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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Feb 2010
    Charlotte, NC

    My First Layout- The Colorado and Southern in 9x5

    I have been working on this layout for about a year now and it is about halfway complete. This is my first attempt at building a layout. It is in Hon3 and uses code 70 micro-engineering track. The layout represents the Colorado and Southern in the late 1930's and all equipment will be based off the C&S equipment towards the end of service on the South Park Line. The track plan includes an upper mainline with 4% grades and a lower mainline with 1% grades. Specific areas being represented are the main yard at Como (very condensed because of space restrictions), Forks Creek, and Central City (freelanced). The layout is not completely accurate because of space restrictions and I added a tunnel which I have dubbed Alpine Tunnel even though Alpine Tunnel shut down in 1910. Included in the layout are the Georgetown Loop high bridge as well as steep prototypical 4% grades which provide plenty of operating challenges. All track is operating and built except for the Central City spur and the Roundhouse trackage in Como.
    Here is a a rough drawing of my track plan:
    Click image for larger version. 

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    My rolling stock consists of:
    Locomotives: Key Imports C&S 2-6-0 #9, C&S 2-8-0 #58, Blackstone D&RGW C-19 346 (was leased to the C&S 1935-1937), and the shell of PFM 2-8-0 #65 which I intend to eventually rebuild.
    6 Gondola's all by Micro-Trains
    3 Reefers by Micro-Trains
    1 Stock Car
    4 Boxcars by labelle, Grandt line, scratch built and I plan to add at least 3 more
    1 C&S coach #70 by A.W. Enterprises
    1 Combine #26, scratch built, aquired from ebay
    1 caboose #1006 by Balboa
    2 Flat cars by Micro Trains
    1 C&S Rotary 99201, being scratchbuilt from an Alco Rotary by Walthers
    C&S #9
    Click image for larger version. 

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    Stock Car 7125
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    Scratchbuilt Boxcar #8349 and Combine #26 linked at bottom
    More to Come
    TrainBoard Attached Thumbnails TrainBoard Attached Thumbnails 126.jpg   128.jpg  

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Feb 2010
    Charlotte, NC
    Here are some photos of the actual layout:
    Both Tracks in the foreground are the upper mainline, Central City will be located in the open space behind the two tracks.
    Click image for larger version. 

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    The main storage area on the Layout, due to space restrictions the roundhouse will only be 4 stalls instead of the prototypes 6 and the coaling trestle would not fit. The Roundhouse trackage has not been layed yet besides the turntable.
    Click image for larger version. 

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    The Forks Creek Area. My workbench is in the background
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    The high bridge is operational but still requires dummy bridge footings and cross bracing. The bridges in the background are based off the twin bridges at Romney on the Gunnison line.
    Click image for larger version. 

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    The only part of the layout that has basic landscaping added is the "highline" portion which is a blended combination of Alpine Tunnel's west approach and Boreas Pass. My layout room doubles as a playroom for the children in my family, which is the reason for the toys in the background.
    Click image for larger version. 

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    Next I will upload photos of a two engine train over the upper mainline.
    Last edited by southparkline1; April 25th, 2012 at 06:14 PM.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Feb 2002
    Northwest Montana
    Blog Entries
    I can see a wide variety of great photo possibilities for the time when scenery is done.
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  4. #4
    Join Date
    Feb 2010
    Charlotte, NC
    Here is a run of a two engine mixed freight over the line.
    The consist is:
    2-6-0 #9 is the road engine
    2-8-0 #346 is the helper
    2 Gondola's
    2 Reefer's
    1 Boxcar
    Combine #26
    Caboose #1006
    Here is the train ready to depart Como
    Click image for larger version. 

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    The train begins its battle with the 4% grade. The Combine actually doubles as a track cleaning car but I have removed the cleaning pad for this run, because of this the combine lacks underbody detail. It also needs to be lettered. The bridge still needs cross bracing.
    Click image for larger version. 

