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Planning an MTL Briefcase Layout: Interior Dimensions?

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  • cotedelachevre
    I live in Bandon, Oregon and would like to build a Micro-Trains Line (MTL) Track briefcase layout. Considering the space limitations, I imagine it will be a
    Message 1 of 8 , Sep 2, 2009
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      I live in Bandon, Oregon and would like to build a Micro-Trains Line (MTL) Track "briefcase" layout.

      Considering the space limitations, I imagine it will be a simple oval layout.

      What should be the minimum interior dimensions of the briefcase?

      For width: the minumum MTL track radius is 195mm (7.67 inches), which means the minimum curve diameter is 15.35 inches. Allowing for space on the perimeter, I conclude the minimum briefcase interior width should be around 19 inches.

      For length: Two radii (15.35 inches) + 220mm (8.6 inches) straight section = 23.95 inches oval track breadth. Allowing for space on the perimeter, I conclude the the minimum briefcase interior length should be around 28 inches. (Using the shorter 110mm (4.3 inches) straight sections might shrink the minimum briefcase interior length to around 24 inches.)

      For height: I have no idea. Is 4 inches enough?

      Help appreciated.
    • garthah
      Most briefcase layouts I have seen have used the Micro Trains or Peco flex track for the rail so they could fit into any brief case they had available to the
      Message 2 of 8 , Sep 2, 2009
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        Most briefcase layouts I have seen have used the Micro Trains or Peco flex track for the rail so they could fit into any brief case they had available to the builder. The only real concern is how tight a curve can you engine handle as that will dictate the radius of the curve. If you use the slab or roadbed track then you assumptions are pretty much on target.

        Height might be okay but I think you have to put some buildings done on you base and see where the height is going to be. You can always remove the file folder section found in most brief cases which should improve your height restrictions.

        cheerz Garth


        --- In z_scale@yahoogroups.com, "cotedelachevre" <rsmiii@...> wrote:
        >
        > I live in Bandon, Oregon and would like to build a Micro-Trains Line (MTL) Track "briefcase" layout.
        >
        > Considering the space limitations, I imagine it will be a simple oval layout.
        >
        > What should be the minimum interior dimensions of the briefcase?
        >
        > For width: the minumum MTL track radius is 195mm (7.67 inches), which means the minimum curve diameter is 15.35 inches. Allowing for space on the perimeter, I conclude the minimum briefcase interior width should be around 19 inches.
        >
        > For length: Two radii (15.35 inches) + 220mm (8.6 inches) straight section = 23.95 inches oval track breadth. Allowing for space on the perimeter, I conclude the the minimum briefcase interior length should be around 28 inches. (Using the shorter 110mm (4.3 inches) straight sections might shrink the minimum briefcase interior length to around 24 inches.)
        >
        > For height: I have no idea. Is 4 inches enough?
        >
        > Help appreciated.
        >
      • Loren
        Welcome from Medford, If you use flex track from MTL you can go with a much smaller space, so your briefcase dimensions will work just fine. Four inches should
        Message 3 of 8 , Sep 2, 2009
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          Welcome from Medford,

          If you use flex track from MTL you can go with a much smaller space, so your
          briefcase dimensions will work just fine.
          Four inches should be plenty of height unless you build some
          mountains......better make them small mounds instead :o)

          Tell us more about your Z scale. Just starting out perhaps?

          You might want to think about the Z scale convention here in Medford next
          spring in April. You would meet most of the great Z scalers on the West
          coast and from all over, and have a lot of fun.........oh and I'll be there
          too. Looking forward to meeting you.

          Loren



          ----- Original Message -----
          From: "cotedelachevre" <rsmiii@...>
          To: <z_scale@yahoogroups.com>
          Sent: Wednesday, September 02, 2009 10:28 AM
          Subject: [Z_Scale] Planning an MTL Briefcase Layout: Interior Dimensions?


          >I live in Bandon, Oregon and would like to build a Micro-Trains Line (MTL)
          >Track "briefcase" layout.
          >
          > Considering the space limitations, I imagine it will be a simple oval
          > layout.
          >
          > What should be the minimum interior dimensions of the briefcase?
          >
          > For width: the minumum MTL track radius is 195mm (7.67 inches), which
          > means the minimum curve diameter is 15.35 inches. Allowing for space on
          > the perimeter, I conclude the minimum briefcase interior width should be
          > around 19 inches.
          >
          > For length: Two radii (15.35 inches) + 220mm (8.6 inches) straight
          > section = 23.95 inches oval track breadth. Allowing for space on the
          > perimeter, I conclude the the minimum briefcase interior length should be
          > around 28 inches. (Using the shorter 110mm (4.3 inches) straight sections
          > might shrink the minimum briefcase interior length to around 24 inches.)
          >
          > For height: I have no idea. Is 4 inches enough?
          >
          > Help appreciated.
        • cotedelachevre
          Thank you. I did not realize MTL made a flex track; I did not see it on the MTL website. Flex track should allow a tighter radius than 195mm, and
          Message 4 of 8 , Sep 2, 2009
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            Thank you.

