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Thread: Another Monopoly and Octopus

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    Default Another Monopoly and Octopus

    I guess it's high time to start my own layout thread. I've been meaning to start one for a while now, but it seems starting is the hardest part....

    After moving to the Seattle area a couple years ago, I decided I'd actually build a layout again. The best I could wrangle is a small section in the den, so I thought I'd do another Monopoly and Octopus-based layout. I wanted a twisty-turny branch line, but also a loop with wide curves so I could run whatever anachronistic thing that struck my fancy.

    The layout is inspired by the Virginia and Truckee, but will be heavily free-lanced. I'm saving my strict prototype compulsions for a train simulator; this layout is more of a practice run to get back out of the armchair and somewhere to play with physical trains.

    My last layout was back in the late 90's, and was a cookie-cutter construction faithful version of Atlas' Monopoly and Octopus. This time, I'm going with a slightly larger table (4'x5') and using a foam base. I attached a light framework of 1x3's to provide some additional support and give some support for the legs:
    PXL_20211031_194018064_small.jpg

    I sealed the top with some leftover latex paint, and laid the track directly on the foam. Since I'm modelling an old branch line, I wanted the track down in the mud instead of up on an embankment.

    Running a train after completion of the outside look:
    PXL_20211227_021202038-small.jpg

    In hindsight, I should have used some risers or something under all of the track to make it easier to do below-track scenery. Carving the foam isn't working as well as I had imagined...

    Here's a reasonable overview of the layout, with my helpers. I left off about half the switches from the original M&O plan, removing the reverse loops and providing for a longer run on the branch line:
    PXL_20220310_014127954-small.jpg

    And the Golden Spike ceremony once the last track (not counting the spurs) was laid:
    golden spike-small.jpg

    So now, I'm working on some structures for the layout (many of which have been sitting half-completed in boxes for 25 years). I still have a couple turnouts to wire up / install the throws (then I can paint the rails and ballast the track), and am otherwise procrastinating starting in on some of the scenery...


    Thanks!
    Curtis
    Last edited by Pencil; 31st May 2022 at 12:11 AM.


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    Regarding carving of the foam, maybe you'll be able to get away with not doing too much of it. Instead, build the terrain up in most places, to get undulations and topography. Make it seem that the track is down at floodplain elevation.

    That said, elevating the terrain thusly will deprive your helpers of their comfy reclining locations! Not sure if they will let you get away with that. It might be worth carving out a lake or pond feature just for kitty parking...

    Hello. My name is Michael, and I am an ALCo - haul - ic.

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    That's a good idea! I'll see if I can't carve out a pond or something.

    In preparation of adding some hills, I made a quick mockup of an engine house, just so I leave enough space for it:


    I also spent some time painting up an old DPM model. There's still some detail / touch-up work to do, but it's a far cry from before.....



    Curtis


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    Finally figured out what I wanted to do for the yard area. I put in an Inglenook so I could mix things up with a switching puzzle every now and then:



    Verifying the siding lengths:



    I sized it for 40' cars; when using shorter cars I'll just move the buffers in some so I don't cheat . I can probably squeeze a caboose in the shorter spur - that'll help when making trains up, also...

    With any luck I can get the track and feeders soldered up, and wire up the new switches this week. I want to get to the rail painting phase (and then ballasting), but want to get all the soldering done first. Hopefully this is the last of it!

    Curtis

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    I like your kitbashed baggage car in the golden spike ceremony pic.
    "Do Not Hump!?!?! Does that mean what I think it means?!?"--Michelle Blanchard

    "People saw wood and say nothing, but railroad men saw trains and say things that are better left unprinted."--Charles De Lano Hine

    Down with UP

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    Thanks! It didn't work as well as I would have liked - the Bachmann combines have more of a roof overhang on one side than the other, so it didn't line up as nicely as it could have when I rotated and connected the sections. I was going to try again, this time separating the roof from the body before I cut the body up, but now I might just 3D-print a new body....

    Here's a closer view of the car, this time on Shapeways (Panamint) trucks:



    Curtis

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    I finally got the last of the frogs wired up. To no small amazement, when I powered up the layout, there were no shorts or anything - the test engine (sacrificial disease'al?) just worked! The cats are happy the layout is running again...

