Why Waste the Space on an HO 4X8?
Although an HO 4X8 track plan seems compact, it actually requires a large footprint.
If you have that much space, there are some interesting alternatives.
I'd Rather Fight than
Switchback industry spurs are found on
many published trackplans, but they're rare on the prototype (for good reason). Here's why I think this gimmick is overused.
Radius? Diameter? How wide is that curve?
often seems to be confusion in model railroading over radius, diameter, and the width of benchwork needed for a "turnback"
curve. Measuring model railroad layout curves.
Quick thoughts on layout design for a garage
In the US West and elsewhere, basements are few and far between. Here are a few ideas on layout designs to share a garage.
"Cornerstones" of layout design
Most layouts will benefit from including these important concepts:
- Prototype Inspiration
- Major Industries
Read more about the cornerstones
Starting Ops on a 4X8
OK, it's not my favorite style for a layout, but Ops can be fun even on a classic 4X8. Here's a step-by-step beginner's example.
Forget the Fast Clock
Some folks swear by the Fast Clock, others swear at 'em. While it won't work for everyone,
this discussion may give you some ideas of the benefits of slower clocks, and even 1:1 time.
A Little Love for the Yard
We spend lots of time thinking about the arrangement of tracks in our yards. But here are 11 "Serving Suggestions" that will help balance the load between yard and road without rebuilding.
PSR/NMRA '04 Clinic
"Op Session Design -- Freelance and Prototype"
Cherry Pickers on your Crew?
Three Keys to operating realism and fun
Successful ops plans are based on:
Read more about these keys
The Tragedy of CTSS
CAD-Too-Soon Syndrome strikes thousands, an epidemic fueled by the Internet.
Read why I think model railroad design software too often leads to precisely-rendered design disasters.
Prototype and Freelance: a choice ... or a palette?
Few questions polarize model railroaders more than this one, yet I am convinced that every layout
should combine elements of both concepts. (A version of this editorial was published in Layout Design Journal #25,
Winter 2001). Read more
Finding Pink and Blue Foam
Extruded foam board is a popular material for model railroad layouts, but
can be hard to find in mild-winter areas. Here are some tips for finding foam.
Influencing the movement of visitors and controlling where visitors look
are key elements of casino design ... and we can borrow a couple of ideas.