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 New L&N Layout Trackplan-Constructive Comments Pls
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Robby

Posted - 2007 April 12 :  11:39:26 PM  Show Profile
Okay, to get away from some of the "what's wrong with this forum" topics, here's the trackplan I've been working on for my new layout.

It's the 1979 to 1981 time period on the former L&N's Cumberland Valley Subdivision in Eastern Kentucky. The coal boom is still in full swing, the ICC has granted the L&N a massive rate hike and the company has used the cash flow to invest in brand new GE C30-7 and EMD SD40-2 locomotives being delivered in the Family Lines paint scheme. But for now, Alcos rule the rails with the C628, C630 and C-420's running out their final miles. The U30C fleet has just been assigned to Corbin for service and traffic is so heavy the massive yard in this little town is almost always gridlocked. The famed Onieda & Western Green Trains cycle down these rails five times per week and several coal company bean counters have leased hoppers from everyone with steel to spare. Former Rock Island cars are the newest addition to US Steel Lynch turns and utilities such as Georgia Power, Florida Power and TVA have placed huge Ortner 5-bays into unit train service. (This is all real history, no made-up fantasy stuff for me)

This layout is designed to do a good job filling a 2,000sqft basement and represent the section of the CV from Corbin(KY) south to Ponza with the busy C&M and Straight Creek Branches included as well as a few shorter spurs that saw lots of action. Almost every structure will be scratch built, most of the L&N's unique hopper fleet has already been kitbashed and almost all the remaining cars and locos will be custom painted and get decals applied (most already done over the summer while my new basement was being built). Not too much room for RTR in my life.

Train control will be Digitrax with radio throttles, the main line will get block signals with CTC controlled switches many of the Alcos will have sound.

Construction on the Crew Lounge has been kicked off and I'm still tweaking the plan so tell me what you think. Let's discuss trains and stop crying about a few forum rules.

This layout made possible by the Atlas C-420 release coming to a basement near you very soon. Thanks again Atlas!

The Lower Level with staging
Download Attachment: CV_Sub_Lower_Level_RV.jpg
391.25 KB


The middle level at an average height of 44 inches.
Download Attachment: CV_Sub_Middle_Level_RV.jpg
403.35 KB


The upper level at an average height of around 62 inches.
Download Attachment: CV_Sub_Upper_Level_RV.jpg
414.36 KB

Prototype pictures of every coal loader and industry I plan to model have been posted to the files section of the APPALACHIANcoalhauler group on Yahoo but you'll need to join the group to see them. If you don't want to join, ask and I can post pics here to give a feel for the area.
Robby
Building the L&N CV Subdivision in HO Scale
http://s226.photobucket.com/albums/dd247/robby-ky/CV%20Subdivision%20Layout/

Country: USA | Posts: 948

jrbernier

Posted - 2007 April 12 :  11:59:23 PM  Show Profile
Nice plan for your layout. One thing does bother me. You have 'trapped' the utilities like the HVAC with a lot of trackage. What happens if you need to service this gear? Also, if the fire inspector ever gets downstairs, he will have a fit about that. I had a branchline terminal on the other side of a utulity room wall. After 18 years the 'A' coil for the AC went out in the summer of 2001 - 100+ heat in the house when I got home from the NMRA National in St Louis! I had to take a 'sawz-all' to the last 3 feet of the branchline and cut a hole in the wall so the A/C guy could remove the 'A coil' from the plenum! The unit could only be removed from the layout side. I have 'redesigned' things after that episode.....

Jim


Modeling the Milwaukee Road in SW Wisconsin - In the 50's!

Country: USA | Posts: 931 Go to Top of Page

CPRailer

Posted - 2007 April 13 :  01:32:18 AM  Show Profile  Visit CPRailer's Homepage
That's a pretty serious looking! Wish I had the room and cash to do something like that.
Good luck with it!



Country: USA | Posts: 55 Go to Top of Page

Robby

Posted - 2007 April 13 :  01:37:48 AM  Show Profile
Hey Jim,

I did give some thought to that. The actual aisle between the "mechanical room" and the layout edge is almost 4' wide at that point which is big enough to get the entire water heater out if needed. I should have included a scale for these prints. None of the aisles are less than 36" and most of the middle level scenes are 30-34" deep. On the inside of the mechanical room, one leg of the wye runs along the back wall and passes behind the HVAC and the water heater to reach the helix in the far corner. The other leg of the wye is the issue. It does pass in front of the HVAC and water heater but it will be on a long straight 4" wide T girder that is detachable at the helix and at the wye switch. I had to make it this way so I can have easy access to our electrostatic air filter that has to get cleaned every 30 days. I believe this will be workable. Full access is available to everything in that room by pulling two pins and two connectors then storing the T girder on pins above the folding access doors (not drawn).

