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I am back!  After taking about 3 years off from trains I am building a new layout.  This time around it will be transformer controlled, and be easy for my kids to run.  

The setting will be 1945 and steam is king.  It is a small Lake Michigan coastal town of Little Rapids.  Its late November and snow is on the ground but Lake Michigan is still free from ice and the fisherman still head out each morning.  

I will be starting my benchwork this weekend and have a pretty good idea of my track plan.  

Here are some things I am planning for the layout:

1) Siding with Grain elevator

2) Train station with passing siding in front

3) Operating Drawbridge 

4) Grist Mill with operating water wheel 

5) The whole back of the layout will be elevated kinda like how my last layout was.  What is new is the hidding siding will be behind the elevation so I can park an extra train back there.  

6) Great Lakes Car Ferry.  Phase 1 of the layout it will only be on display on the actual layout loaded with my scale size freight cars that will not be running on the current layout.  Phase 2 will be in a few years when I can remove the closet and build a yard to where I can load and unload the ferry itself. 

7) Harbor scene separate from the car ferry.  If you ever been to Leeland, MI aka "Fishtown"  it is the scened I have in mind.  

8) Snow and lots of it.  Layout will be set in late November, snow still on the ground but Lake Michigan still free from ice and the fishing is still open.  

I have plenty more ideas and will post photos of the completed room soon along with a basic trackplan. 

Last edited by Jdevleerjr
Original Post

Here is what I am working with.  The green is the benchwork, and yes it is an odd shape.  There are several reasons for this.

1) I am using an exisiting 5x8 table set at a 45 degree angle.  It is a table my grandfather built me for trains when I was 7, and I want to use it for my layout. 

2) I need to get to the back corner of the layout ceiling.  The shut off to the outside water bib is there and I need to be able to shut it off in the winter and turn it back on in the spring.  If there is ever an issue I want to be able to get there to shut the water down, etc...

3) The black box is a closet I can not remove, yet.  My wife stores stuff in it and I do not have the land rights to it.  I figured after I get the layout up  I can build her another closet in another part of the basement and get the rights so I can set up a yard there.  

I will most likely add more to the back, but I also want to be able to stand back there to work on the layout.  The top left cutout is for the same thing.  




Images (1)
  • Michigan

Construction has started!  

Here are a few photos from this morning.   My 5x9 table that my grandfather built is in the middle of the room.  I will be extending it and hope to have more photos of the completed benchwork tonight or tomorrow.  

I do need to add one more lighting fixture so I can get nice even lighting over the whole layout.  I will also be moving the Car Ferry to the back of the layout in the open triangle area you see in the upper right hand corner of my last post.  This will serve as a harbor with a light house and all.  





Images (3)
  • 20170202_100359
  • 20170202_100403
  • 20170202_100409

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