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Euro modeling in the Seattle/Portland area?

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Railwriter Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 01 Jul 2015 at 2:54pm
Hello Mitch,
 
I would strongly urge you to consider a hidden spiral or helix to help the trains change elevation. There are kits for these or you can build your own.  For example, you can have the visible section of your layout focus on a relatively steep mainline climb to a summit station -- but then use the hidden helix to get the trains back to the starting elevation, or v.v.
 
Also make sure you have a substantial hidden -- yet accessible -- staging yard.
 
The one concept that has stuck with me after reading a lot on layout design and construction is that the visible part or parts of a layout are a stage on which things happen.  But, for these things to happen -- including passenger trains making station stops, freight trains switching industries, etc. -- you also need a substantial off-stage portion.
 
Having trains appear and disappear adds interest -- and it also keeps all of your visible layout space from containing tracks.
 
You probably also want to have at least one substantial branchline or spur that dead-ends at a smaller station, where trains have to change direction.  That adds a lot of interesting switching.
 
Just some thoughts.
 
-- Ernest
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Mitch Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 01 Jul 2015 at 4:15pm
Thank You, and yes I understand about hidden areas.  My shipmate is also working on track plans with me.  I made more measurements in my room.  I plan to cover, block out, the 2 sets of 2 windows and paint the entire top half of the room sky blue.  I am also planning on building a false wall in front of the door to the garage so I will save that access, but it will be behind a backdrop.  I will have to work my track plan around that.  I will be moving the Foosball Table to another room and I am getting rid of the large Air Hockey game.  

I plan to build the layout in stages as I think it would be overwhelming to expect to do everything at once.  Moreover I do not have enough track for what I expect to do.   My Main Station will only be able to handle trains with long cars of 3 or 4.  I plan to operate older equipment with shorter cars.  I like the idea of a small station dead end and the engine will have to unhook and run around and pull the other way.  I have a few small tank engines that can do this service.

I also plan to move my train case as I want this room for operation only... and my computer desk.  

Thanks again for your advice and interest... now off to dance class and back to the ship... today's lesson is "Quick Step" !

Mitch Thumbs Up
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Mitch Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 15 Jul 2015 at 3:58pm
Thanks Guys... just home for a few days.  Then back to sea for 3 weeks...then some vacation.

I have a few restrictions in the room and I think I will start out small layout with C track then decide what specific buildings I need to develop my layout.

So my theme will start out with early German Provincial RR's, cars will be smaller and I want to showcase my Kaiser's Train... I bought this set a few years ago on ebay and need to run the train.

I think I will stay in this Topic as I am not showcasing my layout yet...and I am in a club and I welcome any Marklin/Euro modelers to visit me to help plan, build or operate my layout.

Here is the room (left side) as you enter:

Room (rightside) looking in:

Here is the Kaiser's Train (digital model):

So I am just using some old doors now... I think they are the maximum size I can handle to set up (3' x 6'-08").  These are just for my rough layout to see what fits... I will have plywood cut to size when I decide how to proceed.

I will keep the door to the garage available for now so the track table will be 3 feet away from that door.

I do plan to have tracks under so I can store trains out of sight.  I also plan to come down both side of room but that will be in future... This is only day 1... I just removed the Air Hockey Game.

I think I want to make a sliding backdrop to cover the windows as I want them blocked when operating, but on days like today, it is nice to open the window. 

Mitch Smile

so... I am open to any comments and suggestions from one and all!




Edited by Mitch - 15 Jul 2015 at 4:01pm
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Mitch Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 16 Jul 2015 at 12:18pm
Next morning...

I only used the doors to see what I need... and I need more than 36 inches to turn around.  That curve is radius 1.   So I will be using a 4 foot at the ends for a turn around.  The center section will be 32 inches deep.  If I use my turntable it will be on the left by the windows as the right side I can create a hill as I have more wall height available.  I think I will block off the door to the garage and the trains on that side will be able to make a detour and come under the view-able layout for sidings and parking out of sight. 

