I now have track, locomotives and some rolling stock. Granted, the newest stock is from the late 1990s but it was all working when last used.
I built as many loops as I could with the available track - can I get three trains running simultaneously? At this stage, no. I managed to pick up my twin controller so I can power the three loops but until I "chip" a locomotive, I can't run anything on the DCC loop.
In this, there are a number of points but in the actual build, I don't have the point peices so it was three straight loops. The outer loop is the DCC loop. The inner-most track was set up with the Pullman carriage pulled by the Class 0F saddle tank. The middle track was used to test the remaining engines. All tracks used 1st Radius curves.
The trials found that the A3 class "Pretty Polly" motor is not at its best, the locomotive ran intermittently (when using powered cleaning brushes the motor seemed to run ok) when on the tracks and once it was finally more reliable, after about 5 minutes the motor began screaching! I have since retired this A3. All of the other locomotives work fine after a little TLC.
I have tried to DCC fit one of the locomotives. The best runner and easiest convert appeared to be the Class 47 "Royal Mail" Intercity. After plenty of research, I determined it was a ringfield motor which was not using the chassis. A little bit of soldering (very frustrating for me as I've no skills!) and it appeared to be OK.
Setting the Class 47 onto the outer track (once programmed on a separate track section) and yes, not only had I not blown up the PCB board but the train responded to the E-Link software; I was successfully running three trains at the same time - Yay!
With the new available space defined, the plan was redrawn. This time I was able to design a three track layout without any of the trains driving through the station on each pass. Space means that I will only be able to have one sation. Realising that the sidings where on the left as you see the plan meeant that they would end up on the side of my layout with the least space so the layout was flipped over when built. I then also noticed that the points are not ideally placed; to get from the inner track to the outer would result in 2 laps - not ideal if I want to run multiple units.
This layout was never built - the rotation and points configuration aside; I still only have one DCC locomotive! The layout built was as 1D v2 but straight track instead of points and only one siding. Therefore there are still three totally independant loops but each has a station side track.
Yup, got to go and visit a "local" model railway shop and purchase some track... also spent my birthday money on a Church - it has the main church, a lych gate, stone walls, gravemarkers and a parish notice board.
The layout consists of three independant loops with station sidings but I did get the three trains running. The Class 47 pulling the Pullman and Class 0F pulling the two Intercity carriages heading clockwise around the lines and the Railbus providing the "return trip" counter-clockwise.