Controllers / layout advice

Planning on building a 00 layout on a baseboard around 8' by 4' when we move in a couple of weeks and hope you all could give us some advice. We are
thinking of having an inner (2nd radius) and outer (3rd radius) rail running around the edge and loco shed and fiddle yard in the middle or possibly on an additional side board. Initially looking to be able to run two locos at the same time, but with the facility to expand at a later date to three or possibly four, mainly shunting in the fiddle yard so the Hornby HM2000 is looking tempting.
This layout will be entirely fictional, as the stock will be a mix of heritage steam locos and at least 1 blue livery BR diesel (the better half has decreed the latter so I must obey!).
We would like some quick results initially to keep the children interested, but plan to install points off the mainlines for future expansions. As this will be our first model railway building project is this be too steep a learning curve and too ambitious?
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My layout is 8' x 6', with a 4' x 2' hole in the centre. I have a double-track oval, and on one straight side, through the station, I have used a total of 6 curved points to provide a 3rd track. Inside the loop, on the opposite side, I have a storage yard (also using curved points) with 6 through tracks, a bay track for my Lima Cl 101 DMU, a turntable, an engine shed, and storage tracks (eventually) for 6 steam locos, mostly Hornby. With only 4' width, there would not be much room for a fiddle yard in the middle; however, the curved points do enable one to save a lot of space in a relatively small layout. My points are a mixture of Peco and Hornby, and the track consists of Hornby fixed radius and Peco and Atlas flex-track.
--
Martin S.

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That sounds like an excellent layout, thanks for the input about 4' being too tight. I think I need to put together a business case for 6' width!
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"Robin Mayes" wrote

tempting.
If you're set on conventional DC control then spend a little bit more and buy a Gaugemaster 'D' two track controller. The increase in quality and serviceability over the Hornby product is well worth the extra few pounds.
John.
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Cheers. I've found the Gaugemaster site and despite the "they look a bit old fashioned" comment have been given the necessary approvals. Still, I guess the comment was half expected, considering she wants the diesel!
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I have to agree with the Gaugemaster D. I originally bought a HM2000, but was disappointed by the poor response at low speeds. Then I "borrowed" a Gaugemaster, and it was a totally wonderful experience. I've sinced dumped the HM2000, and bought a Gaugemaster D.
The only comment I have is that I cannot run two trains on the mainlines, and do shunting at the same time. Guess I need to look into DCC for that - may be next year, when I've completed the scenery/buildings etc.
One final tip... if you have any questions, ask the group - I did, and have found them to be an excellent resource for almost anything related to model rail.
Ian
John Turner wrote:

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DC control is more than capable of doing what you describe.
With DC, one train can be controlled 'per section' provided that the sections are isolated from each other.
If (as I suspect) your layout has a single point from the mainline to the shunting area, this is insufficient to isolate the two sections. (look for a continuous metal rail between the two sections)
Two points connecting two loops together (as you normally have between your mainlines) is. (Note there is no continuous metal rail between sections with this two point arrangement)
Hornby also have a piece of 'isolating track' in their catalogue. Alternatively, you can buy plastic isolating rail joiners (use with a switch and a little soldering)
I'm guessing that most people looking to keep it simple, have two points 'doubling back' on each other at the boundary between sections.
Hope this helps you...
Craig
"Ian Cornish" <"icornish at talk21 dot com"> wrote in message

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Yes, but the Gaugemaster D only has two outputs, and that could be the reason he can't run three trains simultaneously... just a wild guess!
Cheers, Steve
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Perhaps the HM2000 (if he still has it) could run one of the main lines?
(Sorry forgot to state that each section needs it's own controller)
Craig

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move
running
interested,
this
and the most realistic. regards, Steve
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I've had a brief look at DCC and it seems very complicated, but perhaps that is just the way the web-sites I've looked at have described it. One of the models we want to run will be an EFE motorised 1938 tube stock and haven't seen any mention of if DCC can be installed.
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"Robin Mayes" wrote

that
DCC is as complicated or simple as you choose to make it.
I can see no reason why you cannot install DCC into your EFE tube stock, but I've not seem one of the power cars to be able to confirm that.
John.
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They are not powered. I have powered mine with Tenshodo SPUDs, which requires some surgery. I don't know how difficult it would be to wire in a DCC decoder.
--
Martin S.

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"Robin Mayes"

A London Underground line is one of the few scenarios where there can be little benefit in using DCC. How many tube trains do you want to have on the same track?
On the other hand, if your layout is completely "freelance" and you intend that your EFE train will run with other companies' locos and units, there is no reason why DCC should not be used. I believe that Black Beetle power units are easier to "chip" than Tenshodo Spuds. Remember that the tube stock cannot negotiate tight curves unless it is severely hacked about.
Dave W.
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"David Westerman" wrote

the
Think of the Circle Line! At least with DCC you could operate such a system with each train under independent control.
John.
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I was always under the impression the Circle Line could be modelled quite accurately with a static diorama ;-).
--
Daniel (a.k.a Spyke)
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What about the district line trains that run two to three minutes apart throughout the day along the southern part of the Circle Line?
--
Jane
OO in the garden http://www.yddraiggoch.demon.co.uk/railway/railway.html
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writes

Or the central line that runs along BR at west Ruislip and the mutual Tracks running from harrow on the hill to amersham on the met/chiltern line.
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the
We are thinking of having a cross platform interchange between the mainline and tube with the tubes disappearing down the pipe along the lines of Stratford.

is
stock
Thanks for the advice regarding the Black Beetle!
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