Large(st) layouts in Oz

 
  yesbenno Station Staff

Location: Bathurst - The Golden West
I'm not looking to start a "mine's bigger" discussion, but I'm trying to establish 'how big is big' in terms of large layouts in Australia.

I think these things can be measured in a couple of ways:
-mainline trackage length
-overall trackage length
-floor footprint (tricky with multi-level layouts)

There's also the private vs publicly accessible distinction and obviously scale/gauge.

Does anyone know of a listing of 'stats' that might help shed any light on the above?

Disclaimer: I'm involved with a project to bring a 70m long, mostly double-track mainline HO railway into public accessibility. My concern is the 'media types' wanting to call it 'among the biggest in Australia' and I'm wary that's not the case...

Cheers,

Benno

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  kingfisher Chief Train Controller

Is this the layout from the Cowra Museum that was closed and sold off recently.
  dthead Site Admin

Location: Melbourne, Australia
Google "Arid Australia" - it was in AMRM as well I think. that was a  BIG model railway indeed.

70M - that is a long railway, not 70ft ? (which is still long)

Regards,
David Head
  HardWorkingMan Chief Commissioner

Location: Echuca
The model railway at Emerald Lake used to advertise itself that way.  Of course something bigger may have been built since.
  yesbenno Station Staff

Location: Bathurst - The Golden West
Is this the layout from the Cowra Museum that was closed and sold off recently.
kingfisher
No it's not. It's still early days and opening is still over 12 months away. Official publicity is likely to start in 3-4 months and it's probably best if done by the professionals (not me!) to ensure all the cogs are appropriately greased.

Once I've got something concrete to share, it will go up here.

Thanks,

Benno.
  yesbenno Station Staff

Location: Bathurst - The Golden West
Google "Arid Australia" - it was in AMRM as well I think. that was a  BIG model railway indeed.

70M - that is a long railway, not 70ft ? (which is still long)

Regards,
David Head
dthead
Yeah, 70 meters for one lap (it might actually be a little more, still to get accurate measurements).

A bit of Googling found a number of pictures. It sure is big! I'll have to track down the AMRM article for the stats.

Thanks,

Benno.
  petan Chief Commissioner

Location: Waiting to see a zebra using a zebra crossing!
There is also a new planned to be eventually revealed larger one for the Ipswich Workshops QLD that apparently was donated or similar source. It was mentioned in the media some time ago.
  David Peters Dr Beeching

Location: "With Hey Boy".
There is also a new planned to be eventually revealed larger one for the Ipswich Workshops QLD that apparently was donated or similar source. It was mentioned in the media some time ago.
petan
Not sure if that was the actual layout donated that was built into a special building just for the layout and one persons model train collection. I am not sure so do not quote me on this but I think the actual model train collection or part of it anyway is going to the Ipswich Railway Workshops but not sure about the actual layout. Be good if it can be used at Ipswich though as this layout was massive!
  c3526blue Deputy Commissioner

Location: in the cuckoos nest
Is this the layout from the Cowra Museum that was closed and sold off recently.
No it's not. It's still early days and opening is still over 12 months away. Official publicity is likely to start in 3-4 months and it's probably best if done by the professionals (not me!) to ensure all the cogs are appropriately greased.

Once I've got something concrete to share, it will go up here.

Thanks,

Benno.
yesbenno
Hi Benno,

I hate to steal your thunder (if I am right). Your location at Bathurst has been noted.

I will take a punt on it being the "Main West" layout (aka "The Western Line"), which is featured on the NMRA(AR) website.
    http://www.nmra.org.au/Layout_Tours/Brewongle/index.html

This layout was formerly privately owned.  As the owner sold up and moved the layout had to go.  It was at one stage to be demolished.  It is (??) good to see that things are moving towards it's reopening to the public in another venue.

I hope that its history and the people involved will be part of its story in the new location.

Unfortunately I am certain that it is not the largest layout in Australia.  This must belong to the layout in this blog.
   http://mainsouthlinelayout.blogspot.com.au/

Note that it is named "Main South Line Layout" (a theme perhaps?).  Size 31' x 30' with 3 decks, peninsulas and continuous double track.  Around 400 points and I estimate about 600' (200m) of run.  Wow, that is ambitious!

Unfortunately no updates for almost 4 years.  Crying or Very sad

Any others?

Happy layouting,

John
  yogibarnes Locomotive Fireman

I'm not looking to start a "mine's bigger" discussion, but I'm trying to establish 'how big is big' in terms of large layouts in Australia.

I think these things can be measured in a couple of ways:
-mainline trackage length
-overall trackage length
-floor footprint (tricky with multi-level layouts)

There's also the private vs publicly accessible distinction and obviously scale/gauge.

Does anyone know of a listing of 'stats' that might help shed any light on the above?

Disclaimer: I'm involved with a project to bring a 70m long, mostly double-track mainline HO railway into public accessibility. My concern is the 'media types' wanting to call it 'among the biggest in Australia' and I'm wary that's not the case...

