Making my HO scale model railroad Dolton Junction module a junction in more than just name increases operating interest.

Ever since the Dolton Junction module was built some years ago it was nearly always a non-operational “junction”. That is, a junction in name only with only one leg of the junction actually going anywhere. For a while it was temporarily able to use it as a actual junction but then it had to revert back to having only one leg of the junction non-operational due to space in the train room after a move. Recently I was able to change that so that it acts as an actual junction again, allowing better access to the Calumet City yard and industries on my HO scale switching layout. To make the junction work with the Calumet City industries and yard required some re-aligning of track on one leg of the junction and realigning some track at the end behind the Illinook module so that trains could run between the two modules.

Before the change it looked like this:

Notice that the farthest track goes into the backscene and stops there? And there is a short industry track accessed via a crossover? After the recent changes, it now looks like this:

The module is a bit deeper, the short industry track is now overgrown with weeds as the re-alignment rendered it un-usable, and the farthest track is now full operational and allowing access behind the Illinook module. The changes were tested, the first train being a B&O freight from Calumet City to Barr Yard via the new trackage.

First train through the re-aligned Dolton Junction trackage heading west near the Calumet City industries.
First train through re-aligned junction.

The re-alignment of the junction was a success, and has totally changed the way the layout is operated, especially when there is more than one operator (which there was not long after the changes were made).


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