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Hello all,

I am in the planning stages of a new and large N scale layout and would welcome any advice offered since I haven't built such a layout before!

My current plans are to use my revamped childhood layout as an end loop module and connect it via a large bridge module to a large station, set somewhere in western Austria (the Tirol region) and fairly close to the Swiss border to allow ÖBB or SBB trains to look at home. My determination to run *almost* scale length trains up to and including a double-headed EuroCity service with 11 coaches means the longest platforms have to be at least ~205 cm.

The station is to have Hauptbahnhof status and serves a large town in an area with much scope for Alpine tourism and sports, in addition to typical regional industries such as sustainable logging etc. The town lies on a primary two-track mainline route with much through-traffic, passenger and freight, including international trains. The trains will be operated with DCC, track is to Peco code 55. The station does not yet have a name...but something like Wörgl springs to mind! The time period is epochs IV and V, fully electrified.

My provisional track plan is probably too ambitious and slightly longer than necessary, and is intended to be built in two halves each on a 6' x 2' board so that 12 feet is available:

Loading area 1 is for post (PTT) and adjacent supermarket deliveries.
Loading area 2 is for local industry etc. and may be changed to include a ROLA terminal.
There are seven platforms, platform 1 may be lengthened (dotted areas) for the covenience of passengers catching EuroCity class trains.
The tracks below the station are for freight trains to be held temporarily/added to/shortened, with a depot area off towards the right.

I made a to scale trackplan in XTrackCAD4, which shows a slightly older version of the plan with a different lower platform arrangement:


All well and good so far, but the project is ambitious and I'm not really sure about many things, in particular if it resembles the typical Austrian prototype at all (I am not expecting anyone else to have a clue either!) but MOST IMPORTANTLY if it will be fun to construct and operate as designed? The plan is unfinished, but there could be major flaws that those with vastly more experience than me will spot instantly and I would welcome any advice or suggestions on the design.

Thanks in advance,

Goedel
 

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Looks good to me - I like it. If it's going to be on 2 boards you have at least got the joints on straight track & away from points - that should alleviate potential problems.

Will be a good layout to build & operate - like the way trains can arrive & depart from either direction & access any platforms.

Be nice to see some pics as it progress'es.
 

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QUOTE (dbclass50 @ 16 Jul 2007, 07:24) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>Looks good to me - I like it. If it's going to be on 2 boards you have at least got the joints on straight track & away from points - that should alleviate potential problems.

Will be a good layout to build & operate - like the way trains can arrive & depart from either direction & access any platforms.

Be nice to see some pics as it progress'es.

Will you be operating(I'll use English) Loco waiting tracks for loco changes,direct passenger coaches (Kurswagon)adding or removing on arriving/departing passenger trains

The operational possibilities with this type of layout are endless

Have fun with this project.

All the best.

David
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
QUOTE (adecoaches26point4 @ 16 Jul 2007, 17:41) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>Will you be operating(I'll use English) Loco waiting tracks for loco changes,direct passenger coaches (Kurswagon)adding or removing on arriving/departing passenger trains

The operational possibilities with this type of layout are endless

Have fun with this project.
Thanks both for the words of encouragement! I will definitely post pictures when I begin construction!

The siding off point 's' was intended as a locomotive waiting track, and possibly the one off point 'p' too...I haven't thought of it much and will think about revising my plans...I suppose that older Swiss and Austrian locomotives could exchange trains because of the narrower pantograph system Switzerland had, and the station is meant to be near the border. I had not planned on modifying passenger train compositions but if the station has ternimating trains as a HBF then it should be considered...the original plan was to store the trains in a large fiddle-yard directly underneath the two boards as mainly fixed rakes and then summon them to appear via the end sections with transition spirals.

Goedel
 

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Well I thought I should report on how I have got on! No layout yet but the plan has gone through many revisions...

When I discovered that Peco code 55 track was THAT expensive I decided that quite so many double slips etc. might be a tad excessive, especially for the first layout I will be building on my own, i.e. without the family expert on hand. I then rethought about where to base the layout, and decided in the end to go for a fairly large station in the Tirol - Ötztal which is to the west of Innsbruck on the wonderful Arlbergbahn to Bludenz, and so on the east-west axis to Switzerland (my other area of modelling).

