Thank you for stopping by the Train Room.
Permit me a short preamble to my discussion of our plans.
In 1984, in my apartment in Santa Ana, California, I built an N-scale layout measuring 9 by 13 feet, with 6 interconnected levels standing almost five feet high. The layout featured eight separate locations, seven separate control panels, and five power supplies. There were over 100 remote turnouts, over fifty locomotives, and over 150 cars, mostly freight cars. The layout also included a master control panel and power pack, a diesel-steam sound system and many automatic switching features.
Even though the railroad needed a human to run it, I wrote a computer program which detailed which cars were to be picked up, and where they were to be delivered. There were over 40 different destinations (businesses) for freight cars. The program put together lists of consists with each car in the consist in the optimum order for setting out when the mainline freight arrived at a particular town each day.
It was quite a railroad.
The name was/is (the thing still exists, whole in my mind) The Nemo, Lincoln & Rand Railroad. It ran from 1984 through 1991, when we moved. Ah, yes, when we moved. The NL & R was too big to move. It had to be cut apart to get it out the door and up to the Pismo Beach area. I never put it back together. It sits in pieces in my house, in what we refer to as the train room.
The real centerpiece of the layout was the Harding Yard: 11 feet long, two feet wide, 55 remote turnouts, a powered turntable, and a very innovative control panel (more on the control panel elsewhere). The yard is more or less intact, probably needing a few weeks work to be put back in shape.
The yard is now here at The Institute. I have started trying to figure out the electrical. After six years of inattention, quite a bit of work is needed. I will try to spend some time each day repairing and re-wiring, until it is operational, hopefully by the end of Summer.
Once it's done, you're invited over to see it, and I'll put what I can of it here on soli.com, our website.
The yard almost exactly duplicates the diagram below, except the real yard has a few more connecting tracks, and the parallel tracks are a little farther apart than in the diagram. As far as progress on getting the yard back in business, I'll try to keep you posted here.
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