Here is the turntable I bought from a local hobby shop that used to carry Maerklin but does not any more:
I have already a 6 stall Vollmer Roundhouse built, and the entire left side of my layout might just be a steam engine service area,  I can come deeper as I need and have 12 feet long wall to work with.

For the rest of the day I have 3 dance classes, then I go back to sea for 3 weeks...so more pencil and paper work.

Mitch
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Railwriter Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 16 Jul 2015 at 3:07pm
Mitch,
 
There is a small book that may help with track plan ideas:
 
100 Gleispläne (100 track plans), byJoachim M. Hill, published by Alba in Germany.
 
This is volume 1 of a series Kleine Modellbahn Reihe.
 
The original came out in 1969, though there were many later printings.  I have the 1977 version.
 
The books from this series show up often on eBay and other used book markets.
 
 
Though the text is in German, the drawings are the main content, and you can probably figure out the main points of each plan without knowing much German.
 
The main reason I suggest a German track plan book is that I have found track plans in American publications of limited value.  The general arrangement of stations and yards in Europe, particularly for smaller towns, tended to be quite different from those in the U.S.  Many smaller stations in Austria, Germany, and Switzerland were/are in mountenous terrain (good scenery for model railroads) with limited flat areas.  At the same time, mainline trains in Europe have always been much shorter than in the U.S., which affects the design of stations and yards.
 
If you buy this book on eBay (assuming there is a copy available) you could probably get it within ten days.
 
Though some of the plans are more suitable for a particular scale, each plan has the dimensions for that layout in HO, N, and TT -- in meters, of course, though those are easy enough to convert to U.S. measures.
 
You may also be able to find other European track plan books elsewhere, such as at Reynauld's.
 
Again, I think you will find European plan books more useful than those from the U.S.
 
-- Ernest
 
 
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Mitch Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 17 Jul 2015 at 12:34pm
Thank you as always, that is why I am posting here... I have an old track plan book that I plan to bring with me this trip...it is for M & K track. I will use it as a guide for my sectional track plan.

Also just received 6 German Steam Loco kits from a shop in Canada.  Made by Revell, I looked at LHS but they only have the Big Boy.  I also bought a Diesel loco kit from Revel several years ago.  I already have that on the ship.

5 of these steam engines are level 4, one is level 3.  I plan to build that model first.  There are 2 spures of black plastic, some small clear parts, one model has a sprue of red.  The molds look new and crisp.  I also belong to IPMS (International Plastic Modelers Society) and hope to show off some of these models at the next meeting!

Since I want to have a Steam Service Area this is a cheap way to increase my inventory as these kits are 25.00 each.  Of course they are static display and will not move.  But models of these would be from 250 to 750 dollars each for motorized and digital versions.


Maybe I will document the builds and post under Miscellaneous.

Mitch Big smile

PS: I bought the book when C track came out and M track was phased out...you can see it was reduced in price many times when I bought it!  It has some small layouts that might be a good start for me to practice building my scenery!
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Mitch Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 06 Oct 2015 at 10:33am
Train Show in Lynden, WA: (was on Saturday and Sunday, October 3 & 4, 2015.)

My Brawa DCC Powered DB local at the station with 3 cars... I ran this train the first day with 7 cars.

I ran a total of 5 different trains over the course of the 2 day show... at one time I had 3 trains on the track and was operating 2 at the same time.

I only found out about ETE (European Train Enthusiasts) at this show.  There is a chapter forming in the Pacific NW.  I plan to stay with my 4D modular group and also join in with the ETE group.  I also plan to join the Marklin club.  I was in that in the past and I believe it is better now and has more information that is valuable for me.

I will let you all know the next train show I will be at... In the mean time if anyone in the Pacific NW (Oregon, Washington and British Columbia),  is interested in operating with a club I suggest looking into the European Train Enthusiasts:

http://www.ete.org/

Mitch


Edited by Mitch - 06 Oct 2015 at 10:41am
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