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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
Hello all, for the past oh I say two months I have been researching building my first model layout. I have visited model layouts in the past and told myself that I really like this stuff but I would like it better as a spectator. A few months ago I figured that it would be a hoot to run trains up and down the top of the divider which separates my kitchen and living area in my VERY modest (yet nice) apartment.

In between sending out resumes for a new IT gig which is a good thing to do especially since the unemployment has run out I have been reading this and other forums as well as watching WAY too many youtube videos on layouts and trolleys. I have stolen your best ideas and being that I starting a (n amzingly low paying) job next week I now have the wherewithall to spend money on my traction empire.

I bought a 5'10" x 4" sheet of OSB and put it on casters thinking that I could do a modest HO layout and slide it under my futon when not in use. It was a good idea until I figured that I couldn't do any over/under and basicily I would be limited to set up four city blocks with an intersection in the middle of the board. The 5" inch clearance between OSB and BED limited the size of the buildings I could use as well. If I put in a hotel is my seedy downtown I wouldn't put a billboard on top advertising hourly rates. Hmmmm I really do like the variety of buildings and traction models in HO. What to do....what to do.

Seems like a HO layout on the 5'10" x 4' board which will hide under the bed isn't not the best plan after all. Here is what I am thinking and I will gladly reimburse you via Paypal for your two cents. I saw that someone on youtube admitted that they were building a small layout in preparation for doing something more ambitious later. Sounds like a good idea to me. I haven't done anything with model trains since.....ah....Robert Blake was playing a cop instead of being questioned by one. Because I am a fan of streetcars and trolleys I plan to build a 4' x 2' n scale layout and keep it rather simple. The image shows my track plan. I plan on having the back part of the layout elevated with the tracks on the right making the climb to a plateau which will host a rural village before looping around and coming back downtown and on the left side the tracks will descend into a tunnel before looping back around. I would like to have a turnout in the tunnel so that I can occasionally redirect traffic to a traction rail yard.
I was not able to make my loops perfect but I know to make the loops with a minimum 7" radius.

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