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N Scale - Transcontinental Pennsylvania Railroad - Members Personal Layouts. - Model Railway Layouts. - Your Model Railway Club
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 Posted: Thu Mar 22nd, 2012 11:25 pm
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mascotia
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Three full circle roundhouses!?!

One word...

Golly!:thud



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 Posted: Fri Mar 23rd, 2012 01:05 am
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Yup. That was the era when the Altoona Shops were the largest heavy backshops in the world. The Juniata half of the shops are still there today, although all three roundhouses are long gone.



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 Posted: Fri Mar 23rd, 2012 01:33 am
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mascotia
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Nothing quite like a link to the prototype to give one a sense of scale...

My Swiss comment came from a photo I saw in a book once of swiss model railway - the modeller also had a helix (a Huge one!) and had created mini-scenes up the mountain - including a station at a ski lift - it was very cool and really convincing, so maybe exposing a cut or two of the helix could add a scenic element...

Nice model of the FF-3, they were an awesome engine of their day...

You're not seriously gonna run catenary around all of that are you?

:shock:



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 Posted: Fri Mar 23rd, 2012 02:40 am
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eric220
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As I've said many times before I plan to have the finest N scale catenary that can be imagined. :roll: In other words, no. :mrgreen:

I've always loved the Ce6/8 crocodile. Bringing in the SBB in my alternate history as consultants seemed like a good excuse to bring the crocodile over onto the Pennsylvania. The highest horsepower rating that I've seen for them was around 3,300 HP. I figure that the PRR electrification was built 5-10 years after the Ce6/8 design was introduced, so they probably could have found a way to bump that rating up a little higher, closer to the 3,750 HP P5 or the 4,600 HP GG-1. I'm thinking that the FF-3 would probably have been around 4,000 HP.

Now I just need to replace the Swiss buffers with PRR style pilots and MicroTrains couplers. I also need to grind down the flanges to make them compatible with the Atlas code 55 track.



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 Posted: Fri Mar 23rd, 2012 05:38 am
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mascotia
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Not even a pretend catenary - c'mon - challenge yourself!!!

Beautiful engine...The Swiss knew electrification like no other in those days...
Love the 'alternate history' angle... I love that about modelling - make your own world and have fun in it!
Microtrains couplers are the best - it's that simple. For N scale, there really is no other in my mind...it's just about getting round to installing them all...(sigh)

The Crocodile will no doubt look just fine in the setting you're producing - I guess I have a similar passion for the 'Castle' and 'Hall' class locos from Swindon works (not that I've got any yet - I wonder if anyone does an N gauge brass kit?
Hmmm...:lol:



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 Posted: Tue Apr 10th, 2012 07:06 am
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A little prep tonight for the Gandy Dancing that is scheduled for tomorrow night. The track gangs (who were diligently finding ways to get around rule G) managed to prepare grade up the Blue River and Snake River through Keystone.



Work then progressed up to Loveland Pass.



Although this curve seems rather nondescript, it is actually a significant milestone. This curve marks the crossing of the railroad over the continental divide from the Pacific basin to the Atlantic basin. For you historical sticklers, at least I've gotten into the right side of the continental divide. :roll:

Work wound down grade toward Idaho Springs, and came to a stop at the end of the prepared ROW just outside the town limits.



The goal for tomorrow is to get track and electrical down on all of this. That includes two sets of universal crossovers, using four members of that endangered species, the Atlas code 55 right-hand #10 turnout.



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 Posted: Tue Apr 10th, 2012 07:46 am
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Very impressive work, Eric.
Did you 'steam' the ply to bend it?



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 Posted: Tue Apr 10th, 2012 02:47 pm
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Eric,
     Your woodwork is a thing of true beauty!Very organised approach to building a railway.I suspect a lot of us on here can (and will)learn from your example.
Lay on MacDuff.........

Cheers,John.B.:thumbs

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 Posted: Thu Apr 12th, 2012 05:56 pm
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I tried to post this last night, but at the same moment that I went to post, my ISP decided that I didn't deserve an Internet connection. Oh well, we're back up this morning!

The Gandy Dancers came and put in a diligent two hours of work. Before some union rep pointed out that Management had kept them on the job for an extra 20 minutes with no additional pay, they managed to get some wiring done, install a few tortoises, and push the mains through KEY interlocking:



and into Keystone:



The next day, while the Gandy Dancers were on strike, Management tried to hire some scabs to continue laying track. Being unable to find any, the managers themselves showed up and began throwing down rail. They pushed the mains past the Keystone team track, up over Loveland Pass, and were closing in on Idaho Springs when the caulk ran out.



Fortunately my Gandy Dancers are volunteers, so Management shouldn't have too much trouble finding the money to pay an extra 20 minutes at time and a half.



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 Posted: Tue Apr 24th, 2012 01:52 am
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eric220
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I've got some hard-core gandy dancing scheduled for tomorrow (be sure to turn your safe-search filters off to see the photos), and I'm back in design mode. I've been thinking about the N&W interchange in Morrow. Right now, it's set up to be a runaround as well as the entrance to lower staging.



