Home Railways

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Home Railways

Post by mattmason » Tue Jan 24, 2006 3:02 pm

I have a few questions for this group about home tracks. I am writing a series of magazine articles on this and would appreciate your feedback.

How many of you guys have home railways?
(By this I mean a live steam railway at your house but don't use for large club functions like Bitter Creek and Western in CA.)

What size do you model and is it on the ground or elevated?

Finally, what kind of information would you like to see published about home railways?
(i.e., construction articles on building trackside structures, track laying techniques, other home layouts, other helpful things...)

I would also like to know your answers if you are looking to build a home layout as well.

Thanks for your help.
Matt Mason

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Post by willjordan » Tue Jan 24, 2006 4:10 pm

I'm barely getting started on mine, just have enough rail for the first 50 feet. I bought the Railroad Supply standard aluminum rail and will be installing it on plastic ties using screws and Kadee tie plates.

I'll be building it at 7.5 inch gauge with turnouts designed for both 7.5 and 7.25 inch gauge (wide flangeways on the frogs).

My design will be an oval with 35-40' minimum radius, with a small yard. One corner of the propery drops off, so there will be a small curved trestle. Total trackage will be about 600' mainline with yard trackage and a 100' spur into the front yard.
grace & peace

[url=http://willjordan.com]Will's Web Pages[/url]


Post by willy » Tue Jan 24, 2006 4:33 pm

I am slowly working on mine. Where I am not retired yet the push to get it done isnt important yet.

My track will be "groovy" type with steel bar stock pressed into CCA. At present I have about 200 feet on the ground and I am at the point of making #2 of 3 switches required for my layout. The minimum radius will be 50' yet most of the turns will be 60' radi. Total layout basic will be about 1500' on 7 acres of property. Should I become rich I can make the loop fold over on itself and increase the track to 2500'.

The track is all ground line 7.5 guage running 7.25 equipment.

As to article? Unless it is posted in Live Steam its doubtful that I will bother to subscribe to anything else. Although in Live steam I do look forward to construction articles of "how to make it". I also look forward to the articles of what other tracks have for runs and what facilities they offer (camping on site, ease of unloading, availability of full cook tent/kitchen and so on).

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Post by Fred_V » Tue Jan 24, 2006 4:49 pm

http://www.risingconcepts.com/frapper/s ... hrailroads

this site has some info that might help.
fred v

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Post by makinsmoke » Tue Jan 24, 2006 5:37 pm

I am one forty foot curved trestle away from completing a 7-1/2" gauge loop around our corner lot. I live far enough away from tracks that I need something to keep the juices going and test run the ten wheeler when I get it done.

I have had previous experience working on a bud's layout in Texas so had an idea of the basics. I still had to figure out some interesting things such as how to cross my driveway, minimum radius using an engineers' tape, marking the track layout, digging and preparing the roadbed, cutting ties, building track panels and pouring footers, and building simple bridges. All that and paying attention to drainage, and weather effects on trackage.

Many of these things I had lots of help from on this board and others, but an article or two with these basic things would be a great help to newbies.


Post by Mr.Sharpe » Tue Jan 24, 2006 8:53 pm

My brother and I started in the hobby of Live Steam in 1968, but it took retirement to actually get things going. We recently purchased 6000 feet of steel rail from Lake Shore Live Steamers and have about 100 ten foot sections of straight and 100foot radius track assembled. We bought 1500 Wolmanizied 8ft 2x4's before they were changed to the new formulation, and use the full 4" depth for each tie, with 4 SS screws on each tie. Altogther, we hope to get a little more than 3000ft down on our ten acres.

It took us awhile to grade, but we expect to lay that first 1000 feet this spring and summer. We do not belong to any club, because they are too far to drive, and it would take away time from our own RR. We do almost all of the work ourselfs, including casting our own frogs, guard rails, and rail joiners.

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Home Railways

Post by srrl5 » Tue Jan 24, 2006 10:36 pm

Follow the link for info.



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Post by Bruce_Mowbray » Sun Jan 29, 2006 3:59 pm

I have been working on building a home railroad. 7 1/4" gauge and 1 1/2" scale equipment. About 2000 feet of (proposed) track with about 200 feet down. Building my dream house got in the way but someday I will return. See my web page at http://www.geocities.com/trainhead391/
Bruce Mowbray
Springville & Southern RR
TMB Manufacturing & Locomotive Works

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Post by David_W » Mon Jan 30, 2006 1:00 pm

makinsmoke wrote: I still had to figure out some interesting things such as how to cross my driveway
...so how did you cross the driveway (I need to do this also, looking for ideas- mine is gravel)?
Thanks, David

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Post by srrl5 » Mon Jan 30, 2006 11:00 pm

David_W wrote:
makinsmoke wrote: I still had to figure out some interesting things such as how to cross my driveway
...so how did you cross the driveway (I need to do this also, looking for ideas- mine is gravel)?
Thanks, David
I have the same problem, gravel, my unloading is inside the top loop. have been driving over the track for 8 years without major problems but less then once a month. Crossing is also on a curve.


John Greiner

Home Railroad

Post by John Greiner » Tue Jan 31, 2006 9:39 am

I started mine 5 years ago with a 1,000 foot loop around my house which
includes 1 tunnel and 3 trestles, using standard rail. Next I built a switchback to descend and climb a 20 foot hill at 1.5 % grade. This added about 1500 more feet using West coast rail, treated lumber 2X 2 X 14 inch ties, #10 screws and fender washers. This also added 5 more trestles averaging 80 feet in length. I then added another 1,000 foot loop and a giant trestle 20 feet high and 125 feet long. Last month I completed another 1300 food loop to eliminate one of the switchbacks.

I now have 5800 feet of track, 725 feet of which is elevated on trestles, and 13 switches which are electrically operated, an a single steaming bay.

Next I plan to build an engine storage building and then some facilities for handling visitors.

Most of this can be seen on my website at: http://homestead.com/lrmrr

edited by moderator to make link clickable--wej

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