Crofut & Iron Creek RR 2005 – 2017 …so far
Here, I’m attempting to document the designing and construction of my F-scale, Dual Gauge model railroad from planning to its end if that ever happens. This is where I have fun and allow my creativity to get the best of me.
I moved from Atlanta to East TN, 20 some years ago.
I quickly got interested and then involved with the Smoky Mountains and then the Little River RR and Lumber Co. Museum. Because of my growing involvement there and also being in some form of construction management most of my adult life, I decide quickly that I wanted to model the logging industry. I now have a good access to historical information of the railroad and the lumber company’s operations up in the Smoky’s. It’s been a wonderful learning experience and continues to amaze me with the ingenuity and grueling hard work of these people at this time of our national history.
Since I decided that my focus would be logging for my modeling efforts. I also decided on 1934 to be where in time I was modeling. So now my attention would be driven to research and model anything that would have been here at that time period.
Of course, “Crofut and Iron Creek” did not exist. That came from my imagination. It’s a what-if concept knowing that in the southern mountains of TN, there were several places that were never logged and this small operation purchased one of those areas and did just that.
My take, “Crofut Falls”, came from the Indians that inhabited the region before the settlers arrived and the name for the double waterfalls kept its name. The small river, Iron Creek, like many here in the Smoky’s was named long before this operation. This then became the name of the town and also part of the railroads name.
I decided to model inside since I was working in and out of town often during my work career, I needed to lock the door, turnout the lights and not worry about the pike until I returned and that was often times, months at a time.
The room is a reverse L- size with overall dimensions of 22’ x 42’
I model in Narrow Gauge Fn3 – 3’on 45mm track >1.20.32 scale. But, I also wanted to show a connection to the outside world as all narrow gauge railroads did for commerce in some way, usually by rail in the thirties from regions like this.
Because of this, the yard and engine facility are Dual Gauge allowing me to build models in Standard Gauge F- 4’-8-1/2” on 70.64mm track > 1.20.32 scale. This shows how big standard gauge models really are with their narrow gauge counterparts. (see What is F-scale)
The railroad is designed to have a continuous running mainline loop. This allows me to operate one or two trains continuously while entertaining visitors coming to see the railroad.
It also has two other levels that are connected for operation. You can build and run different trains to and from the different industries that the railroad supports.
- A Dual Gauge Yard with Engine facility, including a Wye and multiple sidings
- A 3-Stall Engine House with a connecting 64’ Turntable. This will accommodate anything that I’m presently planning to operate on the layout including small standard gauge engines. It will allow a K-37 to turn, even though I don’t have one or intend to. Those that do come here are models that I’m repairing or painting for a customer.
- Two Hidden storage tracks under one of the mountains
- A woods Log loading area with its own switching yard and turntable large enough to turn a 3-truck shay.
- A sawmill facility
- A Coal Mine with its own switching yard
- A Grist Mill with sidings
- The town of “Iron Creek”
- “Crofut Falls” with floor to ceiling scenery
- Eight Tunnels
- Fourteen Bridges
- Four Trestles