Or as a diagram



I don't like the N&W line running next to the track pans, and I'd really like to have a couple of setout tracks so that I'm not blocking the runaround with interchange cars. My thought is to go back to my original idea for the area, with the N&W running along the Shurkyll River under the PRR bridge, and the connection to lower staging being in the approach to the helix. The connection between the interchange and the N&W would be off-layout, thus:



I don't really care about the specific orientation of the yard, but I'm having trouble fitting it in the available space. Ideas?



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 Posted: Tue Apr 24th, 2012 06:39 am
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eric220
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Here's one thought.



The interchange yard tracks are just shy of 50" long.



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 Posted: Wed Apr 25th, 2012 01:37 am
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Hi Eric, apologies I have only just found your layout thread.  Wow, that's really impressive and your construction pics are great, so please keep those coming as the layout develops.  Couple of things cropped up whilst reading your thread.  I'd heard the phrase 'Gandy Dancers' some time way back in the past, but had to Google it to find out exactly what they were.  Fascinating!

The other thing was the name Altoona and I'm sure I've been there before.  In my electronics days, I worked for the UK subsidiary of a US connector company called Elco.  I went to their factory several times back in the 70's and feel fairly sure I flew into Altoona before getting a car to their factory in Huntingdon.  They eventually got bought out by Kyocera, but that was long after I had gone to a competitor.

Anyway, I digress.  Super layout.  Must be wonderful to have a large basement to play with...:thumbs

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 Posted: Wed Apr 25th, 2012 05:43 am
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Gordons - I don't think that there's an airport in Altoona. It's in the middle of nowhere, Pennsylvania. It was once the heart of the Pennsylvania Railroad, and still hosts the (now) Norfolk Southern's Juniata Shops.

http://g.co/maps/rxe7b

Thanks for coming along for the ride!



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 Posted: Wed Apr 25th, 2012 06:25 am
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We flew from Philadelphia on one of those small commuter aircraft that stopped at most places. State College and Johnstown? were two that spring to mind....

Just checked and it's still there.

http://www.flyaoo.com/

http://maps.google.com/maps?q=altoona+airport&hl=en&ll=40.287645,-78.31089&spn=0.208464,0.354652&sll=40.485604,-78.377151&sspn=0.103926,0.177326&t=h&hq=altoona+airport&z=12

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 Posted: Wed Apr 25th, 2012 06:44 am
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eric220
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Huh, fancy that.

Here's another idea. The thought would be to depress the yard a bit, as though it's on the grade down to the N&W line, and break up the plywood prairie a bit.



In this arrangement, I lose the passing siding/runaround. There's also a bit of a complication with the support structure, but it's not insurmountable.



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 Posted: Wed Apr 25th, 2012 07:17 pm
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Here's the results of some more brainstorming.



If I don't double-end the yard, there's actually enough distance to get the interchange line down under the PRR mains. This arrangement opens up another interesting possibility. If instead of going straight to the backdrop, the interchange line takes a hard turn to the left, I can sneak it across the river behind the PRR bridge. Mirrors under the bridge would conceal the track. There's enough room under Newark that with careful placement of the turnout motors, I could squeak a 15-inch radius balloon turnaround track under there. I could either turn the track back on itself, creating a one-train staging yard, or I could snake the track around directly down to lower staging. There's nine inches of separation, and to get under the PRR mains, the interchange track has to drop two inches, so there's only seven to go. The benchwork would be a little tricky, but I think it could be done.



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 Posted: Sat May 19th, 2012 01:00 am
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Here's the latest on the Morrow NW interchange redesign.



There's just enough room to drop the interchange yard down a quarter inch. I think that should be enough to get a nice, subtle visual separation. Also, it's hard to make out, but this plan includes the turn on the interchange track that takes it under the bridge. A dummy track completes the illusion that the interchange track carries on to the NW main. In reality, it curves hard (14" radius) to the left, goes under Newark, turns back around, and comes out on the facia. It follows the facia around to the helix, where it joins the line down to staging. That way, an NW train can either come up on the helix on the PRR main and cross onto the NW interchange, or it can come up the interchange and cross onto the PRR. Either way the train starts and ends in staging.



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 Posted: Thu Jun 7th, 2012 04:07 am
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eric220
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Quick update before I head off to bed. The Gandy Dancers came over last night, and we got the benchwork for the upper level completed.



Ready for some cork/track layin'.



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 Posted: Thu Jun 7th, 2012 07:22 am
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That's a stunning railway room Eric.............:shock::shock::shock::shock::mrgreen::mrgreen::mrgreen::mrgreen::mrgreen:



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 Posted: Fri Jul 6th, 2012 12:43 am
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eric220
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OK, I've been seriously slacking on my updates (and work on my layout). In the meantime, check out my most recent big purchase.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=n2XASKHP7zU&feature=plcp



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