The Green Bay & Waupaca is the HO scale version of the Green Bay Route
taking shape in my basement.
Green Bay & Waupaca Track Plan
Laying track on the
Green Bay & Waupaca
My model of GBW #617
|Layout at a glance
Name: Green Bay & Waupaca RR
Scale: HO (1:87) Size: 14
x 15 feet
Theme: Green Bay & Western
Locale: eastern Wisconsin
Layout height: 44" to 52"
Roadbed: cork on
Track: Shinohara code 83
Turnout minimum: no. 5
radius: 24" (21-5/8" on inside track on passing sidings)
Maximum grade: 2.5 percent
Scenery construction: plaster
shell and rock castings over cardboard web (planned)
Backdrop: Sky blue walls and ceilings
Wangrow System One DCC
Here's the plan and background information on my layout.
up and now track laying and wiring (and even some structure work) has begun.
Check out my first GBW model: caboose #617, modeled as it would appear not long
after it was delivered in 1966 -- with windows and roofwalk intact.
A little Q & A about the Green Bay & Waupaca RR:
Why the 1960's Green Bay Route as a prototype?
Why the Green Bay & Waupaca for a model?
Towns & Industries
I grew up in the 1960's in New Franken, on the Kewaunee, Green Bay & Western RR line
to the Lake Michigan carferry docks. Likewise, my parents, grandparents, and
great-grandparents did the same in previous generations. My great-aunt & -uncle lived on
Norwood Street in Green Bay, less than a block from the street entrance to the
Norwood shops. I went to junior high school in Casco and high school in
Luxemburg, also towns on the Green Bay Route.
To me, the word "railroad" was synonymous with the
red-and-gray locos and yellow cabooses of the Green Bay Route.
Basing my model layout on the fictional Green Bay & Waupaca RR serves
1) My interest is one-person operation of way freights, which is
about as far from the Green Bay Route's bridge line operations, so a free-lance
prototype seemed appropriate;
2) My family lives near Green Bay and my wife's
family lives near Waupaca, so a line connecting the two towns makes sense;
allows me to paint locos and cabooses following gondola&W practice;
fictional aspect allows me to incorporate various free-lance aspects that interest
The basement layout room is 14 x 15 feet with walls on three sides.
Ceiling and walls are finished plaster and the floor is carpeted.
A plan of the layout is at the here. The layout is designed for one operator to follow
his/her train along the layout. All but one turnout is within 24"
of the layout edge, and no turnouts are concealed in hidden trackage.
They layout was designed for one-person operation in an out-and-back
fashion. A session consists of assembling a train in the Green Bay
yard and then a way freight works its way to the division point at
Stevens Point and return, working industry spurs along the route.
Layout construction is progressing very s-l-o-w-l-y. The framing is
convention L-girder, with 3/4" plywood subroadbed. Roadbed is cork
on the mainline and Homasote in the yard. Track laying and
wiring is complete in Green Bay and tracks are now being laid through Black Creek.
Lighting consists of a minimal amount of recessed ceiling lights, though I
have left wiring outlets and intend to install florescent lighting balanced
for daylight and valences along the ceiling.
The towns are selected to roughly follow the prototype Green Bay Route
from Green Bay to Stevens Point, Wisconsin. As is typical for
many model layouts, distances are very compressed! The entire
layout has under two scale miles of main line, while the prototype took almost
90 miles to cover the same distance! (Fortunately, this
layout is designed for way freight operation and not timetable running.)
Industries are selected to maximize switching possibilities for a way
Here's my list of towns and industries. You might want to view the layout plan.
Like many model railroads, I anticipate acquiring
an excess of rolling stock over time, so I added a little more yard
length than perhaps is typical.
True to the prototype Norwood Yard in
Green Bay, I intend to have the Strid Grain Elevator
looming over the yard. In my case, it will be used to help
conceal some water pipes hidden behind a box-out in the wall.
The Cold Storage Warehouse is a nod to both
my great-uncle who lived right by the real Norwood Yard (he
worked at a coal and ice plant) and the Cheese House district of the
east side of Green Bay.
My Norwood Shops are a lot smaller than the
real thing -- I don't even have room for a turntable. Engines
will be reversed by running out to the return loop at Black
Creek. Normal operation will be by two diesels running
back-to-back so this shouldn't be a big issue.
In - Fuel (tank), Castings (flat), Sand
In - TOFC (flat)
Out - TOFC (flat)
Cold Storage Warehouse
In - Meat (reefer), Beer (reefer), Boxes
(boxcar), Ammonia (tank)
Out - Products (reefer), Ice (reefer)
In - Products (boxcar)
Out - Products (boxcar)
Strid Grain Elevator
In - Grain (covered hopper boxcar)
Out - Grain (covered hopper boxcar)
After crossing the Duck Creek a little west
of Green Bay, the line
begins an uphill grade, and the first stop on the journey west is
Black Creek. A Soo Line interchange with
the Green Bay Route is here.
The building materials warehouse is a nod to my
past: my first job out of high school was working for Wisconsin Wholesalers,
a similar warehouse in Green Bay. Unloading boxcars of
insulation on a hot day is not fun work!
