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  1. Hi guys, I'm finally feeling the urge to take the plunge and delve into making my very first permanent N scale layout from scratch starting from the bench work construction of a dedicated table to fully furnishing it with scenery. It'll be something I'll want to make taking inspiration from a few other Japanese layouts by members in the Japanese Railway Society and possibly some here. I'd like to make it a layout I can proudly display at convention centers and train shows (who wouldn't), without being sanguine for my first project. The name I have so far christened it with (桜木の湯線) is after the area I'm in as well as mentioning my love of cherry blossoms and hot springs. I'd like it to be a mostly steam JGR/JNR era fictional layout. There may be no catenary, but I'll have many EL that I like (EF13, EF65) running on it as well! The first stage in my mind is configuring the final track layout before the first shovelful of sod is turned. I'm using an app called "TrainDesign" to make a relatively complex track arrangement (hopefully not too advanced for my first layout) with KATO N Unitrack to fit within the confinement of space (a single table 1462 mm x 906 mm) I'm willing to spend in my apartment. Does anyone have experience using this, or would they recommend another program? The train table is something I'd really like to make the most of by having it be sturdy, portable and also presentable while still remaining practical and minimal in its embellishments. To give it a "Japanese" flavor, I'd like to stain and lacquer the wood finish of the fascia of the table and add ropes at the narrow ends for carrying it. A layout depicted below ("Yama no yu sen") built by Stephen Gomersall is said to have done such. Note the pedestrian bridge. I'm looking into more details about this layout for more inspiration. Any suggestions or advice? I thank you all for any help you can offer so I put my best foot forward! The layout will also strongly take inspiration from this depot model of a fictional Japanese roundhouse called "Kamanashi Kikanku" built by Phil Hendry. I hope to acquire the same or similar kits from which the roundhouse and turntable were built (Fleischmann). If anyone knows a good locale to purchase them, many thanks! I will soon shown the decided general track plan and rough sketches of the table I'll want to build for sociable critique before moving to the next stage; buying materials. Aside from the roundhouse mentioned above, I intend to have an engine house as well, merely since I'd like there to be plenty of space devoted to showing off my locomotives awaiting their next turn of duty. I have the three bay engine house kit that resembles the classic stone one in Hitoyoshi, one of my favorite landmarks on the line. I would however like to alter the color of the brickwork of the kit by making them a lighter shade (like the VoR shed below) to match the cedar woodwork of the table. If anyone has experience with kits such as what techniques or paints can be used to achieve this, much appreciated. Update (Nov 2, 2023): Here's the current track plan design courtesy of Doug Coster who rendered this for me in 3D. I'm pretty satisfied with it.
  2. Only for the German members (maybe other too, pls check by your own), there is now the opportunity ... "2 Monate Amazon Kindle Unlimited kostenlos testen" to gather via the Kindel and a free 2-month subscription KATO UNITRCK plans and layouts with detailed track plans Here is the list of the original eBook Japan layouts for KATO UNITRACK: Have Fun !
  3. Hi folks, I've spent about 4 months building a 3 level layout for my British OO, Japanese N and Lego and it's finally finished*. Hope you like the video. https://youtu.be/Nr3axLF001Q Feel like I have an encyclopedic knowledge of how to build a layout in a shed now, from insulation to wiring etc to the removeable bridge for the door, so if anyone has any questions happy to advise. Bridge has copper strips underneath to keep the connection, and is lifted up to leave the room, with a section of the scenery swinging open. Need to step over the Japanese one to leave which is a bit tricky but there's a handlebar on the outside to help. None of it is digital - Gaugemaster and Kato controllers respectively but with the Hornby HMDC app to control the two branch lines. Lego is battery powered, remote control. Shed is well insulated, have a heater and a dehumidifier in there. Layout is 6m x 2.5m so plenty of space for nice long platforms! *Lots of little details to add to the British one from signals to passenger bridges to station names etc but the laborious work is finally over, now on to the fun stuff: running trains and adding little details. Going to landscape the temple area with static grass, paths and lakes too.
  4. Kyuhae

