Critique? What can I improve on?

wisconsinjimmy Nov 15, 2014

  1. cuyama

    cuyama TrainBoard Member

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    Different Atlas products have built-in switch machines. As far as Atlas is concerned, that doesn't make them "SnapSwitches", which are a specific product with a sharper-than-#4 frog and a curved diverging leg. You may call them whatever you like, but in helping others, I have found it helps avoid confusion by using precise terms.

    If what you have on hand are very old brass turnouts, they may be the pre-Customline Atlas turnouts manufactured by Casadio. I don't know the exact dimensions and frog number of those.
     
  2. cuyama

    cuyama TrainBoard Member

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    I'll just suggest again that to avoid confusion, it's probably helpful to call things by the correct name. Atlas "SnapSwitches" have the curved diverging leg and are sharper than a #4.

    Best of luck with your layout.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Dec 18, 2014
  3. wisconsinjimmy

    wisconsinjimmy TrainBoard Member

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    Yes, my switches have the #4 on one tie and on the following Atlas Snap Switch the other has the Custom Line logo, by far the Snap is the most abundant on the ebay list.
     
  4. John Smith

    John Smith TrainBoard Member

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    I thought that is what I read... but, it has been about 10 years since my turnouts were laid... so, I wasn't totally sure. Thanks Jimmy! JMS
     
  5. wisconsinjimmy

    wisconsinjimmy TrainBoard Member

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    Room1.jpg
    Here is a rough plan HO any one want to take a crack at it, I can cut through the closet also the left wall of this room goes into another room which I can access at a later date.
    To be honest I have hit a brick wall. Also this is drawn in anyrail and converted to jpg
    Jim
     
  6. wisconsinjimmy

    wisconsinjimmy TrainBoard Member

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    here is my final draft, I am using 18"curves 22 would have been nice but I am not ready to lose my free space which is not much. I could have went into the closet but I am not ready for an overhaul quite yet.
    Room123.jpg
    I am thinking I might elevate the rail closest to the wall and around the corner or build a mountain scene with a tunnel. I also have to get some switching action, I have a roundtable that will fit into the right loop. One other thing is about fastening the track together either soldering or?
     

    Attached Files:

  7. Kevin Anderson

    Kevin Anderson TrainBoard Member

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    I have been soldering the rail together. This will help me in the long run to maintain power continuity. Now you just have a loop, is this a multi deck layout or single? Any ideas for passing sidings and industrial Spurs?


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  8. wisconsinjimmy

    wisconsinjimmy TrainBoard Member

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    This is a single deck layout and at present I have no idea as to where I can put in passing sidings or industrial spurs, I was thinking about a turntable in the loop on the right side of the plan. I have no idea why I want a loop as railroads are basically out and back maybe what I should do is put the turntable on one end and a wye on the other to turn the power at least it is something to think about.
     
  9. Kevin Anderson

    Kevin Anderson TrainBoard Member

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    Point to point layouts are good. My day had one he called the Dorado and Silver Mountain. After he passed away I inherited it. In my home I have enlarged it and it is now the silver mountain sub of the Utah Railway. Here are the two plans. The first is my dads. It is small. The second is mine and my dads would fit on one side of it. These may help to give you some ideas. My layout I started drawing it in 2003 and I am still tweaking it today even though just about all the track has been laid. It has evolved over time from the third image to what is shown in the second. Also I want to add a staging yard and since it won't fit in my room I am building a mobile yard that will fit on three carts that will be wheeled in and out of the room when I want to set it up and run trains. These will be setup in the hallway.

    DoradoandSilvermountain.jpg layout8k.jpg layout1.jpg
     
  10. cajon

    cajon TrainBoard Member

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    If you used flex vs sectional track you wouldn't be "forced" you to put it where it "makes" you put it. The top loop won't need to go thru the wall & bottom one could stay on the table. Speaking of which why is that table <3'?
     
  11. BarstowRick

    BarstowRick TrainBoard Supporter

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    Any of us who's had some experience building a model railroad...well..we've all fought with the tight radius curves. In HO scale anything less then 22" radius is TO tight. If I could convince you to move to N Scale. A N scale layout with the 18" radius curves would be by far nicer. I spent most of my hobbyist life fighting with those darned tight radius curves in HO and finally gave up. I got no satisfaction from them. I now operate N scale using the same radius and am very pleased.

