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Portway Terminal US O scale.
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Jordan



Joined: 27 Oct 2006
Posts: 1281

PostPosted: Tue Jul 03, 2007 2:59 pm    Post subject: Portway Terminal US O scale. Reply with quote

As I was one who suggested this Subject forum I suppose I'd better try & post a few pics of my current project, "Portway Terminal Railroad" US O-scale.
It is based very heavily on Minimo, from MTI#54 & the Ballard Terminal RR, MTI#55.
It's 15ft long on 3 5ft boards by 1ft wide, track is Lima. The inset street track (here in un-painted black plasticard) is assumed to lead to the Interchange. Behind it is a passing loop which will have a Silo's/Elevator on the backscene. At the lefthand side is a minimo-style siding & kickback to serve a Cold-Store & Freight Forwarders. All buildings will just be low relief.
Those of you with long memories/backissues of Model Trains may spot that the Plymouth is Chris Ellis's original FairWeather Shortline one from May 1981 MT... of which I'm immensely proud, thanks Chris!! All I've done is added PORTWAY TERMINAL on each cab with dryrub letters, leaving the FWR of the 'previous owner' in place.
This layout shows you can get very big US freight cars round very sharp curves- British Oscale has been less successful, since even short 16t Mineral Wagons can buffer lock on these!!
This is at an early stage of work & I am a very slow modeller... updates may be rare!!!




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Jordan



Joined: 27 Oct 2006
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PostPosted: Sat Mar 01, 2008 12:18 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I'm somewhat appalled to see I posted this up back last July Rolling Eyes Embarassed , I did say I'm a slow modeller but boy, some people have probably built several layouts since then...!!!
Probably a bit of a cheek to post this with no pics, but progress has been made, albeit at my usual snail's pace, and bearing in mind all the other modelling projects I have, including a second O scale layout "Withyn Reach" (see elsewhere in this section), hopefully in a few days or so I'll have some pics to show the progress, which is as follows...
- The Cold Store has been built and the shell painted; today I've been adding loading bay doors & made a start on the small loading platforms.
- The Silos are all made (old 'Pringles' tubes) and painted and fixed in place. Next up is to make the Elevators- I want a 'modern' Tower type, and a more 'traditional' looking one if possible as well. The silos actually look a touch small next to O scale stock- in HO they'd be massive, but if I made them much bigger- apart from not knowing what to use for them, I think they'd then dominate the scene far too much. When I post the pics I'd welcome any comments...
- Other backscene 'buildings' include the low relief back walls of a Garage and Cafe- the Garage is in place, now needs some chain link fencing & clutter/junk adding. I'm just starting the Cafe, but also plan to have at least one other 'Eatery'- the Ballard Terminal article in MTI #55 was making my mouth water, it seemed to mention so many cafes & restaurants!!!
- The roads are painted 'concrete' & weathered, though that's an ongoing thing I'm trying to do gradually & not overdo. Using black plasticard sheet (even 2mm thick) fixed with UHU was a bit of a mistake; the glue has distorted the plastic quite badly in parts, and the extremes of temperature in the shed haven't helped- if anything the heat is worse than the cold for black absorbs it more easily... with a bit of luck/imagination the road does at least look like a very worn US industrial backstreet, rather than smooth endless blacktop...
- I've also tackled in places some ballasting & 'scenery' (just weeds & scrub basicly!!!)- I have to say laying the track on top of texture paper hasn't really worked convincingly for me, though it has helped the layout look a bit better than just having plain track on bare boards until I get round to ballasting! A snag I've discovered is that stuff like a bag of ballast that would do a whole OO/HO layout goes nowhere in O scale!!! Rolling Eyes

Well that's a written account of recent activity... I've even managed a few operating sessions in between all that lot Shocked but I'll make an effort to take some pics & get them up soon! Thanks for looking... you can wake up now... Laughing Embarassed Wink
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Korschtal



Joined: 20 Aug 2007
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Location: Stuttgart

PostPosted: Sat Mar 01, 2008 8:54 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Have you got a track plan/overview? I like the design but I'm trying to figure how it all fits together...

Very nice inset track BTW
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Jordan



Joined: 27 Oct 2006
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PostPosted: Sat Mar 01, 2008 5:50 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Okay... I'm useless at 'Paint' & the like for doing trackplans, so I've resorted to raiding the lad's felt tip pen box... Rolling Eyes Embarassed
The layout is 15ft long, 1ft wide, on three 5ft boards, so the plan isn't strictly to scale as it looks so long'n'thin on paper!!!