The Sand & Cement and Steel
Fabricator are the result of my current employment as a civil
|Sand & Cement
In - Cement (covered hopper), Fly ash (covered hopper),
Stone (covered hopper), Gypsum (covered hopper), Coal (covered hopper)
Out - Cement (covered hopper), Cement (boxcar), Sand (gondola)
In - All
Out - All
In - Steel coils (flat), Steel shapes (gondola),
Castings (boxcar flat), Supplies (boxcar)
Out - Fabricated steel (flat gondola), Scrap metal (gondola)
In - Steel Fabrications (boxcar), Cement
(boxcar), Supplies (boxcar), Castings (boxcar), Roofing asphalt (tank)
In - Boxes (boxcar), Spent grain (boxcar
Out - Flour (covered hopper)
Located near the highest point on the layout,
Shiocton is the smallest town on the layout. A lonely Stockyard
is situated out here. I don't believe that the Green Bay Route
had any stock cars, but I'll use the stockyard as an excuse for
adding some to my layout.
Out - Livestock (stock car)
In - Spent grain (covered hopper boxcar)
What is a KGB&W town doing out here? I
took a little liberty and inserted my home town on the layout.
It's in a very conspicuous viewing location, too.
The feed mill will be modeled after Basten's
Farm Supply. My grandfather worked here during the time I
was growing up in New Franken in the 60's. I have fond
memories of visiting grandpa down at the feed mill.
There are oil tanks in New Franken, though they
are not served by the railroad. I've not been able to find out
if they ever where in the past. In my model layout, Van Dreese
Oil will be!
Greiling's Lumber was located in
New Franken, though it went out of business after the second
|Basten's Farm Supply
In - Spent Grain (covered hopper boxcar),
Farm Supplies (boxcar)
Out - Grain (covered hopper boxcar)
Van Dreese Oil
In - Oil (tank)
Out - Oil (tank)
In - Wood (boxcar gondola)
By this point the Green Bay & Waupaca has
begun its descent to the Wisconsin River at the far end
of the layout.
The Green Bay Route had a unique over/under
crossing with the Soo Line at this point. The
physical limitations of the layout required a tunnel at this point,
so I'll try to incorporate features of the unique crossing where the
upper track crosses over the lower one.
The canning plant will be a division of Green Bay
Foods, Inc. In the later years of his life, my grandfather
had a job repairing machinery for Green Bay Foods, which took him to
many of the towns along the east half of the Green Bay
|Box & Crate
In - Cardboard (boxcar), Plywood (boxcar),
Plastic pellets (covered hopper)
Out - Boxes (boxcar)
In - Scrap metal (gondola), Crushed cans
Out - Scrap metal (gondola)
Green Bay Foods
In - Vegetables (reefer), Boxes (boxcar)
Out - Canned goods (boxcar, reefer), Vegetable oil (tank), Soybean
meal (covered hopper)
The branch line to Waupaca separates from the main
line at Amherst Junction.
McLauren Haggis Company will be a packing
plant which receives livestock from Shiocton and iced reefers from
Stevens Point. The name is a nod to my father-in-law who
lives in Waupaca, and is proud of his Scottish heritage.
The actual Waupaca Foundry is the largest
employer in the area, but it was actually served by the Soo Line,
since the Green Bay Route abandoned the Waupaca Branch in 1947.
I would have liked to have included a potato
company in Waupaca but limited space will force me to locate an
all-purpose Team Track here instead. I guess I'll
have to settle for the canning plant in nearby
In - Scrap metal (gondola), Foundry sand
(covered hopper), Supplies (boxcar), Boxes (boxcar)
Out - Castings (boxcar), Castings (flat), Waste (gondola)
In - TOFC (flat)
Out - TOFC (flat)
McLauren Haggis Company
In - Livestock (stock car), Boxes (boxcar),
Out - Meat (reefer), Hides (boxcar), Tallow (tank boxcar), Lard (tank),
Bone Meal (boxcar)
This represents a division point on the
layout. The actual Green Bay Route's division point was
in Wisconsin Rapids and Stevens Point was served by a
branch. What had been Duck Creek near Green Bay's
Norwood Yard has miraculously become the Wisconsin River
when the far end of the line is reached! I took a little
modelers license because I wanted to include a brewery because of
the varied car types it receives...
...and if you're going to model a brewery in
central Wisconsin, there's only one that will do: Stevens Point
Brewery. The real Stevens Point Brewery was served by a spur of the
Stevens Point Branch.
The nearby Ice House will be used to ice
cars for the brewery, the packing plant in Waupaca, and the cannery
in Amherst Junction.
|Stevens Point Brewery
In - Corn syrup (tank), Corn, Malt,
Barley - (covered hopper boxcar), Boxes (boxcar), Cans / bottles (boxcar),
Hops (reefer), Cleaning chemicals (tank)
Out - Beer - (reefer boxcar), Spent grain (covered hopper boxcar),
broken bottles (hopper), Crushed cans (gondola).
Ice House & Icing Platform
In - Meat (reefer), Canned Goods (reefer),
Beer (reefer), Ice (reefer)
Out - Meat (reefer), Canned Goods (reefer), Beer (reefer)