Author Topic: Feeling the pull of the dark side  (Read 5440 times)

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MichaelT

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Feeling the pull of the dark side
« on: June 03, 2010, 11:19:25 AM »
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And I decided to just go with HO for now and see what happens. :)

In my 10x11' train room, I have decided to put in a small shortline railroad, loosely modeling the Arkansas Midland Railroad that serves the industrial area in my hometown, but back dating it to the mid 60's to use the motive power that I have on hand.



The small yard will represent a portion of the Jenks yard in North Little Rock, Ar. and the mainline connects to the AKMD with a wye on the southside of town. I'm not building the wye at this time, but having the straight extension to be used by the AKMD for storage until the mainline ops picks up the fulls and drops empties. Industries served in Jacksonville are a packaging company, a plastics products company, a small chemical plant, a pre-cast concrete facility, a cabinet manufacturer, and although it does not have rail access I'm adding an aluminum products company.

When the city local engine completes the setouts, pickups, and gets the full cars ready for the road engine, then the road engine can pickup and with an addition of a liftout section;



the road engine can now run continuous to anywhere along the railroad's route. Once the train gets to the next area, i.e. lets say Malvern Ar. for sake of argument, then the liftout can be removed again, and the Malvern businesses can be switched if needed, or the road engine can continue.

It may be a crude idea right now, and some changes will undoubtably occur, but I think it will give me the best of both PTP operations and continuous running when desired.

Benchwork is in place; tonight I'll build the liftout section and start laying roadbed for the track.

I'm going to use code 83 flex mostly, probably #6 minimum switch unless I need a #4 in one of the smaller customers.

Motive power will be GP35's, an RS3, a couple hold out 2-8-0 Connies, and no freight cars over 60' for now...possibly a little larger once I figure out my minimum radius curves on this thing.

Jesus is my engineer! :)

Philip H

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Re: Feeling the pull of the dark side
« Reply #1 on: June 03, 2010, 11:21:21 AM »
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Looks like you made a good choice here - an area you are familiar with, using existing rolling stock you have on hand, and good use of the space you have.  I especially like how the lift-out changes the character of the railroad.  Now go build it and soak up with pictures!
Philip H.
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Baton Rouge Southern RR - Mount Rainier Division.

"Yes there are somethings that are "off;" but hey, so what." ~ Wyatt

"I'm trying to have less cranial rectal inversion with this." - Ed K.

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MichaelT

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Re: Feeling the pull of the dark side
« Reply #2 on: June 03, 2010, 11:45:34 AM »
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Thanks Philip, actually I'm pretty stoked about this finally! With the continuous run addition that can almost give me the freedom (in theory anyway) to run a train just about anywhere...and set up in another town.

The idea of building excess structures has even come to mind, and swap out to give the "different towns" a different look.

Jesus is my engineer! :)

Philip H

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Re: Feeling the pull of the dark side
« Reply #3 on: June 03, 2010, 11:51:29 AM »
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Well, to hear Ed and Dave V tell it, the structures can almost stay in place and the rolling stock can swap - within reason - to create new eras at least. 

And once you get your custom decals made, we can discuss coordinated operations, since I model south Louisiana!
Philip H.
Chief Everything Officer
Baton Rouge Southern RR - Mount Rainier Division.

"Yes there are somethings that are "off;" but hey, so what." ~ Wyatt

"I'm trying to have less cranial rectal inversion with this." - Ed K.

"There's more to MRR life than the Wheezy & Nowheresville." C855B

ednadolski

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Re: Feeling the pull of the dark side
« Reply #4 on: June 03, 2010, 11:52:55 AM »
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mcjaco

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Re: Feeling the pull of the dark side
« Reply #5 on: June 03, 2010, 12:02:12 PM »
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That would explain why I've had to notch out the belt the past few months.   ;)

ednadolski

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Re: Feeling the pull of the dark side
« Reply #6 on: June 03, 2010, 12:08:09 PM »
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I like your trackplan, just a few suggestions if I may:

 - You might wish to relocate the turnout that straddles the liftout section joint.  If you don't need that short tail track next to it, then you can maybe eliminate the turnout entirely.
 - There is a crossover below the "Packaging Co" label that you might want to eliminate.  It has a tight-looking S-curve, and it isn't needed anyways for a runaround since you've already got another crossover on the middle of the right-hand side of the diagram.
 - The turnout at "Jax/LR Junction" also looks like a possible S-curve problem, seems that can be fixed with maybe a #6 turnout connected with some flextrack in place of 1-2 of those curved sections.

HTH,
Ed

MichaelT

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Re: Feeling the pull of the dark side
« Reply #7 on: June 03, 2010, 12:12:48 PM »
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I like your trackplan, just a few suggestions if I may:

 - You might wish to relocate the turnout that straddles the liftout section joint.  If you don't need that short tail track next to it, then you can maybe eliminate the turnout entirely.
 - There is a crossover below the "Packaging Co" label that you might want to eliminate.  It has a tight-looking S-curve, and it isn't needed anyways for a runaround since you've already got another crossover on the middle of the right-hand side of the diagram.
 - The turnout at "Jax/LR Junction" also looks like a possible S-curve problem, seems that can be fixed with maybe a #6 turnout connected with some flextrack in place of 1-2 of those curved sections.

