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My only concern: is the tail of the turnout next to the
green and black building long enough to accomodate
the loco and 2 or 3 cars? The loco would PUSH cars
to the two stub tracks. You might consider a nearby
passing siding so loco can get on 'the other side' of
a car.

Don
 

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Greetings to all! Again, I solicit your opinions!

I am ready, now that golf season has come to a freezing halt, to begin work upon the main table. I did some work and have two options. One incorporates a curved TO on the reverse track which saves some space and helps the run. Then I also made a revision to include some passing tracks - one on the inner eastern loop and then using crossover TOs an option for the western loop. I am pretty much against the eastern one, as I don't see much additional op benefit for the $130 or so of equipment, but the western one? Does that look nice and adding good operational interest?

I am torn - I like the free run of the west without the crossovers. But I can see that those crossovers will add interest. Your thoughts?
View attachment 571260
or:
View attachment 571261

I would very much appreciate your replies and comments. Thanks!

Steve J
Steve;

First, I agree with DonR about that short track coming out of the top turnout, and the lack of a runaround track up there. I think if you buy two more turnouts, they should be used for that runaround, rather than the somewhat pointless arrangement in the lower plan. That's one reason that I prefer the top track plan. The one without the extra turnouts & center track. I don't see any point to the extra track components, down there.
Your layout is already pretty full of track, to the point where scenery, and structures, may be restricted.
In my opinion a "Model Railroad" should look as close to a miniature of a real railroad, as is practical in the available space. That's what makes it a "Model Railroad", instead of a "Train Setup."
It is (at least theoretically) a model of a real railroad, rather than just a bunch of track with trains buzzing around on it.
Notice I said "look" not necessarily "be."
It is impossible for most of us, in the limited spaces we have, to build an exact scale model of the entire trackage of even the shortest of short lines. Instead we can try to build something that gives the illusion of a real railroad. This can be based on a prototype, or not, as long as it looks like something a real railroad would build.

For example, my own model railroad is vey loosely based on the Milwaukee Road's passenger operations in Seattle, Washington, in the 1920s.
Is it an N-scale duplicate of all the track the Milwaukee had in that area, at that time? Heck no ! I don't have the room, or the money, to build that. However, its fairly close, at least in the immediate area of Seattle Union Station. The further away from that station you go, the more compromised things get, in terms of realism.

However, does it give the impression of being set in Seattle in the 1920s? Well, I hope so. I've invested a lot of time, effort, & money, to make that impression in the minds of people seeing the railroad. Making a model railroad look realistic includes modeling the proportion of railroad real estate to the "rest of the world" as much as our always-too-small space & budget allow. I can have reasonably accurate models of a few signature Seattle structures to establish the locale, but only a few, and only on two very shortened "blocks" of two Seattle streets (4th Ave, S. & Jackson St. see photos)

The real world, aside from actual railyards, has perhaps 1% of its land covered by railroad track. Most model railroads are up in the 80% - 90% range. Its tough to look realistic with all that track everywhere. Concealing some of it, or dividing the main (vertical in the drawing) part of your layout, into two separate scenes, with a backdrop between them, would help a lot.

All that said, Its your railroad, so do what you like best.

Traction Fan 馃檪
 

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The tracks circled in red are nigh impossible to service. Especially if you have any cars spotted by the green building. Can you make it come off the reverse loop instead? Either directly (preferred) or as in green shown below (if you must have a diamond), and remove the orange track.

Slope Line Parallel Schematic Rectangle


If you did it directly it would open up a nice alley between the diagonals that you could stuff some scenery in to visually separate the lines. Some buildings, a little hill?

Slope Schematic Parallel Rectangle Font
 

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~Thelic has a highly valuable point here. To add to what he is thinking; that 45deg Diamond could be swapped for a 12deg dbl slip turnout and some trackage reworking as well to accommodate it. That way, Thelic鈥檚 observation and, add one or two more travel options. As well as trackage ending up closer together if you do it right. Therefore allowing a smidge more scenery space...

~I鈥檓 glad you swapped out to a dual radius Lft turnout up in the north-west area of the turnaround track. A suggestion I made a few months back. Very Cool...

~On the subject of the new extra crossover setups. Hmm. Redundant my brother. You already have plenty, as CTvalley has mentioned. However, the east side one could be usefully lengthened by a dual radius rgt hand turnout at the northern end of it. Making it a bit more useful to the building you have there. I get that you already see it as kind of useless but, Look again with the turnout revision I鈥檓 proposing.
The newly added west side crossovers, I think are actually the more redundant ones here...

~That鈥檚 all Ive got at the moment-lol. Apologies if post seems longish.

Scott.
 

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Don originally pointed it out!

I just proposed a few solutions. Don's solution would work, but it looks to be about 14" from the clearance point of the turnout to the end of the spur, not a lot of room to get an HO engine in with any kind of car that needs to be spotted. If those two spurs were engine service it would be ok, but they look to be industry tracks.

Even if the spur were long enough you would have to nose in by the green building on your first go around the track, drop the entire train minus maybe one car (if it fits), then back it into those spurs, again, one car at a time. Then escape back to the mainline, go around the reverse loop, then service the remaining (now trailing) spurs.

If you like this puzzle, then you can keep it as is, but slide the turnout further south on the industry track to the green building to increase the room on the lead.
 

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Discussion Starter · #66 ·
Jiminy Crickets, you are right! Thanks for the time invested and suggestions.

