I was looking around for a new project and my thoughts varied between an O gauge garden layout to yet another micro/mini layout. I certainly have stock for a goodish size Garden Layout, but did I need the stresses and strains of making and maintaining it. Another option was to clear the garage of my OO layout and start afresh in O gauge. After much thought, I decided to make a large, for me, layout that could be kept in the garden shed and brought out on fine days any time of the year with little maintenance. I also wanted to keep the door open to possible display at Exhibitions although I have no suitable transport at present.
I came up with many plans and a couple were later put on a shortlist. I purchased a pair of Laser cut baseboard kits, both were 6′ x 2′. After much head scratching I decided that these had to be the scenic section and that a separate provision was needed for a fiddle yard.
I chose the attached plan for the scenic section. And I innovated a small fiddle yard, possibly to be superseded later.
The overall size including fiddle yard is a respectable 17′ and will hold a small Tender Engine or for instance a Class 24 and three suburban coaches. The fiddle yard has the head shunt from the goods yard, this only extends half the length of the fiddle yard. This meant that by adding a point in the fiddle yard I could gain a lot of flexibility. I can hold three small trains, one large and a small train by the use of isolating sections. I consider the whole layout is for storage and the run round loop and the bay platform can hold stock awaiting movement.
I also wanted to run the layout in two sections, the parcels/passenger section and the goods yard, hence the placement of power feeds and crossovers. The runaround loop being dual use.
No name for the layout yet as I want to run multiple era’s and regions. It will be scenically set from about 1950 until 1970 and generic railway structures will be used.
I think that any era/region can be run with three small loco’s, six parcels/coaching and up to 30 goods wagons – plenty of shunting using ‘spratt and winkle’ couplings.
The extensions for the four sawhorses were made to increase the height by 5″. Note I took the opportunity to increase the width that the trestle can hold, and put a ‘stop’ on the top to hold the layout in place.
The Layout will be DC as I find that I can use a smaller magnet with ‘spratt and winkle’ couplings and it is easier to position a train over the magnet.
All the straight track is glued already, but the points are just tacked as they need the holes drilled in the baseboard to accept the motors. A manual test then needs to take place before the full electrics are done.
The Platform has been formed already to ensure good tolerances for the stock. The platforms are Laser cut MDF supplied by Laser Cut Model Railways – excellent product.