Prototype Trackplan: Sn2 K&DR (Part 1: Overview)


I have a passion for layout planning and periodically I offer my services to others in the hobby.  One of those persons is Gary White.  I’ve known Gary for 10+ years.  Since he started hanging out around my layout at Midwest 2-Foot meets.  Like me he is stuck on Sn2.

A few years back, Gary indicated he wanted a home layout, but was struggling with a track plan.  I offered some help.  His idea was a Kennebec Central with some extras.  In the end, I had little to offer, in part because the KC did not interest me (I like to design for operations) and in part because Gary did not seem convinced with the concept.  So the project died.

At this years Midwest Narrow Gauge meet, the layout topic again surfaced.  Gary indicated  he was looking to do a layout, not the KC theme, instead a SR&RL or SR&RL predecessor theme.  He was thinking Strong.  He wanted all three lines to Strong operable.  Now I know the SR&RL (been doodling track plans for 20+ years) and I know Strong (see photos from my first layout: and I know his space.  There was no way he could do justice to Strong.  So I suggested some alternatives:  1) Harrison on the B&SR or 2) Phillips on the SR&RL.  Both of these are great candidates for small spaces, as the locations are curved.  Gary conceded that Strong might not work, but denied my alternative suggestions.  Instead he suggested the Kingfield and Dead River (K&DR).  Basically from Bigelow south.  I tried to deny his desire for the K&DR too, on the justification that Bigelow would not fit his space….But he did not give me an alternative….Instead he left me thinking, challenged, and driving 5 hours home.  It’s dangerous what can happen to ones mind…ok my mind…when I drive by myself…let alone for 5 hours…

By the time I got home from the Midwest Narrow Gauge show, I knew I had to make a few formal doodles.  Those doodles make me think that it’s possible to capture the feel of the K&DR in his space.  But I’m getting ahead of myself.

Let’s use the rest of this post to capture an overview of the project.  Let me not, that Gary and I have not talked about his givens and druthers much.  Instead I’m taking a leap of faith based on my knowledge of the prototype and knowing him personally.  He can comment if I’m off-base.

Givens & Druthers

  • Theme:  Kingfield and Dead River Railroad from roughly 1900-1910.  Formal date not decided on yet, post 1908 would be after the SR&RL consolidation.
  • Locations: Bigelow (including Sawmill), Lumbering/Logging Areas, Carrabasset, Carrabasset River, Kingfield (representation, accuracy not expected)
  • Scale/Gauge: Sn2
  • Size: 12×16′ (see diagram below)
  • Continuous Run: Nice to have (not required)
  • Staging: Nice to have, might not be required
  • Operators: 1-2
  • Duckunder: Allowed if required
  • Min Radius: 32″
  • Min Turnout: #8
  • Grades: Minimal, 2% max?  (Admittedly prototype was 4% or greater)
  • Train Length: Loco + 5-7 cars (includes caboose) is roughly 38-50″ long


Gary’s layout room. Roughly 12×16′ with a door on one of the long walls.

Next Time:

We’ll review prototype and  modeling information.

In the mean time take a look at the following web sites:

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1 Response to Prototype Trackplan: Sn2 K&DR (Part 1: Overview)

  1. Looks like a really interesting project!

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