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After much procrastination the helix is finally underway for the Hudson Bay Railway. It will be an oval partially herniated 5 turn helix between the two levels. Ignore the two angled boards in the open center of the helix base, they were there to help with some plywood cuts but are not attached to the base.
The first 4'6" will be flat and a part of the Cranberry Portage passing siding. The helix will also have a 2 track staging yard inside the main track for the layouts south staging. I've got some ideas about how to do the staging, we'll see how that plays out as things move along.
I have taken some good advice from others about not having a long hidden run; the herniated sections will have some scenery to let operators see their train progress between levels. I have some scenery ideas since this will be a mainline with no switching. I do plan to access a separate branch line off the helix (Snow Lake Copper and Zinc mines) so this will give people another reason to come operate the layout.
The oval should also lessen the overall grade between levels, although I'm not sure my wife will necessarily appreciate a big blob in the corner of the media room. Hopefully she'll come to appreciate the operational opportunities that this will generate on the layout.
This article first appeared on model-railroad-hobbyist.com
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