FAQ:How much space do large scale layouts take?

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Short answer: How much space do you have??

Longer answer: Get the book, "Track Planning for Realistic Operation" by John Armstrong, or one of the recent (March 2006) issues of Model Railroad Planning, which has a supplement titled, "Workship Tips: Introduction to Track Planning." These include articles on "Sketching by the Squares."

The basic idea is that you decide what your minimum mainline radius is, then calculate the size of Square that will contain a 90 degree corner. You then measure your available space, and mark it off into squares of the standard size. Then, sketch away! Your sketches will be realistic, as opposed to the optimistic sketches most folks end up with.

You will be able to get a good idea of how much layout will fit in your available space. Or, to answer the question, you can design a layout and see how much space you'll need.

If you're familiar with T-Trak, the corner and straight modules seem to fit this kind of layout planning quite well!