Cheers,

Benno
yesbenno
OK, I'll bite, with some numbers.
Excluding Club and commercial layouts, because they have more resources (either $$ or/and people), a home layout size, will be limited (in the long run) by the amount of ongoing maintenance it will require.
In my view, that limit is approached at 36 square metres (including aisles), or 50 metres of mainline.
  Draffa Chief Commissioner

There is (or was) a display layout in Beaudesert a number of years back that was open to the public.  No idea what the size was, but it was O Scale and housed in a purpose-built industrial shed at the front of someones acreage iirc.
  dthead Site Admin

Location: Melbourne, Australia
There is (or was) a display layout in Beaudesert a number of years back that was open to the public.  No idea what the size was, but it was O Scale and housed in a purpose-built industrial shed at the front of someones acreage iirc.
Draffa
Sure it wasn't Beenleigh way ? - at one stage, called "The Train Place" also a large O gauge American layout for public viewing. Also a big shed and a small shop at the front. They did have some miniature track at the front but never got going.

the remain were for a small tiem redone in soutport but didn't last long there.

Regards,
David Head
  miktrain Deputy Commissioner

Location: Adelaide SA
Excluding Club and commercial layouts, because they have more resources (either $$ or/and people), a home layout size, will be limited (in the long run) by the amount of ongoing maintenance it will require.
In my view, that limit is approached at 36 square metres (including aisles), or 50 metres of mainline.
yogibarnes
As Benno said it is not a size contest but to help you with getting a handle on this, I regularly run on a private layout that has about 1000 mts of mainline (87 scale kilometres) and much the same of sidings. There are some good bits but also a lot of very basic scenery and as you say maintenance can be a problem, more so with the owner now getting on, things are slipping a bit.

Tony
  Lake View Beginner

the Whyalla Model Railway Society has about 280feet of main line with at least two branch lines of about 50feet all in an L shaped shed in Whyalla, they are approaching their 50th anniversary soon. we also rebuilt and look after the model railway at the local maritime museum, consisting of 4 mainline loops with bi directional automatic trains, as for its length, I've never measured it
  Draffa Chief Commissioner

There is (or was) a display layout in Beaudesert a number of years back that was open to the public.  No idea what the size was, but it was O Scale and housed in a purpose-built industrial shed at the front of someones acreage iirc.
Sure it wasn't Beenleigh way ? - at one stage, called "The Train Place" also a large O gauge American layout for public viewing. Also a big shed and a small shop at the front. They did have some miniature track at the front but never got going.
dthead
That's probably the one.  It was a long drive from the Northside in the back of Mums Datsun 120Y. Smile
  NSWGR1855 Deputy Commissioner

I'm not looking to start a "mine's bigger" discussion, but I'm trying to establish 'how big is big' in terms of large layouts in Australia.

I think these things can be measured in a couple of ways:
-mainline trackage length
-overall trackage length
-floor footprint (tricky with multi-level layouts)

There's also the private vs publicly accessible distinction and obviously scale/gauge.

Does anyone know of a listing of 'stats' that might help shed any light on the above?

Disclaimer: I'm involved with a project to bring a 70m long, mostly double-track mainline HO railway into public accessibility. My concern is the 'media types' wanting to call it 'among the biggest in Australia' and I'm wary that's not the case...

Cheers,

Benno
OK, I'll bite, with some numbers.
Excluding Club and commercial layouts, because they have more resources (either $$ or/and people), a home layout size, will be limited (in the long run) by the amount of ongoing maintenance it will require.
In my view, that limit is approached at 36 square metres (including aisles), or 50 metres of mainline.
yogibarnes
I hope you are wrong, I am building a H0 gauge layout that works out at 60.5 square meters, and about 40m of double track mainline excluding the end fiddle yards.

Cheers,
Terry Flynn.
  comtrain Chief Commissioner

Location: Near Albury Wodonga
Hobsons Bay North is an offshoot of my Club Layout that once was housed near the Docklands in Melbourne.Its  in a 15m x 8m specialty built room, runs around the walls on two levels and via a central island, also double stacked.
At present I have 400 meters of track with Albury yard and helix yet to lay.
I have a three track helix with outer radius of 1.17m and circumference of 7.35m and 5 tiers high to maintain a light grade. If my calculator is being operated correctly, that should have used 110.25 m of track?
The rest of the layout consists of SG track (simulated with code100) and BG track (simulated with code 75)
A second helix,, being only double track (SG) is being built now to access the Northern end of Albury and simulate trains to and from Junee. That will be near 60m long
The existing track, yards and branch line on both levels roughly calculates out at 300m.
Adding in the future Helix and Albury yard is frightening me, but calculated at albury being 600mm by 12m and main line and sidings roughly filling the board  8 tracks across? another 96m?
The helix 60m and the BG branch station on top 20m
I am going to have over 500m and possibly almost 600m of track Sad
My idea was to form a Club up here near Wodonga, but unfortunately I over estimated the numbers of people that might be interested, having very few show any interest despite advertising my intentions. My layout requires at least 4 to operate and could comfortably accommodate 20 people Aisles are huge and from my experiences with Hobsons Bay in Melbourne, I was able to learn from our mistakes down there, particularly the wide aisles
My long delayed layout is overwhelming me, and but for the help of good friends, it would be near hopeless. I guess
Cheers
Rod
You can see my 8 year journey here if interested  HobsonsBay North Blog
  TheMeddlingMonk Deputy Commissioner

