In contrast to my usual method of layout design, the following two examples focus primarily on operation. They have been led by route direction and the splitting of Caledonian Sleeper trains for onward travel to more than one location. As such, there’s always a chance that realistic scenic appearance might be compromised, particularly near helices, return loops or where two sections of main line run close together.
Above: This large, dual-level ‘OO’ gauge layout includes flexible directional travel and has two helices for accessing the low-level fiddleyard at each end. It includes at least two major rural scenic sections in order to model some Scottish scenery. There are a couple of issues with using helices. There’s a possible lack of prototypical appearance, they can take up too much space, and they compromise scenic opportunity. But I think with careful use of physical and scenic arrangements, you could disguise them in order to maximise operational potential.
Above: This large ‘OO’ gauge is on a single level and offers more potential for modelling Scottish scenery, as I’ve managed to include a drop section for a viaduct. It’s arguably more prototypical than having helices, but it might lack realism in and around the return curve junctions and at the station by-pass lines.
Above: Outside the sleeper depot, looking south. Eagle-eyed readers may be able to spot one of the AC Locomotive Group’s two Class 86s, used to haul empty stock between Euston station and Wembley.