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Discussion Starter #1
Welcome to Scrapwood Junction everyone.

Scrapwood Junction is a fictitious place set in the western high plains somewhere post WW2. It's a place where 3 lines, mainly Union Pacific, Chicago & North Western, and The Rock Island lines merge. The main industry is an Icing facility to repack refrigerated cars on the way east.

But mostly, its a tribute to my long departed dad...an awesome guy who introduced me to HO gauge from the moment I was able to sit on a stool and watch as he ran his layout he and several others had built by hand in the basement of our home back in Indiana. Sadly, that layout (dismantled 1960) and the subsequent one are distant but happy memories. He, my brother, and I built (1967) and removed in 1970. Sadly after that he never built another layout. His trains languished in boxes until they were broke beyond repair. Many of the rest disappeared because my mother lost them when she moved....engines that she earlier deemed to valuable for me to take to Arizona where I lived at that time.

While the SWJ is a far cry from those monsters, it will operate in that same spirit.

I digress...Every layout starts with a plan, and the SWJ is no exception. As a divorced apartment Rat in 2000ish, something modular and compact was required. Now I'm a homeowner, but at my age, modular compactness is still a requirement...for now. So here's a shot of my track plan which I'll modify to fit my needs.

http://www.modeltrainforum.com/gallery/files/1/5/6/9/8/rr3.jpg

It took about 6 more years to acquire the materials needed. Something always came up. But last year, my job received some freight on pallets made entirely from plywood. I took them home, deconstructed them, and ripped the tops to proper sizes. A few 1x3's for light weight yet strength, and the SWJ was ready to lay track. Yes...the bench work is attached to shelving in a small work room built into a 2 car garage.

Code 100 rail is used because it's easy to find in the Tulsa region. There is only one decent hobby shop and NO dedicated train shops here at this time. Ebay is my friend.

Here's a shot length ways down the pike looking towards the site of the icing station. One of Dads wood kit refer cars is waiting. You can also see the diamond crossover that vexes my 0-4-0 switchers for now.

http://www.modeltrainforum.com/gallery/files/1/5/6/9/8/rr2.jpg

I'll be posting again as soon as I add some more trackage...if the budget holds that might be next week.

Thanks for checking in!
 

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Looks like a very busy yard there, lots of fun.
The track plan calls for DCC are you going with that?

Code 100 is fine, I used code 83 but with my poor track laying skills kinda wish I had gone with 100. It's much easier to work with in my option.

Magic
 

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Discussion Starter #3
The yard is a bit too busy for my tastes and the original track plan doesn't allow much space for accurate scenery. So in an effort to make room for several buildings in various states of completion from our old layouts and save money, I've deleted at least two sidings from the original plan. A third siding will be modified to accommodate a two bay engine house my dad built.
The newest engines that I own were built back in the early 1990's so I don't have anything DCC. Most of them are from the late 60's through 80's...:)
 

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Discussion Starter #4 (Edited)
Laid down a bit more track tonight. I'll need to run some block wiring and turnout machines. Hopefully I can get most of this section done by the end of the year.

rr4 by desertguy56, on Flickr

The left hand piece of trackage will be the start of a "main line". Eventually it and the center track will be connected by turnout and the middle track will curve off as a mainline as well. Perhaps both will be something I can expand on in the future.

rr5 by desertguy56, on Flickr
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Bone1977: If by power zones you mean "blocks" then the answer is yes. The original layout calls for four. I will be adding a couple more as well.
It's my belief that building such a small layout for DCC and attempting to convert about a dozen engines to it would not be cost effective. Plus there's not enough space on the track to run more than two, and maybe 3 by adding an extra mainline to nowhere. If I buy new stuff I'll consider DCC and then pull the plugs until I can afford the control system.

dirts4racing...thanks. I hope he's watching. He's likely grumping about the code 100 track and that I'm not cutting up Homasite board for roadbed. I hated that stuff.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
Well I got the other run around track in. And thus, I ran out of track, switches and money. So I wired up my blocks and existing switch machines and rigged in my power pack. Everything works! YAY!

