Author Topic: Tehachapi, BC  (Read 248800 times)

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ednadolski

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Re: Tehachapi, BC
« Reply #60 on: July 04, 2011, 12:39:00 AM »
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Gary, what if you kept the peninsula, but instead extended it out from one of the long sides? This would preserve a fair amount of modeling real estate while also creating more generous operator space.




This will take some care.   If the aisle at the bottom of the peninsula is only about 24" wide or so (as drawn) , then it could become a bottleneck that almost isolates the layout into two halves.   What is the minimum comfortable width for two operators to pass in a location like that?  However it seems to me that Caliente as a peninsula can only come a high cost in space, esp. considering that as a scene, it's hard to put anything above it.

Looking at the sketches with the 'shadow people' gave me a thought:  It may be worthwhile to print out a scale drawing and make some cutouts the size of the shadow people.   Then you can position them and move them around as they might move during a typical ops session.   This could help reveal trouble spots.

Gary, what are your preferences re: staging?  Seems to me this needs to be worked in as well, since it could affect the amount of overall floor space available to the rest of the layout.  For example, reversing loops or a helix could take up a significant footprint. (My reversing loops took up a footprint of approx 3' x 9' each, due to the turnbacks).  OTOH, single-ended parallel staging tracks would have to be located for accessibility, esp. at an upper level.   Staging will also affect the operating scheme and therefore operator traffic patterns.

HTH,
Ed

GaryHinshaw

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Re: Tehachapi, BC
« Reply #61 on: July 04, 2011, 03:18:07 AM »
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Gary, what if you kept the peninsula, but instead extended it out from one of the long sides? This would preserve a fair amount of modeling real estate while also creating more generous operator space.

Funny you should mention that David.  A peninsula oriented like that is something I had thought about a few month ago when I first saw the space.  Then I abandoned it when I thought I could make the other direction work and never revisited it.  I must have subconsciously convinced myself it was not possible.  I agree with Ed that the aisle is a concern, but I think it's worth another look.  I have at least one scheme I'm going to sketch up that incorporates some of Ed's and Marc's ideas.  We'll see if it goes anywhere.

Thanks,
Gary

P.S. Ed, I'm still thinking of active linear staging along one wall for Bakersfield (north end) and a double-track helix under the Loop for south staging, with a connection back to Bakersfield for roundy-round.


James Costello

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Re: Tehachapi, BC
« Reply #62 on: July 04, 2011, 04:50:11 AM »
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Just a thought - the loop scene itself might be more suited for a peninsula from the side wall.

Having just moved, Gary should have plenty of large cardboard moving boxes available. These can be used to represent people or peninsulas in full sized mock-ups too.
James Costello
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GaryHinshaw

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Re: Tehachapi, BC
« Reply #63 on: July 05, 2011, 12:24:21 PM »
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Actually James, I've been so militant about clearing out the garage that I've already recycled most of our boxes.... I guess I'll just have to start building and see what happens!

So I've been tinkering with the transverse peninsula idea and I think I have something that might work without being too busy or too boring.  Overall there are three levels: two scenic levels (2 and 3) and a staging level (1).  Level 2, from Edison to Bealville/Woodford has the new peninsula, which now looks like this:




Edison/Sandcut - along the top - is unchanged.  From there it transitions hard into Caliente, which forms a horseshoe aisle near the door, then transitions hard again into Tunnel 2 on the peninsula.  After that, you get the set of S curves entering Allard (S curves are de rigueur on Tehachapi), then it enters a quasi-hidden, but accessible, stretch under the upper deck, towards the Loop.  Some notes:

* The Caliente horseshoe has a 24" radius, which gives a 41" track clearance at the pinch point.  This should give a pretty workable 36" entrance aisle.

* The Tunnel 2 peninsula, which is wide open oat grass & live oak savanna, will be a prominent scenic feature as one enters the room.  The track spacing between Tunnel 2 and Sandcut is 32", which should give a 26" aisle.  This is a bit tight, but there is relatively little ops action on the door side, so maybe not too much foot traffic.  The peninsula could be shortened a bit if it seems too tight in a mockup.  (Another good thing is that the track at the end of the peninsula is in a tunnel/cut around the whole curve, so not very exposed.)

* There might be something more interesting to do with the Bealville/Woodford stretch, but this sketch is more of a peninsula proof of concept.

* I forgot to mention this earlier, but the door opens out, so there is no infringement on the interior space. The track across the doorway is single track with no turnouts.