Location: The Time Vortex near Melbourne, Australia
You can see my 8 year journey here if interested  HobsonsBay North Blog
comtrain
I follow your blog, Rod, and am impressed with the size of your layout and your ambition. I wish I had as much space for a layout as you!
  yesbenno Station Staff

Location: Bathurst - The Golden West
Thanks everyone for your replies; it really puts some perspective on how 'big' big can be.

I'm looking forward to being able to share more details over the next 18 months.

Cheers,

Benno.
  yesbenno Station Staff

Location: Bathurst - The Golden West
I'm not looking to start a "mine's bigger" discussion, but I'm trying to establish 'how big is big' in terms of large layouts in Australia.

I think these things can be measured in a couple of ways:
-mainline trackage length
-overall trackage length
-floor footprint (tricky with multi-level layouts)

There's also the private vs publicly accessible distinction and obviously scale/gauge.

Does anyone know of a listing of 'stats' that might help shed any light on the above?

Disclaimer: I'm involved with a project to bring a 70m long, mostly double-track mainline HO railway into public accessibility. My concern is the 'media types' wanting to call it 'among the biggest in Australia' and I'm wary that's not the case...

Cheers,

Benno
OK, I'll bite, with some numbers.
Excluding Club and commercial layouts, because they have more resources (either $$ or/and people), a home layout size, will be limited (in the long run) by the amount of ongoing maintenance it will require.
In my view, that limit is approached at 36 square metres (including aisles), or 50 metres of mainline.
yogibarnes
Would you mind expanding on the sort of maintenance you mean?

I can see where you're coming from in terms of just cleaning the track before a running session, but then there's the little 'tweaks' and fixups of the track and rollingstock to keep it running smoothly, and I guess any electrical fault finding/fixing as they randomly pop up.

What else?

Thanks,

Benno.
  yogibarnes Locomotive Fireman

I'm not looking to start a "mine's bigger" discussion, but I'm trying to establish 'how big is big' in terms of large layouts in Australia.

I think these things can be measured in a couple of ways:
-mainline trackage length
-overall trackage length
-floor footprint (tricky with multi-level layouts)

There's also the private vs publicly accessible distinction and obviously scale/gauge.

Does anyone know of a listing of 'stats' that might help shed any light on the above?

Disclaimer: I'm involved with a project to bring a 70m long, mostly double-track mainline HO railway into public accessibility. My concern is the 'media types' wanting to call it 'among the biggest in Australia' and I'm wary that's not the case...

Cheers,

Benno
OK, I'll bite, with some numbers.
Excluding Club and commercial layouts, because they have more resources (either $$ or/and people), a home layout size, will be limited (in the long run) by the amount of ongoing maintenance it will require.
In my view, that limit is approached at 36 square metres (including aisles), or 50 metres of mainline.
Would you mind expanding on the sort of maintenance you mean?

I can see where you're coming from in terms of just cleaning the track before a running session, but then there's the little 'tweaks' and fixups of the track and rollingstock to keep it running smoothly, and I guess any electrical fault finding/fixing as they randomly pop up.

What else?

Thanks,

Benno.
yesbenno


The usual -electrics, track, locos and rolling stock (in proportion to the size of the layout), damage from use, especially if you are having guest/regular operators.  Also, as we get older it gets harder to - get under the layout, see that little annoying gremlin in the track etc etc.
And, you may have already heard the old adage, a layout is never finished, right?  So, there is an exponential amount of detailing required/available as the layout gets bigger.  Can your performance match your amibition, or will you get bored with the amount of work in front of you before you decide to pull up stakes and start again?
Everyone will assess their own capabilities on this.
  SAR523 Assistant Commissioner

Location: Chicago, IL
OK, I'll bite, with some numbers.
Excluding Club and commercial layouts, because they have more resources (either $$ or/and people), a home layout size, will be limited (in the long run) by the amount of ongoing maintenance it will require.
In my view, that limit is approached at 36 square metres (including aisles), or 50 metres of mainline.
yogibarnes

I'm also not wanting to get into mine is bigger discussion, but this sounds a bit on the small aide.  

My personal layout (which is medium sized around here) will be around 39sq m, and there are several personal layouts near where I live (which is a reasonably affluent part of the Chicago suburbs) that are 4000sq' or 370sqm in size.  The largest is essentially a HO representation of about a 85mile subdivision, so it's literally around a mile of walking.

These are obviously group efforts in terms of construction and rolling stock maintenance, but they're most definitely mostly maintained by the owners.

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