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    #9 edges onto the highline as the little mogul struggles up the 4%. #9 is a rebuilt Key imports model and it is almost as reliable as the blackstone C-19. It actually has more pulling power than the C-19 on grades.
    Click image for larger version. 

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    Here #346, cut in the middle of the train, is working hard on the highline. The locomotive is a blackstone model with sound installed and you can hear the slipping of the wheels as it helps move the train up the grade. I have a ridgeway cinder catcher (Beartrap stack) that I will eventually add to the 346.
    Click image for larger version. 

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    Caboose #1006 brings up the rear of the train. The caboose still needs lettering and the Reefer needs grab-irons.
    Click image for larger version. 

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  5. #5
    Join Date
    Aug 2008
    Nice work!

    This is your first ever layout? If so, you're doing a great job. I like the division into scenes that you've managed in such a small space - the high line is made for photography.

    The track plan reminds me of the one in the first HOn3 annual, did you take some inspiration from that?

    Looking forward to seeing more photos of your progress.


  6. #6
    Join Date
    Feb 2001
    Wishing I was at MP 35 on the Moffat...
    Blog Entries
    Very nice. You'll need to spend a fortune on trees to forest those hillsides! (don't I know it!)

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    My Trainboard Albums
    "What you run to in your time of need has become your god" --Anonymous

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Feb 2010
    Charlotte, NC
    Yes it is my first layout, and it has been a learning process but very enjoyable to. The inspiration for the trackplan was from a model railroader trackplan book. There was an 8x4 layout with a similar trackplan and whether it was the one in Hon3 annual I do not know. The upper loop is similar but did not include a highline, which I added to add intrest. The lower loop trackage and the area based on Como are completely different. My version also has wider curves on the upper mainline since it is 9x5. Also the 2nd town on my layout "Central City" has more space for industries. There was a tunnel on that trackplan but my tunnel is in a different location and there was also a snow shed on the lower loop, but I completely redesigned the lower loop and do not have a snow shed on my layout. The main railyard at Como has more switching and storage space and I made room for a four stall roundhouse. In spirit the layout is based off of the trackplan in the model railroaded trackplan book, but it has been heavily modified to fit my needs and expanded to fit the larger 9x5 space. It is truely amazing how an extra foot of length and width can allow for more options when designing a layout, my original design was 8x4 but I decided to go a little bigger because I had the space. ( I believe I could have gone maybe to 10x6 but that would be a little to large)
    Thanks for the comments, I will post updates periodically.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Nov 2011
    Christchurch, New Zealand
    This is great for a first layout. Nice work. :thumbs_up:

  9. #9
    Join Date
    May 2009
    Columbia Falls, MT
    Really nice! First layout! Wow!

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Feb 2010
    Charlotte, NC
    Here is brief update to my progress on my layout. The flash made some of the pictures I took a little bright.
    Today, with the new bridge constructed and in place,track laid, and wiring complete, my first train under its own power made its way into the freelanced Central City area. This area will eventully feature some small cabins, a coal mine and tipple, an ice house, a small depot, a freight house, and a few small stores. The track the locomotive is on is where the tipple will be located, the ice house freight and depot will be located on the track with the gondolas. The town itself will be located to the left of the trackage.
    Click image for larger version. 

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    Here is a view where the spur to Central City seperates from the mainline.
    Click image for larger version. 

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    A view of the recently constructed and installed bridge, still needing cross bracing just like my other bridges.
    Click image for larger version. 

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    I started doing some scenery work in the canyon, here is a view from the high bridge.
    Click image for larger version. 

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    And last but not least I finally installed a control panel. Before my controls were on the floor. Do to my fleet of brass locomotives and not wanting to install DCC, I decided to stick with DC power.
    Click image for larger version. 

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    The control panel has the ability to be tucked in under the table when not in use.
    Click image for larger version. 

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    Thats it for now but with all trackwork and electrical work done besides the roundhouse trackage, I should have another update by the end of the month because I tend to complete basic scenery fairly quickly.

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