Paul Kenny Paul Kenny
I have built and now dismantled two layouts. Fairly basic DCC control and remote points.
I have been very happy with what I achieved, and loved doing it.
As I am moving house I was wondering if there are any web-sites that suggest things to progress to or consider when building a new layout.
I don't want to get near the end of building and wish I had known about and included something.
I would like to make this a long term build, but need to know the things I could do and in what order that I should do them.
I am not good with computers so don't want to go to that extreme of control.

I have followed the Focus Forum for some time now, and some of the topics just go straight over the top of my head.

Please help

Paul.
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AHJAY
Hello Paul

In a sense if you have had it running before, then you will be fine.

If it is UK prototype and you like small locos then DO consider powerbase unter all track. Powerbase is mostly targeted for power on gradients but... Small locos will perform much better on a powerbase fitted to the layout because as well as helping pulling power, it also greatly improves electrical pickup of all locos.

If you want something like a shuttle train that runs automatically while you drive other trains, look at the ZEN Black decoders from DCCconcepts - they have a really clever built-in shuttle that is dead easy to implement. (ZEN ABC can also be used for automated terminus of fiddle yard stopping etc - sometimes helpful on an end to end layout.

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Apart from that: I think that just common sense things are the issue. We all learn as we go.... so ask as you progress if anything is in doubt. This forum responds quickly and a days delay for advice is often a big long term saving if it avoids later changes. We all enjoy helping anyway.

And... post photos. sometimes ideas come from them that a text based communication cannot really inspire.

Apart from that...
* Consider layout height. As we age its nice to not bend too much. If its not an exhibition layout, then build it so you are at the same height as a scale height tran enthusiast on a high embankment for the most realist "layout View" ... coincidentally thats a nice height for viewing from a bar-stool height with a glass or cup in hand :-) :-)
* Make it easy to work on - ie stand on its side for wiring etc
* Install a proper power bus
* Use an adequate wiring size and quality
* Use a consistent colour code in your wiring for a long term layout - so troubleshooting is always easy.
* Make it at least partly modular so that is an unexpected move happens, you can take it with you
* Ideally forget the "Flat Earth" approach and only have surace where track is - and make THAT at a datum point several inches above the frames, so that the land can go both up and down according to the terrain you are modelling.
* For a long term layout, definitely paint all (wooden) surfaces of everything including the frames so that long term expansion and contraction or warping etc through moisture content and temperature shift are minimised

Others may add other things, but thats all from me for now.

Ahjay

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