Author Topic: Dayson & Mixen Line  (Read 2242 times)

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Chris1274

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Dayson & Mixen Line
« on: December 20, 2013, 10:42:51 AM »
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This will be the first of what I hope will be many installments of my layout progress report. Construction hasn't yet begun, but I do have a more-or-less finalized track plan with some scenery and industries blocked in:



It's to be built on a 36x80 HCD with the main theme being that of a CSX coal hauling subdivision in the Appalachian hills, which I'm calling the "Dayson & Mixen Line." I'm not modeling any real-life location nor any particular time period, so it'll see all sorts of motive power in paint schemes that never really rode the rails together (CSX Yn3 GEVO's and Conrail sd80macs, for example). Perhaps when (if) I build my "dream" layout I'll be more careful about that sort of thing, but for now this is just to have fun watching my trains go. The minimum radius on the mainline is 15" (except for a few sections hidden in tunnels) so the 6-axle locomotives shouldn't look to weird. The branch line up to the coal loadout is tighter (11" with even a bit of 9.5") but that will only ever see 4-axle geeps pulling six or seven hoppers. The track will be code 80 ( :facepalm:) because (a) who knows when Atlas will get around to re-supplying code 55, and (b) more importantly, I want to use Peco streamline turnouts with their spring-loaded points that don't require an additional switch machine. Caboose ground throws are too fiddly and under-the-table machines are expensive and a PITA to mount under 2" foam core, which will form the layout base. And frankly, the look of code 80 never really bothered me. I grind my axe on other issues (mainly having to do with couplers).

So that's about it. I have all my turnouts but one, so I just need to get my hands on some code 80 flex and we're ready to get building.

davefoxx

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Re: Dayson & Mixen Line
« Reply #1 on: December 20, 2013, 11:19:23 AM »
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Chris,

As a proponent of HCD layouts (I've built two), I really like your plan.  It has more than just the roundy-round, and I can see a bit of ops built in without the need for expansion.  That said, I'm glad to see the option for expansion in the interchange and the potential wye.  Well played.  I enjoy a similar branch on my HCD layout.  The grade and the sharper radius (10") on my layout don't give me problems at all.  Be careful not to fall into a trap that the town is built only on a flat and level, making the ridge look like a loaf of bread thrown on the middle of the layout.  I try to avoid flat and level areas on my layout (except the track), and I believe this will help a HCD layout look bigger than it really is.

You may want to consider a passing siding on the town side, which would allow you to stage cars going up and down the mountain while switching.  In other words, think about how you will need to pull loaded cars and replace them with empties.  You won't be able to get out of your own way without an additional track at the mine or at the bottom of the branch.

I look forward to following along with your progress.

DFF

EDITED TO FIX TYPO
« Last Edit: December 20, 2013, 11:34:26 AM by davefoxx »

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Philip H

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Re: Dayson & Mixen Line
« Reply #2 on: December 20, 2013, 11:23:14 AM »
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Chris,

think about how you will need to pull pomaded cars and replace them with empties. 

DFF

Whoa!  When did we have to start adding hair product to our modeling practices?  I mean hairspray fro trees I sorta get, but pomade for coal cars?   :trollface:
Philip H.
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Baton Rouge Southern RR - Mount Rainier Division.

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

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davefoxx

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Re: Dayson & Mixen Line
« Reply #3 on: December 20, 2013, 11:35:30 AM »
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That's what happens when your interrupted during your post by work.  Back to the grind.  ;)

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Chris1274

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Re: Dayson & Mixen Line
« Reply #4 on: December 20, 2013, 12:12:28 PM »
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Be careful not to fall into a trap that the town is built only on a flat and level, making the ridge look like a loaf of bread thrown on the middle of the layout.  I try to avoid flat and level areas on my layout (except the track), and I believe this will help a HCD layout look bigger than it really is.

You may want to consider a passing siding on the town side, which would allow you to stage cars going up and down the mountain while switching.  In other words, think about how you will need to pull loaded cars and replace them with empties.  You won't be able to get out of your own way without an additional track at the mine or at the bottom of the branch.

Dave,

Thanks for the encouragement. I agree that mountains plopped right in the middle of perfectly flat terrain look ridiculous, so I tried hard in working on the plan to imagine things in 3 dimensions. The road through town will have slight up grade, starting just after the printing company (which has to be level with the spur coming off the mainline) and following the track grade for a bit, and then dip back down so it will cross under the branch line and cross the mainline at grade. That will provide at least a bit of vertical variation in the terrain at the foot of the mountain.

As for the additional passing siding, I'd like to maintain the appearance of single-track mainline as much as possible. I think if I add a second siding on the town side of the layout, I might as well just double-track the whole thing. The way I envision mine runs, the shifter will (eventually, when the staging area is added on) come onto the main from the wye in the upper left corner with a dozen or so empties, zip around the oval a few times, drop off some of the empties on the siding and take the rest up to the mine and leave them there for loading. It'll come back down engines-light to get the remaining empties and then on to the next loader which is somewhere off layout.
« Last Edit: December 20, 2013, 03:23:24 PM by Chris1274 »

Rich_S

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Re: Dayson & Mixen Line
« Reply #5 on: December 20, 2013, 02:10:21 PM »
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As for the additional passing siding, I'd like to maintain the appearance of single-track mainline as much as possible. I think if I add a second siding on the town side of the layout, I might as well just double-track the whole thing. The way I envision mine runs, the shifter will (eventually, when the staging area is added on) come onto the main from the wye in the upper left corner with a dozen or so empties, zip around the oval a few times, drop off some of the empties on the siding and take the rest up to the mine and leave them there for loading. It'll come back down engines-light to get the remaining empties and then on to the next loader which is somewhere off layout.