    Kyuhae's desktop layout

    Welcome! In this thread i'll be posting about progress on my layout. Feel free to comment, ask questions, suggest things... A few words about what I aim to achieve: Modular design: My available space is on my desk, about 60x180cm. Occasionally, I may also have a larger space (on the double bed!🤣). I have decided to use modules, somewhat similar to the T-Track standards. Some modules will be exactly to T-track spec, just in case I ever meet anyone near me who also does T-Track. Others will be custom sizes to accommodate different track configurations, or to fit into the available space. Setting / Era I will be mostly modelling steam-period Japan, as well as the UK, Germany, and basically any other locations that I think would be nice (I am not excluding the possibility of doing scenery based on fantasy novels, games, books, or artistic / abstract scenery made from origami paper for example). A given module would be set in a given period/country, but I will be connecting modules representing different periods/countries to form a full circuit. (if I had the space, time and money for a full fleet and layout for each era and country, that's what i would do! But for now we'll have to imagine that the layout depicts some kind of crazy worldwide railway, architecture and landscape museum with full-sized models 😁. Either that, or some mad scientist installed teleporting gateways on railways across the world...) Computer-assisted or Computer-automated control I have an Arduino Uno, which uses the arduino motor shield to power the track. This allows me to write a program to control the power supply to the tracks. By computer-assisted, I mean that I will develop a program on the pc (and hopefully for smartphones at a later date) to be able to perform actions such as a progressive start from a standstill, or a progressive halt, simply by pressing a button or key. By computer-automated I mean an alternate mode, where operation is fully automated, no intervention needed. This might be done at a later date once I decide how to go about building my own point motors and controlling them via the arduino. (as well as acquiring other sensors, either hall effect, ultrasound, or a camera. Sound (from external loud speakers) I'd love to have some sounds to help bring the trains and scenes to life. I plan on achieving this by playing sound files from a laptop which will communicate with the arduino. Whistles could be controlled similarly to the computer-assisted control mentioned above, and exhaust beat / coasting / brake squeels could be played automatically depending on the power supplied to the track by the arduino. It would also be nice to have some ambient sounds, such as wildlife, station announcements, and so on, either automated and random, or manually played. Progress so far: First image shows the join between the peco code 55 flex track, with woodland scenics foam underlay, to kato unitrack. There is a slight difference in height, both due to the underlay, and at the actual rail join, but it does not seem to be big enough to have a huge impact on running. Second image shows the module construction. Minimal tools required: base is a sheet of extruded polystyrene cut with a bread knife, onto which the track is glued with PVA / Wood glue. R249 curves on these two 180° end modules.
  5. AhmadKane

