Interested in Layout Design?

Working from a prototype location or trying to fit a specific space? Everyone loves a good trackplan...
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Franklinsburg
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Re: Interested in Layout Design?

Post by Franklinsburg » Fri Mar 29, 2013 12:55 pm

Hello Boys,
Am a member of the Yahoooo Group only.
Personally, I find that looking at the prototype is generally all the layout design ideas I need.
Regards,
John H. Wright
http:// http://www.xclent.net

tunnelmotor
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Re: Interested in Layout Design?

Post by tunnelmotor » Sat Mar 30, 2013 11:27 am

Franklinsburg wrote:Hello Boys,
Am a member of the Yahoooo Group only.
Personally, I find that looking at the prototype is generally all the layout design ideas I need.
John,

I absolutely agree and thank goodness for Google Earth etc. There is no better plan than the one the professionals laid down for the real thing. However our members have differing objectives due to either space, ability, finance, basis of interest (some build for Ops), etc. Personally I try to tick as many boxes as I can and have come to the conclusion that as long as you have the space (or access to space for a modular set up) you can build a realistic set up that also offers scope for Ops too.

Just my outlook.

But yes, let's get something started with discussion about designs individual members want to explore. One of our group members is setting out on the planning path, is a member of LDSiG too and asked how I went about designing my modular set up Dillon. I have asked him to post a thread here to set out his givens and his druthers and let's see how it evolves.

Mike

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Gloriousnse
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Re: Interested in Layout Design?

Post by Gloriousnse » Sat Mar 30, 2013 11:48 am

PeterLJ wrote:Hi

I think if we do such a thing we use this forum as our "base". I am sure we could negotiate for space for articles and such.

Peter L-J
Shouldn't be a problem.

John, whilst I agree with following the prototype I think theres more to it than that. For instance I bet no prototype planner had 'must be transportable in the family car' as a design criteria! :mrgreen:

(Posted from my mobile)
Martyn Read

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Franklinsburg
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Re: Interested in Layout Design?

Post by Franklinsburg » Sun Mar 31, 2013 10:32 am

Hello Boys,
My comment was aimed at the stuff that appears on the top of the boards.
Looking at many of the copious North American layouts in the mags and on the web I get the general impression that their builders are still firmly entrenched in the 'old school' concepts inspired by John Armstrong and John Allen and co.. Great examples of their genre ..... but yesterday's way of thinking IMHO. I feel many of the LDSig posters are still of this mindset. Tight curves totally visible, squeezing around islands ...... and horror of horror ...... tracks turning back on themselves and then running through the same scene on a different level. If this floats your boat , then OK ..... but they do destroy any realism you are trying to create. Tony Koester is a strong supporter of the separated multi level approach while the likes of Lance Mindheim, Pele Soeberg, Jim Six prefer a more minimalist approach. I like what these folks are doing and believe they are showing the way forward if modellers would care to observe their efforts...... combining interesting operation with realistic observation of the prototype. Meanwhile the likes of Model Railroader Magazine are still pushing the old eight by four .... Lord help us! British outline modellers have left the rabbit warren approach many years ago much to the benefit of the quality of layouts we have seen.

BTW Anyone seriously interested in following prototype practice in the steam era ( such as myself ) would do well to get themselves a copy of 'FREIGHT TERMINALS AND TRAINS ' by John A. Droege ..... a treasure house of prototype info re track planning, much of which can be adapted by modellers.
Regards,
John H. Wright
http:// http://www.xclent.net

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Gloriousnse
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Re: Interested in Layout Design?

Post by Gloriousnse » Sun Mar 31, 2013 1:03 pm

Hiya John, I tend to agree with where you're coming from, although the hobby is a 'broad church'!

For instance I'm sure ive seen Armstrong plans published which actually are prototype based and linear, and he wasnt bad at 'what would a real railroad do?' either, certainly for his time it was groundbreaking stuff.

And the humble 4x8? Building a chunk of 'real' railway sometimes isn't the main objective, especially when starting out....

(Posted from my mobile)
Martyn Read

calaf01
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Re: Interested in Layout Design?

Post by calaf01 » Sun Mar 31, 2013 2:32 pm

Watching something going round and round seems to be something that the majority of model railroaders want to do. We can't afford to ignore that majority. Hopefully we can draw them in and educate them about the joys of more realistic operation, but we'll never do that if we put them off in the first place.
Alan C.

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Re: Interested in Layout Design?

Post by santafe1958 » Sun Mar 31, 2013 4:58 pm

calaf01 wrote:Watching something going round and round seems to be something that the majority of model railroaders want to do. We can't afford to ignore that majority. Hopefully we can draw them in and educate them about the joys of more realistic operation, but we'll never do that if we put them off in the first place.
I think that most of us like to see something going round and round.... when it is a new item and we like to see how it performs / works.
However, I find that the big difference between US modelling and European (including British, to a lesser extent), is that with the US railroads being more freight orientated, that a lot of converts initially tend to copy what they know, and it is a while before they get in to operations, US style.
Brian K.Woolven
Chief Operating Officer,
Deadwood City Railroad.

santafe1958
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Re: Interested in Layout Design?

