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Author Topic: My Fort William to Banavie idea  (Read 254 times)

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Offline Arrowflyer

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My Fort William to Banavie idea
« on: February 11, 2019, 02:05:41 PM »
Hi.  I'm looking for some review/advice on my idea for my first proper N Gauge model rail layout.  I'm reasonable at modelling; though at a basic level.

I'm returning to modelling after a very very long time as my little kiddies are all grown up and flown the nest.  So I've commandeered our 9x8 box room with an idea to build a West Highland Line Extension based model.  Yes, another one !  There seem to be lots on this forum - which has been a great help so far in helping me formulate ideas.

So my plan is for a 'sort of' diorama of Fort William to Banavie as I think there is a lot to model and for me to learn skill from. That is, a long station with opportunity for detailing, long runs through some simple scenery plus complexities of track geometry and a big fiddle yard at Tom Na Faire.  Then I went a bit overboard and decided I needed to get Banavie in to see if I could do the swing bridge at the Caledonian Canal.   

That was OK, but needed 2 levels in my small room.  Then I decided it needed a loop so that I could have some kind of roundy loop for scenic run and train running-in.  Enter level 3!

What I've tried to do is have the branch line element to Banavie and the main line to Glasgow.  So tried to get at least the track direction facing the right way - west and south. roughly!

I've had to shorten some space to make it fit.  Fort William seems to be a 10 coach station - can't fit that! and I've had to use the odd double  & 3-way slip to get the track geometry to fit in my space.

Space between levels is not huge at 300 mm (1ft) which I think works well in terms of height for me and baseboard depth of mostly 600 mm (2ft) with a little extra for curves where necessary.  Aiming for R3 15 inch curves, but am forced in places to go for R2 12 inch in tight spots like the 90 degree turns (probably hidden)

I plan to run a Stanier black 5 with 4 MK1 coaches (maybe 3 depending on pulling power) for the Banavie line and Class 37/47 pulling the Caledonian Sleeper of 4 MK3 coaches.  So looking at modern era.

I'm quite excited to start this and started building baseboards, but I'm thinking maybe too ambitious and more importantly if I've left myself enough space on the boards for scenic work and would value your feedback.









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Re: My Fort William to Banavie idea
« Reply #1 on: February 11, 2019, 02:24:19 PM »
Welcome to the forum Arrowflyer.
Your plan looks most interesting and one Iíll follow with interest.
Iíll let someone else comment on the design. I prefer to lay track roughly to construct my layouts as I can never really tell what anything will look like on track plans.
Iím sure someone else will be along shortly.
If it looks right then it most probably is right.


Online Newportnobby

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Re: My Fort William to Banavie idea
« Reply #2 on: February 11, 2019, 03:33:36 PM »
Hi Arrowflyer, and welcome to the forum :wave:
At least you have modelled before so it's not overly ambitious, but is a lot to take on board. I'd really suggest you split all the tasks into separate sections so at least you have a feeling of accomplishment when one section is finished rather than contemplating a vast expanse of board to terraform or wire up in one go. You will be able to learn from mistakes and correct them before moving onto the next section. I can assure you once trains are running all progress ceases ::) :-[

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Re: My Fort William to Banavie idea
« Reply #3 on: February 11, 2019, 09:22:06 PM »
G'day from Australia, Arrowflyer, and welcome to the NGF!  :thumbsup:

That's an extensive plan, similar to American planning practice. Looks great!

Nothing wrong with another highland model, by the way.  :thumbsup:
Vision over visibility. Bono, U2.

Offline Caz

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Re: My Fort William to Banavie idea
« Reply #4 on: February 12, 2019, 07:11:24 PM »
Welcome to our friendly forum Arrowflyer and that plan looks most impressive, a lot of work there I see.   :thumbsup:

Offline Ben A

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Re: My Fort William to Banavie idea
« Reply #5 on: February 12, 2019, 07:47:52 PM »

Hi Arrowflyer

What a great idea.

Are you more interested in operations or scenics, or a bit of both?

