B&O Lost Creek Branch, WV track plan HO

B&O Lost Creek Branch, WV HO scale track plan
  • Size: 10′ x 12′
  • Scale: HO
  • Minimum Radius: 24″ 
  • Minimum Aisle Width: N/A
  • Designed by Dan Bourque

B&O LogoThe lines around Clarksburg, WV were home to many of the coal loaders served by the B&O including the short Lost Creek Branch. This branch left the B&O’s old West Virginia & Pittsburgh line between Clarksburg and Weston, WV at the small town of Lost Creek and traveled about 2 miles up Lost Creek to serve a pair of large tipples near Rider (“Righter” in old B&O mine listings).

Layout

This track plan depicts the Lost Creek Branch as it appeared in the mid-1950s. Aerial photos show three active loaders on the branch … Read more

INT Dixiana Branch, VA 3 track plan HO

INT Dixiana Branch, VA HO scale track plan
  • Size: 20′ x 15′
  • Scale: HO
  • Minimum Mainline Radius: 27″
  • Minimum Aisle Width: 26″
  • Designed by Dan Bourque

Interstate LogoThe Interstate Railroad built the Dixiana Branch in 1954 on top of an old narrow-gauge right-of-way from Addington (Holton), VA to Dixiana. At the end of the long branch was a five-track tipple that was transplanted from another coal mine far away. Along the branch, smaller loaders popped up at various sidings and spurs making this a busy branch served by two mines per day after the Southern took over operations in 1965.

The Layout

This layout depicts the Dixiana … Read more

SOU Monarch Branch, VA track plan HO

SOU Monarch Branch, VA HO scale track plan
  • Size: 15′ x 20′
  • Scale: HO
  • Minimum Radius: 27″ 
  • Minimum Aisle Width: N/A
  • Designed by Dan Bourque

Southern LogoThe Southern Railway’s branch to Monarch, VA was a leg of the coal-producing St. Charles Branch west of Appalachia, VA. The L&N had (and CSX still has) trackage rights on the branch, so mine runs from both railroads worked the major mines on the line including Blue Diamond’s Monarch Mine, Benedict and Kemmerer Gem.

The Layout

L&N LogoThis track plan represents the Monarch Branch and Kemmerer Branch of the St. Charles line as they appeared in the … Read more

INT Dorchester Branch, VA 2 track plan HO

INT Dorchester Branch, VA HO scale track plan
  • Size: 20′ x 15′
  • Scale: HO
  • Minimum Mainline Radius: 27″
  • Minimum Aisle Width: N/A″
  • Designed by Dan Bourque

Interstate LogoThe Interstate Railroad had four primary branch lines that served the coal fields of southwestern Virginia. The shortest of those branches was the Dorchester Branch which split from the L&N and crossed the Interstate mainline at Dorchester Jct., VA. Its profile crossed a valley via a trestle before descending and then ascending a grade to Dorchester, home of a medium-sized tipple and two banks of coke ovens along with a couple small truck-dump docks at the end of the … Read more

LEF&C, PA Diesel Era track plan HO

LEFC, PA HO scale track plan
  • Size: 19′ x 12′
  • Scale: HO
  • Minimum Mainline Radius: 24″
  • Minimum Aisle Width: 27″
  • Designed by Dan Bourque

LEF&C LogoThe Lake Erie, Franklin and Clarion Railroad was a 15-mile long coal hauler in northwestern Pennsylvania. Like other PA short lines such as the Montour, Cambria and Indiana and Pittsburg & Shawmut, the LEF&C ran its operations with a handful of diesel switchers. With its simple track arrangement, compact motive power and a number of industries in addition to the coal loaders, the LEF&C makes a great subject to model even in a modest space.

The Layout

This track plan depicts the LEF&C in its … Read more

MTR Montour Railroad, PA track plan HO

MTR Montour Railroad, PA track plan HO - lower
  • Size: 14′ x 40′
  • Scale: HO
  • Minimum Radius: 24″ 
  • Minimum Aisle Width: 30″
  • Designed by Dan Bourque

Montour RR LogoThe Montour Railroad existed to serve the coal mines along a semi-circle southwest of Pittsburgh, PA. By the 1970s, the railroad’s operations consisted mainly of four major raw coal loaders, the large Champion Prep Plant, and interchanges with several railroads. A few small non-coal industries broke up the monotony of endless coal hoppers, but black switchers and hoppers still ruled the line until its closing.

The Layout

This track plan began as a challenge to design an HO-scale layout for a … Read more

P&S Widnoon Branch, PA track plan HO

P&S Widnoon Branch track plan HO
  • Size: 10′ x 14′
  • Scale: HO
  • Minimum Radius: 24″ 
  • Minimum Aisle Width: 35″
  • Designed by Dan Bourque

Mahoning Yard on the Pittsburg & Shawmut in the rolling hills of western Pennsylvania was where the three-mile long Widnoon Branch (formerly Tidal Branch) split from the mainline along Mahoning Creek. Mahoning was also the dividing point between the two locals that worked the P&S–the Kittanning Local from the south and the Brookville Local from the north. During the 1970s, the branch served two loaders reached via a three percent grade. Additionally, a shorter branch across the creek to Carpentertown served a bank of modern coke ovens later converted to a trump dump tipple.

The Layout

This track plan represents the … Read more

BLE Branchton, PA track plan HO

B&LE Branchton and Hilliards Branch track plan HO scale
  • Size: 12′ x 20′
  • Scale: HO
  • Minimum Radius: 27″ (30″ mainline)
  • Minimum Aisle Width: 24″
  • Designed by Dan Bourque

B&LE LogoBranchton, PA was home to the Bessemer and Lake Erie’s northern coal operations including the mainline from Filer, PA (north) to Butler, PA (south) and the adjacent 10-mile Hilliards Branch. Until 1958, the Hilliards Branch was a major supplier of limestone bound for Pittsburgh’s steel mills, but after the limestone operations shut down, the branch continued to supply coal from a few modest operations into the 1990s. While the mine run base was moved to Butler in the early 1980s, Branchton continued to serve as an important … Read more

Winifrede Railroad, WV track plan HO

Winifrede Railroad track plan HO scale
  • Size: 10′ x 15′
  • Scale: HO
  • Minimum Radius: 24″
  • Minimum Aisle Width: 40″
  • Designed by Dan Bourque

The Winifrede Railroad was a small short line that ran from the Kanawha River and a connection with the Chesapeake & Ohio to the coal mining town of Winifrede, WV along Fields Creek. While it connected to the C&O, the Winifrede was primarily a shuttle operation bringing coal from a large tipple near Winifrede down to a barge transloading facility at Winifrede Jct, near Chelyan, WV.  For much of its life, the Winifrede operated a single locomotive and a ragtag fleet of old, beat-up hoppers to run alongside cars borrowed from the C&O. During the late steam era, the locomotive … Read more

Unity Railways, PA track plan HO

Track Plan Unity Railways HO scale
  • Size: 12′ x 14′
  • Scale: HO
  • Minimum Radius: 27″
  • Minimum Aisle Width: 36″
  • Designed by Dan Bourque

B&LE LogoThis plan is perfect for those who want a simple layout and like the railroads around Pittsburgh, PA.  Despite its modest size, there are four railroads represented on this layout along with a yard, an interchange and a large coal loader.  This layout represents a compressed version of the four-mile long Unity Railways Company in its entirety. Dating back to 1915, Unity Railways was constructed to haul coal from the operation at Renton, PA to a connection with the Bessemer & Lake Erie at Unity Jct., PA. Along this short route was a connection with … Read more