Need Opinion of abandoning Atlas N16 layout due to 9 3/4" radius turns

Ke6nyt Dec 17, 2018

  1. Ke6nyt

    Ke6nyt TrainBoard Member

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    Back in 2007 when I really didn't know anything about model railroading, I decided to do N Scale due to availability of space. Not having a clue what I was doing, I searched for a track plan that looked cool and somewhat challenging. I liked the Atlas N16 Atlantic Longhaul. I also like steam locomotive and transition era trains. So i lost my wife to Leukemia and had a 6 year old and 14 year old so the train got set aside, mothballed, used as a stacking junk on area.

    I have recently decided to complete my original mission. In 2007 I also bought some freight cars and a really cool Athearn Challenger 4-6-6-4. Going forward 11 years I started to finish my N16 track layout. Again still not knowing anything about model railroads or real railroads for that fact, started building using the old looked still good to me track and switches. So now the track is down and switches are in still need to put in the switch motors, and I've decided that DCC is really cool. I purchased the Kato Milwaukee Road nine car Hiawatha set and the FP7A/B, and 95C FP7A engines. So I have four engines, nine large passenger cars, eight freight cars, including a caboose.

    If you look up the Atlas N16 track plan you notice a ton of 9 3/4" turns and if you look at the Challenger or the Hiawatha specs you'll notice that they are calling for a MINIMUM of 11" turns. And they are correct! going into any of the 9 3/4" turns, is a disaster even with just an engine.

    So, do I stop wasting time on this N16 layout before sinking more money and time in it to install the 14 more truck motors and buy a smaller engine or maybe a switcher, or tear it down and build a layout that will work with what I have?

    Thanks for any input,

    Dan
     
  2. Ke6nyt

    Ke6nyt TrainBoard Member

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    Oh by the way I STILL don't know anything about this hobby!
     
  3. Hardcoaler

    Hardcoaler TrainBoard Member

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    If you wish to keep the equipment that you've purchased (and you have some nice stuff!), you'll probably want to start with a new track plan. A number of N Scalers here have found contentment with 11" radius curves and I am one. My Challenger runs fine on my 11" radius test oval.

    Bigger is better with curves for operational reliability and appearance, but some of us find that we are limited. If you wish to retain your current road, your thoughts on smaller equipment is the solution.

    Very sorry to read of your wife's passing. :(
     
  4. Ke6nyt

    Ke6nyt TrainBoard Member

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    Thanks I have an NW2 coming that will work on the layout with my freight cars. I was thinking of adding on a 32"x7' yard with a kato turntable. That i would connect to the Atlantic Longhaul but again it would be for the NW2 I guess. Not sure how much I can press the family into taking up the garage. hehe.

    Thanks for the thoughts on my wife. March 25, 2007 was her last day...my father passed away 4 years to the day later. Very remembered day! Its all good, she is out of pain after being in the hospital for 11 months before her passing.
     
  5. Ke6nyt

    Ke6nyt TrainBoard Member

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    Need to find a book that tells me what I need to know. I read through a lot of the posts here and most of the lingo i don't understand. Even the names of the tracks I don't know. Mainline I understand, but the simple stuff like that I need to read a book about to catch up.

    Dan
     
  6. CarlH

    CarlH TrainBoard Member

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  7. acptulsa

    acptulsa TrainBoard Member

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    The Atlas N16 could conceivably be built with gentler curves, but a lot of modifications would have to be made, and it would take up more space. Trying to convert an existing layout of that complexity with wider curves would likely be more work than starting over. Sorry. Yes, I think it's worth the trouble, as there's a lot of really cool trains out there for gentler curves, and you own several of them!

    Track Planning for Realistic Operation. Even if you don't have any intention of designing your own, it's readable, educational, and likely to help you pick out the best pre-planned layout for you. And could help you customize it in most delightful ways.

    It could also change your mind about coming up with your own design.
     
  8. Hardcoaler

    Hardcoaler TrainBoard Member

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    You might try to find a copy of the softcover book N Scale Railroading by Martin McGuirk. I don't own it, but it might cover some of the basics.

    https://kalmbachhobbystore.com/product/book/12428
     
  9. Ke6nyt

    Ke6nyt TrainBoard Member

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    Ok. I received my Kato NW2 yesterday and my digitrax decoder for it and installed it today. The NW2 runs ok on my Atlas N16 Atlantic Longhaul. Maybe I’ll put in my switch motors and keep the track going. I’ve designed a couple simple tracks that I might make for the big engines and Hiawatha cars. One is a 4 x 8 figure eight with unitrack with double track curved ends for around the CHRISTmas tree.


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
     
  10. in2tech

    in2tech TrainBoard Member

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  11. Ke6nyt

    Ke6nyt TrainBoard Member

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    Still working on it. I am continuing to work on it and will play around softening the turns and I will be using smaller trains. I have an NW2 that pulls my freight cars around it OK. SO today I finished putting in and connecting the 13 tortoise switch motors. Time to turn the layout back right side up and start figuring out landscaping.
     
