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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I am planning on expanding my layout and may need to add a lift out section to access areas in the center of the layout. Any recommendations do's or don't's that will make this section trouble free. Thanks
 

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Hinged section best, lift out second, duck under worst

I am planning on expanding my layout and may need to add a lift out section to access areas in the center of the layout. Any recommendations do's or don't's that will make this section trouble free. Thanks

flyerrich;

I recommend a hinged section over a lift out. The hinged section is a bit more work to build, but it will make things easier every time you use it. Overall it's really going to be less work, not more. I saw a video on youtube that had a great, simple, system. In the file attached I say that a downward hinged section is better than an upward swinging one. Well in the video they had an upward hinged section that had the hinge set about 3-4 inches in from the end of the moving section. This meant that on this particular type of upward swinging hinged section the critical hinge-end track actually swung down giving it the same advantage as a downward hinged section, but much easier to build. A hinged section is self-storing, a lift out is not.
If you do decide to use a lift out, I'd build two small, simple, shelves to hold it. One inside the layout operating pit, and the
other one outside. With this system, no matter which way you are traveling, you will have a safe place to set your lift out section down.
You can skip most of the attached file, if you like. Skip ahead, and near the end you'll find four sketches of layouts. Right after sketch #4 is an explanation of the advantages, and disadvantages, of different ways of accessing a layout with track across the opening. I think that explanation covers the subject of your question pretty well, and should help you in making your decision.

Good luck, have fun;

Traction Fan :smilie_daumenpos:

View attachment 3 & 4 How to build a better first layout.pdf
 

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I agree with Tractionfan...go hinged lift up...you'll have
less problem with track alignment. I found that
when you complete construction of the 'bridge' and
ready to lay track, use a long flex section. Use Dremel
or razor saw to cut the rails over each end of the
'bridge'. Use a \ angle cut on the open end and a / angle
on the hinge end. Be sure that track is well anchored before
cutting. This will assure vertical and lateral alignment and
a track 'meet' that avoids rail snaring.

You'll also want to provide for a SAFETY STOP at the
'open' end of the bridge. Cut a gap in RIGHT RAIL
(ONLY) about 2 feet or so back from the bridge. (more if
you have long or consisted locos) Install a short
brass or copper strip to the open end of the bridge.
Attach a matching strip to the main table. Warp one
strip to assure a good contact. Run a
track drop from the new isolated section rail to
the main table strip. Run a feed from the RIGHT rail
bus to the bridge strip. When bridge is up, power is
cut to the iso section and your loco is saved from a
floor plunge. The hinged end needs no safety since if
bridge is up the loco would be stopped by it.

Don
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
OK guys, thanks I understand what your saying. Also Don you mention the angle cuts. I understand the reasoning for them now that I made a sketch to visually see there would be some interference when rotating the track up.
Thanks
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
This came up because when I expand my layout I want to make a mainline run to include the existing outer most track on the present layout which is in a "U" shape. My extension of the layout will most likely be another "U" shape. Like putting the open ends of two horseshoes together. My control board for my turnouts etc. is at the "bottom" of the "U" shape so access will have to come through a section I can raise up then lower to get "inside" the layout to access the control panel.
 

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Trackage

This came up because when I expand my layout I want to make a mainline run to include the existing outer most track on the present layout which is in a "U" shape. My extension of the layout will most likely be another "U" shape. Like putting the open ends of two horseshoes together. My control board for my turnouts etc. is at the "bottom" of the "U" shape so access will have to come through a section I can raise up then lower to get "inside" the layout to access the control panel.
flyerrich;

I'm assuming there will be at least one track crossing the moveable section. Will there be more than one? Will the tracks that cross the gap be just a double track line, or widely-spread, independent, tracks? The former is easier than the latter, so try to make your access point at a place with minimal track.

good luck, have fun;

Traction Fan :smilie_daumenpos:
 
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