The original Lake Town & Shire was a loop-to-loop layout built in 2000 that allowed continuous running. The photo below shows an overhead view of the layout as it appeared in 2002. Hobbiton is at the right, Laketown at the left, Moria in the center, and Mirkwood Forest at the lower right. A lot of Middle Earth was cramped into a tight space (about 40' x 27',) and the arrangement did not fit the Middle Earth geography very well, even allowing for some folding. So we decided to...
During 2005 and 2006, we expanded the Lake Town & Shire to approximately 4 times its original size. The length of the mainline from Hobbiton to Lake Town, inlcuding the reverse loops, is now about 400' or 1-1/2 scale miles. Here is the new track plan with the original layout designated by a red rectangle at the lower left.
|Name||Lake Town & Shire Railroad.|
|Scale||1:20.3 on Gauge 1 track (3 foot narrow gauge).|
|Size||100' x 100' L|
|Length of Mainline||Approximately 400' (1-1/2 scale mile) from Hobbiton to Lake Town, including reverse loops.|
|Theme||Narrow gauge short line serving logging and mining interests. It resembles railroads in Eastern Tennessee, Eastern Kentucky, or West Virginia at the turn of the century.|
|Locale||Tolkien's Middle Earth.|
|Track Height||Ground-level to about two feet above the ground.|
|Track||AristoCraft 332 brass with extra-wide turnouts.|
|Minimum Radius||5 feet on the mainline.|
|Maximum Grade||About 4.5%.|
|Control||DCC: 8 amp Digitrax Chief with three radio control throttles.|
|Equipment||Bachmann and LGB steam engines with Bachmann and kit-built rolling stock|
|Status||All track-work is completed except for the ore tram line from Moria to the stamp mill in Rivendell.|
Copyright 2006 Donald Nute
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