    Curtis

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    I started to lay out the tunnels / mountain in the corner, then realized I should paint / ballast the track before I put the tunnels in - not after. So - first coat of paint on the track done:


    Curtis

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    Started carving out for the river:


    I also printed up some rock walls for the bridge in the foreground. I'm thinking a small wood trestle, but I'm not sure if I'm going to need a bent in the middle of the river or if I can cross that segment with a single span.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Pencil View Post
    I'm thinking a small wood trestle, but I'm not sure if I'm going to need a bent in the middle of the river or if I can cross that segment with a single span.
    Trestle bents are usually spaced at about 15' to 18' increments, which would be roughly 1.25 inches in our scale. It looks like you have a span that would be about three bays wide, or two bents in the stream. That is how I would do it, and put those bents on stone or concrete foundations that come up above the water surface. Trestle bents will be of different widths to allow for the diverging routes. I think such a bridge design would be easier than something like a plate girder, which would have its sides not parallel to each other and consequently a changing cross width that would mean greater effective loads at the wide end. But, I suppose a single span plate girder would be feasible, it just would have to be a bit over-structured to account for this geometry.

    I suppose a third option would be two separate deck girder spans, with the tracks sitting on top. I think this is the most likely scenario, as it keeps the flow path clear, and each span can be optimized. They can sit on the same abutments.

    Hello. My name is Michael, and I am an ALCo - haul - ic.

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    Thanks, Michael!

    I have about a 32' span to cross the river. I'm shooting for a design similar to this bridge here, although with only 3 bents (one on each side of the stream instead of two) - and modified for the diverging track....:


    I was kinda figuring I would have to add the bent in the stream, but was hoping there was some way I could avoid it

    Curtis

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    Because water levels can change, build bent foundations as if all of them will be in the water. While we know the river will never rise, the 1/160 engineers don’t.
    Use what you know about the world to modelÖ
    Learn from modeling what you don't know about the real world.



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    The wooden trestles here don't have foundations. They just drove the pilings down.
    073 RiverTrestle before being cut '03.jpg
    Moving coal the old way: https://youtu.be/RWJVt4r_pgc
    Moving coal the new way: https://youtu.be/sN25ncLMI8k

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    I printed up some more rock walls and painted them:

    These are thin enough that they will bend around a curve, which is a challenge with the store-bought cast walls.

    And the first one in place: I used the strip of wood at the bottom to angle the walls out a little bit - I figured it would look a touch better than completely vertical....


    And from the other direction:


    Curtis

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    This week, I've been working on covering the foam with a layer of plaster to smooth things out:


    I'm putting in a cliff to cover another elevation change on the mountain line, below the town site. I'm using a Superliner to check the clearances on the curves - so far my luck has held and it has cleared everything, but I'm sure that's just temporary.....


    Finally, I printed up a small shipwreck to put at the bottom of the lake:


    This will be my first resin water feature - I'm looking forward to it!

    Curtis


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    Got the first layer of ground stuff down. I think one of the grouts I used is a bit too white, so I'll go over that with a darker color; as well as picking up the spots the base paint is still showing through.




    The ballast needs a second pass, as well. Overall, though, I'm happy with how it is progressing!

    Curtis

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    Did the first resin pour for the lake:

    Here's hoping for no leaks or bubbles!!

    I previously masked off about where I thought the shoreline would be, and airbrushed the lake bottom with a thin layer of greenish-brown to darken it up a little. Hopefully this will help it look like it is wet ground:


    Curtis

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    Looking very good indeed! I especially like the prow of the sunken boat.

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    I agree nice , in particular I like how you did the small height cliff along the long sweeping turn . it looks right .
    printed walls and poured water also looking cool .

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    Slow progress - I've added several more layers of resin. I have one more to go, I think. I stopped to put some grasses along the shore, thinking that the last layer of resin will fill in around it, making them looks somewhat submerged. Now that I have a couple clumps in, though, I'm wondering if the resin will just knock the grass over instead of filling in around it. And, I don't know if it will be noticeable on the edge if the grass is sitting on top of the water or actually embedded into it.



    So, I think I'll let the last of the glue dry, pur the last layer, and continue the grasses from there.

    I did print up a little canoe (shrunk and remodeled from https://www.thingiverse.com/thing:2993121) for the lake - and a G.I. Joe hovercraft, because that's the problem with thingiverse - too many shiny things


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