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Thread: Interesting track plan, Tupper Lake & Faust Junction

  1. #41
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    Default Balloon Loops at Helix End of Layout

    To clarify, I am concentrating at this time on the helix end of the layout, and the associated balloon loops of the double track mains,....NOT the rest of the layout, NOR tracks other than the mainlines, and NOT the 'configuration' of the mainlines in the other portions of the layout.

    As Dave has posted,...

    The layout would be two laps of double track around the room , one on each level. At the bump out one end on each level would go into a balloon loop, and the other end would go into a double track helix.

    Since its a glorified dogbone, once the trains are speed matched, they can run forever around the loop. Since it's a dogbone, every train will appear to operate in both directions, so I could constantly have the trains passing each other.
    With only a double track main around the room, the benchwork can be as wide or as narrow as I liked. It will leave a lot of room for scenery or buildings.
    The balloon loops would go above and below the helix track, (BE notes: both inside the same 'external housing' I will build for the helix)
    LOWER DECK
    In this particular first iteration, the balloon loop is shown in a blue color, and it is a simple level loop of track that connects the 2 mainlines running down the left side of the layout. Note there is also one turnout on this loop that feeds a track running to the center peninsula (similar to the original Tupper Lake design)

    On the other side (right side) of the layout these 2 mainlines become elevated to subsequently fly over some tracks below, and to enter their double-track helix phase. Note here that there is a track bearing off of one of these mainlines that subsequently joins back into the one of the mainlines on the left side. This track will provide for an 'escape' for a train to avoid the helix, and simply run continuously around the lower level.
    Click image for larger version. 

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    UPPER DECK
    The upper deck is generally about 20” above the lower deck. It's balloon loop here is shown in red. It was purposefully brought back thru that shed back wall as far to the left as possible so it might have good 'exposed' track on the interior for a 'reason' (undefined at this moment). It also is provided with a 'connection track' so that trains might avoid the helix, and run continuously around this top level.
    Note that 2 mainline tracks arrive to this top deck at a 16” high height, then rise up to the 20” height of the top level in general.
    Click image for larger version. 

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    Summary: The two balloon loops are at 0” & 20” respectively. The helix track itself rises 12” in 3 turns. The first 4”, and the last 4”, (8” total) is taken care of by the 'approaching tracks' on the 2 decks themselves.
    Within the helix portion the trains will climb counter clockwise, and descend clockwise, regardless of which double-track they are on.

  2. #42
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    Default Helix Elevations

    ...quick sketch

  3. #43
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    Default Accessing My Staging Tracks, Problem that needs Solving

    This is a dilemma that has been bugging me for quite some time. Suggestions would be welcomed.

    I want a staging track area of at least 8 tracks wide (maybe more for multiple train consist I have), and my thoughts were to place those 8+ tracks under the long, lower shelf on the right hand side of my layout. The tracks would be mounted on a firm piece of plywood shelf that would be supported by the metal wall brackets as shown in this photo and sketch. I figure I can get away with at minimum an 8” clearance under the bottom top deck plywood subroadbed down to that staging shelf., and particularly since my shelf right above the staging will not be real deep.
    Click image for larger version. 

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    Click image for larger version. 

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    My dilemma is how to get an access track to that staging area? At first I thought just make an addition to the helix that would drop down in some manner to that staging level. But what I don't like about that is it puts my helix circles too close to the ground. My helix structure is an 'outdoor affair' and I don't fancy getting that low to the lawn/dirt/whatever to have a look up inside the 'cylinder'. In fact, even if it was an indoor helix I would not fancy playing 'limbo' to go up inside the helix to fix things.

    So I began to think of numerous ways I might drop an access track down along the opposite long side (left side) of the layout, or down along that helix end of the shed. I can't make use of the other end wall of the shed, as that is my doorway into the layout, and will be bridged by 2 removable bridges (upper and lower) across that opening.

    So lets assume I try to drop a single access track down along one of the walls of the shed. It needs to drop at a minimum, the 3/4” thickness of the plywood subroadbed plus the 3/16” thickness of the metal bracket supporting that plywood, plus 3.5” to clear the tallest cars that would be staged, plus the 3/16” height of the Atlas track,.....total approx 4.6”.

    If I were to accept a 4% grade in this access track that means I need 115” of horizontal trackage to get that 4.6 inch drop in the access track (4% grade).
    My metal shelf brackets are spaced every 24 inches along the walls (stud spacing), so I need to 'interupt' 4 of them (create 5 spaces of 24”) to get that drop in the access track.

    That is NOT an appealing thought! Those metal wall brackets are being utilized in a cantilevered manner to support that upper deck, and thus require their integrity in a whole manner, rather than cut out to provide a drop in that staging access track.

    This is my main dilemma,...how to 'dip' that access staging track down under lower deck of the layout plan, while not disturbing too much of the lower deck's support structure??

