Lonely Hearts Club Band

rsn48 Mar 29, 2002

  1. rsn48

    rsn48 TrainBoard Member

    I know you're out there. Yeah you......and you.....and you eating the potatoe chips with your coke sitting beside you...lol. I know you're not working on your layout as much as you hoped to. Well what I am proposing for an experimental 2 month period is a layout design self help group.

    The purpose of the group is to encourage others to get out of their arm chair and do some more work on the layout. And also to motivate you (and me) to do more work on the layout. I am hoping we can get a small group (but no one will be rejected) of people who will be committed to posting their work on the layout from the following week. This means for two months you are committed to posting once a week. We will of course congratulate those who work on their layout, and encourage those who haven't.


    1. Brief description of your layout to present, with what you want to accomplish in the next two months (don't make it grandiose is my recommendation).

    2. A brief description of what you hope to accomplish in the next week.

    3. A commitment to posting once a week describing what you have or have not done. It is important to report if you have "fallen off the wagon (not worked on the layout" so that we can see all are human here, and that we can encourage you.

    4. A commitment to not fudging your reply so that you look better than you are really doing. By joining this group, you are acknowledging already that you haven't worked on the layout as much as you know you should have. The idea here is for us to have some fun and act as an electronic round robin self help group. When I have others coming over to my home to help me build, I am more efficient because I have to plan and prepare, then work when they arrive. Well, this is the IRRG (the Internet Round Robin Group), we may not be able to physically help you out, but we can support you and your efforts.

    I will now start in the next post what I have in mind for format.

    [ 28 March 2002, 19:04: Message edited by: rsn48 ]
  2. rsn48

    rsn48 TrainBoard Member

    Hi, I'm Rick living in the Greater Vancouver area of British Columbia. I have a 9 by 13 foot layout I have been building, more off than on, for the last year and a half. I am not happy with the progress I have made, possibly due to sloth tendencies, also because certain aspects of it intimidating me.

    Right now, I have 80% of the benchwork up. I have decided to work on it sectionally; I have mentally divided the layout into three seperate areas, bottom level, nolix (no helix), and upper level. The benchwork is in for the upper and lower level; it isn't for the nolix.

    My commitment is to backdrop and track, with some structures and scenery added to the bottom level in the next two months. My goal at the end of this commitment is to be ready to begin work on my nolix area at the beginning of month three.

    My commitment for the next week is to get the backdrop hardboard (masonite) in for the bottom level.
  3. BurghThing

    BurghThing TrainBoard Member

    Hi, I'm Chris. I live in Brandon Fl, just outside of Tampa. :cool: I've been working on a layout since just after the holidays after I threw my old benchwork out (long story). I've been making steady progress but enjoy having people to discuss it with. My goal for this week is to wash all my track and start soldering the snap pieces I will be using. Keep in mind its been about 20 years since I've done any serious soldering so wish me luck!
  4. MetroNorth

    MetroNorth E-Mail Bounces

    Hello all, My name is Jim and I just saw the link for this forum on the Atlas forum and scince I just started my railroad I figured I'd give it a shot. So here goes....I built an 8x4 layout, got the track down and trains running within two days (including laying and weathering roadbed). Scince then little progress has occurred. At least not very noticeable. I'm putting together building kits right now so it's slow. In the grand scheme of things to come it will be a model of the Hudson Valley area of the CSX (old Conrail) line, with the Metro North railroad headed to NYC. Amtrak also shares part of the line w/ MetroNorth, and occasional freight. Let's see if this forum gets me off the couch and on the layout.
  5. Colonel

    Colonel Staff Member TrainBoard Supporter

    HI my name is Paul and I have an N scale layout that I have been building for the past 6 years. I am currently scenicing the layout extension and hope to lay roads and paths on my town area this week.

    I will post some pics as soon as my IPS's webserver is up again.

    Rick this is a great topic I'm sure it will be well participated.