The silos are on strips of braced 3mm MDF, fixed behind the main boards, as I thought a 2D backscene here would look odd; only a proper cylinder can really represent a cylinder Wink , especially from all different angles. The Elevators will have sides to them rather than being just flats like the other buildings, to stop them looking a bit odd next to the silos... Pics will explain all... soon... Embarassed The 'Modern' Elevator will have a canopy over the track.
Other things... the Freight Forwarder building spans two boards; I still need to work out how I'm going to deal with this... and on the middle board the kickback siding goes across the road, but is assumed to be 'lifted' beyond- ie at one time it would've joined to the rear loop... I did consider actually doing this but decided against it; there are now a couple of wheel stops on that siding before the crossing, and the rails across the road finished as overgrown and abandoned, something not often seen modelled, especially on small layouts where every inch of track is valuable !!!
Also, although the front track is assumed to lead off up the road & off to the Interchange, there's no hidden track or fiddleyard- it could be done if my shed was another 5 or 6 feet wider, but I just swap stock there on the inset track, which is visually divided from the other tracks somewhat anyway. I just have to pretend a bit harder that the train's come from further up the line than if it actually appeared from hidden sidings...
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giles b



Joined: 25 Oct 2006
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PostPosted: Sat Mar 01, 2008 6:29 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Oh I do like that! More updated pictures please, as things progress. Good track plan with just enough snags to create interest, without getting tedious, I imagine.

Giles
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Jordan



Joined: 27 Oct 2006
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PostPosted: Sat Mar 01, 2008 6:47 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks Giles, that's pretty much the idea, and why I didn't link up the rear tracks... Major 'snags' are that the Cold Store spur has to be cleared to switch the Freight Forwarders, and the Run-round Loop (the Siding in US parlance Rolling Eyes Wink ) is also a loading point!!! The 'spare' track in front of the Cold Store is very useful!!!
In addition I have made up an Operational Restriction:- the Interchange track cannot be used for shunting, only for arriving/departing; rolling stock left on that track would block up the road to traffic... in itself maybe not such a worry in the US as it would be here in UK, but I also imagine that the Railroad switches cars mostly at night (saves the Companies served from having to pay Nightshift rates to their loaders!!!) and unlit Boxcars left on the street would be even more hazardous than in daylight...
I don't actually operate it in the dark Cool Rolling Eyes ... that'd be too much like being at work for real!!! Laughing Evil or Very Mad

Just another thought; in HO this would fit in 7 & a half feet... Shortliner drew up this plan as such; I won't say what he called me for putting new ideas for a layout in his head Laughing Laughing Laughing Wink
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mog



Joined: 31 Oct 2006
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Location: Mansfield Notts UK

PostPosted: Sat Mar 01, 2008 9:25 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

oooh... I can see that in N scale too..perfect for those reefers I just bought.. Very Happy Now I wonder what size that would be? (opens xtrakcad)
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phew!
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shortliner2001



Joined: 22 Oct 2006
Posts: 727

PostPosted: Sun Mar 02, 2008 9:20 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Since Jordan bought my name into it Very Happy , I will add a small comment(or two!).
In HO this would make a very nice shelf-switching layout. It has definite overtones of the "Ballard Terminal Rwy". If I was building it in HO, I would add 6" to build it on 2 x 48" long boards - an extra 6", "Yes", because that would let me curve the road at the right-hand end away to the left, and allow the inset road track "to interchange->" to go back to being ballasted track, albeit for only a few inches, for scenic effect. I'd also make it 9" wide which would let me run the inset road trackage down one lane of a two-way street to allow road traffic in the other lane,(emphasizing the difference in size between road and rail vehicles - I'm lucky enough to have some of the true 1:87 scale vehicles sold by Walmart in the US in their "Fresh Cherries" and "Malibu" ranges) with a "flagman" at each end - again for scenic effect. These are just my version ideas - you may have others. Sudden thought - "night ops" wagons parked on the "interchange in the street" with flashing cones around them - Hmmm!
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Korschtal



Joined: 20 Aug 2007
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Location: Stuttgart

PostPosted: Sun Mar 02, 2008 1:30 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks for the plan Jordan- I really like the way you've squeezed the silos in. It looks like the street is plasticard, is that correct? I meant to ask earlier.

I never thought about the 'built in snags' Giles mentions, I'll have to remember that when planning future layouts (which I keep doing despite moving far too slowly on the current project)

Please keep sending the updates...
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Jordan



Joined: 27 Oct 2006
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PostPosted: Sun Mar 02, 2008 6:01 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Well it's nice to see the interest this layout has generated... despite not getting quite as far as I'd like with some bits before posting pics, here's a few to be going on with...

