Thursday, October 01, 2009

Layout updates

Over the last couple months I spent a lot of time experimenting with track alignment and options for Emsingen. My updated requirements list is roughly as follows

  • passenger station for a small city (it's ok to have a semi-rural/small town look & feel)
  • ability for train meets (i.e. at least one siding long enough to hold a decent sized freight train)
  • single through track (I'm building a single track main line after all)
  • proper signals for two direction operation on at least two tracks
  • enough sidings to allow for terminus operation (i.e. some passenger trains end in this station, the locomotive runs around the cars and the train later leaves in the direction it came from)

    Now the list of nice to haves:

  • "lok station" (i.e. small coaling/operations/service facilities for steam + diesel locomotives to service locomotives of trains ending in Emsingen)
  • engine shed (for one or more locomotives)
  • 2+ industrial spurs or loading options
  • some multi-use yard tracks to break down/shuffle car cuts left for Emsingen and Talheim by a freight train passing through

    When I started tearing up the original plans, I relatively quickly came to add a couple more nice to haves:

  • lokstation/engine shed needs to be on the near end of the station from the controls (what's the point of e.g. a turntable, if it's hidden behind the engine shed/roundhouse and servicing facilities)
  • a (small? how small?) turntable would be really cool.
  • sorting of cars needs to happen on near side of the station, too. You need to see what's moving where
  • yard tracks need to be straight

    ooops. Here's my first try:

    The location of the station building is pretty much set on the city side of the tracks. I converted the former freight area to become the lok station, including a 3 stall round house, and turntable. The round house, as a side-effect, conveniently hides the tunnel entrance of the ramp to the middle level, so I'm hoping that the effect will be "train enters the stage" instead of "train exits yet another tunnel". The space for the service area is tight but workable, given it's a small terminus with only a few road locos to service, as well as 1 or 2 locomotives stationed here.

    On the other side of the main track is an open air loading ramp, or maybe I put some oil tanks in that corner on the inside of the right turn towards the bridge.
    The yard tracks are a bit odd, and too short for any real work. There is a limit on how deep the station area can become without encroaching on space needed for the middle level. However, they correspond well to the available length of the yard lead. One problem I have with all approaches is that I'm having trouble properly operating the arrival/departure track without using the main line track. I kind of want to maintain the ability for fairly busy operation on the main line (either automated, or by a second operator), as much as that is possible on a single track ...

    A simplified approach for the yard tracks. Basically, I left enough track to shuffle cars for switching and local deliveries.

    I also re-aligned the tracks in the lok station a bit. I'm not happy with how the switches to the lok station clog up track 1 in front of the station building. I want servicing to be located between the tracks and the turn table. The setup is a bit loose here, since I don't have a turntable (yet), and most roundhouses require a certain distance between turntable and doors, which is larger than what I accounted for here. I might have to circle the round house to the right and potentially move the turntable more to the left further into the curve, which would affect the arrangement of the servicing and access tracks. Clearly more accurate planning is needed for this area.

    A sneaky approach to get more usable length for the yard tracks by using slim switches with a small angle, and allowing the tracks to encroach on middle level territory. The lead track is to short to hold a full cut of cars from the longest yard track, plus locomotive.

    Here I attempted to address the problem of "how do I get a complete train from the yard onto the main line with no switching maneuvers". As a side effect the industry track on the right gained some space. Unfortunately this also meant more encroaching on middle level territory.

    Same idea, with longer yard tracks and simplified trackage, no dedicated yard lead.

    A variation on the theme that leaves much more space around the industry track, but again requires somewhat odd movements for yard operations.

    Going back to basics. Instead of trying to squeeze a lot of yard operations into an impossible space, I just go with two storage tracks, making them as long as I possibly can. The alignment of the mainline track slightly changed by removing the curved switch, which leaves space to arrange the two storage tracks more neatly.
    What I like about this setup is that it allows me to do some switching operations, without eating into space I had originally allocated for scenery, industry, and roads.

    Less is More.

    This plan is also updated with the actual track layout I'm using on the middle level around Talheim station and on to the tunnel.
  • 1 comment:

    Christian said...

    wie gut, daß ich davon so überhaupt nichts verstehe!

    Aber einer gewissen Begeisterung kann ich mich nun auch nicht verschließen.
    Man könnte auch formulieren: man kommt ganz sicher von ...
    und ... überhaupt ... und davon sowieso ... und da kann man reden, wie man will ... nicht los!