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Hello! I'm thinking of redoing my layout since I have a now full MTH DCS system operating and I want to add an atlas turntable. I plan on using FasTrack since that's what I have.  The first picture is the layout I have now and the second picture is what I plan to make, anything you would change of this was your layout? The table size is 5 ft by 10 ft.image-7image-6

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Last edited by KSG350
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I have a shelf layout with a few trains. Few years ago got the full DCS system so I could leave several engines on the tracks without having to pull them down to run the other. Now what I really want is a switch yard. I know the switches are pretty hefty in price, but having the ability to unhook and hook up to other freight cars at my finger tips makes me want to build one. Only hobby shop in town have an N scale layout. I watch the guys struggle to un-hook their trains without de railing them in the process. I almost went the fastrack route myself until I found this site and learned of Gargraves. Cut my costs way down. Bought flexible straights and fixed radius pieces. Does not flex easily like HO flex track. Takes some work to get it smooth.

Id like to have a turntable as well. Like to see it in action once you get it operational.

@Tugboat15 posted:

I have a shelf layout with a few trains. Few years ago got the full DCS system so I could leave several engines on the tracks without having to pull them down to run the other. Now what I really want is a switch yard. I know the switches are pretty hefty in price, but having the ability to unhook and hook up to other freight cars at my finger tips makes me want to build one. Only hobby shop in town have an N scale layout. I watch the guys struggle to un-hook their trains without de railing them in the process. I almost went the fastrack route myself until I found this site and learned of Gargraves. Cut my costs way down. Bought flexible straights and fixed radius pieces. Does not flex easily like HO flex track. Takes some work to get it smooth.

Id like to have a turntable as well. Like to see it in actio

@Mallard4468 posted:

The whisker tracks are much longer than the turntable - do you plan to park more than one engine on each?  If not, they could be shortened.

If you want to have some operating accessories or industrial sidings, you could remove 2 or 3 whisker tracks and add sidings to the "top" of the inside oval.

That's not a bad idea! I was trying to figure out where I can put another siding

Your planned turntable has several whisker tracks, but no roundhouse or diesel engine house(s). If you moved the turntable to the right in your track plan, could you install a roundhouse (and thus make the turntable "more functional" like a real railroad).

Admittedly, a 5x10 table for an O-gauge layout with a turntable AND a roundhouse may not offer adequate space.  Just saying.

Mike Mottler    LCCA 12394

I am the fan of the interchange track.  Replace one of your outside curves with a turnout, the straight part exiting off the board.  You can make a straight piece of track on a board that hooks to that section when you need it, and you can load it with cars that need to get to something on your RR, and a place to send cars to the outside world.  Just remember to interlock it so any loco or car heading to the interchange has someplace to go other than onto the floor.   It is also a great excuse for why foreign power is on your line, perhaps a run through loco.

Having the siding outside but parallel the main loops is reducing your minimum curve radius. Having it exit from a curve to a corner would permit you to have larger radius curves, which look and operate better.

Also consider moving the right crossover to the other side of the layout, left of the spur. This would allow a train moving counterclockwise on the outer loop to serve the spur on the far side of the layout as a facing point move. If operating two trains in the same direction, it would make it easier to have them swap which track they were on.

You can also put the crossovers on the curves. I added a switch to the TT in photo 4. If it fits, it would allow an engine to return to the TT after dropping cars on the siding without having to go around and back in. I’m not sure how far up the right side you can put the switch. I’m in Georgia on vacation and didn’t bring my laptop, so I don’t have access to SCARM.

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@DoubleDAZ posted:

I should say I would concur with Ken’s comment about the siding being outside, but I suspect you’d prefer to use the curves you have than buy and try to fit O-54 curves to have O-54 outer and O-45 inner ovals.

im using lionel fastrack and they never made 0-54 fasttrack, also i have the siding there on the outside as thats the side facing twords the room

Unfortunately, I don’t have SCARM with me, so can’t try things until I get home early next month. I guess I need to bring it with me in the future. I didn’t think it would take that much to join 2 O-36 switches to make the crossovers, at least not without shrinking the O-36 oval, but there’s no way I’d use that many small pieces throughout the design.

I didn’t mean to mislead you. While straight whiskers are preferred, there’s no reason you can’t use curves as long as you account for the front of the engine overhang, especially steam engines, and don’t buy a new engine without checking it first. Sometimes all it might take is adding a 1 3/4” piece. If it were me, I’d take a piece of plywood, draw the TT ring on it, measure those outer blocks and cut some pieces of scrap to add them, then line up the curved whiskers to see what works, or doesn’t. I can’t tell from photos how high those blocks are relative to an engine on a whisker track, you may not even have a problem.

In this version I eliminated a lot of the small pieces by revising the switch position and changing my acceptable tolerances from .1 in to .11 inches. The place on the bottom that doesn't join is because it has a 0.11 inch overhang. This plan doesn't leave much distance between the edge of the table and the track. If the engines @KSG350 has, work with the curved whiskers, I would stick with that plan and not this one.

Take Care

Eric

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Mahesh, that’s the way I thought it could be done. Now It looks like the lower whisker track could be straightened now, or at least have a 3” or 5” straight added at the TT if needed for overhang clearance.

And now I’m wondering if something like this can’t be done to add back the deleted whisker, it looks like there’s enough room.

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To see what a some what similar sized layout could be, the layout diagram (actually the control panel picture) below is 11 ft x 5 ft 9 inch without the top bypass track, which is hidden off the layout.

This layout has 027 track and Marx 1590, 027 switches.  The turntable with a pit is homemade and cost $10.  Even so it may of help you is seeing something similar to what your plan.

Picture of Main board layout

Train Complete 1-17-2015 116

Details of how the layout and turntable are at OGR link below.  A table of contents is on Page 1, bottom of post 1.

https://www.ogrforum.com/...95#60276340902001695

Charlie

@Pappu I was puzzled about your comment on the overhang, as I thought it fit within the five foot table based on the grid and the view. I see now that the programs "Size and Area" view adds about an 1.5 inch buffer to the edge of the track, that is not a feature I had noticed before. The plan I drew had track right to the edge of the table (obviously not good), which I hadn't realized from just looking at the grid.   I learned something, thanks for pointing it out.

Eric

Mahesh, the 2nd option looks better, but you totally understood what I was saying, thanks. Next time we travel I’ll take my laptop so I have access to SCARM, that’s the only reason I have it. I’d love a version of SCARM for my iPad. I’d think the new iPads with the M4 chip would have enough horsepower to do the job.

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