Every now and again, a "Eureka" moment comes. Far too often for my liking, I have more layout ideas for my available space and track than I have brain cells. Usually my inspirations come from prototype photographs and maps (plus of course the wonderful resource that is Google Earth), but on this occasion it has come from somebody else's modelling, via the medium of Carl Ardent's small layout scrapbook.
Now, with a larger than standard garage to play with, the small layout scrapbook isn't somewhere I normally look for layout ideas, rather I simply enjoy looking at other people's models. Nor is my inspiration from a recent entry, but from the "classic layouts" page. In particular, the Gum Stump and Snowshoe. Following the links contained there, the "City Classics" caught my eye. For future transport home (I leave NZ on June 29th!) the two paired boards lend themselves to boxing up and putting in with our possessions in a shipping container. It gives me a continuous run to watch the trains go round, and some nice shunting space. By very happy coincidence, the base level of baseboards from my helices lend themselves to the design superbly. Dropping a 4 foot section in between them gives me 12 feet length. I will make some tweaks to the design to fit an S Bahn station in and to allow freight to run around without blocking the main. Depending on the outcome of some trials, I might even make the loop double track. Otherwise, the industry tracks will remain largely as they are.
So. A plan has been chosen. My next step will be to have a stiff drink, take a radio into the garage tuned into Matinee Idle, and partially dismantle SteinrÃ¼cken. Then the fun begins...
Happy New Year!