Spring projects are plentiful on the central coast. CCCGRS members are adding details to existing landscapes, breaking ground on their first layout, or even building a second layout – in one case, just for the challenge!
Here we have assembled a few updates from Santa Maria and Arroyo Grande.
In a separate post, we have included updates from northern San Luis Obispo county.
We cannot wait to see these new additions to member layouts in person!
While you are here, we encourage you to browse around the website. A number of features have been added to existing pages for your information and enjoyment, including more information about the
Monarch & Sand Railroad and J & W Railroad.
Early runs of a LGB large scale locomotive operating on the interior loop of Walt Wajda’s layout “puzzle” constructed during the 2020 California Safer At Home period. The track-powered layout, which will eventually feature two locomotives operating on two loops, is an electrical wiring “puzzle”, as track polarity changes each time the locomotive enters a specific loop. Walt enjoys the challenge of recreating this layout which he previously operated more than 35 years ago.
Our big USA Trains SD70MACs need big radius curves and there is not much more room for such in our yard, but a smaller engine requiring less space, well, we could do that. Thus our out-and-back automatic reversing track enclosed in the center oval of our main line. I began construction by placing a small pond where it will be visible beyond the bridge (temporarily absent) and can eventually be part of an expanded water feature. with perhaps a river and a waterfall (W. Kastner, image).
Then the construction of the track bed on the sand dune—partially buried concrete precision blocks, leveled across their width but not always along their length because we thought the track would be of even more interest if besides curving it also undulated. When the foundation blocks are firmly in place (and the many irrigation lines are re-routed), then cap blocks are added and shaped in at least two planes (W. Kastner, image).
On the Monarch & Sand Railroad, of course the track must circle the pond (W. Kastner, image)
An LGB 22.5° crossing allows for the pond circle. The track power attaching point will be to the left of the photo below, so the power will come in from the upper left and continue out the lower right, but the circling track will then bring the power around to the lower left and out the upper right, leading to the north end of the reversing line. We think we can make this work because 1) the Easy Bend Duo Track rail bender can shape a very tight curve, and 2) the engine involved will be an Eggliner, with a 4” wheel-base (W. Kastner, image).
The entire run, including circle, will be about 35’. Southern end of the main line, two legs of the reversing wye and the southern end of the reversing line are visible in this view (W. Kastner, image).
The northern end of the Monarch & Sand Railroad main line loop, two sidings to the main line, and the northern end of the reversing line are shown in this view. The reversing line is at the elevation of the main line at its southern end and then drops down to the level of the pond, after circling which it climb as it heads northwards at about an 8.5% grade. The reversing line is at the elevation of the main line at its southern end and then drops down to the level of the pond, after circling which it climb as it heads northwards at about an 8.5% grade (W. Kastner, image)..