Doug Geiser’s Granite Mountain Railway is ground breaking in its three tiered design and its housing of a great multitude of trains running together. In this video, hear some of Geiser’s inspirations, advice, and techniques for building your own revolutionary railroad as he talks with Allen Keller.
Geiser states that the running of his many trains on the same layout is made possible through interchange. All trains feed out of staging yards and appear in locations on the layout that all tie together through interchange, whether a two car track, or a small yard. Interchanges allow for railroads to swap cars between each other. Every line has its own track, besides the Milwaukee which shares a track.
Geiser goes on to give advice on how to accomplish the inclusion of multiple railroads on one layout. The biggest problem and solution when it comes to building a multi train layout is having enough space. Although the space where the Granite Mountain Railway is housed is not overly small, the multiple levels on the layout enable more lines and tracking for multiple trains.
The experience that Geiser has had in other modeling clubs and groups has given him the knowledge to create a multiple level railroad. A club’s giant layout also gave him the inspiration to go as big as he could, even in a decently sized space. Larger layouts can really make the railroad feel more realistic and prototypical. It is also important that every train looks like it belongs with the other. All the railroads should interchange somehow and feed into or interact with one another for a cohesive layout.
Geiser also shares with Keller the advantages and disadvantages of being a freelance modeler. As a freelancer, Geiser is less prototype oriented, and thus is able to have the freedom to make his own decisions in terms of paint, rolling stock, and any other aspect of the layout he desires.