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Layout design & sleep
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 Posted: Tue Dec 5th, 2017 08:16 pm
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Richard Hughes
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Well,I asked and you all responded with answers.I couldn't sleep last night,so i thought about the layout.I will be hauling this layout to shows in a Ford Ranger with a tool cap on it.
   I'm restricted to 30" wide sections at max width and can only haul 3 sections if I go that wide.That will give me a layout 30" wide X 18' long.That seems to work better with a switching style layout.That's still not a big radius at less than 15",and will not allow continuous running that looks good with 2-6-0 or 2-8-0.I could set this up at home. 
  I can fit (4) 2' wide by 6' long sections.I could design them to go 24' long or put (2) back to back and have a 4'x12' continous running single level layout.This will give a wide radius for the 2-8-0 engine.I'm not sure how much room I would have at the RR shows,But i could not set this configuration up in my workshop.I would like to have your thoughts on pros & cons of 30" and long(24') or wider and shorter and with bigger curves.
 I have bought a NCE DCC system and was going to use that just to do some switching.My son and 8yr old grand son says we need a computer to run it using something called "JMRI".It sounds like it is complacated to me and we will end up with 50K' of wire under the layout!!! No not really,maybe 45K.
As I come up with more questions,I will post them here.Feel free to post any thoughts.Thank you for all the help.This is a lot to think about and decide what I should do.I hope I sleep tonight,so I can find the workshop on Wed. Rick






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 Posted: Tue Dec 5th, 2017 09:07 pm
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Thayer
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Richard,

How big a theoretical box can you slide into the back of your truck? If your tailgate is over 48 inches wide, and your cap tall enough to clear 30 inches above the gate across that width, you could rotate 30-inch wide modules on edge, holding them vertically by bolting the ends to small pieces of plywood. Depending on how tall the scenery is, you may be able to get more pieces into the truck this way.

Careful scenic, RoW, and town planning may well allow structures and scenery to overlap/nest without contact. I just did a quick CAD sketch that assumes 3 inches of module framing. If you can push that 30 x 48 box into the truck, you could do two modules with 12 inches of vertical scenery, and 4 more at 9 inches. You could also use removable elements to allow taller buildings or trees.

I have an NCE system and have been having a lot of fun using it without JMRI.

Thayer

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 Posted: Wed Dec 6th, 2017 05:11 am
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jtrain
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Just about everyone at a train show has a loop with a train on it.  I'd say go do something different and have a point to point operation.

With 2x24 feet of layout to work with, you will have a heck of a switching layout!

On this forum, there is one layout that shows what you can do with a long shelf in On30.  It's called Mara Harbor.  Here is a link to the first page that still has active pictures:

Mara Harbor, Page 11

It was built by Martin Welberg of the Netherlands.

You could look through the 78 pages of the thread, but to really understand what I'm talking about, here's a video I found on Youtube that shows the layout's operations.
 
US Modellbahn-Convention Rodgau 2017 Mara Harbor USA

For the train show, just have plexiglass on each end to prevent equipment from running off the track and onto the floor.

--James

Last edited on Wed Dec 6th, 2017 05:28 am by jtrain



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 Posted: Wed Dec 6th, 2017 10:59 pm
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Richard Hughes
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Thayer & Jtrain,
      Thank you for the replies.I spent most of the day in the shop thinking about what I want to do.I like the idea of a switching layout.My son wants to use JMRI for auto running the trains.I think we will try that and I will sit back and watch.I can still run the train using the NCE DCC system i bought if i'm by myself.
     I will have to measure my truck bed better to see if I can slide the mods in on edge.I'm not sure how much room I have to the top of the bed rails,with a shelf built at the point where the tool cap starts.I hope to get better measurements of truck and cap on Friday.It is cold and raining here today.I have the idea of (3) modules 2'x6' end to end for a 2'x18' total.This will allow me to still have room to load the legs under each section and put tool boxes in next to them. I will still have room in my workshop to build the test layout that will be 30" by 6'.This will be my test board for all the new ways of building.I can also let my grandson play with trains here.At the top of the list is time spent with son/grandson.        I have been thinking of each section as a stand alone design.I want a backwoods logging engine service area with all the support structures for the middle section.This will allow a lot of scratch building and detailing,which is what i want,besides the switching.Thank you jtrain for the layout video link.The video really gets me thinking about how to make a harbor scene.I will keep that in the thought basket.The section to the left,i was thinking a edge of town with small industries sharing a track to make things more interesting.To the right,i thought of a logging camp,only because the saw mill is something you see a lot of.If I model the camp,i could include the loggers shacks,a log loader.This would be a good place to end the layout.
     I have also been thinking how to extend it in the work shop and thought of making a 2'x2' turning section with a bridge and scenery below track level.After being into trains for 50 years I have only built scenery outside for my "G" scale.As always,all comments,ideas,opinions are welcome.Take care, Rick

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 Posted: Thu Dec 7th, 2017 05:36 am
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Michael M
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Richard,

Just to make life more difficult how about having both a continuous loop and a switching section.

Not everyone at the trains shows are modelers.  Many just want to see trains run.

If you could incorporate a loop, even one with a tight radius, and then run some switching operations in, out, or around the loop.



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 Posted: Thu Dec 7th, 2017 07:00 pm
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Milocomarty
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Richard, depending on the layout size it will not cost 45k to run trains automatic. I started to work on Mara Harbor and think I can run it with a computer if I have a opertor shortage. As Michael stated, people like so see trains run on shows. That's what they pay for. Thus far I spend 89.95 euro on the occupancy detectors and I tink MH can run on that. My switches already controled with Cobalt IP digital machines I just throw down a couple of meters of wire..that's all. And I believe the NCE system already can talk to your computer. Point besides that it gives your son and the 8 year a lot of fun to go to shows with you.



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 Posted: Sat Dec 9th, 2017 08:28 pm
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Richard Hughes
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Michel,Milo: Thank you for your replies.I have decided to run the layout with 2 NCE wired throttles. If my son wants to add JMRI,he can buy it and i will hook it up.I"M looking at a track diagram where the trains run point to point.When they leave from the right,they can take the rear track and come into town on the passing track.After switching,they can leave on the front track going back to where they started.There might be a simple way to use JMRI and make the trains go back and forth under auto control.I don't want a back drop to have to put up at shows.I want to have the train wind in between the buildings and trees to hide them from view.I agree with the thought of not having a loop to run on.I think it will be a little different to have trains going back and forth from one end to another.Im gaining more room in the shop for the layout.A good friend came over to talk about getting a table saw.I decided just to give him mind and have more room in the shop.Im now thinking 24' long and turning it and having another 12'.The next step is to start building modules and design a track plan.Thank you,Rick

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 Posted: Sun Dec 10th, 2017 12:00 am
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jtrain
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Forgot to mention that you could have a temporary oval if you wanted at shows. But as discussed in the other thread, you simply don't have room for a loop when at home.

Either way, I would first build the switching layout, then add a temporary oval if you feel the need to.  So long as trains are moving, people get what they paid for at a show.

--James



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 Posted: Sun Dec 10th, 2017 02:04 am
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oztrainz
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Hi Richard,
Would you consider an unsceniced fold up loop.
If yes have a look at http://www.freerails.com/view_post.php?post_id=70275 and we can talk further if required,



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 Posted: Sun Dec 10th, 2017 04:58 am
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jtrain
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What Oz said.  You could do reverse loops too if you're up for the wiring.

--James



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