Post by santafe1958 » Sun Mar 31, 2013 5:04 pm

Franklinsburg wrote:Hello Boys,
while the likes of Lance Mindheim, Pele Soeberg, Jim Six prefer a more minimalist approach. I like what these folks are doing and believe they are showing the way forward if modellers would care to observe their efforts...... combining interesting operation with realistic observation of the prototype.
Agree John, it is the likes of these modellers that gave me thought in to what I wanted.
Just from operating my own layout I have both simplified operations, although a simple local freight train can take nearly an hour to run out and back,
and concentrating on a more specific era.
Brian K.Woolven
Chief Operating Officer,
Deadwood City Railroad.

santafe1958
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Re: Interested in Layout Design?

Post by santafe1958 » Sun Mar 31, 2013 5:06 pm

Franklinsburg wrote:Hello Boys,
Meanwhile the likes of Model Railroader Magazine are still pushing the old eight by four ....
Their 'Beer Line' model was one of their better projects, in that it could be a shelf style layout, but they are few and far between.
Brian K.Woolven
Chief Operating Officer,
Deadwood City Railroad.

calaf01
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Re: Interested in Layout Design?

Post by calaf01 » Sun Mar 31, 2013 5:40 pm

I was rather impressed with their Virginian coal hauler actually. I thought that for what it was it had a very good operations scheme. Of course it's limited because they're trying to keep the interest of a slightly less sophisticated audience, but I thought that for its size it ticked all the right boxes.
Alan C.

Mike_R
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Re: Interested in Layout Design?

Post by Mike_R » Sun Mar 31, 2013 9:28 pm

Watching something going round and round seems to be something that the majority of model railroaders want to do. We can't afford to ignore that majority. Hopefully we can draw them in and educate them about the joys of more realistic operation, but we'll never do that if we put them off in the first place.
That's what we thought at Western Union with our big double track loop layout. Then we decided that some meetings would just have our new modules, with no continuous run, turns out everyone is happy to run operations on the new modules so no more loop!
Mike Ruby

tunnelmotor
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Re: Interested in Layout Design?

Post by tunnelmotor » Tue May 14, 2013 11:02 am

I wonder if there is an appetite amongst our members to start some series of article in Roundhouse on layout design, starting with basic principles, and explaining the thought processes any member planning a new layout needs to take account of? I have read a good few books and articles by renowned layout designers and builders to see what is important and that compromising is something any builder must get used to very quickly.

Over to you guys....

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BrianMoore
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Re: Interested in Layout Design?

Post by BrianMoore » Tue May 14, 2013 12:43 pm

tunnelmotor wrote:I wonder if there is an appetite amongst our members to start some series of article in Roundhouse on layout design, starting with basic principles, and explaining the thought processes any member planning a new layout needs to take account of? I have read a good few books and articles by renowned layout designers and builders to see what is important and that compromising is something any builder must get used to very quickly.

Over to you guys....
Whilst there is indeed some benefit in possibly producing an article or two, it is such a broad and subjective subject, and one which has a huge amount of stuff already written upon it, that there would be a danger of just shuffling what is readily available in many of, for example, the excellent soft-cover books by Kalmbach. If I was asked for an opinion by someone who is "starting out", I'd recommend they buy a couple of the Kalmbach books and really suck up all the derivations. Most of it has "already been written", by some of the hobby's leading people.

That being said, those of us with some experience have obviously got some lessons learned, but again, we all have slightly different goals in mind for our "perfect" layout. If I've learned one thing, it's that you always have to compromise, but once you do and keep to it, you can also liberate yourself too. And, for a layout of whatever size, and upon which you want to conduct some sort of "operations", you can't have enough storage. I am always reminded of the Tony Koester calculation that the storage tracks you really need are exactly double the number you originally thought, plus one.

You see, that's two already...
Brian Moore

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torikoos
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Re: Interested in Layout Design?

Post by torikoos » Tue May 14, 2013 3:14 pm

I agree with Brian for the most part, also in regards to Tony Koester's rule of storage tracks, however the latest Modelrailroad Hobbyist shows a design by Lance Mindheim for a one turnout layout. He uses the approach that it's not the amount of industries (and their associated tracks), but the number of car spots that dictate the operational qualities and possibilities of a model railroad.

As for trackplans:
An alternative could be possibly for members to send in their layout track plans, perhaps with photo's a bit like they do in MR and other magazines.
I always enjoy that sort of article, there are usually some solutions or scenes that inspire me to get out of the comfy chair and do some modeling.
In our case, it might highlight the way we do things here in the UK (and europe), usually available space is smaller, the influence of british modeling may add elements normally not seen in the US press (fiddle yards etc are not often featured), these elements dictate a different layout design and topic in many cases.

My two pence.
Koos
Koos Fockens -Devon UK. North American Model Railroading
Age is just a case of mind over matter. If you don't mind, then it doesn't matter.

PeterLJ
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Re: Interested in Layout Design?

Post by PeterLJ » Thu May 16, 2013 7:05 am

BrianMoore wrote:And, for a layout of whatever size, and upon which you want to conduct some sort of "operations", you can't have enough storage. I am always reminded of the Tony Koester calculation that the storage tracks you really need are exactly double the number you originally thought, plus one.

You see, that's two already...
Hi Brian

I think this depends on the size, purpose of the layout and personal preferences. Lance Mindhim says neither a classification or staging yard is a necessity on a small one train layout. "A switching layout can easily be designd without either and still be fully functional operationally." I mention this as so many of us only have room for a good small switching layout (which can indeed double as a module).

But we have two staging/classification yards for Saturdays Western Union meet :D

All the best

Peter L-J

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