Like you, I made a mistake with my last layout, except I put a helix around a water heater. That's right, the top element burned out after two years and the plumber said no way. At least now I know how to change those elements by myself.


Robby
Building the L&N CV Subdivision in HO Scale
http://s226.photobucket.com/albums/dd247/robby-ky/CV%20Subdivision%20Layout/

Country: USA | Posts: 948 Go to Top of Page

Dump_The_Air

Posted - 2007 April 13 :  04:57:23 AM  Show Profile
That looks like one hell of a layout!




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LehighValley

Posted - 2007 April 13 :  10:51:19 AM  Show Profile  Visit LehighValley's Homepage
I am not familiar with this part of the L&N or the operations in the area. It certainly looks like you have done your research. From a model RR perspective, what is the planned operating scheme? It looks like most of the trains will run from staging to a mine(s) and back. The only yard appears to be Walsend and it is not a classification yard. Are you going swap the loads out of the coal cars between sessions? How many cars do you think will be moved per session? What type of routing system do you plan to use? Car Cards, software or some other design. It seems that a train that runs from staging, to a mine and back will cycle the same cars every two sessions (since they will not be mixed at a classification yard).

I guess it is a good thing the L&N HS ran the series of articles on kitbashing L&N coal hoppers. How many hoppers do you think you will need for the layout?

Overall, the design looks great and should be east to build (just time consuming). I think we all will look forward to seeing the progress pictures.




Modeling the Lehigh Valley Railroad
Fall of 1972.
http://webpages.charter.net/dmnolan/

Country: USA | Posts: 85 Go to Top of Page

CIOR

Posted - 2007 April 13 :  12:26:58 PM  Show Profile  Visit CIOR's Homepage
Robby,
Looks like a GREAT layout you have planned. Looks good, I will give it a better go over later, but I like what I see. Tons of coal action!
The rule of thumb is 4' so you should be safe. Most houses use a 36" rule (why entry doors are standard 36" now. SO, you ought to be safe on that aspect. Sounds like you learned your other leason. LOL

Plus, you will have the ability to test stuff before you start building and refine once you do build.
BTW, what is the spacing on decks and height from floor?
Great job Robby.

Matt


________________________
The C&O of Indiana
http://candoindiana.com
The Central Indiana & Ohio Railroad
http://www.trainweb.org/cior

Edited by - CIOR on 2007 April 13 12:29:18 PM

Country: USA | Posts: 1465 Go to Top of Page

Tom M.

Posted - 2007 April 13 :  1:25:11 PM  Show Profile  Visit Tom M.'s Homepage
My only concern is with the upper level. Operating crews will have a long walk around the peninsula to regain contact with their trains as they enter the Horse Creek and Gregory branches.

Tom



Edited by - Tom M. on 2007 April 13 1:27:04 PM

Country: USA | Posts: 1150 Go to Top of Page

Robby

Posted - 2007 April 13 :  1:34:46 PM  Show Profile
quote:
My only concern is with the upper level. Operating crews will have a long walk around the peninsula to regain contact with their train as it enters the Horse Creek branch.



Tom

I'm seriously considering swapping the two switches because of that. In real life, the spur to the old Lee tipple is before Horse Creek Junction but I never could come up with a workable plan. You make a very good point and I may consider flipping this section such that Lee is on the other side and the line into Levi runs up the left side. Crews will still need to walk around Levi to work the wye but then they had to do this in real life anyway. Half the train would be stored in downtown Manchester while the power loaded the other half. The wye was all ground throws so lots of walking needed to be done.


Robby
Building the L&N CV Subdivision in HO Scale
http://s226.photobucket.com/albums/dd247/robby-ky/CV%20Subdivision%20Layout/

Country: USA | Posts: 948 Go to Top of Page

Robby

Posted - 2007 April 13 :  1:43:56 PM  Show Profile
quote:
BTW, what is the spacing on decks and height from floor?
Great job Robby.



Matt,

I'll play around with this some before I set it in stone but the lower level will target 28-30", the middle deck will be a nomnal 44" and the upper deck will target around 62". I like at least 15" which I had on my old layout (also 3 decks) but I plan on playing with the deck thickness this time. The old layout was almost a constant 3.5" thick and used sheet plywood. This layout will be more open L-girder and I plan to thin the edges down to as thin as 1" in some places. The old layout lacked elevation so I have big plans to make this more visually realistic. Note the upper deck has a setback from the middle deck as well meaning the middle deck may have a depth of 30" in one spot but the upper deck may only be 20" (my bare min depth design criteria). This lets the spacing be a little tighter while still allowing you to see all the way back.


