Help Please....design a dbl-deck layout in its own Hand-House shed

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Access Ladder

Interestingly I already had in my possession a special step ladder that will allow me to climb a couple of steps and reach over to the back sides of the upper deck tracks. Turns out it just does just fit under the bottom deck at 40 inches off the floor. And it has a built in 'handle' that can be used to grip or lean against when accessing that upper deck.
I just have to make sure I build the lower deck shelf high enough to accept this ladder.
DSCF1487.jpg
DSCF1490.jpg
DSCF1488.jpg

I'm currently evaluating whether to build the lower deck shelf of plywood, foam, or a sandwich structure of those 2 materials.
 

beiland

Active Member
Turn Outs, Templates, Updated Layout Dwg

It has been suggested that I utilize some full size paper templates of the track components (turnouts, etc) to help with my layout plan. I'm going to give that a try. So I went looking for some of my turnouts, etc.



I found many of my turnouts from my stowage trailer,...all but my Peco ones. I also discovered some full scale templates for Peco turnouts. As you might see I have a large number of very nice Fleischmann Pro-Track ones.
turnout inventory1.jpg
turnout inventory 2.jpg


Thought I would run a quick experiment to see if I could duplicated one portion of my layout design with actual turnouts I had in stock.
Updated the layout dwg first , with some scaling lines(boxes),....each box represents 1 foot (12 inches) in full size.
DSCF1550, 800p wide.jpg

And here are a couple of examples of the entrance tracks to the freight yard
(BTW that piece of plywood they are laid out on is only about 36" wide, rather than the 53" I plan on using on the layout,...per the dwg).
turnout arrangement 1.jpg
 
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beiland

Active Member
Couple more photos of those
turnout arrangement 2.jpg
turnout arragement 3.jpg

(BTW that piece of plywood they are laid out on is only about 3 feet wide, rather than the 53" I have on the layout dwg).
 

tootnkumin

Active Member
Staff member
As a rough idea it looks OK, but you need the bigger width to be accurate. It's amazing how things can change shape once all joints are firmly pressed together and all tracks properly aligned. I can see that once that is done, the spacing between yard tracks is going to close up from what you have there.
 

tootnkumin

Active Member
Staff member
I was wrong on one point, you do have enough width there to try it out accurately, because it will all narrow up once done. Better to be safe than sorry, especially when using fixed length track.
 
Updated Track Plan for loop and frieght yard entrance

....
And here are a couple of examples of the entrance tracks to the freight yard
(BTW that piece of plywood they are laid out on is only about 36" wide, rather than the 53" I plan on using on the layout,...per the dwg).
Before I take this cardboard mock-up down in order to install the 'masonite' wall coverings, I figured I would do an update on the double track loops I now want around the turntable area, and a little more accurate model of the turnouts leading into the freight yard.

DSCF1587, ps.jpg

DSCF1586, ps.jpg

DSCF1584. ps.jpg

DSCF1588, ps.jpg

(I eliminated the dbl 'Y' I had in the first edition, and included a second dbl-slip down at the end for that last combo turnout)
 
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A few thoughts regarding the last month's worth of posts.
Aisle width/center island - I thought that you resolved the aisle width with the full-sized mock-ups and determined that you would fit easily. I can't believe that you gave in to your detractors!:confused: That is unless you tried the mock up some more and that made you change your mind. The pictures in post #65 looked doable. Regardless, with narrow aisles and your height, even with the 20" deck spacing that I remember; you will need to be seated in order to view the lower deck, as you posted somewhere, so just be sure that your chair has enough clearance.
Double track on RH peninsula - Do the math, double track, turntable and roundhouse will not fit. Your thoughts on using a shortened roundhouse is a reasonable solution given that you just want to display your engines. I doubt that it will all fit even with single track.
Ten gallons RR in five gallon layout - You have posted hopes of including the turntable/roundhouse, yard, wharf, steel operations, coal, mountainous regions, bridges over rails and roads and maybe some things that I cannot remember. It is going to be a bit difficult to make it all fit. Difficult but not impossible.
Time - Now, please don't take the following as negative because it isn't meant to be. Stop overthinking and get on with building at least the lower level. You have posted somewhere that you only spend part of the year in Florida and that you spend part in Thailand. Then you go and spend a few weeks in Nova Scotia (I am jealous); when will you have the time for this endeavor? Unless you have a very tolerant wife!!!:rolleyes:
I'll go away for a while.

Willie
 
A few thoughts regarding the last month's worth of posts.
Aisle width/center island - I thought that you resolved the aisle width with the full-sized mock-ups and determined that you would fit easily. I can't believe that you gave in to your detractors!:confused: That is unless you tried the mock up some more and that made you change your mind. The pictures in post #65 looked doable.
Yes, the aisles would have accommodated my moving around, but I would be standing most of the time, or just setting at the very head of the peninsula. I would not have had even a small workbench inside the 'layout room'. These thoughts weighed on my mind while I was up in Canada.

I decided to do a modification to the original plan where I reduced the size of that peninsula. In doing so I gained extra width on both of the side shelves. In one particular case on the right hand side, that allows me to get that turntable/freight yard scene all in (the one I just posted). I thought a lot about the extra room I was gaining for both myself, and a small workbench inside the perimeter of the decks around the wall. I came back from Canada and did the modification to my cardboard mock-up, and that convinced me I had made the right decision.



Double track on RH peninsula - Do the math, double track, turntable and roundhouse will not fit. Your thoughts on using a shortened roundhouse is a reasonable solution given that you just want to display your engines. I doubt that it will all fit even with single track.
I was having doubts myself, and that's part of the reason I did that latest mock-up I just posted. Do you see the 2 radius lines in this photo,..those denote the C/L of a 23" radius inner loop track, while the outer track is a 25.5" radius one......

