Ready to start but need to focus my ideas. N scale.

David Macdonald Jan 9, 2018

  1. David Macdonald

    David Macdonald New Member

    Hello from Australia,
    Returning to the hobby. In my youth I had Australian HO and British OO with a few US locos thrown in. When my priorities changed as a young fella these all sat in storage for years. I dusted them all off about 18 months ago with the idea of a small around the room shelf layout. This all changed when I traveled to Japan last year and my wife bought me the full Kato 844 excursion set from Kato.
    So I'm now a N scale convert and I've since traded in a lot of my old stuff, got a DCC system running and have started accumulating locos and rolling stock, mainly diesel but also the lovely 4449 :love:. My layout location has also changed as it is no longer the spare bedroom, instead it will be in a purpose built room in my workshop. I've got 3m x roughly 3.5/4m to play with.
    I'm at the stage that a lot of guys stumble at, ready to build but finding it hard to focus. Power will mainly be UP and NS with a few steam excursion specials. I'm more of a watch them run sort of a guy as I find it very relaxing, but a friend has got me interested in operating so I would like to have a scenic layout that I can railfan but with a few small industries to operate on with friends when they're over. I'm thinking of around the the room with a middle peninsula. I like the idea of a multi level layout but I don't want to fall into the trap of taking on too much and getting bogged down. I also like the idea of a mountain location.
    I look forward to trawling through here for info and help. If anyone would like to point me in the direction of guys who help with layout plans that would be great.
    Last edited: Jan 9, 2018
  2. vince p

    vince p TrainBoard Member

    Welcome David glad to have you here.
  3. fitz

    fitz Staff Member

    Welcome aboard, David. I will be very interested in seeing photos of your efforts, as a sometime helper with the 12 inch to the foot scale 4449 crew, and steam fan who has also ridden behind the 844.
  4. WFOJeff

    WFOJeff TrainBoard Member

    Welcome to TrainBoard David.
  5. bremner

    bremner Staff Member

    Welcome to Trainboard!
  6. Hytec

    Hytec TrainBoard Member

    Hi David, welcome. Glad to have you on board.
  7. Ironhorseman

    Ironhorseman Staff Member In Memoriam

    Hi David. Welcome aboard.
    We have a thread regarding layout plans; and a rather enormous N-scale modelers section. You should find anything you need as you move along. There's also a, "how to" thread that comes in handy when ever a question comes up you can't come up with an answer for yourself.
    Best wishes,
  8. HemiAdda2d

    HemiAdda2d Staff Member

    David, Does your local library have model railroad books? You might find one that has track planning info within. Your local hobby shop would also be a source for inspiration.

    What I think you need to do first is decide on some things. I have heard them called the 'Givens & Druthers'. The Givens are the must-haves, the Druthers are things you would like to incorporate, but are not deal breakers.

    For example, in my layout, a Given was to model a specific section of the D&RGW Moffat Route, with signature, recognizable scenes. Another Given was to model multiple tunnels. A Druther was the house track at Crescent Siding. I liked the ability to park a helper loco, a bad-ordered car or a MOW outfit there, but space and design didn't allow it.
    1. Do you want to model a specific NS or UP route, or something generic?
    2. Do you want to simply run trains, or do you want to replicate a either NS or UP's operations?
    3. Do you have scenes you would like to model, or will scenery be generic, not attempting to replicate any particular geographical area? Both of your chosen railroads traverse some particularly gorgeous scenery. Rugged Rocky Mountains in Colorado, and the similarly rugged Appalachian range out east.
    4. How many trains do you want to run at one time? Do you want dedicated loops/routes for each train (multiple mainlines works well for UP), or single mains with sidings?
    Once you sort out your Givens & Druthers, you can begin to scribble track plans based on your space.
    Doorgunnerjgs likes this.
  9. David Macdonald

    David Macdonald New Member

    Thanks for all this, great advice.

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