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Model railroad operation is a very important and exciting aspect of model railroading that, for many model railroaders, serves as the main goal in the hobby. The Process of Model Railroad OperationMoving railcars to and from their industries, customers and staging yards is the main goal of model railroad operation; and it should be done in a way that is at least somewhat prototypical and makes the most sense.
All of this activity is often done according to schedules and timetables set up by the host or by the chief dispatcher to hopefully provide for smooth model railroad operation. Helpers-An additional TIP on model railroad operation-In the April, 2009 issue of Model Railroader, on p.114, Andy Sperandeo wrote a very informative one-page article on "Helper Operations", in which he talked about the various prototypical ways in which helper engines can be used to get your trains up steep grades.
Boldon JunctionSize – 30ft x 10ftThe clubs previous large, Dc only '00' layout, first exhibited in 1988. The typical operating session is run based on a fast-clock, which compresses a 24 hour train schedule into 3-4 hours, depending on how long you want your operating sessions to last. The layout was rebuilt in sections several times before retiring in 2006 (for now!) with a new owner in Kent. Both are detailed Lima models with working roof fans, these have now retired to Kent with the layout.
Set in the Canton of Uri in the centre of Switzerland, the layout was constructed with distinctive 45 degree baseboards. In all its versions the layout was shown over a 100 times, from Scotland to Kent and most points in-between.
Further back, would be the car going to milepost 19, which would then be the first of the 3 cars to be dropped off.Using car cards and waybills is probably the most popular method of car forwarding used for model railroad operations. You can buy the forms for this through Micro-Mark or Old Line Graphics; or you can make your own.

A branch line terminus with some form of local industry that would generate rail traffic.9.
Some form of local industry which would require a separate siding (Brewery ?)Then came a list of things I would like, if possible, to incorporate.1. A Permanent Way Department - (I had already built a breakdown crane for my previous layout)5. Assuming that the main station area would be on the opposite side of the layout, how then could I fit in a branch line and terminus? A few quick sketches and calculations revealed that the storage roads would take up a little over 350mm of board width and, assuming a maximum board width of 750mm, that left me with about 400mm of free space in front of the storage roads. I've never been a fan of straight lines of track along one side of a layout with unrealistic bends leading to and from it so I roughly sketched in a long, sweeping curve of track linking the two ends of the storage roads.
Two, good sized, triangular sections in each corner of the room and a quite shallow area linking these two areas together. One of the corner areas was large enough to accommodate a reasonably sized station with a few buildings to the rear and side of it to give the impression of a larger town area beyond. After much head-scratching and screwed up pieces of paper I came up with a design which ticked all of the boxes though the construction of that board would be quite complicated.
That just left the link area between the two corners and I managed to create just enough space to get an industrial siding and a brewery in.I use Winrail for designing my layouts so, having roughed out the basic design on graph paper, it was now time to see if it was physiclly possible andidentify any potential problem areas. To my delight, not to mention surprise, it all went together quite easily and I quickly had the basic design established. The hardest part was optimising the positions and orientation of the points leading into the storage roads in order to make the approach curves as gentle as possible.

Minimum radius is 320mm in the hidden areas and 450mm in the scenic areas though, due to the way Winrail works, these are only momentary as the radius is constantly changing.
For example the radii of the station approach curves actually vary between 450mm and 1250mm.This then revealed the amount of space I still had available for the MPD, Goods Yard, PWD siding, Coaling Stage and Turntable.
In the end I am quite pleased with how it has turned out and am satisfied that traffic flows will be both realistic and interesting. The sharp-eyed among you will, no doubt, spot a facing point leading to the Goods Shed but I could find no other way of achieving what I wanted to do.
A more prototypical single slip did not fit the alignment of the approach tracks so I had to console myself with the thought that in real life even the mighty GWR had to bend the rules occasionally.
I was thumbing through an old magazine and came across a small 00 scale dock-side layout that was a mere 18" wide and it suddenly came to me that I could do something similar. A few tweaks here and there to the track plan gave me enough space to construct a small harbour scene and Parmouth Harbour was born.TRACK PLANOver the course of the following months the track plan was fine tuned and the scenic areas developed in more detail until it became the design you see below.
On the whole I am satisfied with the final result into which I have managed to incorporate everything I had on both of my wish lists.

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