Robby
Building the L&N CV Subdivision in HO Scale
http://s226.photobucket.com/albums/dd247/robby-ky/CV%20Subdivision%20Layout/

Country: USA | Posts: 948 Go to Top of Page

CIOR

Posted - 2007 April 13 :  2:04:23 PM  Show Profile  Visit CIOR's Homepage
I think you will like the staggered deck, I know in the 2 spots where my layout is the same deck on both the top levels, it requires a stool for shorter operators.

________________________
The C&O of Indiana
http://candoindiana.com
The Central Indiana & Ohio Railroad
http://www.trainweb.org/cior

Country: USA | Posts: 1465 Go to Top of Page

Robby

Posted - 2007 April 13 :  2:12:49 PM  Show Profile
quote:
From a model RR perspective, what is the planned operating scheme? It looks like most of the trains will run from staging to a mine(s) and back. The only yard appears to be Walsend and it is not a classification yard. Are you going swap the loads out of the coal cars between sessions? How many cars do you think will be moved per session? What type of routing system do you plan to use? Car Cards, software or some other design. It seems that a train that runs from staging, to a mine and back will cycle the same cars every two sessions (since they will not be mixed at a classification yard).

I guess it is a good thing the L&N HS ran the series of articles on kitbashing L&N coal hoppers. How many hoppers do you think you will need for the layout?




The layout will be mainly mine run switching. All my hoppers have removable loads so cars can be "loaded" at the mines. Flood loader sites will have the crews perform the "loading" by inching under the loadout and adding a load by hand while they stay with the train. The single car mines will either have loads spotted and ready for a mine run to pull or they will spot mtys and a "Coal Czar" will drop by like Santa Clause on Christmas Eve magically filling each for the next mine run to pull.

Walsend was an old steam-era mine run yard that was reactivated in 1977 to cover the single car mines on the Straight Creek branches and the few sites between Pineville and Barbourville. Since it's not big enough to handle unit trains, a SB "Loyall Turn" would drop mtys and pull loads as needed for the day's orders and one of two "Walsend Crews" would be off either up Straight Creek or fighting for track time on the CV main to service sites like Artemus, Hammer, and the Elys-Jellico and Pine Mountain East Branches. The NB "Loyall Turn" would then pull loads for Corbin on the way back north in the evening. The SB "Loyall Turn" would pull the loads heading out the CV's back door via Hagan's Switchback, usually loads bound for the east coast.

The C&M Branch had unit train crews called out of Corbin for loading at Levi, Redbird, Joan or Cargill while at least two Corbin-based crews covered the single car mines (C&M No.1 and C&M No.2) as needed. Almost all loads ran back through Corbin, however the Shamrock Green Train would sometimes go south and take Hagan's switchback for movement to Santee Cooper power plants in SC.

I'm still working on the routing scheme. I'm working on an Excel-based (mine order) system (I can't attach a copy but email me if interested rdv2@aol.com). Hit F9 and it picks random mine orders and indicates how many loads are to be pulled and how many mtys to spot then calculates how to call the C&M and Walsend crews and how many mtys they need. It still needs some work. I have a total of 18 staging tracks and figure there were 6-8 "run-through" trains each 24 hours cycling between mines south of Ponza in Harlan county and Corbin and then maybe 6-8 unit trains called for the model portion of the layout. The run-throughs would run to give the crews working on modeled sites something to deal with. The staging capacity should allow plenty of room for the run-throughs, the Loyall Turns and the C&M crews. I currenty have about 850 hoppers in inventory and the system usually indicates I need 750 for an operating session. Some, like my Southern Silversides and some Inland and Beth Steel cars only showed up randomly on the CV so they would be added to throw out some variety from time to time.


Robby
Building the L&N CV Subdivision in HO Scale
http://s226.photobucket.com/albums/dd247/robby-ky/CV%20Subdivision%20Layout/

Country: USA | Posts: 948 Go to Top of Page

k9wrangler

Posted - 2007 April 13 :  5:10:39 PM  Show Profile
Robby, when's your first ops session, I'd like to mark up on the call list!

Karl Scribner
H.M.F.W.B.I.C.

Sunfield Twp. Michigan

Just a grumpy old man playing with my toy trains!
Friend of SPIKRE

Country: USA | Posts: 2633 Go to Top of Page

chrisbutts

Posted - 2007 April 13 :  8:11:39 PM  Show Profile
Looks great, where do I sign up for the extra board?

chrisbutts

Country: USA | Posts: 420 Go to Top of Page

CSXT4447

Posted - 2007 April 17 :  08:44:54 AM  Show Profile
Hi Robby - sent message on this subject to PM Inbox.

thanks,



Mark Menges
CSX Barr & Garrett Subs
csxt4447@hotmail.com

Country: USA | Posts: 530 Go to Top of Page
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