    Nippon Bali

    When lockdown sets I had my parents ride to the next province and escape COVID-19 before it blows up. Luckily we are all alright. I told them to pack up my layout back in Jakarta, and decide to revamp it here. It's been months since I made progress on my layout back in Jakarta due to studies. But with the lockdown, I actually got to many things and many builds. I don't have a timelapse but this is what I made. A Balinese/Japanese diorama. I was inspired by the Japanese waterfall I saw in Nikko, particularly Chuzenji Lake. I am also attempting to build paddy fields using hard brushes, they would be piled up much like the ricefields you'd see in Indonesia, particularly Bali. The baseboard is made out of multiplex wood and 3 layers of single wall corrugated cardboard I got for free from appliance stores. I painted with a green base and made the scenery. I wanted to begin with the heavy duty objects such as the hills and the mountains first. For the paddy field I had piled a couple of glued Styrofoam together and painted the sides with brown colour. The challenge was to build the paddy texture and I used hard paint brushes. I was wondering if I could use long static grass instead, since using hard paint brushes aren't exactly yielding best results... I had it spun like that because I was making the hills first. The main hill would have two tunnels running through it, and on top, I was inspired by a Japanese manmade waterfall, the one with bricks and look like steps. I am very keen of doing it when I saw a tutorial from makrlinofsweden. I've painted most of the mountain and am currently waiting on some plaster molded into layers of aluminium foil before continuing. The waterfall would then flow unto a river, which I've formed using wet tissue and glue, and would flow to the lake. The outer rail would climb to a cliffside, where I wanted to make sort of a hill, or a city bored through the cliff. I am still looking for ideas, but the top is virtually ready, that's why I took the opportunity to try out a static grass applicator built using a mosquito racket. From the cliff it would go down through the bridge and encircling the lake before arriving at the station. I had some points from an old antiques shop, and most of them are either manual turnovers or the machinery has been burnt to crisp. I made a Y turnover combining 3 rail lines, and would need to insulate the setup later. In the middle I'm planning to have a city going, but I think I'm going to put it off at the last time, since buildings are so expensive and I wanted to focus on scenery and completing the circuit first. But with the generous amount of toilet paper I've used, I was wondering if there are any suggestions on using used toilet paper rolls for industry? I was thinking that since this layout would feature a shitton of paddy fields, I wanted to make a rice silo, ones that you see in Japan. My main problem other than a lack of materials is the outer track, the steep climb had my locomotives crying for mercy and an embankment after a drop had caused a couple of derailments when passing under the waterfall. Most particularly my 100 Series Shinkansen. The turnovers aren't exactly stellar as well, I would need to sort out the electronics too.. I am still a beginner and have a lot of things I want to do, and I really appreciate if I could get some feedback and guidance from this community. Is the lake an ok color, should I put varnish? Is the mountain the correct color, etc... I am really open to any feedback on my first layout, and I really want to make it stellar. I hope you could enjoy my layout, Nippon Bali. Thank you.
  6. Hi, here is the layout I'm building. It has 2 independent layers, with two independent control panels (placed on the left and right hand side). The idea is that my two kids can play at the same time. Everything will be operated by an Arduino Mega board. Speed and direction of the trains will be controlled thanks to two LR293D IC connected to the Arduino. I will do the coding according to the control panel I've designed. The two control panels have switches for lights and other things like red light or the cable car, but right now I'll go through to the main part that operate the trains. From left to right (as shown on the picture), there is a FULL TOP switch – the equivalent of a hand-brake a HARD BRAKE button – to quickly decrease the speed a SOFT BRAKE button – to gently decrease the speed a HOLD switch – when turned on, the train maintains the current speed, if not it will slowly decelerate (unless the "increase speed" is being pushed). a INCREASE SPEED button – to accelerate a DIRECTION switch – to go forward or backward I've made a little "back door" underneath the layout. The Arduino board and the other boards are fixed to this door. All the cables are labelled and converge there. I try to make it as clean & clear as I can, for maintenance, future improvements and especially troubleshooting while coding the Arduino. Also, the little door is convenient since the layout is stored vertically (I don't have a lot of room, nor a man's cave 😔). Anyway, I can easily work on the electronics and cabling, while the layout is upright against the wall. That's it for now. I'll post more details through the next steps. I'll happy to reply if you have questions. I do have a question for the community tough. I've used Minitrix flexible track nailed directly on the 5mm plywood. I wonder if I should have put cork underneath the track. What's the purpose of it? reduce noise? easy track replacement? On the other hand, some of my turns are tight, and the nails+plywood hold everything in place very well. Bye for now
  7. Hello everyone! Today marks one of the first days that I've begun work on an actual (hopefully) N-Scale layout! As these first two pictures demonstrate, I finally arranged a deal to get some space for a small layout, which at the moment is 16' × 2' (really only 20", because of the upper shelf support poles.) Eventually, when time, useable space and family permit, I have plans to expand it into a reversed 'F' shape, through the use of additional shelves along a different wall, and a heavy duty wooden center island table left over from some HO-scale projects. The shelving on the rear wall will the be top part of the letter 'F', and will add about 11' by 2' (again, only 20" of that useable). Final dimensions of the center island table TBD. (Possibly 5' × 6'?) I'll try and post the potential track plan(s) later tonight! I am also always open to feedback, so please chime in, it might really help me out! Thanks for your interest! ~Phillip R.
  8. Hi All! (NOTE: various links in the post lead to my blog) A member on the forum recently said that my little re-do adventure might be of interest to some of you. I had a layout that was really humming along. Scenery, structures, and little scenes were in full swing. However, there were major items that were not working for me on the layout - a major one involved trains and operations, which I wasn't as interested in when I originally started. . After months of thought, I decided to tear the whole of it down and start over again. This was NOT an easy process! I had to have a large glass of whiskey before starting to pull stuff off my layout and pack it up! hehehe However, now that I have things the way I like on the train and track front, I'm SO MUCH HAPPIER! It's night and day. I'm moving forward on getting back to the point where I can get scenery and structures back on, but all in all it was well worth the effort to get things to a point where I'm no longer sad and disappointed when I run trains around the space. So, I suggest that you make an effort to be happy with your layout without settling for "well....it's fine, I guess". Make it something you really enjoy! Any other re-do stories out there? More can be found on my blog: https://n-rail.blogspot.com/ Cheers!
  9. valkyriepm