Layer 3 is mostly unchanged.  All I did so far was to expand the Loop to 21" radius (inner track), which gives a crossing separation of 3.2" with a 2.3% grade.  This seems to fit ok while still retaining the lower approach curve with its Tehachapi creek crossing, a feature I really like:




Here's how it all stacks up with the staging layer included:




Some more comments:

* The ops-heavy segments of Bakersfield, Edison, and Monolith are all separated horizontally - one per wall.  Aisle space near those sections seems to be ample.

* There are a lot of "plumbing" details to be worked out under the Loop shelf with the staging helix and such.  The basic concept is that Cameron/Mojave connects up with an oval staging helix under the Loop which in turn connects back to the main line between Bakersfield and Edison.  There should be a turning wye and/or a yard lead in there somewhere too.  I think this track would all be relatively easy to access under the Loop shelf, so I'm not too worried about it appearing complex in projection.

* Access to track on the Loop shelf will be maintained with 24" access hatches (not shown).  These can be reached by a simple nod-under.

* The Bakersfield yard (in blue, bottom wall) his hidden under the peninsula.  However, the only turnouts in that stretch are the runaround crossover on the end, which will be moved to the right to be accessible under Caliente.  Sufficient vertical clearance will be maintained throughout to facilitate rescue missions.

* I'm a bit worried about the vertical clearance between Allard and Tunnels 15-17.  The track is separated by 14", which is plenty, but I want to make sure there is enough scenic separation between these two very different scenes.  Perhaps a backdrop on the peninsula, in front of the upper shelf?

Comments welcome (if you've stuck it out this far!), they have lead to many good changes so far.

Thanks,
Gary

DKS

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Re: Tehachapi, BC
« Reply #64 on: July 05, 2011, 12:40:39 PM »
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I like the effect of entering the space and not seeing the whole layout all at once. That said, I think I'd be inclined to shift the peninsula to the left, away from the door, as this would be a high-traffic area, and it needs some extra room for folks to pass one another as they enter and leave. Also, by compressing the s-curves ever so slightly, there would be less loss to the larger operating space around the loops.

“Everyone leaves unfinished business. That's what dying is.” —Amos, The Expanse

GaryHinshaw

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Re: Tehachapi, BC
« Reply #65 on: July 05, 2011, 02:04:15 PM »
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Point well taken David.  The nice thing about this arrangement is that the exact track plan for the peninsula is fairly flexible.  (I too like the way it serves to block the view of the whole layout from the entrance.)  That being said, one feature about Caliente that I'd like to retain is the sense that it's a screamingly tight curve on the prototype.  Here's a good overview shot of the valley it sits in:

http://www.railpictures.net/viewphoto.php?id=105594&nseq=5

This vantage point corresponds roughly to looking from the end of the peninsula towards the doorway.  So it may end up being a trade-off between retaining that sense and creature comforts.

Cheers,
Gary

P.S. I do still have a ton (literally) of packed book boxes in the garage.  I can use them like blocks to mock up a peninsula.   :)

DKS

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Re: Tehachapi, BC
« Reply #66 on: July 05, 2011, 02:27:27 PM »
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Perhaps, then, position the sharp part of the curve on the peninsula, instead of within the aisle space? Also, the peninsula need not be "square" relative to the rest of the layout; it could extend out on an angle.
“Everyone leaves unfinished business. That's what dying is.” —Amos, The Expanse

ednadolski

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Re: Tehachapi, BC
« Reply #67 on: July 05, 2011, 02:38:07 PM »
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Gary I really like what you've done!    Increasing the curve radii at Caliente and Walong will I think really improve things -- it's interesting how sometimes it can be possible to actually save space by making curves larger  ;).   With the broader curves  I think you could go to a 2.5% or 2.6% grade on the Loop to get more clearance at Tunnel 9, without compromising operational reliability.

The Loop approach curve looks maybe a bit tricky.  The track height difference with Edison is 11.6", but it appears that the Edison operator will have to reach in maybe 30" or more under the upper level to access the switch at the far left end of Edison.   The available height could turn out to be less than what it seems, since the approach curve features the bridge over Tehachapi Creek,  which means that the scenery will extend maybe 4" or more below the actual track level, in order to model Tehachapi Creek itself.   There is also the descending track from Cameron/Mojave to consider.  It might help to slide Edison to the right maybe a foot or so, and also shorten up some of the sidings.

From Tunnel 10/14 going to Cameron/Mojave it looks like the track will have to drop about 10" or so if it is to clear underneath the Loop approach curve track at the upper left.  What kind of grade does that require?

The space in front of the door looks like it actually does have a switch or two directly in front of it, on both levels.   Seems to me this will probably want to use lift-outs, as a duckunder would have less than less than 46" clearance.

Seems to me there is more lower level staging space that you could leverage.   For example, the staging along the bottom wall could be done as a reversing loop under the Tunnel 2 peninsula, which would allow you to turn trains and have easier access.    Likewise the area under the Loop approach curve could maybe be useful too.

