I'm in the planning stages of my 2nd railroad (which is actually the first railroad I've planned as my 4x8 ft CN Shelburne Sub just sort of 'happened'), and I need some help. The York, Simcoe & Northern (YS&N) is a new shortline railroad running on ex-CN trackage from Toronto to Washago, with a branch to Collingwood and with head office and most industries in Barrie. The layout as its designed at the moment is a shelf railroad, with each shelf 2-2.5 ft wide. The layout is along one side of a room 11ft long, and continues along two side walls for 5 ft, with a 5 ft long peninsula sticking out in the middle. (It looks like a backwards E)
Anyway, I've got a few questions about my future layout that I need some guidance1) Layout height. My layout is an industrial spur of the YS&N. I'm thinking of building it at a height halfway between my waist and my arm, which is about 4 ft high for me. Based on your experience, should I move the railroad higher (closer to my arm height), or lower (closer to waist height)?
2) Curves and turnouts This industrial spur has 3 major industries: a brewery, a lumber mill, and a chemical plant. It's set in modern times, which means I'll be using modern tank cars, Canadian Grain hoppers, etc. With such long cars, could I build this railroad with 22in radius curves and no6 turnouts and have it work properly and look realistic? The reason I'm asking is that I'd like to simplify construction and use sectional track wherever possible.