Couplers and layout design

I did more work on my baggage-mail car today. I’m four eyebolts away from having it ready for the paint shop!

While installing the steam lines and air/signal lines on the ends, I realized I’d have to cut off the Kadee trip pins so they wouldn’t interfere. At the same time, I checked the various lines on the baggage-mail car against the pilot of one of my CNR 4-6-0s. They clear the pilot – phew! But the front couplers on my 4-6-0s are also without their Kadee trip pins, which would interfere with the pilot. In fact, I’ll have to clip all of the trip pins because they’ll jam against the pilots when switching.

What this means is I may have to make a slight modification to the Port Rowan section of my layout plan:

The Layout Plan - for now...

In short, I may have to change the alignment of the fascia along the front edge of Port Rowan (the turntable side of the main track) to ensure that reach-in distances are not too great.

To the left of the turntable, I can squeeze the fascia closer to the turntable lead, although I will lose some of the space for the orchard at the front of the layout. That would be unfortunate as I really want to use it as a scene divider. It basically works that way on the prototype, framing the yard.

To the right of the turntable, I can also squeeze the peninsula if I eliminate the building in the feed mill complex that’s closest to the aisle, and shift the garage to the left about three and a half feet, so it’s near the turntable.

Or, I can build the layout a little bit lower than planned to give me better reach with a coupler pick. I expect this is the route I’ll take, because it would be nice to have a good stretch of scenery between track and front edge of the layout. I also envision all that empty space filled with static grass, which will look great in photos.

Scenery versus access. Height versus depth. Got an opinion on this? Use the Comment function to share…

Pictures of the baggage-mail car to come – once I have those eyebolts installed!

1 thought on “Couplers and layout design

  1. As it turns out, I did not have to change the fascia to the right of the turntable. Nor did I have to lower the layout. I did make a minor adjustment to the front edge of Port Rowan to the left of the turntable, however. The best way to confirm my thinking was to build the layout.

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