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Thread: What Would a Real Railroad Do – Your Advice

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    Default What Would a Real Railroad Do – Your Advice

    So it appears I have a space issue. As you can see from the pics, I barely have enough space to ballast the track in this area. It looks like it will make it, but, the ballast will end right at the edge of the drop off. I might be able to add some plaster, but it would throw off the look of the culverts. I was thinking of a solid metal/wood wall, kind of like one half of a plate girder side. What would a real railroad do? What do you recommend?

    Thank you.

    Frank
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    I don't think you have a problem. The ballast should just barely cover the black roadbed. Any more would just be too much ballast.
    Cheers!
    Gordon
    Rheinland Bayern Bahn
    http://www.nscale.net/forums/showthr...4-x-9-5-layout

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    I would do nothing , it looks like you have a few scale feet from the edge of the roadbed .

    Steve

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    Moose see plenty of margin between roadbed where ballast would lay and edge.
    ~ Moose (Co-founder of the Mt. Tahoma & Pacific Railroad, located some where in the Pacific Northwest)

    "Beware the Train of Thought that Carries no Freight..."

    Click Here to See Moose's Layout Thread

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    As others have said, I'm not sure you have an issue. The ballast could end well short of your culverts if the hill is well vegetated to hold in place. If it's not, a real railroad might:

    - Just dump heavy gravel over the edge until the whole area down to the culverts are rocked.

    - Build a small retaining wall, possibly out of (depending on era, cheapness)

    - Rail hammered in vertical.

    - Rail hammered in holding old ties.

    - Old ties.

    - Large (e.g. 5'x5'x10') stones put in place with a crane.

    - The crinkled sheet steel stuff the pile drive in (often around bridge piers).

    - Dig out the culverts and build a larger box culvert, particularly if washouts are frequent in the area.

    That plate girder is big enough to hold up a bridge, and thus way too expensive and heavy. They would never use that.
    --
    Leo Bicknell

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    Maybe some railroad ties above the culvert like a retaining wall to keep the ballast from washing down into the culvert.

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    Thank you all for your replies. I will ballast it and see how it looks.

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    Growies are your friend.

    I learned this while studying architecture in college, when it came time to deal with a problematic portion of a building rendering. Just scribble in some shrubs or "growies" to hide the conditions that you can't quite figure out yet! In this case, get some ballast down, but then don't be afraid to put a bunch of 10' tall shrubs and coarse turf all down the slope to the culvert. This is the kind of place where such things would tend to grow wild, and because of the slope they'd be hard to maintain, so I could see the maintenance crew letting things go a bit unkempt there. With scraggly bushes you won't be able to discern the underlying topography as much.

    But I don't think you really have much of a civil engineering problem there, in the first place. I think you have a reasonable sub grade profile, but maybe it would get augmented with some rip rap in the real world to prevent erosion of the slope. On our models, we tend to compress things a bit, which means our soil slopes can end up slightly steeper than real-world, so it's up to you whether to line this with rip rap (boulders) or weeds/shrubs. Maybe a bit of both, with rip rap down near the bottom to keep the water course clear.

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    I've seen prototypical situations with tighter clearances. I wouldn't worry.

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