Where on the Railroad?


A map and some information about Bagby, CA along the Yosemite Valley Railroad (Author’s Collection)

If you’ve read my past posts about track planning and the future of the YV project, you know that I’ve struggled with figuring out what to build, how big to build part of a layout, and what a TOMA concept YV, or Free-Mo YV, or just about any version of portability would look like because I don’t have room for that large layout here. (If you’ve read before, you’re probably going “here we go again”… as am I.)

There are several other factors that limit my layout planning.  Beyond just not currently living in the eventual layout space, there is the consideration that I need space for two layouts, the YV and a Central Vermont layout that my wife is working on equipment for.  Without knowing the “final” space considerations, and with a 78 mile line to plan, it also is hard to know what towns and locations will have to be compressed out or what can be included.

It’s time, however, to build ‘something’ other than rolling stock for the YV.  I narrowed down a few locations earlier in 2017 that would be good candidates in Snelling and National Lead.  They’re still good choices.  The other choices of locations that would be interesting would be Bagby or Merced Falls, as the log trains, the locals, and the passenger trains all passed through or worked at these two locations.

I built benchwork last summer for both Snelling and National Lead.  Now I’m giving the benchwork intended for National Lead over to become either Bagby or Merced Falls.  It’s 14” wide and 8’ long.  That’s plenty of space to build Bagby.  I have the material available to expand the benchwork and make it Merced Falls, with the lumber company, box factory, and a few other structures.

My next step is going to be to lay both towns out on a 1:1 piece of paper and then make the decision on what to build.

Whatever I build, it’ll serve several purposes, allowing me to photograph models, run trains, experiment with scenery materials, and have fun.  After all, that’s the goal and reason for doing any of this.

–      –     –

It’s time once again to resume setting and reviewing goals monthly.  December is a difficult month to set goals for, as one never can quite plan on how much time around holidays and family time there will be.  That said, I’m going to set some relatively easy and reachable goals and we’ll see if I can accomplish them before the New Year.

First, I want to add details to, touch up paint, and assemble my Accurail 36’ car from Trainfest.

Second, I want to build a new sanding block and sand the C&EI boxcar.

Third, I want to have some full-size track planning done.

Fourth, I want to sort my project cars and make sure the build plan for 2018 matches with my overall goals.

Fifth, I want to lay out my overall goals, and share them here as I get ready for 2018

It’s time to get back to modeling!



One thought on “Where on the Railroad?

  1. Personally, I think TOMA is hard to do optimally.. I’ve built Sn2 Free-Mo modules/sections twice for Sn2 SR&RL layout, but neither set is ideal for my current basement. Some of my sections had a radius that is tighter than my current minimum, some consumed to much space or did not optimize track routing or aisles. The net result is compromises that I’d not make if build a layout specific to the space. Having some sections and modules to share at shows was fun. But I wish I’d focused more on Rolling Stock, Structures, etc… All elements that are easy to consume on a new layout. Another challenge, is that a module such as Free-mo which can be viewed from both sides, will only be viewed from one side on a layout. On a layout, the back scenery would be blended to the backdrop but that does not look good when viewed from that side. Consider any of your existing towns and think how would I have planned that in a module (ignore that you have double deck) and would it have fit into my layout? Your main yard might work. With all of that said, you have “historical modeling” is there any chance a local museum would want you final result? If so, going with modules or TOMA (Should be TOSA – The One Section at a Time) might be worth while. Good luck, I look forward to your future adventures.

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