Here on the excellent www.sporenplan.nl website I found a plan of the station from 1987 which I link to here so that you can compare it to my design!
http://www.sporenplan.nl/html_nl/sporenpla...38/oetztal.html

The station is in an area of beautiful valleys and mountains with lots of winter and summer tourism, and there are logging and other Alpine industries to model and of course all the Intercity and Eurocity trains and international and local freight trains as they traverse the primary artery of western Austria! This gives me huge flexibility with the prototype which is great. Also it is a point where the double track becomes single track for a time which, like on the real railway will lead to opportunities for shuffling the order of running, e.g. freight stopping in a passing loop for an express train to jump the queue etc.

Here is my latest plan, basically a lengthwise compressed Ötztal, set in 1980s to 2000s depending upon exactly which trains I am running at the time. Please note that the station is upside down relative to map of Austria; it will be viewed from the North side so I designed it that way.



It is 4 metres long, (the grid is 1 metre sections), and this is mainly because I haven't simplified the track work at all, but want to cram in platform space for an 11 coach express train (the EC 'Transalpin' is often 14+ coaches!) to stop. This works out at about 290 real metres, and my long platforms are about 1.8 scale metres so 288 real metres, which is a lot of platform to squeeze in!

The platforms are connected by underpass, the tracks closest to station building are passing loops and not used for embarking/disembarking. There is a goods loading area (grey) with warehouse (blue) and a large goods yard beyond which will be full of timber waiting transport, building materials, maybe a new gondola for a ski-lift etc. (in one photo I have of the real station there is a 4 metre model of the Eifel Tower in the yard!)

The siding at the far left of the plan goes to a lineside quarry/gravel merchant so will have ballast wagons etc. visiting it, and the other sidings pointing away from the 'Innsbruck end' are for storing terminated trains etc., as Innsbruck is the Tirol's state capital who bring skiers and holidaymakers from the international airport there etc. etc.

Control: currently Roco multiMaus digital system.
Track: Peco code 55 elektrofrog, all long points except a few sidings which have medium points, and three Y points.
Baseboards: probably built in four 1 metre sections for ease of transport

According to the computer the station trackplan uses 17.5 metres of flexitrack and 20 points, for which the best price I can find comes to about £220. Does this sound reasonable for a layout of this size and scope, should I consider code 80 or does it look too toy like, and isn't very much cheaper? Can people see how I can improve the design, I don't have to be exactly faithful to the prototype track plan? (I've already sneaked some Y points in as then the angle is 5 degrees each way which helps a bit). Are there ways the 'operational fun' could be enhanced which I have overlooked? Some feedback would be super!

(This will all end up on my website hopefully, when ever I get round to updating it ... a long way off in the future!)
 

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Like the plan, especially the way it "flows" nicely.

Although an HO modeller I would go for the code 55 track, provided that all the stock you have will run on it OK. Visually it will look so, so much better - heavier track in N always looks like girders to me.

Look forward to seeing regular updates.
 

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Hi Gödel

Planning a station layout is so much easier when you have a real station plan to base it on.

One of the compromises is always going to revolve around
1) Train Length
2) platform length
3) storage siding length.

In terms of your aspirations concerning running a 11 coach passenger train, that can stop at the station, may have to give way to it just passing through the station.

On my layout, my station area is approximately 5 meters long, but the longest platform length is about 2.2 meters long )points take up a lot of space!) but it does allow me to run a 9-10 coach train (DRG and Landerbahn coaches where not as long as today's examples) which looks right for the station.

Cheers

John
 

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Magic Goedel - a nice, flowing plan that'd look great in any scale.

A thought Re getting more platform length....

The "East" end of the station. (confusing with North pointing South - hope I get this correct.... :) :) )

If you can move the two crossovers a little more left..... (yes, literally more left - or east on the drawing)
Flow the first (top) turnout more directly from the East>West line curve using the other "hand"
do similar to the other two turnouts south west of it and above the centre platform
you will easily gain another 300mm of platform length for the upper/south side platform

Just a thought - ignore if U like - anyway you do it it'll build and look great anyway, and on the bright side re the cost saving.... by avoiding all those slips, you'll probably gain a bit of improvement in running too - slips can on occasion look much better than they actually perform

Richard

PS - Yes, do stay with the finer rail - code 55 looks so much better, and is pretty well "scale" for a heavy main line as you are modelling!

