B & O Decatur Sub

Layout Description

My layout models the Chessie Railroad route from Indianapolis, Indiana to Decatur, Illinois. The journey starts in Moorefield yard and passes through western Indiana and out on to the Illinois prairie. Although the layout stays true to the actual route that was traveled, a lot of modeler's license is taken. Some of the many features of this layout include a refinery, stone quarries, coal mine, grain elevators, scrap yard, saw mill, cement manufacturing, and a grain processing plant. The Decatur Sub interchanges with Conrail at Moorefield, L&N at Roachdale, MILW at West Dana, MoPac and IC
at Tuscola, and IC, ITG and N&W at Decatur. Two staging yards represent Cincinnati to the east and Springfield to the west. The layout is double-decked with a helix. There is one duck-under to get to the crew lounge.

Jobs include Moorefield Yard, which handles block swaps for through trains, as well as building and breaking down turns and locals; Decatur Yard which handles block swaps for through trains, switches the large Staley Plant, and handles interchange transfers for three railroads; three district switcher positions which may or not take an entire session to run, depending on the amount of work on the particular day; and road crews. Most trains have at least some switching.


Layout Details

Layout Owner

Brad Rotert


Carmel, IN



Layout Size

30 ft x 28 ft

Mainline Size

425 ft


Chessie Era

Crew Complement

4 - 11


Track: 98%
Scenery: 50%
Electrical: 98%

Control System


Communications System

Intercom system

Dispatching Method


Car Forwarding


Health and Safety


Yes - 2 friendly golden retrievers