Turntable and roundhouse requires handlaid track

Over the last couple of evenings, I’ve put in the ties and timbers for the tracks around the turntable and into the roundhouse. It’s hard to imagine how you would achieve this without handlaying the track. Mercifully, for most of us, it’s all just plain track – no turnouts – and so, relatively straightforward.

Handlaying the track enabled me to interleave the ties at the edge of the turntable. Now, my tracks are rather closer together than a lot of tracks that approach larger turntables. Even so, I would expect a 70′ or 90′ turntable requires some similar interleaving.

Turntable and roundhouse ties

When the engine tracks enter the roundhouse, they first cross a threshold, and then proceed into the roundhouse not on ties, but on timbers laid lengthwise. The timbers go all the way from the threshold to the rear wall, as do the rails. I suppose that makes it so there does not have to be a bumper in the middle of the roundhouse floor.

When I first laid the timbers for the engine stalls, I thought they went only as far as the edges of the pits, and so, I laid ties up to the pits. On further research, I discovered my error, and pulled up the ties in favour of timbers. The 6×10″ timbers are laid on .010″ plastic shims to bring them to the same thickness as the ties.

Turntable and roundhouse ties

The third track was not an engine stall. We have no record of its actual use, but I’m going to employ it for engine coal. Because it is not an engine track, I reasoned that it could be on ties. I should probably add some more ties to take the track right to the back wall, so I can avoid a bumper there too.


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