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Theo
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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Now this is neat. I like it. Not got any little kids to make one for, but no prob - I happen to have an N-gauge model train, and been planning to make a layout for it. A spiral like this would be perfect.
Spiral Ramp for Wooden Train Tracks
 
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That is pretty neat! My suggestion is that the O shaped blue supports be replaced with a C shape so that the child can push the train continuously up the track. Makes me wish I had a small grandchild who would appreciate this. Here is the Amazon listing for an MLCS wooden train track bit set. I think this would be a fun Christmas present project, particularly for a group.

https://www.amazon.com/MLCS-Train-Track-Bit-piece/dp/B000GG09R2
 

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OK, thinking this through, I think a much simpler "Wood Track Riser" to stack wooden train tracks would be an open "C" shape. This could easily be glued together out of scrap. The open shape would make it easier for a kid to push the train up a spiral without knocking everything down.

The second shape, a "Wood Track Base", would let you plug in a riser or block for stability, otherwise little hands would knock everything down.

The third shape, "Wood Track Blocks", would allow ramping up on a more gradual angle.

All of these could be made of scraps, although I'd sure want to make any wooden train set or parts of Maple. It's all made of small flat blocks and strips, pinned and glued together with an edible finish since little brothers like to taste everything. I'd probably bame everything from 3/8ths or half inch thick stock.

This is one of those projects that would be a delight to make. If it were a community project, it would be fun to get a few quilters together to make a felt roll up "Town blanket" with streets, stores, parks, wooden cars that the tracks could be laid out on. I'd bet any early childhood education facility or even a church or private preschool would cherish. Hours of constructive and developmental (fine motor) activity, along with developing basic concepts of form and structure. It would keep boys occupied for an hour at a time. For example, get the quilters to make a jungle ride and have the boys bring their dinosaur toys in. Maybe the ladies on here could suggest a layout and activities that would appeal to the girls?

Thinking ahead, you'd get to make houses, stores, train stations, cars and other stuff to populate the town. Make several sets at the same time so you could gift Headstart or other facilities at the same time. And of course, someone has to build the trains and cars, cabooses, etc.
 

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Not Done yet:

How about some little people for the town? Here are some I made years ago to explain the function of a marketing database we provide. Little spheres on top of short sections of dowel, on a square base, all glued together with a dowel, then painted. Add faces and paint-on clothing and you have families, the grocer, candlestick makers, mom/dad, kids for a playground. Something for the boys' dinosaurs to chase, or to ride in the train. Don't forget a nice box to hold all these parts.

Ok, over the top, but this would be a train set that would be cherished for generations. Have everyone involved put their name on the bottom of the pieces for a public project. Probably be around long after we're all gone.
 

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Years and years and years ago, I saw plans for a multi-level n gauge railroad setup. At each end of the layout, the trains went into a spiral thing that was called a "stacker" that would run the train up and down to the next level. Because of the minimum n gauge radius, it was quite a hefty piece of equipment and it consumed a good amount of track. If I remember correctly, the incline was 1.5%. It was before the internet when I saw it; it might have been in one of the compilation books of Model Railroader. I miss doing trains, but life has different priorities these days.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Tom I really like those designs. They would work very nicely on a model train layout, or at least 'I' think they would. And that link gives me some inspiration for a layout. I'm not going to make train tracks, so won't need the bits, and I'll pretty much design everything else myself. Almost makes me want someone I could make one for. Almost.
 
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Tom I really like those designs. They would work very nicely on a model train layout, or at least 'I' think they would. And that link gives me some inspiration for a layout. I'm not going to make train tracks, so won't need the bits, and I'll pretty much design everything else myself. Almost makes me want someone I could make one for. Almost.
Theo, yeah, this project really got me going too. Can't recall their name but a member here is in a woodworking club and they do an annual project this might be perfect for. Could be made mostly from cabinet shop donated scraps, quick, simple production line parts, and someone could make the engines and cars, buying wheels in bulk. Really appeals to me.

There's also all the little items for the layout quilts, cars, trucks, houses, buildings, bridges, water tower, construction equipment, etc. to fill in the town.
 
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