Would you maybe build the Upper Tunnels as part of the Tunnel 2 peninsula, i.e., without a separating shelf?    Scenically I think that would be pretty impressive.

HTH,
Ed


GaryHinshaw

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Re: Tehachapi, BC
« Reply #68 on: July 05, 2011, 10:19:49 PM »
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You're inside my head now Ed!  You've pointed out several things I'm still concerned about, or was thinking of.  The main point of the last post was to flesh out David's peninsula suggestion and I think it's a huge improvement.  In the process, however, the length of run on level 2 is now shorter than it was with the longitudinal peninsula, so the deck separation is less (given the 2.3% grade limit).  This gives rise to many of the issues you raise.  One option is to add a loop or two of helix in the Bealville/Woodford stretch, around the staging helix.  It's easy to get 3.5" of rise per turn given the geometry (13.3 foot circumference @ 2.3% for the inner loop).  I think 2 turns within the prime mainline run is about as much as I would have patience for, but that would give another 7" of separation.  Here is a blow-up of the upper-left corner, as currently drawn:




The left end of Edison is at 42", so the separation is 13", but it's still snug given the creek bridge, etc.  The reach to the end turnout is ~30", but my plan is to have these automated; the most likely spots for manual uncoupling would be to the right of the turnouts (for set outs), so not as much of a reach there.  If the upper deck reverts to 58" or more, then it is quite easy to nod under this section for access, if necessary.  And I would imagine leaving an access point within this upper loop open during ops sessions.

On the profile of the upper deck: the Loop shelf is 2.3% up to Tunnel 10/14, then 0.5% up to the door (summit), then 2.3% down back to the upper left corner.  The net elevation change is +2.4", so I need to allow room for the Mojave track to run behind the Woodford track until it's in the helix under the Loop.  When I enlarged the Loop radius, I shoved the Woodford approach into the Mojave track, and I still need to reclaim that.  Scenically, I'm thinking that the Woodford turnout will be in a cut, like this:

http://www.railpictures.net/viewphoto.php?id=115825&nseq=72

The turnout would be roughly where the 8th car in this train is located.  The Mojave track would slide behind a mini-backdrop just before reaching this area.  (It would be located roughly where the fire road is in this shot!)

I'm sorely tempted to lay out the Loop shelf and give it a test run.  I'd love to see if 2.5% is doable - with or without helpers - and see what the separation looks like.

I too was thinking that a staging loop under Tunnel 2 would be a good way to go.

Still thinking about the scenery in the transition from the peninsula to the Tunnels.... Plenty of options.

:)
Gary

P.S. The Edison sidings as drawn are very generous, to allow for big blocks of reefers and covered hoppers in an open Central Valley setting, but they could be brought in a bit without too much pain.
« Last Edit: July 05, 2011, 10:25:13 PM by GaryHinshaw »

GaryHinshaw

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Re: Tehachapi, BC
« Reply #69 on: July 05, 2011, 10:39:38 PM »
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In studying this photo some more, I think this is a rare case (for Tehachapi) where the depth of the creek bed could possibly be disguised with tree tops.

ednadolski

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Re: Tehachapi, BC
« Reply #70 on: July 06, 2011, 01:29:45 AM »
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On the profile of the upper deck: the Loop shelf is 2.3% up to Tunnel 10/14, then 0.5% up to the door (summit), then 2.3% down back to the upper left corner.  The net elevation change is +2.4", so I need to allow room for the Mojave track to run behind the Woodford track until it's in the helix under the Loop.  When I enlarged the Loop radius, I shoved the Woodford approach into the Mojave track, and I still need to reclaim that. 

I'm not sure if I understanding this one part correctly.  The Tunnel 10/14 is at 62", and if I understand you right then the track drops by 2.4" by the time you get to Cameron, so Cameron is at 59.6". This is 4" higher than the Loop approach curve (55.6").  But here is where I get lost:  From Cameron is the track supposed to go to the staging helix under the Loop?   I'm not clear on the exact track path, but it seems that the grade from there to the under-loop staging may work out rather steep, something like 6 inches in 8 feet, perhaps more.   What have I missed?

HTH,
Ed
« Last Edit: July 06, 2011, 01:33:00 AM by ednadolski »

James Costello

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Re: Tehachapi, BC
« Reply #71 on: July 06, 2011, 04:58:52 AM »
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In studying this photo some more, I think this is a rare case (for Tehachapi) where the depth of the creek bed could possibly be disguised with tree tops.