(articulated steam will be confined to the outer loop, while diesels can use both)


The brown circle of cardboard in the photo represents the 18.5" turntable pit.

The shaded area in the layout's corner behind the turntable and stretching half way down that side to the 'Mt Royal' train station is a removable 'city-scape structure' fashioned of artistic foam board that sits over the double tracks. The 'roundhouse' itself is only a front-faced structure probable 3-4 inches deep.




Ten gallons RR in five gallon layout - You have posted hopes of including the turntable/roundhouse, yard, wharf, steel operations, coal, mountainous regions, bridges over rails and roads and maybe some things that I cannot remember. It is going to be a bit difficult to make it all fit. Difficult but not impossible.
You are correct. I have so many structures I would like to include, but I will have to make some decisions as I go along as to what I might be able to include. I'm just trying out ideas on some major ones as they need space and feeder tracks.



Time - Now, please don't take the following as negative because it isn't meant to be. Stop overthinking and get on with building at least the lower level.
I know what you are saying, but time spent planning may well be time well spent. Its already caused me to alter my plan,...and I'm not sure I like the new track plan as much as the old one.

Funny thing is I may have to do considerable work on the upper level deck before I install the lower level,...accessibility. (and I don't even have its track plan laid out yet)

You have posted somewhere that you only spend part of the year in Florida and that you spend part in Thailand. Then you go and spend a few weeks in Nova Scotia (I am jealous); when will you have the time for this endeavor? Unless you have a very tolerant wife!!!:rolleyes:
I'll go away for a while.
I have a tolerate wife as she is living in Thailand right now.
 
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cajon

Active Member
Interestingly I already had in my possession a special step ladder that will allow me to climb a couple of steps and reach over to the back sides of the upper deck tracks. Turns out it just does just fit under the bottom deck at 40 inches off the floor. And it has a built in 'handle' that can be used to grip or lean against when accessing that upper deck.
I just have to make sure I build the lower deck shelf high enough to accept this ladder.
View attachment 63265
View attachment 63266
View attachment 63267

I'm currently evaluating whether to build the lower deck shelf of plywood, foam, or a sandwich structure of those 2 materials.
There is a step ladder that you can lay on over a layout w/o having to put your hands down on it.
 
Lower Deck/Shelf of my Layout

Here is an interesting illustration of what I have in mind, except this example utilizes wood extensions added to the wall brackets.





I like the really clean look of this arrangement, and the lack of big thick wood framing structure one might have if utilizing L-girder. or open grid, or cookie cutter support of that shelf.

Well one asked, how about attaching the risers to this arrangement? I reply, can't the risers be fashioned of foam blocks, or similar 'blocking' to attain the heights of tracks desired? And can't the depressions be cut out of the flat plywood (or foam) deck where desired. Its all be done in foam board construction.

Since my lower deck/shelves are considerable 'wider/deeper' in some areas, I want to replace those wood beam extensions shown above with metal beams,...attached to my wall brackets. The choice of the metal extension beam will depend on the depth of the shelf at any particular location. I think I would choose this angle iron for the very large width areas under the two loops at the entrance, and perhaps under the peninsula loop.....



As the deck/shelf narrows down I would chose these alum square tubes (probably the white colored ones since they are of a greater wall thickness....(probably only need single tube, rather than 2 side by side, as it is quite strong)



For this lower level my subroadbed will likely be a good quality 1/2" thick plywood firmly attached to those alum beams,...such as to decrease its chance of warping, and to add a 'skin like' support to the whole structure of 'beam & skin'.
 
Staging Tracks

I want to put some staging tracks under the freight yard side of the layout. Originally I had been thinking of 4 tracks side-by-side in the triangular area of the wall bracket.

Forgive this depiction as the tracks are upside down from what I intend. This illustrates the width available for 4 tracks.








Now I have found a way to add more staging tracks,...maybe 8. Simply add another one of those square sectioned alum beams to the wall bracket at a lower level,...





The use of this metal beam substructure results in a staging area that is not as far under the surface of the lower deck roadbed, thus it might climb to that upper level with less grade, and perhaps without a helix?
 

wombat457

Active Member
Staff member
beiland,

Your bench work looks great but was wondering what you used for your fascia? I didn't see in the thread where that was mentioned but it looks like either luan or masonite.
 
Upper Deck/Shelf of my Layout

Since I discovered those square tube alum extrusions that are widely utilized in housing and commercial building hand railings, I've become fascinated with their use for shelf layout building. They are plenty strong to support the upper level deck/shelves of our layouts, particularly since these shelves are likely 18” or less in depth.

They are applicable whether utilizing foam or plywood subroadbed shelf material. They are stiff enough on their own to be utilized in a cantilevered manner, or certainly in a supporting beam manner.

I started out considering how I might 'attach' those square tube beams to the wall studs. I've come up with several alternatives. The most minimal method might just be utilizing these small steel corner brackets with one arm inserted into the hollow tube's end. If more strength might be required, these small brackets can be doubled up like shown....




Should some still like even more strength I found these solid steel shelf brackets (with no obtrusive diagonal brace) at a store called Tractor Supply..... (new ones were label as Stanley brand)




With thoughts of keeping the deck/shelf bracket support structure at a minimum visually, I considered the idea of some hanging supports from the ceiling. I was thinking of some sort of fishing line, or fishing leader wire attached to the outer ends of those small box alum beams and up to small eyelet hooks screwed into the ceiling studs. I wonder if this upper deck/shelf was reasonably rigid 'plate wise', maybe only every other beam need be attached to the ceiling?
 



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