    In BarstowRick.com see categories. I talk about tight radius curves with some pictorials you might find interesting. http://www.barstowrick.com/category/radius-curves-how-tight/ :cool:

    Just my two cents.
     
  12. wisconsinjimmy

    wisconsinjimmy TrainBoard Member

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    I have went with the 24" rule so I do not have to stretch to reach the other side other then the corners, not sure about using flex for my radius I would think in my limited space I would get in trouble with some crooked track.
     
  13. wisconsinjimmy

    wisconsinjimmy TrainBoard Member

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    Here is the add on which makes the entrance to the room a bit tight with about one foot of free space and the door closes ok, the new section is a rough 4x4 so now I get to refigure the track.
    Room1234.jpg
    I thought about the N Scale and I would change but the wife is a major share holder in the household and the main breadwinner (I am retired) has not the time of day for "choo choo trains". So I will be content with what I have. I have no intention of big power mainly an industry type layout.
    I sure hope I made sense.
     
  14. Kevin Anderson

    Kevin Anderson TrainBoard Member

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    Ok I am starting to see areas where a yard would be and possible industries. Also I can see by using 4% grades on each loop you can raise the rear most track up. Then take a spur off the raised portion and increase height again to a mine or logging area. With that in mind. Future expansion into the closet to a hidden staging yard. Take a spur on the inside of the upper loop curve into a tunnel under the main line into the closet.


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  15. wisconsinjimmy

    wisconsinjimmy TrainBoard Member

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    I have started to do a soft lay on the track, (just laying temporary track) and the last picture I posted is the final draft, I will use only 22" radius which means I will have to go through the closet. If I used 18" I could avoid cutting holes and I still think it might be the better way, I am not going to use any passenger service nor do I think I will use six axle locos. I now have to figure how to build grades any suggestions ?
    Jim
     
  16. Kevin Anderson

    Kevin Anderson TrainBoard Member

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    Several ways. Foam board stacked on each other in a terraced fashion, woodland scenics risers, lumber.


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  17. PPPPPP42

    PPPPPP42 New Member

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    Assuming you still are interested in what you were back at the beginning (I may have missed some posts) my best suggestion would be to pick a different railroad to model. With your budget and available space I think you would be much more satisfied with one of the other local railroads and not have to make so many compromises.
    I was originally going to do the DM&IR but for all its small geographical size it has some surprisingly large and complex things to model as its most important features and generally requires a ton of room for long ore trains and obnoxiously wide curves for the engines that hauled them (yellowstones are huge). Look up what an ore boat model costs and how much space they eat for example.
    There were a ton of Class one railroads in every era of rail history that ran through this area. Maybe a Twin Cities to Duluth Great Northern passenger/freight loop would be the easiest to model using what you have.

    To answer your last question the method of foam that Kevin Anderson suggested is my favorite way to do terrain height changes. Just stack up a bunch of foam board like he said and then bread saw it into the contours you want. The super light weight low density stuff is the cheapest and easiest to work with and you can coat it with spackle afterwards to have a workable surface (while wet) that you can form and then when it dries spray stuff on (lots of odd things in sprays eat foam). You can get it in 4x8 sheets up to I think two inches thick at Menards.
     
  18. wisconsinjimmy

    wisconsinjimmy TrainBoard Member

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    I had big ambitions wanting to do the DM&IR and I have tossed that idea to the shredder. I am going to just do a freelance layout mainly industrial and nothing real fancy.
    Has anyone out there in choo choo land just used plain old gravel/sand rather than buy from the vendors. So know I have to work on the closet part of the plan, I also have a turntable although is my setup large enough.
    Lots of questions.
    -22.9°F
     
  19. wisconsinjimmy

    wisconsinjimmy TrainBoard Member

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    At a stand still.jpg Need some help anyone want to rearrange or add to? I have no idea what I am doing.
     
  20. wisconsinjimmy

    wisconsinjimmy TrainBoard Member

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    I would have gone to N scale but my wife could see no reason to give away the HO stuff. I might add she is the bread buyer at this time, so I will have to suffer with what I have.

    I have done a bit of a redesign and I am wondering if it is permissible to add a different radius section, I have installed two 15" radii sections and this will allow me to not have to cut the closet wall.
    Another jamb is how in the world do you go about setting a grade? Track to the far right I am looking at a tunnel to separate the closeness.
    Thanks for the ideas and info
    Jim
    GRID IS 12"


    1-13-15.jpg
     

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