Another Option is to back the empties up to the mine and place them on the siding. Grab the loads and then move the empties over to the tipple. The loads would then be behind the engines coming down that 3% grade. This is prototypical as the Montour Railroad did the same type of operation on it's Library Branch. Because of the steepness of the grade, the engines were required by timetable to always be on the downhill side of all empties and loads. Just a thought and looking forward to seeing progress on your HCD layout.



Rich S.

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Re: Dayson & Mixen Line
« Reply #6 on: December 20, 2013, 02:23:23 PM »
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One other thought is maybe having the mainline have a slight grade down and up between the town and interchange area on the side without the wye; maybe have it flat for switching the printing company and then have a slight dip and rise after that? Otherwise it sounds like your 3D ideas are spot on, looking forward to seeing the progress! I love mountains, and have always been a closet mountain RRing fan.
Sawyer Berry
Clemson University graduate, c/o 2018

Chris1274

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Re: Dayson & Mixen Line
« Reply #7 on: December 20, 2013, 03:34:35 PM »
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Another Option is to back the empties up to the mine and place them on the siding. Grab the loads and then move the empties over to the tipple. The loads would then be behind the engines coming down that 3% grade. This is prototypical as the Montour Railroad did the same type of operation on it's Library Branch. Because of the steepness of the grade, the engines were required by timetable to always be on the downhill side of all empties and loads. Just a thought and looking forward to seeing progress on your HCD layout.

That's a great idea. At some point in the distant future I'm thinking I could continue the elevated branch onto an extension and have a full flood-loading operation, which could then connect up with a coal-consuming industry for a loads-in/empties-out arrangement.

GimpLizard

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Re: Dayson & Mixen Line
« Reply #8 on: December 20, 2013, 05:36:48 PM »
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And yet another idea.

Have the street, through town, run above track level. With the loading dock for the printing company in the "basement". Then the road, into the wye, could cross over the tracks. And the road, in the otther direction, would run down hill, under the branch, and cross the main at grade.

Scottl

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Re: Dayson & Mixen Line
« Reply #9 on: December 20, 2013, 05:59:35 PM »
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I like this last idea a lot. 

A great layout plan!

Chris1274

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Re: Dayson & Mixen Line
« Reply #10 on: December 20, 2013, 07:58:58 PM »
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I like that idea too. I was planning on reducing the height of the printing company by one storey anyway, since the full-size model would overly dominate the scene. This would provide an interesting way of doing it, since the structure would then be built into a hill.

Bsklarski

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Re: Dayson & Mixen Line
« Reply #11 on: December 20, 2013, 11:03:03 PM »
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And yet another idea.

Have the street, through town, run above track level. With the loading dock for the printing company in the "basement". Then the road, into the wye, could cross over the tracks. And the road, in the otther direction, would run down hill, under the branch, and cross the main at grade.

Just figured it out on your own lol. As a real railroader sometimes thing pop out at me. You said you will extend that someday. Well make a temp extension. Pull the empties up the hill. Nose onto the loads which I assume would be stretched from the tipple going to the right. Shove the loads to the left while spotting the MTs at the same time. Headpin the MTs and the caboose when spotted, Shove past the switch with the loads, pull the loads to the right. Back onto the caboose you dragged in with the MTs then airtest and go. Of course if you dont use cabeese, this operation is WAY more easier.
Brian Sklarski
Engineer, New England Central Railroad

https://www.facebook.com/pages/Boston-Maine-Conn-River-Line/173358446076160

Bsklarski

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Re: Dayson & Mixen Line
« Reply #12 on: December 20, 2013, 11:06:21 PM »
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I may have snipped the wrong paragraph there. I was talking about that branch that goes up to the mine.
Brian Sklarski
Engineer, New England Central Railroad

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davefoxx

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Re: Dayson & Mixen Line
« Reply #13 on: December 21, 2013, 08:33:04 AM »
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Chris,

What are your plans for subroadbed?  I used 2" foam on my HCD layout and even experimented with cookie-cutter construction of the foam, as seen here:


You can see how my branch rises a full two inches to cross over the roundy-round.  I used foam blocks cut in incremental sections to provide the support and create the grade.  I was very happy with the outcome and was pleasantly surprised that the 2" foam was this flexible without snapping into multiple pieces.

The following picture shows the foam upside down on the table, so you can see how I glued the blocks on with low-temp hot glue:


In other words, BEFORE:


AFTER:


DFF

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Chris1274

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Re: Dayson & Mixen Line
« Reply #14 on: December 21, 2013, 09:28:29 AM »
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Dave,

That's my plan as well, though I was intending to use Woodland Scenics inclines since they now have a 3% grade available. However, your cookie cutter method is brilliant. I may very well give that a try.