My operational concept was to have one switcher work the all the industries inside the loops. But I don't have enough space by the western green building. The leg off the turnout is 15 inches as drawn. Even a short switcher could only move one * maybe * two cars. I do have a BLI Plymouth switcher that is only about four inches long.

Hmmm - - - come off the reverse leg - - - double slip - - -

Thanks - good stuff to consider. I'll be back!
 

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Discussion Starter · #67 ·
Thanks again, your suggestions and catches have been quite ehlpful.

Here is a new design for the interior spurs:

Schematic Rectangle Slope Line Font


The curve and the straight off the northwestern inside TO is a total of 23 inches, so that should allow some decent movement, I'm thinking.
 

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The two crossovers on the left side, can (should?) you reverse the top one? Either that or remove one all together, they seem redundant as is.

The interior looks much better!
 

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Looking better and better.
I can still see a couple places to swap out to dual radius turnouts (DRTs) (3 needed) to further lengthen that newer 23鈥 stub and, lengthen the passing siding on the east side.
I agree with Thelic about the redundancy the crossover at the upper west side.
 

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I substituted as many DRT's into my layout as possible, it really lengthened the sidings, usually it nets an additional car. The larger radius also serves as an easement, makes for very nice sweeping trackwork. About the best you can do without hand laying.
 

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Discussion Starter · #71 ·
Looking better and better.
I can still see a couple places to swap out to dual radius turnouts (DRTs) (3 needed) to further lengthen that newer 23鈥 stub and, lengthen the passing siding on the east side.
I agree with Thelic about the redundancy the crossover at the upper west side.
And I see that the new Walthers ones are in stock!!
 

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Looking better and better.
I can still see a couple places to swap out to dual radius turnouts (DRTs) (3 needed) to further lengthen that newer 23鈥 stub and, lengthen the passing siding on the east side.
I agree with Thelic about the redundancy the crossover at the upper west side.
We don't call them "curved turnouts" anymore?
 
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Ah your right, I've committed heresy! John Armstrong refers to them as "Curved Turnouts".
 

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鈥淲e don鈥檛 call them curved turnouts anymore?鈥

Ive always called them curved turnouts. Somehow though, there has been a trend towards 鈥渄ual radius turnouts鈥 terminology, to the point even of me being corrected for calling them the former. I abbreviated the term to DRT in my posts because I dont care to type all that out.

All that said; I will return to curved turnouts here, correct or incorrect.

Hope that Doth pleases his Highness. 馃槄馃槄
 

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Actually, that was an honest question, not a criticism. I haven't seen any tendency to use that terminology in the hobby press or anywhere else (like manufacturer's packaging). To me, calling calling curved turnout a "dual radius turnout" is kind of like calling a car a self powered mode of personal transportation. It's not WRONG, but it's unnecessarily cumbersome and it doesn't add any clarity to the description (if it didn't have two radii, it wouldn't be a turnout, just a curve).
 
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Discussion Starter · #76 ·
Tweaking with the ideas of curved TOs. Model Train Stuff has a pretty good supply, and not crazy expensive.

1. Moved the double-slip on the eastern side further south, extending that passing siding.

2. Used curved TOs inside the loop to (hopefully) enhance the geometry for the industrial switching

3. Took out the NW crossover.

4. Toyed with the idea of a double crossover in place of the NE single crossover - - - but did not think it added much to the ops.

5. Moved the Wye from the SE to the SW spur.

Slope Rectangle Line Parallel Font



I hope to get started with the building of this main loop in January after the holidays. But my oldest daughter is circling in on Jan 21 for her wedding date - - so those preps will override!
 

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I hope to get started with the building of this main loop in January after the holidays. But my oldest daughter is circling in on Jan 21 for her wedding date - - so those preps will override!

Yes, if you think Godzilla trashed Tokyo, you don't want to see what Bridezilla can do to a model railroad! Wait till after the wedding. Then assuming you, $$$$ the father of the bride o_O$$$$$ have any money left, 馃槃 馃槃 馃槃 馃槃 you can play trains again.

Traction Fan 馃槉
 

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Looking better with each iteration!

Here's my suggestion.

  • Remove the cross, service the south west spurs from inner loop as shown, this lets you use the reverse loop as a run around.
  • Since we no longer need to tie up track space on the north switching branch we can swap some turnouts around to get a decent size run around by moving the east most spur to the second switch in series rather than the first.
  • This should let you run a train in a continuous loop while running a second train in a switching operation on the inner and reverse loops.
  • Railroads didn't go out of their way to create switching problems, rather quite the opposite. This should provide a decent complexity of switching without causing frustration.


Slope Rectangle Line Map Parallel
 

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There ya go. I like the new design much better. Yes, I agree that a dbl x-over in NE corner not really needed. However, if you swap those two #6 TOs for a pair of curved TOs, siding gets even longer and sleaker. I like the extra spur you added there as well. Or was it already there?
Did I mention that I鈥檓 a big fan of curved TOs? 馃榾

Edit: (Just saw Thelics suggestions. I like his East side ideas a lot.)
 

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Discussion Starter · #80 ·
However, if you swap those two #6 TOs for a pair of curved TOs, siding gets even longer and sleaker.

Edit: (Just saw Thelics suggestions. I like his East side ideas a lot.)
I did try to replace the NE TOs with curved, but could not make it work AND keep the 22 inch radius of the outside curve, which I really want. I'll fiddle with again, maybe., Thanks for your help!!
 
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