REJ
 

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Looks great Goedel. This will be awesome when finished. I suppose that one of the advantages of N is that you can do more realistic scale stations and scenery. With HO or OO you normally have to make compromises because of space. I'd love to have the space to do a scale model of Glasgow central, unfortunately it would be bigger than my house.
 

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Thank you all for your comments and my apologies for not saying so sooner.

I don't know if I mentioned it before but there is still a house move between me and my layout, however the good news is I should be moving in about 3 months time and I have the dimensions of the loft/attic in which I am building my layout.

I have a rather bothersome shape to play with in some respects but I've had a go at fitting my nice station plan for Ötztal in Western Austria into the space and its proving tricky! I've had to shorten the platforms slightly but this seems the best way to fit as much station in as possible. Beyond that there is a huge (probably far too big!) storage yard underneath and I have attempted to include plenty of open mainline as the railway wends its way through the Alps up to a higher altitude station (orange section is highest) and down again with splenty of scope for spectacular viaducts / bridges etc. just like on the Semmering or Tauernbahn. I've tried to situate the curves so they are concave to the viewer to enhance the close coupling appearance of models and make the radius as large and so realistic as possible. I plan to cram all the tight curves and spirals under mountainous scenery, not an original solution but very easy to do if you're making an Alpine model. Plenty of work still to be done to connect the various sections properly and ensure nice smooth height transitions with minimised gradients in scenic sections.

Any comments would be greatly appreciated, as the forum has so many members who are much further along this joyful path of layout construction that I have got...my only worry is that it's getting bigger and bigger and I don't want to start building a white elephant if possible...

I designed it on AnyRail with Peco code 55 track. I'm looking forward to requesting this thread gets moved to "On My Layout", fingers crossed, in about 3 months! I hope everyone has a Merry Christmas and no-one hears the rattling of loose detailing parts as they receive a present on Christmas Eve / Day / Epiphany!

 

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Hi Goedel,

I think you are a storage yard short. The top line (red line that runs into the black) probably need one so that your overall plan goes Return loop-Storage Yard - Ötztal - storage yard - return loop.

Cheers

John
 

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Hi Goedel,

The layout looks great and you certainly have plenty of hidden storage! I guess this is the loft/attic so I think a key question is how easy is it to reach all of your track? If you can comfortably get at all of it, especially the hidden stuff, then great but do you actually need all that hidden track?


If you had your storage focused across the bottom and then reducing once you have turned up the right hand end you would still have loads of storage but would save a packet on track and wiring (and time). Just a thought...

It will be quite a challenge to build I suspect especially if this is a solo project and one for spare time.


I admire your ambition - it has the makings of something quite spectacular


Have a great
and


Mfg

Geoff

PS Any update on the Dostos?
 

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Again, thank you all for your comments and encouragement! Firstly, having now got periodic access to my new railway space I discovered that it contained a dust coated OO gauge layout and had been fully lined and timbered by the previous occupant. That's very lucky and very useful! I made a 3D model in Sketchup and decided that as the space isn't so tall then a swivel chair on castors is the best way of saving my back from lumbago, which has been useful for deciding on what should go where on the layout in terms of feasibility.



After removing the OO layout I noticed that the baseboards were very solidly constructed and seemed to be in useful places so I pulled out about a million track pins and thought...hmm, can I use the existing woodwork for my layout to save myself some effort? The answer would appear yes so I have adapted the evolving plan to include the existing boards (yellow). I hope to add a picture of the loft space at some point, (then this thread really will have become a blog and I should get it moved!) but it has no intruding beams or rafters etc. which is good.

QUOTE (john woodall @ 24 Dec 2008, 04:06) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>I think you are a storage yard short. The top line (red line that runs into the black) probably need one so that your overall plan goes Return loop-Storage Yard - Ötztal - storage yard - return loop.
QUOTE (Geoff Booth @ 24 Dec 2008, 09:25) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>The layout looks great and you certainly have plenty of hidden storage! I guess this is the loft/attic so I think a key question is how easy is it to reach all of your track? If you can comfortably get at all of it, especially the hidden stuff, then great but do you actually need all that hidden track?
If you had your storage focused across the bottom and then reducing once you have turned up the right hand end you would still have loads of storage but would save a packet on track and wiring (and time). Just a thought...