    Jim a special welcome to you from Trainboard. I hope you become a regular here. I f you have any questions about the site feel free to email me.
  6. rray

    rray Staff Member

    Hi, My name is Robert, and I have been building my small layout for 6 years, making very slow progress. It doesn't help that I live in 2 different towns, staying while working in one, and living in another 4 county's away.

    I'm willing to go with this "progress program" kind of like a 12 setp program to recovery. My goals will to get all the remaining track on my new module laid, and basic groundcover scenery completed.
    I also want to get my wireless unit installed in my NCE hammerhead controller.

    Since I'm leaving town for my weekend work schedule, my goal for this week will be to get the cork roadbed glued down and install the wireless DCC unit.

    This is the state of the handheld unit: The NCE Hammerhead

    This is the state of the module: The New Module
  7. MetroNorth

    MetroNorth E-Mail Bounces

    Just something I thouhgt I should add... probably a common thing but my "plan of attack" is to have all track and roadbed down, then the buildings and streets, then to do ground cover, scenery, etc. as each section gets added. To elaborate on my first post I have two main lines, one passenger(with only a loco) and one freight. I have a small 3 track yard, probably too small for the layout, with a two stall loco house - built. I have on the oppositte side of the board a branch with an oil refinery/oil depot, almost complete. I;m about to build a power substation kit the same side of the oil depot but on the far end of the board. NOW here's my question for all you: I'm thinking of building a mountain lengthwise across the board, this would essentialy seperate the yard from the side with the substation and the depot. The mountain would go over the curve that trains approach out of the yard, hopefully it would slope down off the board where I would have trains cross the valley and onto the next (future) board. I think I've painted a good picture but that's easy for me to say. Do you guys think this sounds to feasable or is it too cluttered to look prototypical? Any input/advice is appreciated. If this is off-topic I'm sorry but I think this would help decide a direction for scenery. Thanks
  8. Robin Matthysen

    Robin Matthysen Passed Away October 17, 2005 In Memoriam

    Hi, my name is Robin. My layout occupies a basement area that is 26ft. by 11ft. Not bad for N gauge. The layout is a point to point with a seaport at one end and an inland city at the other. Today, I added about 8feet of flex track and one switch. I also glued down some cork roadbed in an industrial area.The main line is now about 95% done and is wired for action. I use gauge 18 wire with track feeders around every three feet.
    This evening I watched a movie on TV and I build structures while doing so. A TV table with a cutting board serves as a mini workbench. All the structures will find a home somewhere on the layout. Tomorrow Good Friday, I will do some more track laying.
    In the next two months I want to have the mainline complete and to paint clouds and stuff on the backboards. I should also complete 3 more structures all scratch built. To see my latest effort see the Anderson Coke Plant in the freelance forum.

    [ 29 March 2002, 04:32: Message edited by: Robin Matthysen ]
  9. rush2ny

    rush2ny TrainBoard Member

    Welcome to Trainboard. What part of NY are you from? I am from Queens.

    I have been working on the same 2'x4' N scale layout for 2 years, constantly rearranging things for optimal running. The last "completed" layout (though they never really are, are they?) was on a hollow door which was about 95%complete.
    The larger layout was a lot easier to do because I had plenty of room to place industries and stuff. It was also easier because I was not married nor had kids to distract me from my pursuits. Now, I get 5 minutes here and there to work on things so I usually wind up running trains and make no other progress than that!

  10. nmtexman

    nmtexman In Memoriam

    And I'm Bob. I have a layout in an attached room that I am in the process of dismantling so that I can build a new one downstairs. The problem with the attached room was that it has no heating and no air conditiong. Since I live in New Mexico, that means that it's only usable in Early Spring and Early Fall!

    Downstairs, where my daughter and grandsons used to live, has now opened up and I have tons of room. My wife has opted the big room for a pool table (imagine my surprise and chagrin) and I have an erstwhile playroom for trains!

