I am posting this to the General even though I plan to build in in G Gauge as the idea may be useful in all scales. The idea is to test for 'S' curve problems with the equipment you plan to use on a layout.
I plan to use LGB and Piko track. The curves and turnouts are LGB R5 2318 mm, 7 Ft 7 In radius. There will be a Piko 320 mm piece between the curved section of a turnout and the next turnout or curved section. The straight section on the R5 turnouts and 600 mm and between the far left and the next turnout and the far right and the next turnout is a 600 mm section. The 30 Deg crossing is a Piko as both tracks are 320 mm while on an LGB 30 Deg crossing one is 300 mm and the other is 320 mm.
The track centers work out to 16 scale feet for Fn3, 1 to 20.32 scale and about 23 feet for 1 to 29 scale.
In the bottom curves on the far left and right there is 1800 mm of straight. The middle two straights are 1200mm.
The overall size of the outline is 25 Ft by 50 Ft. In HO scale with 36 In radius it should be 8 Ft by 16 Ft and with 24 In radius it should be 7 Ft by 14 Ft.
If you start with the bottom of the 4 straight tracks at the top of the drawing and number them 1 to 4, you place your train on track 2 and run it clockwise around the test track.
Set the far left and right turnouts for track 1 and run through it.
Set the far left turnout for track 2. Set the crossover to go from track 2 to track 3. Set the far right turnout and the next one for track 3. Run through this area.
Set the far left turnout and the next one for track 3. Set the crossover to go from track 3 to track 2. Set the far right turnout for track 2. Run though this area.
Set the far left and the next turnout and the far right and next turnout for track 4. Run through this area.
This should cover all possible 'S' curve problems. Am I missing one?
Last edited on Thu Jan 4th, 2018 10:56 pm by NathanO
Unless you're running really long trains, I don't see any problems with that plan. The best way to avoid running off the track on S curves is to have easements and run trains slowly.
You could save yourself some money and alignment headaches by getting rid of that double crossover, however. Those sidings aren't terribly long in F scale. Alternatively, the double crossover might be more useful between the main and the longer siding rather than the yard track.
The idea behind this is to 'test' for 'S' curve problems with peoples equipment. Once they have been identified then we can build a layout that reduces the problems after learning what the problems are.