#WarrenYard #RealisingaDream Realising a Dream - 13 - A Multiple Level Railway My Way Admittedly I originally started to build at a single level with a baseboard height of 48 inches for eye level viewing with minimal stooping, but quickly realised this was a mistake and stopped to rethink. The earth isn't flat and neither is the landscape in most of the UK. I decided to go for a multiple level layout because I could not afford the floor space to have even my initial operational ambitions on one level. Certainly not what it evolved into as shown in the Overview (part 1). But never mind, variation in levels makes for more interesting scenes. Before we jump in and plan a multi-level railway there a few aspects to consider, omit them at your peril! 1) How do we get the trains between the levels? 2) Gradients, how much track length can we spare? 3) What type of locomotives do we intend running? 4) How heavy will the trains be? 5) Can you clean the track? 6) How much headroom do you need between levels? 7) How thick is your wallet? It's a fact like most aspects of our model railways we cannot produce everything to scale e.g. in 1:76 a mile is approx 69 full size feet, we can barely build a 'mile' of track between stations. Gradients are another but at least the small scale works in our favour as our models often have a much higher power to weight ratio and grip than the real thing. This allows them to climb much steeper gradients than their prototypes. But working against them is friction, much tighter curves, and curves on a gradient significantly increase friction so the train becomes a greater load on the loco. All is not lost, let's consider the factors one at a time. 1) How do we get the trains between the levels? There are a few methods available from simple to complex. Consider three examples, the simplest is a simple incline, next is a helix incline and third a train lift. Simple Incline The simple incline is just a stretch of track with a gradient. This requires a suitable length of track to change levels which will depend on the rolling characteristics of your rolling stock and the traction characteristics of your loco. Helix A helix takes up less linear distance across the floor but a helix is a gradient on a curve, which as mentioned earlier is a real drag, secondly by the time you increase the curve radius to reduce this extra drag the floor area becomes large. When I examined this approach the amount of space required was horrendous, at least a straightforward incline can be aligned to the boards it connects. Here are two video links demonstrating two similar forms of construction, one is from a kit and the other DiY. Kit version: Charlie at Chadwick :- https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2Q7NFuP5t8E And his next episode 115 details integration to your railway. DiY version: Richard's first Everard Junction layout :- https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RGwdWiYev10 Track cleaning can be quite an issue for a helix. Train Lift A train lift is just that, the whole train enters a motorised deck and is lifted or lowered to the desired level. Good news for the loco it does not have to climb, but the length of the lift platform must accommodate your longest train, and e.g. a six coach train plus loco at 7ft+ (2m+) that is massive. All possible but is quite an expensive piece of kit. Example here :- https://www.doktorrail.de/modeltrainslifts/?lang=en The simple incline is my preferred option. Next, I consider gradients, how much track length can we spare? Jim.

Posted by Jim Franklin at 2021-05-23 21:00:20 UTC