  12. in2tech

    in2tech TrainBoard Member

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    Mind sharing some photo's of it here. One day if space ever permits I want to build this layout again. Not anything fancy like you are doing, but I absolutely love that track plan for some strange reason. I still have my 1990's Nice Scale track plan book, was probably out of date when I bought it. And I bought a ton of piers, still have them, a ton of Atlas pieces of track, still have them, etc... Got the reverse loop working somehow in the 90's, and all or most of the track connected, including that cross over piece, I think it is called I had to cut somehow, once again, still have it. Any updates here preferably and on your blog appreciate.

    Nice post to take my mind off my recent DCC purchase issue's. Thanks for replying, and will check the blog in just a moment! BTW, after only having space for two 2' x 4' layout pieces now to form an L if needed, showed me the Atlas N16 Atlantic Long Haul was waayyy over my head at that time and possibly now, although I think I could tackle it now! I think! If I remember correctly it was the piece you cut out in the middle and than flipped it or reused it to become the top of the deck part that I liked so much. No lumber waste the way I saw it, and see it, plus the walk in that space to control it. Never got anything wired except power to run it, and that was it.
    Screen Shot 2019-01-10 at 2.22.09 AM.png Screen Shot 2019-01-10 at 2.26.06 AM.png

    Is that 2014 your layout?

    Needs a 2019 update :) 2013 and 2014 was ages ago, just saying, and kidding! Actually better yet just post the current progress here. This place will be here forever.
    Best of luck!
     
    Last edited: Jan 10, 2019 at 8:27 AM
  13. Ke6nyt

    Ke6nyt TrainBoard Member

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    OK Here's a really dumb question: My Darling wife new I wanted to do a CHRISTmas layout that the whole family could get involved with. She paints CHRISTmas figurines from Michaels and other sources. So she bought me for my birthday, day before CHRISTmas, the entire Lenox (I think) CHRISTmas village from Michaels. Its in 1:48-60 scale. My son said set it up with the N Scale trains and we can say that it is the characters G scale train set. G is 1:22 i think and N is 1:160. Do the math. How close is he?

    Dan
     
  14. in2tech

    in2tech TrainBoard Member

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    Another member will do the math for you. I want to know if you have current layout photos or better yet, videos? I hope so.

    Sent from my SM-G550T using Tapatalk
     
  15. ViperBugloss

    ViperBugloss TrainBoard Supporter

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    If I understand what you want I think you are off by a factor of about 10. Is what you are thinking is to a model a G Scale garden railway in another scale? I have seen posts and pictures of this concept in the Z Scale forum.

    Picture the scene. Actual people (1:1 scale) sitting on a bench in a garden watching a garden railway running through the shrubbery and around the bench. The garden railway is G gauge, i.e. 45 mm. (It is helpful in this case to consider things in terms of gauge rather than scale.) N gauge is 9 mm. That is a factor of 5. So to make a model of a garden railway in N scale would require all the real life items to be reduced by 1/5th. That could be approximated using the 1 in 6 doll's house scale.

    Why not use your Christmas village in an O scale layout?

    Robert Pearce (aka Viper Bugloss)
     
  16. Ke6nyt

    Ke6nyt TrainBoard Member

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    Because of room and cost. I just started the hobby in late october-november. I don't have room for anything but N scale. I am trying to learn. Im not retired and have a wife and two kids in college. So I was trying to make the nice gift that my wife got me work. So if the Lennox Christmas Village which their website states is between 1:48 and 1:60 will work with N scale train by modeling it at the figures playing with their ???Scale trains, that is what I would like to do.

    Dan
     
  17. in2tech

    in2tech TrainBoard Member

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    I say set them next to each other and IF you like the way it looks, done :) Math is too hard for me :)
     
  18. ViperBugloss

    ViperBugloss TrainBoard Supporter

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    How about this scenario. Picture an actual size garden with a G scale railway and in a corner a 1 in 10 scale Christmas village. Maybe a small child playing with the village or perhaps a cat examining it. Now reduce everything by 1/5th. The railway is now N scale and the village 1 in 50. To establish scale the child or cat would be modelled at 1 in 5, or probably 1 in 6. Also, perhaps 1 in 6 garden fence along the back would help.

    As in2tech suggests. Set everything up and see how it looks. A 1 in 6 scale cat could be mocked up with some paper and tape.

    Robert Pearce (aka Viper Bugloss)
     
  19. Ke6nyt

    Ke6nyt TrainBoard Member

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    Ok I’m really getting over my head. So I am going to finish the N16 Atlantic Longhaul AND I’m building the Jerome and Southwestern that I first saw and bought the John Olsen book in 2007 when I was going to start this hobby. Figured the Jerome can be on the bottom and then build supports to put the Atlantic long haul on top. Now I have the top for freight and the bottom will be able to run my Milwaukee Road Hiawatha passenger set and my Union Pacific 4-6-6-4 challenger.

    Can’t find this mysterious Owens Corning foamular that or like foam to use as roadbed. I used N scale cork bed for the atlas snap track on the N16 Atlantic Longhaul but I’m going to use Kato Unitrack for the Jerome and Southwestern.

    What foam do I use?


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
     
  20. Point353

    Point353 TrainBoard Member

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    Be aware of the relatively steep grades required for the tracks that diverge at Jerome Jct. to cross over one another, if you build the layout exactly as shown.

    [​IMG]
     

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