Tuesday, December 25, 2018

Murrbahn: Layout Design from prototype track plans Gaildorf/West (1)

Quelle: Staatsarchiv Ludwigsburg (PL 723 Bü 55). Used with permission. 

With just over 1000 meters track length (a bit over 3000ft) between first and last turnout and 2 sidings, Gaildorf/West is not a particularly large station. However, in HO this would still be 11.5 meters in a straight line, plus the approaches on either side of the station. Building Gaildorf/West with some gentle length compression as a set of segments with FREMO end plates would be a lot of fun, but I don't have regular FREMO modular meets in gym-sized sport halls within traveling distance, so that's not an option.

Instead, I considered what functions this station will need to fill if I were to use a representation of Gaildorf/West as the northern-most modeled station for my Murrbahn project:
  • Scheduled and unscheduled meets of northbound and southbound trains, as well as higher priority trains passing lower priority trains on this single-track main line.
  • Regular passenger service stops northbound and southbound on the main line.
  • Terminus for passenger service from the weg (Wuerttembergische Eisenbahngesellschaft) private branch line ("Obere Kochertalbahn").
  • Freight locals picking up and dropping off cars for the freight facilities. Mostly loading of wood and other forest products, as well as the occasional box car for the freight house, and cars for the team track.
  • Freight cars to and from the weg branch line are staged in the freight yard at Gaildorf/West for interchange between DB and weg. This will be primarily wood chips cars coming loaded off the branch, as well as various cars for consumers located on the branch.
In order to function as meeting point for mainline trains, the tracks need to be long enough for the longest planned train. The longest side of the room is 490 cm. To balance the appearance of straight track and train length the longest train should probably not exceed much beyond 200 cm. 
Hence, I decided to make the longest passenger trains about 180 cm. That works out to five 26.4m 1:87 length-scale cars, plus an engine. Freight trains could be a bit longer, but should not exceed 210 cm, i.e. about 10 Gbs "long" box cars, or more than 15 Gs regular box cars ... This is only 60% longer than on the Welztalbahn, but a full freight train in a siding at Emsingen occupies the whole track between the turnouts with no room to spare, a look I'm trying to avoid on the Murrbahn project.

The space I have available for Gaildorf/West is 470 cm long. I need to fit the station and the approach tracks which requires compromises, but I'm trying to stay as close to the prototype track plan as feasible.

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