Never mind how much you plan on paper there is no substitute for trying things out full size. I’ve finally had a chance to do this for the 300 square inch challenge and a few things are changing. To simulate the layout area I used some lining paper cut to 36inches by 9 inches and ruled off a triangle at one end to lose the 24 square inches necessary to get back to the 300 square inch limit . I added a pair of small radius peco points and placed some stock on the paper to see how things would fit. I only had a pair of right hand ponts available so the mock up remains a mirror image of what will eventually be built, but the picture below starts to give an idea.


The first impression is that the lower level goods yard will work fine. The second level passenger line though is a bit too short mainly because I want to run an engine that is far too big for this type of layout.

The solution to lengthening the passenger line is to use the diagonal across the baseboard more and to take it over the top of the goods headshunt. Using some blocks of wood, an offcut from a cardboard box, and a yard of peco streamline I mocked this up.


A trip to the local model shop revealed a couple of interesting items from the Harburn Hamlets range. An Anderson Shelter, just right to start giving a wartime feel, and a Pidgeon loft, so right for a tyneside layout. Somehow I need to squeeze both of these into the back yard of a tyneside flat. Now thats going to be a space challenge.