Definitely. The topography of the place certainly lends itself to plenty of optical illusions. Plus it is so complex, who is really going to know?
James Costello
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ednadolski

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Re: Tehachapi, BC
« Reply #72 on: July 06, 2011, 07:16:01 PM »
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I couldn't resist taking another crack at this :D  so here is the next revision (along with a bunch of reference pics ;) ):

Lower Level:



Mid Level:



Upper Level:




The goal of this was to address the tight aisles, and I think the only way to do that is to remove the peninsula. The main casualty of this approach was Bealville which is now gone. Even without a peninsula, it looks to me like the room will start to feel snug with more than 4 persons at once.  I think this revision also addresses some of the reach-in concerns.

A couple more key points:

- I drew the Loop with 24" radius and a 2.6% grade, which gives about a 4.2" elevation gain over Tunnel 9. The increased radius and elevation will greatly enhance appearance and operation, IMHO. I also relocated the Loop next to the door, which increases the possible viewing angles. For example a viewer can now see the west side of Tunnel 9.

- Likewise I increased the curvature at the Caliente horseshoe to about 30", and I was also able to retain Tunnel 2.  I had scenes like these in mind:

http://www.railpictures.net/images/d1/4/3/6/1436.1216325088.jpg
http://www.railpictures.net/images/d1/4/6/5/1465.1176094800.jpg
http://www.railpictures.net/images/d1/0/6/4/3064.1286171473.jpg

- The dogleg curve at Caliente juts out a bit, and can always be reduced, but I think this provides a scene that would look really good with double-stack trains and for meets:

http://www.railpictures.net/images/d1/2/0/8/7208.1289094993.jpg
http://www.railpictures.net/images/d1/6/1/2/7612.1207440000.jpg
http://www.railpictures.net/images/d1/5/3/3/2533.1221525920.jpg
http://www.railpictures.net/images/d1/4/5/3/3453.1212854159.jpg

(Side comment - I think this really leverages one of the key strengths of N scale -- unless you have a La Mesa Club, it would be awfully hard to produce scenes like these in HO!)  ;)


- For operations, Edison is included tho slightly smaller than what you had Gary in your recent sketch, as is Monolith.  Tehachapi now includes some industries, which hopefully increases the opportunities for operations.  Including Tehachapi is another opportunity for signature scenes, for example:

http://www.railpictures.net/images/d1/8/0/4/6804.1300662452.jpg
http://farm3.static.flickr.com/2493/3760711474_eb1bc7edf0_o.jpg
http://www.railpictures.net/images/d1/3/0/0/7300.1090473000.jpg
http://www.railpictures.net/images/d1/0/1/9/7019.1217877153.jpg
http://www.railpictures.net/images/d1/1/4/2/4142.1268718827.jpg
http://www.railpictures.net/images/d1/2/2/6/6226.1211752918.jpg

I drew Tehachapi to include the (restored) depot, water tower, and cantilever signal.  BTW don't forget about those windmills on the distant hills! :)


- Staging is a combination of the hidden, run-thru tracks underneath Walong, and the serial staging capacity of the helix.  The two-track helix is to prevent bottlenecks, and at 20" min. radius and 2% max. grade it should be able to handle sizable trains without too much heartache.  Note, on the lower level, the dark gray track is a one-turn helix around the main helix, basically to get additional elevation for the next levels.

- I included some tags showing the relative elevations, the grades are generally between 1% to 2% (a bit higher on the Loop as mentioned).

- The lift-outs in front of the door on could be sceniced for the middle and upper level. This gives an opportinity for the Tehachapi Creek bridge:

http://www.railpictures.net/images/d1/8/7/2/9872.1092350340.jpg

(With a lift-out, the below-track projection isn't much of a concern :) )


- For a backdrop, I'm thinking photos would be the way to go, as I've found it hard to do paintings that would look good in N scale (close proximity of N scale viewing requires a great degree of skill with the brush).  Most of the structures at Tehachapi, Edison, and Monolith could be done as partial flats against the backdrop.

Hope that this serves as some useful fodder for thought!  ;)

Ed

John

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Re: Tehachapi, BC
« Reply #73 on: July 06, 2011, 07:40:30 PM »
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wow ..if you could figure out how to cram my steel mill in there, i would be tempted to build tehachapi myself :)

DKS

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Re: Tehachapi, BC
« Reply #74 on: July 06, 2011, 07:52:22 PM »
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Impressive plan, Ed. Just a couple of concerns. First, the location of the door, lower right, doesn't appear to correspond with same on Gary's drawings, so it might put a crimp in the placement of the loop. Second, the upper right corner of the third level looks like it might have accessibility issues, not to mention something of a waste of real estate. FWIW...
“Everyone leaves unfinished business. That's what dying is.” —Amos, The Expanse