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Winter 1971 - Page 22


FROM SIMPLE TO SUPER TO MODULAR; THE PROVEN WAYS TO LET YOUR RAILROAD GROW WITH YOUR E XPERIENCE

LAYOUT VARIATION NOMENCLATURE

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Figure eight

Return loops

e growth sequence , from train set to a comp lex model railroad, usually includes some n ee d for a plan for the position of the track. It would b e more fun , p erhaps, i f the mo del railroad c ould merely follow the contours of the land like the real railroads try to b ut few of us have access to such unlimited vistas of space. Most frequently our railroad e mp ires begin as an e mp ty tabletop or , at best, an emp ty room th at we hope to c onvert into some sort of a replica of real railroad action . Given such linear limits to our "emp ires," the confines of a rather definite plan for future track location is the safest bet. The seemi ngly simpler alternative of just laying track wherever it seems to look best will often result in a mo del railroad that is far too comp licated to o perate e njoyably with curves and other areas that are too tight and cramped to allow operation of the largest engines and longest cars. If you are a relative n ewcomer to the hobby you can be consoled b y the fact that literally thousands of others have had problems almost the same as y our own. Those thousands h ave developed, through the oh-too-huma n trial-and-error method of perfection , a series of steps that work best in the developme nt of a mo del railroad from the oval train set start to a room or tabletop full of realism and fun. The h alf dozen or so layout plans on these pages illustrate the major steps in the development of y our oval train set into a comp lete and life time type of mo del railroad. The first two p lans represent the basic oval and figure 8 type o f model railroads that every kid has dreame d about; the only difference is that each of them h as an extra siding or two so that the train can b e

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