The former would be more prototypical. Having to use the main line to
shunt into a siding isn't an issue in real life, because such a small
terminus would have a very limited timetable and hence the main line
can be occupied with shunting movements most of the day without any
The latter plan (what happened to layout2, by the way?) would be
closer to prototype practice if it was the other way around, with the
double slip at the left and the siding running parallel to the main
line instead of the headshunt.
For safety reasons, sidings in the prototype aren't generally
accessible directly from the main line - if they're facing sidings (as
yours are, in both plans) then they're usually accessed via an
intermediate loop that is not normally the destination of arriving
trains (eg, in layout 1, trains would arrive in the top line and then
be shunted via the loop to the siding). That means that any train
which overruns the platform can only end up in the headshunt, not the
siding, and it would require two different points to both be set
incorrectly for an arriving train to reach the siding my mistake. On
layout 3, an arriving train could end up in the siding if it overruns
and just the slip is wrongly set, which is a much lower margin of
error. A trailing siding is much safer per se, since it can never be
reached by accident by an arriving train, so the access to it can be
directly from the main line without needing a loop.
If you want some good examples of compact layout plans, then Carl
Arendt's website at
is one of the best. Don't be put
off by the fact that it's a US site - most of the plans will work
equally well in almost any setting, and many of them are explicitly
illustrated in typical UK settings as well as US and European
:I had an idea for a small branch line terminus station for
: freight. It takes a siding from the run around loop.
: However, if I want to shunt a wagon into that siding, I would
: move the train back onto the line. So I came up with this:
: The siding (upper) and headshunt are accessible from both sides
: loop. Has anyone seen something like this on a real line, and
: think it will work?
Version 1 is more proto-typical, remember that the line would be
work under either the "One engine in steam" rules or by token, so
having to use the running line as the head shunt doesn't matter -
in fact there were many main-line or secondary lines were the
running line had to be used to so extent when shunting the goods
Also, on a real railway, with option 1 there is only one catch
point and facing point lock required, protecting the run-round
loop at it's left hand end, option 2 requires two catch points
(run round loop and siding) as well as two facing point locks,
left hand end of run round loop and the facing aspect of the
double slip. A facing point lock is required, by regulation,
where and when ever a passenger train will travel over a facing
(diverging) point - if no lock exists then a temporary
'clip-lock' needs to be fitted before the passage of the train.
Thus option one would cost the railway less to install whilst not
causing any real operating problems.
: A facing point lock is required, by regulation,
: where and when ever a passenger train will travel over a facing
: (diverging) point
That is, the passenger train in revenue service/carrying
passengers, empty stock movements (shunts) are exempt.
It was a common arrangement. Many companies disn't use headshunts
where they didn't need them. The siding would have been taken off the
front of the loop. Vry often what looks like a hort headhunt is
actually to stop runaways onto the main line, like Calne....
Much of the time they used catch points instead like Blagdon...
Even on double track main lines you didn't always get headshunts, like
Adlsestop. This was shunted from the main line. The goods shed could
be shunted from both directions.
The short track for the loading dock would hold vans that had already
gone through the goods shed.
Only the biggest goods sheds in the biggest yards were shunted by
engines. The pick up goods would drop the vans and after that porters
with pinch bars moved them through the shed. Or if you were lucky a
Layout 2 had the same track plan as layout 3, but with different
I have tried moving the double slip and the siding, but the layout would
have to be at least 20cm longer to accommodate it, and it could be more
difficult to place industrial buildings. A compromise may be the best
Also, should I use an electrofrog or insulfrog double slip? I have used
insulfrog points in the past, and the only locomotive to stall on them is
a class 04 shunter. The smallest locomotive on this layout will be a
small prairie, and the whole layout can be live all the time.
I'm purposely not reading the other posts yet :-)
Prototype stations are built within the available space, which can be
Industries generally are outside the railway's land. An exception would be
staithes. There would usually be a railway goods shed within the station
A track arrangement with a double slip is possible on a very restricted
but I think a DSP on a through line is unlikely.
Probably if you can arrange a retaining wall (or perhaps a cathedral ;-)
the site the DSP can be justified.
: A track arrangement with a double slip is possible on a very
: but I think a DSP on a through line is unlikely.
: Probably if you can arrange a retaining wall (or perhaps a
: to restrict
: the site the DSP can be justified.
You seem to either have no knowledge of UK practice or have
forgotten what you did know, the double/single slip was (still is
were yards still exist) a VERY common feature of many station
*running line* track plans, the 'standard' GWR and to some extent
constituent lines of the Southern and LMS, the main restriction
of use comes from the safety aspects of having to protect all
[ re facing point locks ]
: Does anyone know when this practice was established? If
: enough, perhaps the line could have been built very early, and
: adjusted after it was built.
Very early, and any lines that didn't have such protection would
have been banned (by law) from carrying passenger trains, so
unless you wish to only run freight trains...
But heck, if you just want to 'play trains' you can pretend what
: > : >
: >> But heck, if you just want to 'play trains' you can pretend
: >> like!
: > I'll go with this. Time to buy track!
: Just tell viewers that it's a private industrial branch with
: passenger trains to serve workers and the workers' families
: live adjacent to the works.
Nah, the real thing would still have been covered by a 'Light
Railway Order', best just excuse it all as being set in a
Here in New Zealand, once a track passes through a gateway into
private property it is (apparently) only subject to whatever standards
NZR demand for the safety of their rolling stock.
Privately owned branchlines are a different matter, in that being a
railway they must meet the relevant govt. regulations.
What I was picturing was some large industry, with a gate just off-board,
a platform for the passenger trains and tracks to loading/unloading bays.
That sort of thing has surely existed in Britain?
I have considered putting the buildings and platforms on small, removable
boards, which would allow me to quickly change from a British station to
one of another country. However, I'm worried that the joins would be too
Unfortunately joins will always be visible to some degree. The better you
get at building the less they will be visible.
You can of course attempt to hide them - a removable hedge, a fence, a
curb/gutter/footpath edge, parked vehicles ...
One method I have used is to place thin (1/4") coloured foam rubber between
the baseboards. Mount it a bit high by gluing on to one baseboard end and
then trim it down to height when the scenery is done. That way at least no
shadows or holes will exist when the baseboards are together.
You can also use distraction - have a couple of nude women skinney-dipping
in a pond nearby and (almost) no-one will notice you've forgotten the
There's no end to what you can do with those Preiser figures!
One of the layouts that does the rounds here has a complete nudist camp,
with swimmers, sunbathers, volleyball players, etc. You need a *very*
fine brush to finish them realistically!