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Discussion Starter #1
Those that have seen my posts have probably seen me mention what a hard time I've been having finalizing my layout. I guess I have a hard time visualizing the track and scenery relation :confused: Driving me nuts!!

Anyway, so I'm cutting out cardboard templates tonight of different radius and gonna lay it out in cardboard. I *think* I've come up with a line I'm happy with... but I've said that countless times!!

To get to the point... I've been researching my butt off, looking for tips and examples and such. I'm wondering if anyone here would be interested in helping me out, someone with a better modeling mind that mine!! Someone that can visualize the track/scenery relation. Basically someone with experience!!!!

I'm HO (hence posting in the HO section :p ), my table is 6.5x12. I'll cookie cut it eventually. I'm shooting for 22" curves, min, preferably 24 or even bigger if I can fit it. I wanna keep the grades reasonable (trying to stay below 3%). #6 switches on all main spurs...Of course I've got other criteria I wanna fit, too- a river, mountains and lots of trees, and on and on...

Anyone got a few minutes they'd like to spare, maybe just give guidance if not an all out plan (!), or maybe know a good website (I've probably been to most!!!)? Who's got Track Planning For Realistic Operation? Does it get into scenery at all or is it strictly ops?

Well, thanks for any help. I'm determined this is the one...
EB
 

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I am glad to hear that you have finally (let's hope ;)) come up with the track plan you want to build... Laying it out in cardboard is a good idea to see how it looks... Once you do that get some pictures up here and someone on here should be able to help with the scenery... Heck, I will even put my two cents in, although I am not sure how helpful I can be since I have never done scenery before, LOL :)
 

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I actually had to bust out the ladder in the living room to get these pics!! And I still couldn't get it all in one shot...

Anyway, it's going to take some explaining :laugh: There's elevated lines, some that'll dip just a bit, hidden trackage...

So, with no further ado...







An old yard...




Okay, so going back to the cardboard, if you look at the overall pic (what I could fit), starting from the bottom, the outside line will leave the yard area, counterclockwise, start to climb. After the first big curve, you will see two somewhat parallel lines, there'll be a river running between them, with a high line and a low line on the left. You'll see the low line has a reverse loop that will go under the mountain of the upper line. Hidden, the reverse loop will hook back into the yard lead to make a loop if I want it.

You'll somewhat see two parallel lines running at the far top- one will be the original line that was climbing and will be at 4+ inches here. The other line will be lower, they'll cross at some point. I also am going to try to get them to peak-a-boo from time to time, from small stone, mountain tunnels to thick trees. The low line will obviously go into a tunnel at some point, tho the high line I want pretty much visible all the way around it's mountain. Maybe a cliff?

Going off the layout on the top left, the high line will either come back on the low line or reverse loop on itself. Ditto the low line. Both will drop below the table for hidden staging.

The big empty area will be the yard (little pig-tails show approximate leads, tho I gotta work how the outer line'll join w/o doing a full other loop). I'll also put the turntable and engine/service facilities here. I'm guessing my passenger station will have to be up-top, a plateau on the mountain?

So, the whole back wall is a mountain range, with one good break where the river will start, and like said before, I'd like to see the trains go in and out of view at times. There'll be some rise on the left side of the layout, tho I'm thinking some of that inner line, the reverse loop, at least, will need to dip from level-level(!).

The right side will have the mountain, the river that splits the center lines will curve around and leave the layout on the right. The two furthest lines on the right will disappear through tunnels, the right line being the return from that back lower line, the inner-right side line being the connection to the hidden reverse loop to make an inner loop.

All outer curves are 26", and the minimum viewed line is 24". The hidden portion of the table-top reverse loop is 22". Under the table, I'll have room to broaden things up, I think, for more reliability?

Anyway, if you just run your eyes around each line... it might make more sense than my ramblings!!!


And there's a pic of a proposed yard I had going. I imagine the new one won't look too much different, but after reading this, I'm going to try to incorporate some of those features a little more accurately.

We'll see.

So critique away!! You won't hurt my feelings :laugh: I'm already thinking I may need to go down to 24&22" corners, but I dunno. Easements would be nice... Oh, and #6 switches on any main, #4s at various other spots. Trying to keep the snap-switches off!!

(why can't I get the images to pop-up? I tried img and url :confused:
 

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(why can't I get the images to pop-up? I tried img and url :confused:
Because you linked back to the webpage the image is on, not the actual image... If you notice on the image page, there is box titled "Direct Link Code" with a URL in it, that is the URL for the image... Then you just put tags around it like you did... I fixed it for you so they are there now ;)

Back to your layout though, I think the plan you have is good... It is hard for me to visualize the elevated track though, but it sounds like everything will work :)
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Thanks for the fix, B&M.

Yeah, I figured it'd be a bit hard to visualize, but I think it'll work. I might have to tighten a few curves, but I'm gonna shoot for the bigger ones first.

I do have a couple other questions:

What does everyone feel a decent amount of safety-space is necessary for the edge of the table? I'm thinking 2~3" where track is in plain sight, and maybe half that where they'll be hidden under scenery?

What kind of track-centers should I use? 2" on straights, but what about the corners? I've heard(read) down to 22" that 2" is okay?

Well... now I'm bugging to get started again :D
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Well, glad to report some progress... I've started laying the roadbed for the outer loop. I was able to get 26" corners on the outers... with 32" easements :D (not exactly laid to "Keester" standards, but better than none). My minimum everywhere else is 24".

Hey, going back, what about those center spaces on corners? I know a lot depends on the rolling stock, but mine will be modest in length :)eek:), no extra-long passenger cars or anything. Late-60's locos, also, so no behemoths!!!

Anyway.... done with the fruit salad :D , so back to work :D

Thanks for any help.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
It's not :(



We got a lot of damage from hurricane ike. Prior to that, my wife broke her jaw. Haven't touched it since.

In fact, in preparation for all the work that's about to start... I'm breaking the table down this weekend :(


Down... but certainly not out :D





"I'll be back....."






Best of luck to everyone with their layouts, and....

Merry Christmas, y'all :D


See ya around ;)
 

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It's not :(



We got a lot of damage from hurricane ike. Prior to that, my wife broke her jaw. Haven't touched it since.

In fact, in preparation for all the work that's about to start... I'm breaking the table down this weekend :(


Down... but certainly not out :D





"I'll be back....."






Best of luck to everyone with their layouts, and....

Merry Christmas, y'all :D


See ya around ;)
Ouch. I hope she heals well. I put mine up for a short time. It turned out to be more than 12 years till it was back out. Please don's let that hapen to you.
John
 

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It's not :(

We got a lot of damage from hurricane ike. Prior to that, my wife broke her jaw. Haven't touched it since.

In fact, in preparation for all the work that's about to start... I'm breaking the table down this weekend :(
Sorry to hear that Smokey, I hope that everything works out for you and your family...

Merry Christmas to you too :)
 

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Thanks, guys :)
(hmmm.... I thought I had replied already :confused:)

Anyway, she'll be okay. She still has a lot of pain, can't really use her front teeth... man, it was BRUTAL. I thank the Lord I was home :thankstheLord:

I finished tearing the table down yesterday, that's kind of a relief!! It takes up sooooo much room :laugh: But you know the gears are already turning for its comeback :D

I'm just happy the work is about to FINALLY begin :mad: Man, it's been one delay after another. My foundation gets done the 31st, the roof will be the 2nd week of Jan, the sheetrock the second week of Feb, get new flooring after that... gutters, exterior trim.... ugghh.... well, house will be nice when it's done :)


Anydamnway..... Y'all have a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year :D
 
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