One thing I would watch out for is gradients and curves if you're having a multi level layout - keep climbs as gentle as possible and all curves as generous as you can!

Good luck!

Cheers

Ben A.



Offline RailGooner

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Re: My Fort William to Banavie idea
« Reply #6 on: February 12, 2019, 09:01:46 PM »
Welcome aboard Arrowflyer! :wave:
Per Ardua ad Astra | Mens Agitat Molem | Victoria Concordia Crescit

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Offline Arrowflyer

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Re: My Fort William to Banavie idea
« Reply #7 on: February 13, 2019, 12:45:06 PM »
Thanks for the encouragement.
Iíve started the lower level as it should be pretty straightforward but Iím beginning to realise how much track there is! Transferring from Anyrail to actual layout is surprising. Still trying to get my head around curve radius and how to cut up the plywood, but think Iím getting there.

I visited Fort William a while ago and was impressed with the scenery so wanted to have a go at replicating. So thatís why Iíve gone for the long runs as I figure I can a fair amount of basic scenery done to get the trains running then have some fun as skills improve of adding details.

My focus is on scenery with some operations but I donít think I could do justice to replicating actual operations so Iím not looking to be exact on era or rolling stock but close enough I hope.  Rule 1 😁

Iím struggling a bit with size representation in that I think I need some buildings on a temporary basis to allow me to visualise scale better. So for example just how does an engine shed fit into the scheme even if itís not the final one Iíll put there.

Maybe Iíll have a look on eBay or local model shop for some used examples to help.

Iíve decided to call this ďThe Teuchter LineĒ, a teuchter being a Scottish lowlanders word for Scottish highlander stuff.  It made me giggle as it reminded me of that ancient highland call to action cry of ďquick! Thereís a bus trip comminí in!Ē 😁

Keep the encouragement coming as itís great.

Offline The Q

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Re: My Fort William to Banavie idea
« Reply #8 on: February 13, 2019, 01:10:04 PM »
It will be interesting to see the line develop.
The highlanders will just call you a sassanach..

Online Newportnobby

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Re: My Fort William to Banavie idea
« Reply #9 on: February 13, 2019, 03:42:12 PM »

Iíve started the lower level as it should be pretty straightforward but Iím beginning to realise how much track there is! Transferring from Anyrail to actual layout is surprising. Still trying to get my head around curve radius

You haven't actually said what track system you're using but, as you quoted R3 and R2 in your opening post, I'm taking a guess at Peco code 80 (although I might be wrong and you're bending code 55 to the same radii). Whatever, I suggest you indulge in a set of tracksettas to help with curves and also (and especially) the straight one for, erm, straights :doh:


Iím struggling a bit with size representation in that I think I need some buildings on a temporary basis to allow me to visualise scale better. So for example just how does an engine shed fit into the scheme even if itís not the final one Iíll put there.


To give you an idea of 'footprint' Metcalfe very kindly show dimensions of their buildings e.g......
https://www.metcalfemodels.com/product/pn112-n-scale-goods-shed/

If you can gauge the height then really all you need do is make mocked up 'boxes' from cereal boxes or the like.

Offline Arrowflyer

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Re: My Fort William to Banavie idea
« Reply #10 on: February 13, 2019, 04:46:52 PM »
Thanks Newportnobby. Now thatís a great idea for using Metcalfe sizings. Why did I not think of that!

Iím using code 55 and yes, got tracksetta. Used these many years ago and defo needed at my skill level I think. Not quite ready to eyeball curve radii yet.

Iíve planned around R2 and R3 only as a guide to geometry that clearly works and seemed a good place to start. Iím sure there will be variations necessary to fit specific places. I prefer larger radius but Iím guided by the fact the rolling stock I have recommends no less that R2 as minimum. The tight curves Iím expecting to hide but allow lots of room for overhang. So 12 inch is a bit tight, 9 inch is a no no.


My task this weekend is to experiment with gradients on my stockas per recommendation. Assuming less than 2% is ok and above this needs to be played with to get it right.

 

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