BNSF Temple Sub (with Union Pacific Track Rights)

Hoss Jan 29, 2024

  1. Hoss

    Hoss TrainBoard Member

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    Alright, I've got three different layouts I'm contemplating right now and I've incorporated most of the great suggestions @Sumner and @BigJake have made. Probably in order of my favorite to least favorite...

    Yard Option - Other than maybe some minor tweaks here and there I don't think there's much else I'd do to this one. It has a nice clean look to it in my opinion and it accomplishes the goals I set out to accomplish.

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    Coal Option - I like this one a lot too. Only difference is the yard got replaced with a coal (or maybe a feed lot) operation. Obviously this one lacks a yard so staging is pretty limited unless I can figure out how to add a second level somehow (maybe that's my next task). Not really room for a helix though.

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    Coal & Yard - This one sort of offers everything but the yard clutters up the rural look I want on that left side and really isn't as long as I'd like it to be. Not much room for yard leads either. It would basically just be a staging yard. Still, it's an option.

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  2. Hoss

    Hoss TrainBoard Member

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    It just occurred to me that I could probably put a helix in the town area going down to a lower level...possibly a rural upper level and a more urban lower level. Hmmmm....

    I'll have to think on this, but first...sleep.

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  3. Sumner

    Sumner TrainBoard Member

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    No, the problem was I only took the large one into paint.net to work on and thought the 'zoomed in one' was the same in the closet area and it looks like it isn't so modified what I had. Sorry, should of looked at the 'zoomed' one more and saw that it was different.

    As far as the layouts go, if you open the closet up I like the first one the most. Gives you a lot of main line going through the country and there could also be a few industries there to service.

    Personally I'd forget the helix, at least at this point. If you went up or down enough to not mess up the views on the layout that you've shown it would be a lot of laps for the train to take going up or down and and lot of time for the journey. I put in a track elevator that uses a lot less track and makes the trip in short order but as you've pointed out this all takes up a lot of room to pull off. I wouldn't of done it if I would of had less than what I have.

    When do you think you will start on this?

    Sumner
     
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  4. Hoss

    Hoss TrainBoard Member

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    Kinda depends on the Army. The earliest my son will ship out is probably August and since this is his room it won't be before then. At this point it's just planning and starting to acquire materials.
     
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  5. Hoss

    Hoss TrainBoard Member

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    I'm not familiar with track elevators. I'll check that out.

    If I were to do a helix I think I could start the lead in for it along the back of the far track as shown below. It would be mostly out of sight back there and by the time it got to the town area it would already below the benchwork on this level and not impact that scene. I may play around with the idea a bit since I have time. If nothing else I could maybe just put a staging yard down there for bringing new trains onto the layout.

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    Last edited: May 8, 2024
  6. Hoss

    Hoss TrainBoard Member

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    I did a quick little sketch this morning of what elevations I might be able to achieve and the slopes needed to get there (red). Red lines are sloped track and arrows indicate direction of incline. I could get as high as 3 inches along the top edge but it would only be that high for 2-3 feet so I'll probably just stick with 2 inches as the highest elevation. Or maybe hit 2.5 along the track at the top so that entire stretch along the upper wall is level at 2.5 inches.

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  7. Hoss

    Hoss TrainBoard Member

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    Now I'm just having fun doing some virtual modeling. The "long" train is 3 locos and 36 ea 4.5" cars (roughly 15 feet of cars plus the locos). I wanted to see what a 15ish foot train looked like on the layout so this gives me a good idea.

    I also added the 1 loco / 5 car "Texas Eagle" Amtrak train and did a little fictitious staging in the yard and at the industries. Might seem kinda silly, but it helps me to better visualize scale and how trains might look on the layout.

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  8. country joe

    country joe TrainBoard Member

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    I don’t think it’s silly, Hoss. The virtual trains give an idea of how the layout will look and operate.
     
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  9. Hoss

    Hoss TrainBoard Member

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    One thing I want to do this weekend if I have some time is experiment some more with the helix idea. Since I like both BNSF and UP railroads, I'd love to make this a two level layout possibly with BNSF trains running on the top level (this one) and UP trains running on the lower level. The red line at the top of the layout could be where the UP line breaks off and goes to a hidden track that leads to the helix (dashed red line). Since the upper level is more rural I'm thinking the lower level where UP operates could be me urban/city with a lot more switching and local freight.