I have made the second station a terminus, and hopefully the current track arrangement makes the single storage yard adequate but I'm not sure. Perhaps the terminus should have one too. I've made the main storage yard smaller, and tried to concentrate all the point work in more accessible places. The main station should be on an elevated section running across the whole room and I hope to install the wiring with it out of position, and or build the layout with scope for "modularity of deconstruction" i.e. can lift off chunks of scenery to rerail that annoying coach with the dodgy bogie in the storage yard...speaking of which, I also have a fair sized window perfect for the periodic defenestration of defective runners.

Anyway, I'm waffling, here is the current plan, which I hope is looking more managable than the last one I posted: The terminus station track plan I haven't really thought about properly, but should be able to cope with 4/5 coach regional trains I hope so it can probably be smaller than at present. (267 does not mean 267th exactly...as I started at 256 on this iteration I think, not sure why)

 

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Hi Goedel,

Any chance you could shrink the size of the image of the plan and repost? It's way too way for my display (1280 x 1024) and it's dragged the text off the side too so I can't read it. It's a shame because what you've posted looks worth reading.

Thanks
David
 

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Sorry David, and to anyone else too (I find it very annoying when it happens to me...
), its hard to know what size to post it as! I'll make it smaller at once!

It's now 900 pixels by something...perhaps the forum software needs adjusting to shrink images to fit users' window or screensize, or perhaps there could be some 'automatic-thumbnail-generate-and-replace' algorythm?
 

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Hi Goedel, thanks for doing the resize. It's fine for me now and I can see what's going on.

I've only the one comment - if you want your hidden storage sidings to be of equal length, you can get this by reversing one of the entrance / exit ladders.

Looks like a lot of fun!

David
 

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Hi Goedel,

It looks great and much more manageable than the previous layout. However, I have a nagging suspicion that the interface between your complex Hauptbahnhof and how you get to the hidden storage is too limited or a very long route. It also appears that one of your main lines out of the Hbf just stops (upper of the two green tracks exiting to the right) which will be very restricting. You might want to split the hidden storage so that it isn't just in and out on the upper "paradestrecke".

You may have looked at this in detail and be entirely happy but I also know from when I was planning you sometimes can't see the wood for the trees as you get transfixed on fitting things in. I might be wrong but worth a look just to be sure it is what you intend.

Cheers

Geoff
 

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QUOTE (Geoff Booth @ 18 Jan 2009, 21:13) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>It looks great and much more manageable than the previous layout. However, I have a nagging suspicion that the interface between your complex Hauptbahnhof and how you get to the hidden storage is too limited or a very long route. It also appears that one of your main lines out of the Hbf just stops (upper of the two green tracks exiting to the right) which will be very restricting. You might want to split the hidden storage so that it isn't just in and out on the upper "paradestrecke".

You may have looked at this in detail and be entirely happy but I also know from when I was planning you sometimes can't see the wood for the trees as you get transfixed on fitting things in. I might be wrong but worth a look just to be sure it is what you intend.
Hello Geoff

Thanks for your comments! It was intentional to have one track leading from the right hand end of the station as this is copied from the real Oetztal station, and at first I thought that this would create a nice operating challenge as two way traffic has to be juggled to prevent head on collisions, but now I'm not so sure if it's a good idea. The problem with the current plan I suppose is that it creates quite a long single track section in what behaves otherwise as a double track loop...hmm, more thought needed on this I think so that I'm not driven mad by operating it...

I agree about the storage, I think that it could do with further connections to the rest of the layout perhaps to increase functionality. Also I should make a dedicated storage area for push-pull trains, my Desiro DMU etc. that are going to travel up to the terminus as storing them in the main storage yard is probably inefficient use of space more difficult to operate. I was also thinking of making the upper paradestrecke three tracked with the terminus line running through into the storage yard entrance to perhaps a separate smaller yard. At least there's plenty of space to play with at the moment. I wonder if the big mainline loop needs a crossover at the midpoint and some side features or line-side industry sidings...

Also a small locomotive depot would be nice, I wonder where to put it? Gosh, still lots to decide before I put cheesewire to sundeala!
 
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