Thursday, 25 April 2013

A Layout Tour


With the paying of respects this morning completed,  I decided to have a quiet afternoon and attempt to update the layout track plan.

I have been threatening for some time to generate an up to date track plan and for better or it is.

I have been using the AnyRail program for some years and while i can see severe limitations in this program it is senseless splashing out on a new fangled software package this late in the planning process. Indeed some of the drafting and graphics packages we have in the other side of the business would run rings around Anyrail anyway... but it must also be said that I only utilise the software to create mud maps so in the washup it is satisfactory for my needs .

I have incorporated the latest mud map and for those interested in a tour read on....

For some reason the outer walls have not been included in the file transfer...but is discernable where the grid pattern ends... The total layout room dimensions are 12 metres x 3.8 metres

Is the location of Fish River Station and yard precinct...all track as per the plan is in place to a point adjacent to "G"....I will in a later post devote some space to a description of the yard layout.....

Heading in the "up" direction from the station is the location of the Fish River and associated bridges ( also bounded by the drawn box around the letter B )...the tracks adjacent to the letter "B" are... the main line on the left and the old up main prior to the old double track main line being reduced to a single line...the remnants of the up down main now act as a refuge and /or shunting neck for the yard... The track to the far right is the branch and crosses Fish River on it's own bridge....All track in this area is laid.

The area designated "C" is basically a room within a room ( 3.0m x 3.8m ) with the existing wall being a pre train room feature and has been left and incorporated into the layout room when this was built.  The outer line is of course the main line and this line will be a hidden line while traversing this room entirely.  A scenery divider will be built and the inner line...the as yet unamed branch and terminus will take centre stage in this room.  At present the main line is in situ and the branch line is laid to a point as it just enters the room from "B"....A terminus and associated sidings will need to be planned for this area.

Having left the room designated "C" the solitary main will exit a yet to be built tunnel ( around 900mm before the Liftout Section ) and be visible as it crosses the Liftout Section and reaches the points adjacent to point "D"  This set of points will again see a branch line diverge from the main line ( to serve the cement works yet to be discussed )....After these points the main line will again enter a tunnel or steep cutting and be a hidden line to a point near "E"  It may well end up that the benchwork is widened on this side of the room and the cement branch given a narrower right of way between locations "D" and "E"  so that the area left for the hidden main may well be called upon to house some hidden staging as well.

There will be separation ( grade and or scenery ) between the main as it reappears and the branch to possibly the point where the cement works branch crosses onto the yet to be built peninsula that will house the cement works and quite possibly a small terminus.  The peninsula will be approx 7000mm x 600 +/-mm so there is plenty of space for both to co-exist.  Location "E" also marks the imaginary point where trains leaving Fish River Station in the down direction destined for the next imaginary location exit the stage and Location "D" is also a focal point as this is where trains headed for Fish River in the down direction will first appear.  I guess this realisation decides that a hidden staging area between these points should exist...

The as yet unbuilt peninsula which will house the Cement Works and as already stated, possibly a terminus.  The location of a terminus no matter how small will give reason for passenger workings over the branch.  I have already built the majority of buildings required for this area.

The trackwork between locations "G" and "E" is yet to be installed and the layout as per this plan will most likely vary due to operational issues that are apparent...Also there has been no decision made as to the use of the area located adjacent to "G" outside the main line alignment.  This area may house a depot area or may well house a grain silo and loading facility and this decision will have a profound effect on the yard layout and yard to main trackwork at this end of the yard. I have a new Bruce Akrigg 90 foot turntable and also have an Auscision S008 so there will need to be a decision made although a 90 footer may well be overkill for a depot befitting a locality the size of Fish River Station....Geez not another Ebay moment....

So there you have it at present.....Just a simple track plan that gives some main line action and at least two branchlines in the future.  This will be enough for me I would suggest. 

It is interesting... and I am sure I have stated this before but... It is funny how when a layout room is complete there is an overwhelming desire to shove rails everywhere and the original plan is an empire to behold.  As time goes on you become aware of what is humanly  possible for one person to build and maintain and the realisations of reality takes hold.  My wants in the hobby have changed in the last couple of years and to this end I am presently concentrating on the Fish River Station precinct both track and scenery....I will sometime this winter complete a circuit of track to allow continuous running and then look at one section of the layout at a time with a view to completing it and then moving on...

I will devote some time in later posts to each location and any issues I may have missed in this post... of course comments and any advice is always welcome!!!





  1. Hi Rod,

    It is nice to see your overall plan. It looks as though you have an interesting proposal with lots of hidden track to disguise the fact that it is basically an oval.

    Any thoughts of a spiral or helix and a second level?

    If you decide to get rid of the 90' table before you commit it to ebay please let me know. It could come in very useful for Argyle (Goulburn Loco has a 90' table). I am sure that we can come to a mutually satisfactory arrangement.

    You could also install some storage sidings along the hidden mainline between B and D (behind C).


    John Proctor

  2. John,

    Spirals? Second Levels?...It has to be a "Gee Up"...I spend half my life telling anyone who will listen ( That would be you and um...I will think of someone else ) that i am trying to shrink the amount of work and you have the temerity to post this!!! Yes you can have the 90 footer...$2000.00 ought to do it...