Don’t be afraid to undo things

This is a new one for me, having never built a larger layout before, rarely have I been in a situation where I am looking at a piece of scenery and track that just doesn’t work. Generally speaking, my dioramas are small enough that by the time I have affixed things, I’ve worked out the kinks. That was not happening on the layout, as one corner of the layout has been bothering me since I laid the track. There is a dead-end spur onto the Toronto Carpet Factory site, its not a piece of track that will ever see much, if any use. If I’m honest, I still haven’t decided if I’m even going to actively tag cars to be switched there, but, the way I originally laid the track, limited the placement of a building and the scenery around it in a way I didn’t like the longer I looked at it, so a change was needed before I got much further with scenery on the layout. Making the decision to rip up track and try to change it is a big one, and after some deep breaths today, out came the tools and away we went!

Before, a straight piece of track into the backdrop, forcing the building to the right.

Toronto Carpet is an odd area on my layout. I have room for the full scale footprint of the building, but because of the limits of HO Scale equipment taking curves, the trackwork is actually pushed away from the main factory building further into the courtyard than in real life. Because my benchwork is narrow, there is not a lot of room there for bending the track in a way that is usable for locomotives, but a freight car should take the tighter curve still as a loading spot.

Taking up the building foundation was the first challenge. I glued them down with NoMoreNails construction adhesive, and this stuff works, but gently, with a putty knife, I got in and separated it from the foam underlay. Important lesson, thank goodness I only put a thin bead around the edges, if I’d put a bunch in the middle, this wasn’t coming up without great risk to track I wanted to keep!

Separating the MDF building foundation from the foam, taking up the track, and realigning it with a curve. The new alignment of the track is then glued down with Alex Clear Caulk.

Its now sitting with my handy dandy brick on it keeping the track in place while the caulk sets, but its a good nights work done and I am already much happier with the area. I think I am going to narrow the building base to pull it back to the backdrop from the tracks, as that will give me a bit of room for the yard and a fence around the carpet factory yard to improve the appearance in the long run. This bit of tearing up track and foundations has bought me a 4″ by 4″ area where I can create good looking scenery, rather than trying to hide the weird angle of the track running straight into the backdrop and building at the same point.

Aside from that, an update from last weeks post, I am keeping on with little projects and tasks. In the past week, I’ve done a bunch of scenery on the peninsula, to help make it look a bit more done. This is making me feel good, as I expect the large buildings on the peninsula are not going to get built any time soon, at least not until I am back at the office more than in work-from-home mode, as I need my full workbench space back to have enough room to build them, rather than giving up the 1/3 of my space that is my overflow for setting things aside being my office desk. The good news is, there is still lots to do before I need to worry about the big buildings, so on we go!

Just a little bit of work at a time and scenery starts to appear on the peninsula.

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