    I have benchwork in various sizes (I do N-Trak), and only have to combine the different frames to get what I want! However, it will be a whole new layout with lots of neat new stuff so it will be a learning experience for me as well.
  11. HemiAdda2d

    HemiAdda2d Staff Member TrainBoard Supporter

    I am Jeremiah, and have a larger layout brewin' in the basement of my base house.
    It measures about 17'6" x 9'6" and is arranged in an L shape. They are all built from modules 18" x 48", with 2" foam on top. Modular/portable to move to each place I am stationed in Uncle Sam's service.I have the bechwork completed, and all foam is glued to the tops on the modules, for roadbed/scenery. I have a box of roadbed from Woodland Scenics, the foam stuff, and some flex from Nagengast hardware , on order. 1.35$ a section for Atlas c80! Anyways, I hope to have the trackplan laid out on the benchwork before next month is half over. But money is being saved to buy my wife a nice b-d present before Apr 16th rolls around, so monetary funds are being redirected at this time. The roadbed may be in place, and maybe some track in place in 2 weeks. What is a best way to lay out radii for your curves? A tripod with a string? Other ideas?
  12. Mark_Athay

    Mark_Athay TrainBoard Member


    The best way I've found for laying out curves is to take a very heavy piece of card stock and cut a template of the curve to go against the inside rail. It's amazing how small of a deviationaway from this template can give you problems. If you want to see how good your curves are, watch a steamer as it runs around your track and see how much the front truck weaves back and forth.

    As for my layout, I had to empty out the basement in January to finish it all off. I'll be doing all the work myself. Both of my 4 X 8 layouts are hanging off the garage ceiling, with all the rolling stock in 5 boxes on a shelf above my work bench.

    My goal by the end of April is to have it all framed, duct work in, and all the duct work boxed in. This will also require part of the insulation in one bedroom to be installed. By September I hope to lay carpet, October to have the bathroom finished. Maybe next Christmas I'll be able to start an around the room layout in a 9'6" X 15' bedroom. I've started designing it, with one main line in mountains with a trestle across a window, one "business loop" around the track, and a 5 siding switch yard with a train station.

    Until then I'll be using my circular saw, nail gun, and power hammer. So much for playing with my toys!

  13. Colonel

    Colonel Staff Member TrainBoard Supporter

    Here is a picture of my next project. I intend adding road and base scenery to this area over the next few days I will post pics as I progress.

  14. rsn48

    rsn48 TrainBoard Member

    Welcome all,
    I haven't digested all that is here, but I hope we have some fun. If you are having a problem as you go, like not knowing how to solder, then post it and we will advise or send you to a link that might very well help you.

    All has not gone smoothly to date. I cut all my hardboard for the lower layout size (18") but forgot the upper deck backdrop is much higher. I will have to buy more hardboard cut to the proper size...lol. I guess I have all my fascia board purchased now (the hard board I can't use).

    Also I have been trying to butt glue two pieces of MDF together, but it sure isn't taking. And you will be happy to know that mild panic has set in already for this weeks commitment to install my hardboard for the backdrop. It isn't as easy as it sounds. I am trying to cove the corners in a difficult area. So far I am on plan number five on how to cove the corners easily so I don't have to work at it to hard.

    Your layout looks great. I have a reversing loop that I have been struggling with in terms of scenery. I think I might copy what you have done - city in the middle.
  15. watash

    watash Passed away March 7, 2010 TrainBoard Supporter In Memoriam

    Rick, sand the edges gently of the MDF that you wish to butt glue together to make sure there is no oil from fingers, or wax from the shipping wrapper. Then if you do not hve a "Bisquit" cutter, carefully mark both edges while clamped together side by side, and drill 3/8" diameter holes about an inch and a quarter deep into both boards. Use a soda straw and blow out all the drill cuttings from each hole. Lightly sand off any burrs around the holes. Cut 2 and a quarter inch lengths of round wood dowel rod, and sand both ends to remove saw burrs. Run a bead of Gorilla glue along the edge of one board and coat all the dowels you use (maybe one every 8 inches) inserting each in its hole on one side, then clamp them together while they lay flat on a couple of 2x4's. Leave them over night. Next day, remove the clamps and sand off the excess glue. It is the best way to make a butt joint that will hold MDF.
  16. Colonel

    Colonel Staff Member TrainBoard Supporter

    As you can see the city in the middle straddles the loop so i have made the whole section removable in one piece.

