The Design of Small Model Railways

A compact track plan - continued

A compact track plan - continued
[110×46½ cm²]
 Wayside Halt
 Goods shed
 Container terminal
 Storage sidings

After publishing the previous trackplan, a reader named Jaap asked me to convert the plan from H0-scale to N-scale. He wondered if this could be done by simply replacing the track parts from the Fleischmann Profi system to the Piccolo system. Although the modern Fleischmann track systems use the same design principles, the actual measurements of the track pieces make such a straightforward conversion impossible. You’ll just have to re-design the plan, as I did for Jaap. Jaap asked me to make layout small, not expanding the plan to fit a hollow-core door. He wants to be able to put the layout just on top of his desk. A table-top layout in the true sense of the word.

 The drawing below shows the first try, simply re-drawing the plan with the Piccolo system. A a little fiddling I was able to re-create the plan with only standard track pieces. But due to the different proportions of the track system, the passing loop at the lower side of the drawing turned out too short to be workable.

A compact track plan - continued
[110×45 cm²]
Curved switches

So I used curved switches to increase the lenghth of the passing loop. As can be seen on the plan at the top of this page. This also allowed to skew the storage sidings . This allows for slightly longer sidings and improves the visual appearance of the plan. Though I personally don't like the looks of the curved turnouts from the Piccolo system, Jaap greeted the plan enthusiastically and is currently re-designing and detailing the plan to fit his personal needs. He had some problems with designing the wiring, so I helped him out with the associated wiring scheme.

 This photo of July 27, 2009, shows the goods shed of the little station of Bevaix (Neuchâtel) in Switzerland. The place was in use as a storage shed by the local supplier of window frames.

Gare de Bevaix
Electrical wiring

 The drawing below shows my suggestion for the electrical wiring of the plan. The scheme is for analogous (non-digital) control. I’ve tried to use the colour scheme of Fleischmann.

A compact track plan with wiring
Fl-9100  Rechte 222 mmFl-9101  Rechte 111 mmFl-9102  Rechte 57,5 mmFl-9103  Rechte 55,5 mmFl-9104  Rechte 27,75 mmFl-9108  Aansluitrail 111 mmFl-9110  Compensatierail 83-111 mmFl-9116  Stootblok
6×Fl-9120  Bocht R1 (192 mm) 45°
2×Fl-9128  Bocht R2 (225,6 mm) 7,5°
2×Fl-9135  Bocht R4 (396,4 mm) 30°
2×Fl-9136  Bocht R4 (396,4 mm) 15°
5×Fl-9180  Electrisch wissel links, metaaltong
3×Fl-9181  Electrisch wissel rechts, metaaltong
1×Fl-9182  Electrisch gebogen wissel links
1×Fl-9183  Electrisch gebogen wissel rechts
1×Fl-9186  Electrisch Engels wissel links

I’ve used the so-called “Cab Control” wiring scheme. Each section can get its power from the dual controller. Jaap uses a Hornby HM 2000 Controller. This is done with the switches at the lower side of the scheme. The middle position of these switches turn the voltage of the track section. The switches are called ON-OFF-ON switches. They are not present in the Fleischmann catalogue, you’ll have to buy them at your local electronics shop. The scheme employs a common ground. This implies that, at the section breaks (red triangles), the front track only should be insulated. This is done by replacing the metal rail joiners by plastic ones.

Every section can be fed by the dual controller. Two locomotives can be controlled independently. By setting the switches in a “smart” way, you set the correct right-of-ways. I think two locomotives controlled simultaneously is quite enough for a layout of this size.

The scheme also show the controls for the electrical turnouts. These can be controlled by using simple momentary push-buttons (1×ON).

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