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Thread: Help Me Plan My Layout

  1. Default Help Me Plan My Layout

    Hi All,

    I am new to the hobby. I bought a second hand layout last December, the Atlas plan of the Great Eastern Trunk Railway. I got hooked and decided to build a real Rail Road in the basement. It is currently unfinished but not for long. The drywall and other materials were purchased today, and work began this afternoon. A number of members on this forum helped me plan a benchwork plan to fit the basement. Now I am asking for some input on track placement and other features that would work in the space provided.

    Can you give me some input on general track and feature placement options or concepts that would work on the layout below? All ideas welcome!!!

    Givens: Room size 23' long by 12 feet wide, basement space, HO scale, Room is empty save for book shelves on south wall.


    Druthers:
    Pacific Northwest theme Great Northern Railway, Steam, Diesel, Freight, Passenger
    Not picky about the era
    I would like to run a continuous main line from one peninsula and back
    Possibly a mountain on the left peninsula with an over and under bridge crossing
    A switching yard along the wall at the top of the layout
    A loco turn table and round house somewhere
    Minimum 30" radius on main line

    In general where should I place the main line track?
    Can you recommend yard configuration that would work along the wall at the top of the layout?
    Where should I put the loco turn table and round house?
    What track or other features would be cool on this layout?
    Clarification: The object on the peninsula on the right is a scenic divider which may or may not be used in the layout.

    Thanks much,

    Greg

    Click image for larger version. 

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  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jun 2012
    Location
    Caboolture in SE Queensland, Australia
    Posts
    7,219

    Default

    I've taken the liberty of copying and printing off an enlarged view of "the plan" as it stands and will use it to make some suggestions at first about the main line. A disclaimer here. "Anything I may say or suggest may not be used against me and may only be taken as suggestions, are not written in stone and can be changed or rejected by the recipient, Final choices/decisions are the sole right of the threads O.P.". Seeing you have shown an interest in the great north west, you must visit Chet's (Montanan) layout. Sure to inspire you. http://www.modelrailroadforums.com/f...=Logan+Central
    CONVICTED SERIAL KIDDER

    I'm lost. I've gone to look for me. If I should return before I get back, please ask me to wait.

  3. #3

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    I second the suggestion to view Chet's layout. With the space you have available, the possibilities are endless.
    I survived the Penn Central

  4. Default

    Quote Originally Posted by tootnkumin View Post
    I've taken the liberty of copying and printing off an enlarged view of "the plan" as it stands and will use it to make some suggestions at first about the main line. A disclaimer here. "Anything I may say or suggest may not be used against me and may only be taken as suggestions, are not written in stone and can be changed or rejected by the recipient, Final choices/decisions are the sole right of the threads O.P.". Seeing you have shown an interest in the great north west, you must visit Chet's (Montanan) layout. Sure to inspire you. http://www.modelrailroadforums.com/f...=Logan+Central
    I have seen that video of the layout. It is awesome. Can't wait to see your ideas. Don't worry, nothing will be held against you. I am truly grateful for the help.

    Quote Originally Posted by WJLI26 View Post
    I second the suggestion to view Chet's layout. With the space you have available, the possibilities are endless.
    That is kind of my problem, I need help narrowing down the possibilities.

  5. #5

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    There's already a gazillion MR plans that have been posted thru the internet including this, other MR forums & Google. Doing a search using your listed druthers, should giver you plenty of plans to look thru.
    Andy Jackson
    Santa Fe Springs CA
    ATSF/LAJ Fan & Modeler

  6. Default

    Instead of a peninsula to peninsula configuration, would all around the walls work, or a variation on that? There are some great ideas for those kinds of layouts, ranging from as small as about 9 x 11 feet to as big as or bigger than the room you are working in. And it's easier to get wider curves in an around-the-walls configuration while still having plenty of room to move around in side the layout space. Even with that you could still include a peninsula somewhere if you want the distinctive "going around the mountain" sort of look that can give you....My understanding is that the excellent layout that Montanan (Chet) has is more of an around-the walls configuration.
    Erik

    DairyStateDad
    General Superintendent, Wausau & Lake Superior Ry. Co.

    My layout progress thread here
    My blog (only sporadically updated): Blogging on the Railroad

    Big wheels roll through fields / Where sunlight streams / Oh meet me in a land of hope and dreams
    --Bruce Springsteen

    Overthinking is my superpower!

  7. Default

    After 13 years of living in our house I am finally getting around to finishing the basement. I bought a second hand train set over Christmas it is on an 4x8 sheet of plywood. Anyway I got hooked on model trains and decided to build a real train layout down stairs. Then the wife says why don't you finish the basement first? See how some projects just keep getting bigger as you go along? Then she says make sure you put sound insulation in the basement and in the basement bedroom too. I don't want to hear your trains up stairs. How do I let myself get roped into this stuff? I think it is because she is way smarter than me. She just waits for me to turn a corner then wham hits me with another one.

    Anyway we picked up some drywall the other day and the wife and I carried it down to the basement. That was not easy. She earned a gold star for that no doubt about it. I put the insulation over the basement bed room yesterday. I hate working with fiberglass bat insulation, that stuff takes a week to work its way out of your skin. Today I finished the insulation and started hanging the sheet rock. I have a long way to go, but it is coming along. The pay off for me will be when I start building the benchwork for the layout.

    Click image for larger version. 

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  8. Default

    Good on you that you've got the skills to hang the drywall yourself. I'm marginally handy around the house, but that's way above my pay grade. We just had my layout room done and hired it out -- but it's a much smaller space than you've got, so it only cost an arm, not an arm and a leg....
    Erik

    DairyStateDad
    General Superintendent, Wausau & Lake Superior Ry. Co.

    My layout progress thread here
    My blog (only sporadically updated): Blogging on the Railroad

    Big wheels roll through fields / Where sunlight streams / Oh meet me in a land of hope and dreams
    --Bruce Springsteen

    Overthinking is my superpower!

  9. Default

    Wow! A wife that helped carry the drywall downstairs. She's a keeper!. An old trick that my father-in-law taught me about fiberglass insulation is to use some old stockings or pantyhose as a washrag to get it off. He was in the demolition business and dealt with it on a daily basis. If I remember correctly, it worked for me 40+ years ago. Actually your wife's suggestion to finish the basement first is a good one, as far as the train room is concerned. Nothing like trying to hang lights and drywall above benchwork, with or without track. An early suggestion for the roundhouse is to locate it on the left peninsula where you have access from both sides. How low are the bookshelves on the left, and how often would you need to access them? With a little slimming down of the left peninsula, you might be able to fit a narrow staging yard along the left wall and use the bookshelves for static storage and display of your fleet. That is if you are like me and "overbuy" rolling stock. LOL
    Looking forward to your progress.

    Willie

  10. Default

    You will be fired up when you build the bench work, I know I was and still am ( http://www.modelrailroadforums.com/f...Midland-Layout ) This is my progress from start to where I am now. Do yourself a favor, make sure your radius are big enough to handle the equipment you buy and plan to run. That was my old layout problem. I like the passenger sets and my layout barely could handle them, they looked funny running around a tight radius.

    Once you start laying the track, as I am doing now, you will change your design a few times. As I lay the track down I keep coming up with more and more ideas. That's what makes this hobby enjoyable though.
    Eric

    " Those who say it can't be done should get out of the way of those doing it"

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