KB79: Case Study: Nemo Junction - The Railroad Part 1 of 9

This article was last updated on June 3, 2011, 9:30 a.m. | Print Article | Leave Feedback

Background The world is filled with places like Nemo Junction, a crossing between two railroads which is protected by a signal interlocking plant that also serves as an interchange point between these railroads. Cars destined for places to and from another railroad are exchanged at places like these. The interchange has been described as being the ideal model railroad industry because any type of car can be found there, heading toward places that are not on the model railroad itself. Nemo Junction is based upon a real place, a location in Illinois identified on the timetable of the Santa Fe Railroad as "Nemo", Latin for nothing. At one time, the other railroad that met the Santa Fe was the Chicago & Northwestern, and before that it was the Minneapolis and St. Louis, and before that it was the Iowa Central. Now, Nemo is just a point on the Santa Fe, with the C&NW tracks lifted in the 1980's. Even when these two railroads were active, there were few structures present at this junction, and we have taken a few liberties with the track layout, making the two railroads cross at grade instead of the overpass that is still present there today. Likewise, the locale has been improved, adding an oil dealer and railroad structures, where, in reality, Nemo was simply a meeting point in the middle of flat farm land. Nemo Junction is an Everyman kind of place, like countless crossings throughout the world. The Concept The core element of Nemo Junction is the junction itself. Our model of Nemo is an opportunity to illustrate a variety of Digitrax components used to produce a realistic railroad scene. With this segment, we will show power management, turnout control, train detection and signal operation. The model is a 48 inch by 12 inch N-Scale module which uses Kato Unitrack for a double track mainline with a branching track that leads to an imaginary interchange point with another railroad. The railroad which crosses the double track main is a dummy, simply there for displaying the effect of a second railroad. Here, the bare bones of Nemo Junction:

The junction module is part of a larger N-Scale modular model railroad:

The various modules of the railroad have individual scenes, but the real action will take place at the junction. It is here that trains can change tracks and conduct switching operations. Initially, the railroad will simply be a "runner", but as we add features, it will become an "operator". Next: The Basic Wiring

Was this article helpful? Send us feedback!

Please let us know if this article was helpful to you.

Please leave a detailed message below.