Thursday, 12 January 2017

Philden's HO track plan

Here is a look at Philden's final track plan that I will be taking to the Brisbane Model Train Show on the 6th and 7th May, 2017. As you can see, the layout design for the first level is nothing too extravagant, (neither is the drawing itself for that matter). But at the request of Peter, (this one's for you Peter), I thought it about time that I added some kind of track plan to show the overall view of a HO scale layout that had its beginnings 2 years ago at the 2015 Brisbane Model Train Show. Of course, in the year to come a second level will go on top, so I have shown the space allocated for the upper level staging shelf support on the right, with another 6 cm of shelf to protrude out over the lower shelf staging area.

The entire layout is 260 cm (8 feet 6 inch) long and just 32 cm (1 foot and 1/2 inch) wide. With the modeled portion being 188 cm (6 foot 2 and 1/2 inch) long and the staging shelf beyond the view block adding another 72 cm (2 foot 4 inch) of track. As you can see, the staging shelf tracks fan out slightly at the right to allow a little extra room when placing trains on and off the track. The rail height now stands at 112 cm (3 foot 8 inch) from the floor. As readers can tell, it was designed to stand above my desk and somehow inspire me to write my next novel. As readers can also tell, this layout has distracted me to the point where there is no next novel in the foreseeable future.

The entire layout is simple DC operation, and required the following HO scale track to complete;

  • 1 x SL-90 PECO medium radius insulfrog double slip
  • 2 x right hand SL-95 PECO medium radius insulfrog turnouts
  • 2 x left hand SL-96 PECO medium radius insulfrog turnouts
  • 2 x lengths PECO code 100 concrete tie flextrack
  • 6 x lengths PECO code 100 black timber tie flextrack

Two years after visiting the Brisbane Model Train Show and purchasing the above track (along with a throng of other products), it will be nice to place my layout on public display for the first time at the same venue. On another side note, it will also be 15 years since I last exhibited at the Brisbane Show. I'm hoping to have my layout accepted in at least one more model train show in south east Queensland in 2017, before adding the second level to the layout and taking it to even more exhibitions in 2018 and traveling further afield. My goal was always to make Philden a layout capable of travelling to model train shows, and as nice as it looks sitting above my desk, I'm planning to add just one last touch to the display side of my layout to give it that finished 'wow' factor in time for its' first exhibition. Just what is it? Well, I might just save that as a surprise for the Brisbane Show.


  1. Phillip, Thanks for doing that. Your track plan is much clearer to me now and I think that you've underestimated your ability to construct a "pencil" layout diagram. I hope that you get a great response to Philden at the Brisbane Model Train Show in May.
    Regards, Peter

    1. Thanks Peter. It's probably just missing a scale on the drawing. When I draw up the final track plan for the upper level, I'll try adding a feint graph over the track plan for better comparison. It will also give a better idea how the two levels will overlay each other. As usual, I have my last minute cold feet about the upper level plan. But I usually get it right by experimenting with flipping a turnout around the other way at the last minute. That's why I don't draw up my track plans until it's all ballasted into place!


Thanks for taking the time to visit Philden. I hope you'll book a return ticket soon. Cheers, Phil