HTH,
Ed

Appreciate the suggestions Ed, and YES to anyone that reads this, any and all suggestions are very welcome. Admittedly I'm not the best at planning, NOR working the RR Track program I have.

The turnout at the Junction I'm going to straighten that track out more to run parallel with the yard track, so that should help the S curve there.
The turnout on the liftout, yes I'll move it back a bit so it doesn't become problematic. I got a suggestion last night about making a twice around with some elevation to it; not sure if I can see that now but might play with it some.
I didn't notice the already made runaround, so I'll take that short crossover out. Thanks for pointing that out!

Jesus is my engineer! :)

ednadolski

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Re: Feeling the pull of the dark side
« Reply #8 on: June 03, 2010, 12:18:25 PM »
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Glad to be of help   ;)   BTW I did just notice one other S-curve problem, about 5 squares over and 2 squares down from the upper left corner.  It looks to me like that can be easily fixed by just shortening up one of the straight sections at the top center of the diagram.

Ed

MichaelT

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Re: Feeling the pull of the dark side
« Reply #9 on: June 03, 2010, 01:01:41 PM »
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Any of you guys have any pointers for hand laying track? Maybe code 70 or smaller? With this being a shortline, I have an inkling to try my hand one maybe one short spur handlaying and see if I can have any success with it.

I wanted a lumber facility, but not sure I can wing it with this setup...will have to see.

Jesus is my engineer! :)

MichaelT

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Re: Feeling the pull of the dark side
« Reply #10 on: June 03, 2010, 04:26:18 PM »
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So I'm messing around with more ideas...drew up with more straight lines and less curvature...not sure if that's an improvement or not...
what will be the next of many changes I'm sure before track starts getting glued...
Jesus is my engineer! :)

Hiroe

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Re: Feeling the pull of the dark side
« Reply #11 on: June 04, 2010, 12:42:28 PM »
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Any of you guys have any pointers for hand laying track? Maybe code 70 or smaller? With this being a shortline, I have an inkling to try my hand one maybe one short spur handlaying and see if I can have any success with it.

I wanted a lumber facility, but not sure I can wing it with this setup...will have to see.



It's O scale, but the same basic principles hold.

You'll need the following:
Pliers and Xurons:
 
Track gauge:

Open test car:

Spikes, rail joiners, ties, etc:
 

Don't let anyone use your zurons for anything but rail or soft wire.


Lay out the ties and glue them down:
 

Spike down one rail:
       

Use your gauge to place the other rail, and spike it down too:
 

Continue until you run out of ties, rail, or roadbed.
To "call a spade a spade" is to speak honestly and directly about a topic, specifically topics that others may avoid speaking about due to their sensitivity or embarrassing nature. The Oxford English Dictionary records a more forceful variant, "to call a spade a bloody shovel", attested since 1919.

wm3798

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Re: Feeling the pull of the dark side
« Reply #12 on: June 04, 2010, 02:20:37 PM »
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I like the flow of the original plan better.  the new one looks too rigid.  I don't think you'll need to worry that much about the S curves you had.  They're more of an issue with long cars like auto racks or passenger varnish.  For an industrial short line, you'll see all kinds of bad track!

I also preferred the version that gives you the Wye option to enter the layout from either direction.  This opens up a lot of operational flexibility, for instance, your yard on the left can become "two" locations... one at the beginning of the line, and one at the end.  You can schedule two trains to leave the two terminals, one going eastbound and one west, and plan a meet somewhere in the middle. 

Or, you could have the local based out of one yard working along the line, then having to duck into the hole while a transfer job runs down the other way.

Plus, the wye gives you the option to run trains in either direction from the yard when you're bored and just want to railfan!

Lee
Route of the Alpha Jets

Lee Weldon www.wmrywesternlines.net

MichaelT

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Re: Feeling the pull of the dark side
« Reply #13 on: June 04, 2010, 02:37:28 PM »
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I like the flow of the original plan better.  the new one looks too rigid.  I don't think you'll need to worry that much about the S curves you had.  They're more of an issue with long cars like auto racks or passenger varnish.  For an industrial short line, you'll see all kinds of bad track!

I also preferred the version that gives you the Wye option to enter the layout from either direction.  This opens up a lot of operational flexibility, for instance, your yard on the left can become "two" locations... one at the beginning of the line, and one at the end.  You can schedule two trains to leave the two terminals, one going eastbound and one west, and plan a meet somewhere in the middle. 

Or, you could have the local based out of one yard working along the line, then having to duck into the hole while a transfer job runs down the other way.

Plus, the wye gives you the option to run trains in either direction from the yard when you're bored and just want to railfan!

Lee

That's why I'm terrible at track planning...I didn't even know I HAD a wye in the first design............ ;(
Jesus is my engineer! :)

wm3798

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Re: Feeling the pull of the dark side
« Reply #14 on: June 04, 2010, 02:58:55 PM »
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There it is!  Big as life.  You would have found it after you started blowing up rail joiners and power packs.

Anyway, if you extend the leg there past Jax Jct., and put a couple more yard tracks in the closet, you create the "other end" of the railroad.

Lee
Route of the Alpha Jets

Lee Weldon www.wmrywesternlines.net