  4. #44
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    Default Interesting Idea submitted by Designer of Layouts

    Byron
    It always seems hard for people to understand, but there is a very good way to address these kinds of issues. The lowest layout support (grid, brackets, L-girder joists, whatever) goes below staging. Then staging and the visible deck are supported by risers from that level. There’s no need to “interrupt” anything.



    Risers. Is there anything they can't do?

    Byron Cuyama
    Layout Design Gallery
    I'm going to have to give this serious consideration.

  5. #45
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    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by beiland View Post
    I'm going to have to give this serious consideration.
    Just remember to allow enough vertical space so one can reach in and extract derailed cars on the rear most track. Nothing more annoying and time wasting than having to remove all the trains/cars on the front tracks just to get to the rear tracks.

  6. #46
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    Default

    Two things I have in mind there IronHorseman,...1) allow for 8 inches clearance between bottom of lower deck, and 2) staging tracks NOT recessed back under the lower deck much at all (lower deck on that side of layout is pretty shallow in depth).

  7. #47
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    Default

    @Byron,
    I'm thinking I may only have to modify my lower deck supports, as you suggested, on one side only?

    The side that contains the actual 8 tracks of staging is already well below the lower deck/shelf of the layout, ...so it could still have the type of support that I originally had in mind.
    Long plywood sub-shelf slit to fit the metal brackets attached to the wall studs,...like this..



    And placed at such a height to just barely clear those plastic stowage containers stacked 3 high....


    Could possible extend out to accommodate 10 tracks of staging??


    It's the other side of the layout that would need your modification in order to accept that 'descending grade access track' needed to reach the subterranean staging.

    Interestingly these two sides might be interchangeable.

  8. #48
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    Default Sub-Helix to the Staging Tracks

    Yesterday I was sketching up a revised dwg to just clarify those bracket locations below the bottom deck(s) that might be used to support the staging track decks as well,....result....


    BUT
    While doing this I decided to re-look at the possibility of utilizing the helix structure to gain access to the the staging tracks. What if I decided to try to add two loops to the bottom of my planned outdoor helix to take the trains down to the staging level? Would it really be so difficult to access if I were to have to get inside the 'helix cylinder',...and yes I know I will have to at times.

    I had a 48" circular metal ring that I placed up on the top of three stacked milk cartons. After all, if you look back in this discussion you will find that I had planned on providing enough clearance under my 'staging deck' for a stack of 3 of these plastic cartons to be utilized as slide-in-slide-out storage bins. So my 'staging helix' would be at this level.




    Even with this 48" circle I had PLENTY of room to get up inside the helix. Now imagine if my circle is closer to 60" (30R helix) one I plan on. I am now convinced that I will NOT have to play limbo to get at the interior of this lower helix level.

    And now I could have staging tracks on both sides of the layout while sticking with my relatively simplified metal brackets to hold up my lower decks/shelves all around. I could even have staging down the center of the peninsula. HAPPY
    Last edited by beiland; 02-17-2018 at 10:06 AM.

  9. #49
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    Default Helix, Staging Track Access....error

    Last night went to bed believing I had solved my problem with access to the staging tracks,.... via the use of another lower level addition to the helix structure.

    This morning I woke up realizing I had forgotten to consider an important aspect. I can't have both the track feeding this downward spiral to the staging area, AND the bottom balloon loop track, entering the helix at the same height.

    Back to the drawing board !
    But, I am still a renewed fan of utilizing the helix to get to the staging tracks.

    Just have to figure out the best way to enter this sub-helix?

  10. #50
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    Default Steel Mill Site Location & Elevated Stone Arch Bridge Trackage

    I have pretty much decided that the steel mill scene will be located in this right hand corner of the bottom deck, and the Balt city scene will be located in the left had corner.

    I have modified the elevated double track plan in front of the steel scene to try and give the space behind this double track more room to accommodate the scene. This also makes the track curves in this are more broad in curvature.


    This double mainline track, and the single 'connector track' branching off of it (denoted by arrows)
    will be elevated by a stone arch 'bridge' similar to one that exist in the Balt area,....






    This arch 'bridge' will allow for passages under itself in several locations including the lower loop track to the peninsula area, and hopefully several tracks to the steel scene in the its background and maybe brick factory in the foreground.

    I am having problems fitting the steel scene in. The footprint of the blast furnace itself is just too large, ....a rectangle shape almost 27" long. I could put it in 'parallel' with the stone arch bridge, but then there is almost no way to include any service tracks to it.

    I thought about sectioning it up so I might just include a portion of its face, BUT I would NOT cut up my completely assembled and weathered blast furnace!! Maybe I could find a really damaged blast furnace to kit bash??...Not likely.

    So what if I were to make a background painting that looked like this...


    ......then make some tracks out in front between the backdrop and the arch bridge. I should be able to make that backdrop image fit in the square corner just like this real life model structure does??

    I might even be able to make a small 'switching' area here for steel related cars and locos I have.
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails Click image for larger version. 

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