Tuesday, December 20, 2011

More Detail on Staging Concept

So I wanted to throw up a little bit more on what my line of thinking was when I wrote the post this morning. Here's how I envision the staging/transition between decks working:

as you can see, staging will run against the back of the level all the way around. In the configuration I have above, I can get 4, 200"+ tracks, good enough to slot 8 trains, leaving the 5th one free for loop running. In the upper right, just after the yard throat would begin the 4" climb up. With the length of run, the grade there will be about 1.6%. On the peninsula, I can average about the same, but because some areas will hold a yard/switching functions, the grades will top out at 2.0% in some places. This will get the line along the left wall at 4" where the yard complex will begin. The line will be level the rest of the way around the walls to the helix.

One good thing is that when I built the benchwork for most of the layout, I had 15" depths on the bottom level around the walls. This will now allow me to basically do 12" scenes with some space behind to run these ramps or provide some reach in and/or peaking space if I desire.

Hold the Phone - Finding Inspiration at 1 AM

I was looking through some updates of other layouts and MRP after MNF last night and had an ahah moment so ignore everything I've said in my last few posts. I've been inspired by Shaun and his layout and staging loop. I was at the point over the last few days I was ready to just tear everything down and look at building something quick, easy and cheap. Looking at Shaun's layout, I was contemplating dropping to a single level around the walls with center peninsula and a lift-out and staging underneath. Well, in trying not to upset my wife and dismantle everything I've done, I've figured out I don't need the lift-out and can still have the multi-level layout. I just need to reverse the bottom part of the G shape of the layout, like this plan I had drawn up for a single level layout:

I'll add a 3rd loop to the inside of the helix that will be used strictly to connect staging yards going down, like the staging yard on Model Railroader's MR&T on each level, 4" or so below the primary trackwork and entered on the left-bottom. This arrangement will actually allow me to close off the layout room from the workshop/woodshop side of the basement. I'm going to play some with the entrance/exit of the helix to make sure the curvature and arrange doesn't look too funky since the staging loop will be the inside track.

Saturday, December 17, 2011

Staging Decision

So after much playing around with the space, I've decided I'm going to go with the stub ended L-shaped staging.

Unfortunately, this inverts the direction of traffic flow so I'm going to have to readjust the design slightly or just build the yard and figure out everything else. The deciding factor was the last few days of moving some furniture pieces from the workshop on the other side up the basement stairs (which come down right into that corner). I had also had to take a door and my ladder down and up the stairs. With the refrigerator at the bottom of the stairs, I need as much space as possible in that corner to be able to swing and adjust. Having just the mockup of the helix base there made me realize that I'd have the real possibility of always knocking into it. With the staging, I'll have more room. Of course, I had thought of tearing down everything I had build and going with a simpler plan, something like I had read in MRH and the gentleman is building here. I'm not ready to go to that extreme, yet, but it is something I thought about.


Welcome to the my Conrail Model Railroad site. I will document the research, design, construction and operations of my N-scale model railroad based on Conrail's Ft. Wayne Line in Ohio.

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