Here's the Cold Store, a hardboard panel braced with softwood (some of you would turn it flat & build a layout on it Wink ).
I wanted to depict a facility that was a) large enough to look like it could actually hold the contents of more than one boxcar Rolling Eyes & b) had to be extended when bigger Reefers came into service. To depict this the main (taller) part holds two 40ft Reefers with loading bays spaced to match. All my Reefers are Weaver 57ft types, so the Cold store has had to put a 'new' bay in next to the inner '40ft' bay, and added an extension with a second 'new' bay, spaced appropriately.



The 'Inner' 40ft bay has been closed & deck removed now the 'new' door for 57ft Reefers is in place. Just so the old dock isn't used by accident the doors have been nailed together... (still unfinished I might add! Embarassed ) Also note I got my markings for the steps in the wrong place first try! (more Embarassed Embarassed )


Next up is the back of the Garage ("Ed Turner Garage Services") and the centre-board grade crossing, with the rear track "lifted" beyond it. You might just make out the two wheelstops (scratchbuilt from brass sheet & U-section) before it...



What does anyone reckon to the Pringles tubes as Silos? I know Giles used them on his Catwater layout (& yes gave me the idea- thanks Laughing !). Due to being up the shed/in the cold a lot, I didn't put sticky labels round them, as I'm not sure they'd stay stuck... so the 'scroll' pattern is still visible in them- this I'm just going to put up with. But do they look big enough? This is the main block of silos- the 'Modern' elevator & canopy will be to the left (sandwiched between the two blocks) and the older one to the right. Any cars loading there will foul the point to the loop as well, just to add a further complication...

Apologies for the background... Rolling Eyes Embarassed

Finally for now, a better close-up shot of the "Home Road" power, , ex-Chris Ellis's "Fair Weather Railway" Atlas Plymouth... note "FWR" still on cabside.

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shortliner2001



Joined: 22 Oct 2006
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PostPosted: Sun Mar 02, 2008 6:22 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Would it be worth a trip to your local DIY supashed and poking about in the Plumbing department around the PVC pipes? Those elevators seem to be huge, and I don't really know how much you can compress them

http://www.grainelevators.ca/

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Grain_elevator

http://images.google.com/images?q=Grain+Elevators&sourceid=ie7&rls=com.microsoft:en-US&ie=UTF-8&oe=utf8&um=1&sa=N&tab=wi

http://pruned.blogspot.com/2006/10/grain-elevators.html See the Railcars in the first photo!
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Jordan



Joined: 27 Oct 2006
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PostPosted: Sun Mar 02, 2008 6:39 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks for the links Jack, very interesting... and PVC pipes... mmm... food4thought...

The problems are as follows...
Yes Elevators are HUGE... but for a small (supposedly portable) layout they would dominate it far too much if made to even near-scale...
To take them in as a whole you'd have to be so far back the trains become insignificant, just like in those prototype photos!!
I've mounted these on thin MDF with a peice of 2 x 1 screwed to it, which is in turn screwed to the outer frame of the board; anything much bigger/heavier may not stand straight up!!!
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Broadoak



Joined: 05 Nov 2007
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PostPosted: Sun Mar 02, 2008 7:21 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I do like that Jordan, it looks really good and has got so much potential for some interesting operating sessions. The little Plymouth is perfect for shuffling cars around the elevators. You may have to think about a spark arrester as grain dust is highly inflammable I believe.
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Jordan



Joined: 27 Oct 2006
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PostPosted: Sun Mar 02, 2008 7:29 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Re a spark arrestor- Actually although I lean to the 'Grain' bit as the primary commodity, I have a few Covered Hoppers that are chemical carriers (see the 'Davison' one in my first post here)... I tend to think just in terms of "Bulk Powders" at the moment... I do have 3 Soo hoppers though, so I think grain will win in the end...

Also re Martin & his N scale reefers... rather than compressing it to 3 & 3/4 feet (roughly! Embarassed ) I'd try & make it proportionally a bit longer... but keeping the sidings the same capacities, and just adding a bit more plain running line in between the middle grade crossing and the Interchange 'Junction', making the layout look more 'spread out'. You'd certainly have more chance of adding proper hidden staging to it in N scale, possibly exiting the layout under a concrete 'Highway' style road bridge. ( Rolling Eyes another cliché I know but...)
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davidbromage



Joined: 22 Oct 2006
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PostPosted: Mon Mar 03, 2008 8:15 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

shortliner2001 wrote:
In HO this would make a very nice shelf-switching layout.

It would make a nice shelf switcher in any scale.

In HO and N it would be proportionally be a bit longer anyway as the Lima O turnouts are quite tight. Using Peco small radius or Atlas #4 would ease the geometry a bit and allow slightly larger locos, e.g. SW9/1200 or GE 44t. Not to mention solving the buffer lock problem if built as a British layout.

A suggestion would be to put a mirror at the end of the "main" line in front of the cold storage, giving the illusion that it continues elsewhere.

Cheers
David
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