, or buy, anything they don't need, & have plans for using.

Some people have told you that you're "jumping all over the place" with your questions and plans. That is not a good way to try building a railroad, and I think its going to end up disappointing you.

There are two main schools of thought on planning a model railroad.

The first, and most popular, is to look at lots of published track plans, and pick one. (A variation on this same method is to pick parts of several different published plans, and combine them.)
The resulting layout will typically have lots of track & turnouts arraigned in geometric patterns, like ovals & figure eights. There will likely be alternate routes that both go from place 'A' to place 'B' for no rational reason. There are also likely to be several tunnels that the trains can pop in and out of. Nothing about this plan will resemble anything a real railroad would ever build, but the folks who build them may not know that, or care about it if they do happen to know. Their layout is all about watching trains run along the various routes available, and realism is not a factor. This is a perfectly OK option, and many model railroads are built this way.

The second method is to start, not with plans of model railroads, but rather to start by researching some real railroads, and looking for a small part of one that offers some interesting operating possibilities. Trains are put together in a yard based on what they need to haul where. They then go out onto the main line and deliver loaded cars to the customers who are scheduled to get them. The train my pick up empty cars from the same customers too. Everything on the layout has a purpose that is based on what the real railroad being modeled did. Now this is advanced model railroading, and not for everyone. I am working on my seventh layout, and it was researched for years, then planned & re-planned many times. However, my first six layouts were simple clones of published track plans with all the non-realistic stuff mentioned in method one.

You are new to this.
I've got more than 50 years of experience. (Not all of it good 😄)

I think, at this point, you should not be planning, let alone preparing to build. I think you should be reading that book I recommended, and the files I sent you, plus any other Pre-organized, by somebody with experience, research. Instead, you seem to be hopping here, there, and everywhere, in cyberspace, encountering little nuggets of oddball information, and dreaming about somehow throwing them all into a magic digital "melting pot" of track planning software, that will disgorge a finished, elaborate, track plan for a large layout. Now I've never used track planning software. Maybe it can actually do that, maybe it can't. I don't know. My layouts were all planned with pencil & paper.
If you read my files already, you will have encountered something I call "The 3-'S' method." Make your layout Small, Simple, and Sectional. I will add that since its your first layout, use a published track plan for now. You can always add on to it later.

Traction Fan
I will do that; more reading, including your articles.
I appreciate the advice!
Also, my track will be pretty much a fantasy track; traveling through different environments etc. but I do understand what you’re saying and will do more research.
Thank you!
 

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What he shows in post #75 is not 'open grid'..It's still a flat (to me, archaic, problematic) design..
Open grid is just that; open..There is no flat table..You can stand up within the grid while under construction to add risers which support 4" wide, jig sawed .5", 5-ply plywood sub-roadbed
'right of way', roadbed (of cork/foam) and track following it atop of...

CZ, this is what you want to learn and do...Once you've settled on a main line track plan, from that you determine the shape of the grid below it..The grid is built and lifted up high on legs..
Grades are made by installing risers attached to the cross members, sub-roadbed then cut and screwed to ends of vertical risers;..the entire benchwork away from the walls...
When the time comes to do scenic-ing the open spaces between sub-roadbed get filled with either stapled wire screening or glued foam; plaster added atop to shape into rock/hills...
From underneath all track remains reachable, not trapped on the upper side of a flat table..
The great majority of club layouts are done this way; reason and logic becoming clearer and clearer as the project unfolds..
 

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Discussion Starter · #80 ·
What he shows in post #75 is not 'open grid'..It's still a flat (to me, archaic, problematic) design..
Open grid is just that; open..There is no flat table..You can stand up within the grid while under construction to add risers which support 4" wide, jig sawed .5", 5-ply plywood sub-roadbed
'right of way', roadbed (of cork/foam) and track following it atop of...

CZ, this is what you want to learn and do...Once you've settled on a main line track plan, from that you determine the shape of the grid below it..The grid is built and lifted up high on legs..
Grades are made by installing risers attached to the cross members, sub-roadbed then cut and screwed to ends of vertical risers;..the entire benchwork away from the walls...
When the time comes to do scenic-ing the open spaces between sub-roadbed get filled with either stapled wire screening or glued foam; plaster added atop to shape into rock/hills...
From underneath all track remains reachable, not trapped on the upper side of a flat table..
The great majority of club layouts are done this way; reason and logic becoming clearer and clearer as the project unfolds..
OK so no plywood sheets screwed onto the framework? The layout is then easily lifted up at some sections as well as being easily changed or even moved to another place.
That seems like a great idea!
Thinking that insulation foam at the hardware stores would be really good fit that.
Thanks!!!
 
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