Since I had no track I figured I'd better start repairing cars and engines. So the last 4 days I've rebuilt 3 of my dads hopper cars, and checked out my RI MDC RS-3.
I made a short video of them running. Enjoy!

Happy Thanksgiving everyone!

https://flic.kr/p/pW1trd
 

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Discussion Starter #10
I've got a question for those willing to offer an opinion. This track plan calls for a reverse loop. It's a triangular shaped track using three wye turnouts and 18 inch curves...one "point" being a siding so one can spot either a car or engine there to turn it around. The first problem is the siding isn't long enough for larger cars or engines, and the whole thing looks non prototypical.
SO...
Are reverse tracks like this used in full size railroads? If not I'll eliminate it because I could put some buildings there and have a little town.

Thanks in advance for your answers.
 

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Discussion Starter #12
Wye type reversing tracks were fairly common but the one you've got seems a bit useless if you can't turn a car or loco on it.

Magic
I can turn one of my small tank switchers or an 0-4-0 with a tender OR up to a 50 foot car, but that's it. It would probably fit a SW1500 type engine but my RS-3 is too long. The original design/plan shows almost a foot of track at the reversing point.

I believe part of the issue is I goofed. I didn't transfer the layout plan to full size correctly and ran out of space...:(
 

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A wye can give you some interesting switching moves so,
if you can, try to make each tail long enough to accomodate
your longest loco.

You are aware that on a DC layout you will have to have a system of
double throw switches and isolated track
sections to avoid short circuits in the wye.
You'll have to throw switches reversing the polarity of
the track ahead of your locos. This also affects any other
loco running on the other tracks.

With a DCC layout, a special reverse loop controller does this
automatically.

Don
 

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Discussion Starter #14
A wye can give you some interesting switching moves so,
if you can, try to make each tail long enough to accomodate
your longest loco.

You are aware that on a DC layout you will have to have a system of
double throw switches and isolated track
sections to avoid short circuits in the wye.
You'll have to throw switches reversing the polarity of
the track ahead of your locos. This also affects any other
loco running on the other tracks.

With a DCC layout, a special reverse loop controller does this
automatically.

Don
The Atlas controllers have a loop switch in them as well. Makes wiring simple. Again DCC doesn't appear to be cost effective. What does a controller and 6-10 engine modules cost?
 

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Discussion Starter #15 (Edited)
It's been a bit since I've posted but some small progress has been made. I've been spending time on some of the old structures that have survived along with repairing rolling stock and engines.
First, I've "turned the corner" on the first stage. So I'm going to build some some scenery in before moving on.

rr16 by desertguy56, on Flickr

I found a spot for Dads old Vollmer engine shed. I think he started assembling it in 1968. Now it's pretty much done just needs some detailing. Ditto with the ancient card stock building, which is the yardmasters office. Behind these will be a parking lot, street and part of downtown Derek. Derek is named after my cousins oldest son who died in a traffic accident in 2003.

rr12 by desertguy56, on Flickr

I'm also in the process of finishing this Revell bakery. The switch house is also from our last layout. The platform is from a Revell freight house. I'm going to hide the terminal track by building a loading dock for the bakery.

rr14 by desertguy56, on Flickr

Lastly, I have this Atlas lumber yard. It's going to be over here but I'm not sure if it should be back to the track or across from it against the wall.

rr15 by desertguy56, on Flickr
 

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Discussion Starter #16
My first "rock formation". Scraps of expanding foam covered with wood putty.

rr19 by desertguy56, on Flickr

Other projects to keep me busy while the putty sets...like this Monon caboose I'm kit bashing for use with a couple AHM RS-2s my father owned.

rr18 by desertguy56, on Flickr
 

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It's coming together nicely. Looks like you might be a bit tight for a reverse loop anyway. Not so sure about the 'rock formation', wouldn't like to say what it looks like but certainly more animal than mineral! IMO you can't beat PoP over scrunched up paper.
 

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Discussion Starter #20
It's coming together nicely. Looks like you might be a bit tight for a reverse loop anyway. Not so sure about the 'rock formation', wouldn't like to say what it looks like but certainly more animal than mineral! IMO you can't beat PoP over scrunched up paper.
That made my day! Perhaps it needs a bit more >cough< sculpture.
 
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