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  10. Sumner

    Sumner TrainBoard Member

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    What is going to be the height of the two levels? With a 2% grade each revolution (3 ft dia.) on the helix would be a little over 2" but would keep it at that since 2% on a curve is more than 2% going straight. (Distance between elevations)/2 would be the revolutions. 14"/2 = 7. 7 x 9.4' = 66 feet of track for the helix. Wait on the train to cover 66 ft between level??? Here is one man's view that has one.



    Why I built the track elevator, but not to say I wouldn't of probably gone with a helix also if the elevator wouldn't of been an option (don't see it as an option for you).

    My recommendation would be start the line to the lower level, put in the supports for the track to the helix under the layout and leave room for it but first get the one level up and running with at least track.

    Also my whole layout is on risers that are easy to move at any time. It has worked out great as with traditional bench-work sooner or later some of it is in the way of a switch machine or something else.



    Sumner
     
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  11. Hoss

    Hoss TrainBoard Member

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    @Sumner - Just now saw your response above. I'll look more at that and respond a bit later. For now I need to make a quick post and run to an eye doctor appointment.

    Here are a couple of lower level designs I came up with. I'm not really ecstatic about either one of them. The idea is to run BNSF in a more rural setting on the upper deck and run Union Pacific in a more urban setting on the lower deck. I'm pretty happy with the upper deck plan but I'm sort of getting a designer's block on the lower level.

    These are just two ideas. Definitely open to suggestions and I'll quite possibly try to come up with one or two more completely different designs. Not really set on anything specific on this lower level right now other than more urban than the upper level and more focused on UP.

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  12. BigJake

    BigJake TrainBoard Member

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    Rather than a circular helix, have you looked at whether you have enough run along the perimeter to make the transition between levels?
     
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  13. country joe

    country joe TrainBoard Member

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    Since the upper deck is BNSF and the lower deck is UP I think there’s no reason to connect them. I would make them 2 independent layouts.
     
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  14. Hoss

    Hoss TrainBoard Member

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    I'm not sure about the height difference yet. My thought was there needs to be at least 12 inches of separation between the two levels. 18 inches might be better but I'm just guessing. I haven't really done this before. I had the helix layer hidden on those last couple of pics, but right now I have a 22" radius helix drawn in on the right side where the big loop area is at. At 2% I calculate that to be about 2.75" per revolution. If I did my math right it would take 6.5 revolutions (about 75 feet of track) to rise/fall 18 inches.

    That would be my plan if I decide to go with two levels. I'm still kinda torn on that right now.
     
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  15. Hoss

    Hoss TrainBoard Member

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    That's a good thought that I haven't explored. I think it would take a couple of laps to get the distance needed so I'm not sure how that would look.
     
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  16. Hoss

    Hoss TrainBoard Member

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    That's certainly an option. In my neck of the woods there's a good amount of shared track rights between the two so in my mind I was thinking it would be nice for a train from either railroad to go to the other level if needed. Certainly not necessary though. I'll have to think about that.
     
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  17. Hoss

    Hoss TrainBoard Member

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    @BigJake - Just doing some quick math and a dirty sketch I could do a partial dogbone around the back side of the layout and get down 15-16 inches from the start and stop points shown below (on left). That's assuming a 2% grade. It could work but it's a lot of visible slope on the layout so it might look kind of funny. It also creates a long mainline run though, so I suppose that's a bonus.

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  18. Hoss

    Hoss TrainBoard Member

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    Well, sometimes plans change. My son is still likely leaving for the army, but the wife and I now have a need to use my new "train room" for something else that makes more sense for us right now. So, I'm just going to keep hanging out here and live vicariously through y'all and play around with lots of different track plans for various future spaces. So don't mind me. I'll just be doodlin' and dreamin' for a while.

    That said, I was looking through all the track plans I've done last night and this one was by far my favorite. I was working on making it a double decker, so I'll just keep playing around with this for a while...

    Lower Level
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    Upper Level
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  19. country joe

    country joe TrainBoard Member

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    Shane, do you have room for a small layout such as a 30” wide hollow core door? It would allow you to run your locomotives and try your hand at building kits and scenery. A small layout may not be ideal but it’s a million times better than no layout.
     
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  20. Hoss

    Hoss TrainBoard Member

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    Yeah, I have a couple of places I could do a small layout. I have an enclosed back room that's about 8x16 I could do something in. It's currently being used for storage and doesn't have great environmental controls but I could make it work. I also have space in another bedroom where I could do a small layout (2x6 or maybe 2x8). So, I may do something in one of those spaces just for the purposes you stated.
     
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