            I did not realize MTL made a "flex" track; I did not see it on the MTL website.

            "Flex" track should allow a tighter radius than 195mm, and therefore permit a layout in a more conventionally sized briefcase.

            Thank you again.
          • John Mui
            I building a shadow box layout. Its just big enough to run a GP9 or a GP35. The size of the box is 15x11x2.5. I originally plan to have a tunnel, but due to
            Message 5 of 8 , Sep 2, 2009
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              I building a shadow box layout. Its just big enough to run a GP9 or a GP35.
              The size of the box is 15x11x2.5. I originally plan to have a tunnel, but
              due to the height restrictions, I had to daylight it. The radius is tighter
              then 145mm, so no six axle engines or 50' cars.
              ( http://www.trainboard.com/grapevine/album.php?albumid=60&pictureid=8377)

              John
              ----- Original Message -----
              From: "cotedelachevre" <rsmiii@...>
              To: <z_scale@yahoogroups.com>
              Sent: Wednesday, September 02, 2009 4:31 PM
              Subject: [Z_Scale] Re: Planning an MTL Briefcase Layout: Interior
              Dimensions?


              > Thank you.
              >
              > I did not realize MTL made a "flex" track; I did not see it on the MTL
              > website.
              >
              > "Flex" track should allow a tighter radius than 195mm, and therefore
              > permit a layout in a more conventionally sized briefcase.
              >
              > Thank you again.
              >
              >
              >
              >
              > ------------------------------------
              >
              > Z-scale: minimum siZe, MAXIMUM enjoyment!
              > Yahoo! Groups Links
              >
              >
              >
            • de Champeaux Dominique
              ... Is such a tight radius OK for the above rolling stock and motive power???? Dom
              Message 6 of 8 , Sep 4, 2009
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                >I building a shadow box layout. Its just big enough to run a GP9 or a >GP35. The radius is tighter
                >then 145mm, so no six axle engines or 50' cars.

                Is such a tight radius OK for the above rolling stock and motive power????

                Dom
              • John Mui
                Dom, I tested it, and it runs fine with GP35, GP9, MTL PS2, Penzee coal hoppers. Since all my engines are dcc, so this is the worlds smallest dcc layout. Well,
                Message 7 of 8 , Sep 4, 2009
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                  Dom, I tested it, and it runs fine with GP35, GP9, MTL PS2, Penzee coal
                  hoppers. Since all my engines are dcc, so this is the worlds smallest dcc
                  layout. Well, at least I think it is the smallest dcc layout. :D

                  John
                  ----- Original Message -----
                  From: "de Champeaux Dominique" <ddechamp71@...>
                  To: <z_scale@yahoogroups.com>
                  Sent: Friday, September 04, 2009 10:33 AM
                  Subject: Re: [Z_Scale] Re: Planning an MTL Briefcase Layout: Interior
                  Dimensions?


                  > >I building a shadow box layout. Its just big enough to run a GP9 or a
                  > > >GP35. The radius is tighter
                  >>then 145mm, so no six axle engines or 50' cars.
                  >
                  > Is such a tight radius OK for the above rolling stock and motive power????
                  >
                  > Dom
                  >
                  >
                  >
                  >
                  >
                  >
                  > ------------------------------------
                  >
                  > Z-scale: minimum siZe, MAXIMUM enjoyment!
                  > Yahoo! Groups Links
                  >
                  >
                  >
                • don@hfradio.com
                  Dom, I tested it, and it runs fine with GP35, GP9, MTL PS2, Penzee coalhoppers. Since all my engines are dcc, so this is the worlds smallest dcclayout. Well,
                  Message 8 of 8 , Sep 4, 2009
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                    Dom, I tested it, and it runs fine with GP35, GP9, MTL PS2, Penzee coalhoppers. Since all my engines are dcc, so this is the worlds smallest dcclayout. Well, at least I think it is the smallest dcc layout. :DJohn

                    You can always claim that until proven wrong! ;)
                    Sent from my Verizon Wireless BlackBerry
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