Work on the layout has been rather slow lately. Still working on much of the same: installing cardboard strips for scenery, programming locomotives, etc.
Latey I have been considering expanding the N&W Peoria Branch as originally planned. The idea was for the line to come off the wye onto the shelf above the desk. Unfortunately there is a 4" height difference between the two. So, it has been decided to simply have the line come out onto a 1x4 shelf about 4" above the existing desk shelf. This will provide room for a two track staging yard. The Peoria Rocket and a N&W Mixed Freight will originate here. The N&W freight will travel to Davenport, setoff/pickup blocks and return to Peoria.
A little disappointed by the realization that Peoria won't be developed as planend, I came up with an even better idea. Yesterday, while at work I had an epiphany. The Chicago & Northwestern branch line should be at the perfect height to transition from the main benchwork to the desk shelf. I tested last night and it is perfect! The C&NW will continue under the ovalix, under the N&W Peoria Wye and behind the Entertainment center to the desk shelf. Here, Clinton, IA will be modeled. Clinton will feature a small marshalling yard, Insterstate Chemical Co (chemical storage), Purina Dog Food, and another unnamed facility.
I'm looking forward to the expansion. The question is will the work be completed in time for the op session in May.