    My new mini layout

    Hi guys! Can't wait anymore! Even when I have other projects on the workbench, can't stop thinking on the next layout. So, I've been playing with scarm and track I have available and came up with a little desing based on a layout seen on the net some time ago in the dissapeared blog of Mr. Hidetaka Ishijima (great layouts!). My problem comes withe height gradient to meet the right height on the left curve. Any ideas on this? I don't have yet defined the design. First design: Second, reduced size, but I think I'll go back to the original size: And where I am now: started the elevation earlier but still too much, Was thinking on making an exit to the station on the right: Well, that's all for now. Any super suggestions welcomed! :) :) Martin
  10. I don't know if this has been already posted but I found this useful page on Wikipedia : https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/Category:Rail_track_diagrams_of_train_stations_in_Japan There are lots of other diagrams to discover in the subcategories. Also, some of the diagrams are not stations but yards. Useful inspiration if you're at the conception phase of your layout.
  11. Once again I was looking for a more clever way to solve my layout planning problems (previous thread http://www.jnsforum.com/community/topic/9010-layout-planning-geometric-calculations-for-asymmetric-layouts/), and I came across the Hallade Method. This isn't the whole solution to my problem exactly, but it's some interesting background on how this was (is?) handled in 1:1 scale. It may also provide more information about the white posts that Charles asked about in this thread http://www.jnsforum.com/community/topic/10440-short-white-posts-between-yard-tracks/ https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hallade_method
  12. Saw this on hobby search. Takes 6x AAA batteries and has direction and throttle control.
  13. NihonNoTetsudōMokei

    Japanese model train layout suggestions

    Hello, I am new to the forums. I have been wanting to build a Japanese model train layout for about a year now, but never really got the chance because I've been busy with school and other things. the one thing that keeping me from starting this project is what kind of layout i want to do. I like the modern city part of japan and also the shinkansen, but also like the steam era locomotives such as the C61 and C62. If anyone could give me suggestions on what to do, i would be happy and thankful.
  14. Another model train show announced in the Kantō area. The JMRA near (Keikyū) Kamata station: http://www.jmra.gr.jp/ I'll be going (if time permits) to meet up with the T-Trak Network guys and if all goes well, bring my own module (more on that later). I probably won't go buying stuff there, since I've got more than enough projects waiting to be done. Anyway, if anybody goes let me know and we can have a beer or something. xD
  15. Hi. Im thinking of making a 1.5m by 0.8m table layout in my house for my brother as a present and am having some trouble, cause this is my first time and I have no experience. I got a few questions to ask you guys. Thanks in advance! 1. I have the tracks, trains, buildings etc but I want to make a layout part countryside part town. So, I want to make my train tracks look rusty and dirty, however, how do I do that? Paint? 2. I want to make a base to put all the tracks and buildings on top, with fake grass and trees etc. But what material should I use to nake the base? 3. I want the countryside scene to have a water body like a lake but I don't know how to make the fake water thingy. 4.I also want to make a farmland but I don't know how. Should I hot glue gun the fake grass and plants? 5.in the town part of the layout, I will put a few modern buildings but I don't know how to make roads....I thought of buying road plates but it looks very unnatural. 6. Lastly, I was thinking about making the edges of the base of the diorama lije a cliff or a hill but im not sure how :( Any tips and advice will be greatly appreciated! Thanks.
  16. Vato

    My layout

    Here is my layout in N scale
  17. Kabutoni

    JNMA 2013

    Today I went with a good friend (who also brought another pal) to the JNMA model train fair in Hamamatsuchō. There were a lot of small traders and manufacturers around, as well as a lot of sweaty and rude otaku. It was mostly about getting bargains, showing off ridiculously expensive hand made perfect models and sweating (it was REALLY hot). Anyway, I took pictures of the small T-Trak meeting that was also featured, with an RC N-scale bus, a boat running on a Tomytec moving bus motor over a 'water' surface (looked quite good) and lots of detailed and inspirational modules. Also, the trains on display were featured in magazines IIRC, like RM Models and so on. Some people will probably recognise some of the modules and trains in the pictures. I'm now very eager to start a T-Trak module as well and join these guys, but as I've currently hit rock-bottom financially, no income, and have a new family situation, this will have to wait for a little while. HNGGGGGGG!!!!1
  18. There's a very large layout in a building next to JRW's Saga Arashiyama station where D51 1 is on static display. Amongst many interesting sights and activities are the cabs of EF66 59 and EF66 54, which have their controls tied into the layout; visitors can then drive one of the models. This video is by YT uploader shuuuji. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0-IlVmTKvb4 http://www.sagano-kanko.co.jp/dioramakj/
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