    Today I layed the paths and roads, I used Evergreen styrene for the paths and used wet and dry (sandpaper) for the roadways as it is cheap and relatively easy to glue in place. i then add some white chalk and brush ut in the roadway similar to weathering to get the desired effect.

    Over the next couple of days I will add ground foam to the base and maybe add some figures to start populating the town.

    As soon as I have some pics I will post them here.
  17. Gary Pfeil

    Gary Pfeil TrainBoard Member

    Hi, Gary here. I am building a two level HO layout in a 19 x25 basement. The lower level has its mainlines and staging loops complete and operating, no scenery. I am currently working on the upper level, I have a yard in place and operating, connected to the lower level via helix. The balance of the upper level is under construction. My goal for 2 months is to complete at least the trackage which will exit the other end of the yard and form a loop to operate out and back from the yard. This trackage represents about 1/2 of the main line for this level and a section of a branch line. The loop this trackage forms is going to allow me to turn steam prior to installation of a turntable in the yard area, scheduled for about two years from now. I am four years into a ten year plan. About 1/3 of the trackage to be laid in the next two months will be handlaid, in order to have the required turnouts flow smoothly. There are three bridges to be built before I can proceed. They are in various stages of completion. One (a ballasted deck girder) is in place with track laid, it needs abutments and piers. Another, a Micro Engineering deck/through girder, is built and decaled, over the next few days I will make abutments and install. The last is a Campbell wood trestle (branch line). Bridge is built, I need to make stone abutments and piers, perhaps by end of week. Still not sure of look I want here. Till next week...

  18. Rossford Yard

    Rossford Yard TrainBoard Member

    I have had my layout since 1990, when we moved to our new house. My wife let me have an 12 X 17 space - upstairs, as we have no basements in Texas, with a bar, etc. that most people would use as a pool table room.

    Just after buying the house, I notice a small ad in the classifieds, stating that a 12 X 17 N scale layout was for sale. I went to see it, bought it, and have since been modifying it. I originally did Cajon Pass, for it's relatively easy desert scenery, but tore lots of this up last year to change it to Kansas City (or St. Louis) so I could run interchange trains of more railroads, and make use of my collection better.

    I also added a few more staging tracks, and right now, have completed almost a complete redo of my yard. I have a half built cityscape going, but nothing complete.....

    My goals are:

    1. Finish wiring the engine terminal after the track relay

    2. Install caboose ground throws, as I have been gradually cutting back on all my remote control turnouts.

    3. Get back to city scenery - I promised my wife I would build all the stuff I got before buying any more, "just in case". I probably have too much to use anyway.

    4. Install "opto detectors" for my new hidden staging tracks (I have been putting this one off)

    5. Make use of the carpenters in our house right now to help with a small benchwork extension, to bring a few more tunnel tracks out into the daylight, and possiblly to expand the front of the layout so I can reconnect to some staging tracks in a better way for operations.

    6. with the mainline back in shape, buy rail ops, or another program, and start prototype operating!

    I have to say, after reading this thread, it inspired me to go into the layout room, and get at least an hour of work done, rather than while away railroading hours on the internet. So, thanks! I think the idea of publicly posting goals and reports is just what the doctor ordered!
  19. MetroNorth

    MetroNorth E-Mail Bounces

    Update time. Scince last post I have completed the last of the structures that will be on this section and finished laying the branch lines. Tonight I start laying out the skeleton of the mountain.
  20. Colonel

    Colonel Staff Member TrainBoard Supporter

    Here is a picture of the area I finished over the weekend


    I still need to add some tres then add more detail to buildings etc

    You can see more pics in this topic

    Layout update pics

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