Unnamed - N - Larry Wood

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After several years away, I have finally gotten around to designing a new layout. I have decided against an around the walls design, as I prefer to remain somewhat mobile, and don't really relish the thought of tearing out and disposing of something I have spent a good amount of time on (I don't know how some of you guys do it!).

My current ambition is a twelve by three foot, against the wall design. The benchwork will be developed to be easily split down the middle and my current track plan has no switches in that area. I have also tried to keep any switches within thirty inches of the front of the layout (accept for two on the lower staging area).

The concept is for a small short line that winds itself from a small town up the side of a mountain to a couple of towns that provide various types of freight; iron ore/coal, dairy, cattle, perhaps a small custom furniture manufacturer. The interchange town will connect with the mainline of a busy bridge route, that will loop back and down to a hidden staging yard. I am planning to model late steam era, but no particular prototype. The fabled location of this valley is yet to be determined. I'm looking for a fairly rugged and heavily forested area. Probably the Pacific Northwest, perhaps Oregon or Northern California.

The minimum radius is ten inches and #5 turnouts on the shortline and should handle short cars and engines fine. I have kept the bridge route mainline radius as a minimum of fourteen inches with #7 turnouts. All the visible mainline on the bridge route maintains a 24 inch minimum radius. This should allow me to run some longer equipment and with some very well groomed ballast, set it apart from the short line quite well.

I will wire the layout to use DCC for control. Eventually the movement of mainline trains from the staging yard will be computer controlled and either pausing, or relinquishing control when reaching the shortline junction to pick up or set out cars for interchange.

Below are a few images of my attempt at a plan. The lowest level in the middle of the layout connects with the mainline that leaves town in both directions and loops down two and a half turn helixes to a six track staging yard located at the front of the layout in a drawer. From the interchange town the shortline travels left through a tunnel where it climbs up and around to appear at the back of the layout and continue climbing to the town on the right. From here it turns toward the front of the layout and then loops back and climbs to the town on the left.

There is still work to be done in planning, but much of the framing is being worked on as I get spare time (photos of progress to come). Additionally I really need to come up with names ... for everything. I'm thinking "Crystal Creek Railroad", with "Crystal Creek", "Farmington" and "Blackstone" for towns. But any suggestions are welcome at this point (I haven't painted anything, yet).

I would appreciate any ideas for improving, especially if the way of operating issues you may think of.





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