East of the Blue Ridge

Chronicles of an On30 quarry railroad

Plan Number Six

Dan George's Spring Creek Lumber Company HO scale layout | April 2005

May 9, 2004

Coming up with effective revisions for the Dry Fork layout, or coming up with a new trackplan altogether has become a search for simplicity. To try to connect the Simple Ideal:

with the space I have to build a layout.

Plan Six appears to do that:

It would have just a few operational points, separated by a long stretch of winding, single track mainline. This plan seems to bring together Ideal and Practicality reasonably well, so I am considering it very seriously. It differs significantly from my present layout in that it contains significantly fewer operational elements.

Plan 6 is more about the layout and less about what is modeled. By that I mean that it reflects an Ideal that is not defined by modeling any particular industry, location, or era. It reflects a priority on simplicity, ease of construction, and reliability of operation.

It is difficult to keep the initial premise in mind
and give the project enough thought to develop it. Thought leads to trying to tie a prototype operation to the plan in order to answer questions regarding design, construction, operation. But there are other ways to answer those questions ... to keep revisiting the Ideal.

The Ideal seems to be a layout with low track density, and not much industrial development. The hidden trackage is an attempt to open up a wider scope of operational possibilities, but it is the part of the plan I like the least.