Saturday, 27 February 2016

Progress and planning

As I was packing up the old layout in Sydney I kept a few bits and pieces out to play around with ideas for the new layout. Below is one of the plans that I got the most advanced in mocking up. Although I ultimately went with a different idea, I thought it might be useful to anyone out there trying to plan a model railway in a small space. The below industrial/yard concept measured 130cm x 45cm.

Below is a sketch of the concept I'm currently working on. It's booked into the Hobson's Bay exhibition in four months time, so I'll leave a lot of the final pictures until after that exhibition, but here's the concept so far.

The layout needs to be able to fit under a bed (if it and I want to keep living in the house), so I've designed the legs to fold up underneath. Still need to put a few more spacers in there for ease of transport and to protect the legs from country roads, but it's working well so far.

Once set up, it's pretty rigid. The baseboard measures 140cm x 35cm.

Layout height is always a vexed issue and it seems that more and more modellers are thinking about a "what's comfortable for me" approach rather than the former trend for waist-height layouts. Whereas the track height on my previous layout was around 140cm above the ground, I found that this wasn't visitor-friendly. With a public audience in mind I've lowered the layout to around 125cm above the ground, mainly because I want the finer details to be a stronger focus of people's attention, but also to to inspire some confidence in newcomers that a convincing layout doesn't need to be huge.

For now though, I need to go and actually build that convincing layout. Have I mentioned I'm sick of carpentry?

'Til next time,