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NOCH Preformed Layouts
Everything you ever wanted to know (but didn't know whome to ask).
Baden-Baden Noch Layout
Shown: Baden-Baden N/Z Scale Finished Layout


1.     Introduction


Noch pre-formed train layouts are both very popular, and are also among less understood products, stirring a lot of interest andLayouts causing some confusion among model train enthusiasts. I receive a lot of questions about them from customers, so this guide is an attempt to answer all your questions regarding this wonderful product line.

"One of these days I will start building my dream layout!". And yet this day never seems to come for so many of you. There are plenty of reasons for that: building layout requires much planning, skill, patience, and above all time. If you have all of these prerequisites, then these preformed layouts aren't for you. But for so many modelers Noch layouts offer quiality German made "shortcut" - a professionally made layout platform with finished terrain and bridges (in most cases included). Add track and you are ready to run trains in the matter of hours! And then you can add more details at your pace: buildings, stations, trees, figures and cars.
Yes, you are "limited" by preformed track plan, but there are many layouts to choose from, from very large to rather compact and a whole bunch in the middle, so you can surely find a perfect layout satisfying your particular taste.


2.    Some Hard Facts

Hard fact #1. NOCH Layouts are made in Germany, they are bulky and expensive to import and transport, even within United States and Canada. It can cost, on average, $1,200 to get layout delivered to your residence. Price you see on website does not include shipping.

Tip: there are layout extensions and alluminum framing available to make layout installation even larger, sturdier and professional looking. Ordering main layout with extensions and framing will add  relatively little to your transport expense, so if you plan to expand now or later - don't order piecemeal, get it all in one shot.

Hard fact #2. NOCH Layouts are not "what you see is what you get". You don't get track, buildings and all that scenery, as many think. And you sure as hell don't get any trains! :-)  You get preformed layout board with mountains, tunnels and bridges. You also get instructions with detailed track plan (Marklin, Roco, Fleischmann, Kato). And suggestions for rest of scenery. That's it. Here is what you actually get, when you buy that gorgeous "Baden-Baden" layout:

  Baden-Baden - Actual Board

Actaul Baden-Baden preformed layout board

The good news is, NOCH took guesswork out of equation and, once you settle on your favorite European track maker - it is a pretty fast process to lay down the track by following enclosed diagram, and by putting together enclosed bridges.

Hard Fact #3. All NOCH layouts are special orders.

I intentionally made these points upfront, so you would know exactly what you would be getting into. It might sound strange to even consider getting layout, whose transportation cost might exceed its purchase price. However, you should consider how much time (and possible aggravation) these layouts will save you to get up and start running your beloved trains and to realize the dream of having beautiful, working layout.   

So, if you can get over these realities, read on!

3    Available Preformed Layouts.

NOCH makes layouts available in HO, N and Z scales. All these layouts can be extended, and that is also another source of confusion. We will go over all possible configuration options one by one.

3.0     HO Layouts

3.1      Large HO Layouts

 Let's start with very popular and very extendible  Heidelberg HO Layout.

   Heidelberg LayoutThere is no main layout here - it is a classic "dogbone" layout. What's great about Heidelberg, is it is a modular layout that can be configured several different ways before lunch. Consider below possibilities:

Heidelberg Layout Configurations

Heidelberg Layout Configurations

There is one Left module, one Right module, and then you can get as many Station and Straight modules as you want, And then there is Corner module for making 90 turns. Perfect layout for installations along the walls.


Another very popular large HO layout is Silvretta  pictured below (
220x140x52 cm). 86"x55"

 

Silvretta Layout

Very impressive layout with lots of mountains and tunnels.


Luzern is in the same class of large HO layouts (
220x140x46 cm) 86"x55" with tremendous action potential.

Luzern Layout


Both Luzern and Silvretta have the same footprint, and NOCH made several left and right extensions available for them. Getting left, right (or both extensions) will also mean that you will need to get front extension(s) as well. 

Large HO Layput with extensions

Here you see what complete installation might look like if you opt for right Harbor extension (120x180x30cm)  47"x70"x12 and for left Turntable extension (100x140x26 cm) . 39"x55"x10"  It also shows mandatory front extension (220x40 cm) 86"x15" and also mandatory front left extension (100x40cm, 39"x15" in front of Turntable). Note: front extensions are mandatory only if you opt for "oversized" Harbor.

Another option to extend on the right side is Storage Yard (
120x140x46 cm): 47"x55"x18"

  Storage Yard Extention

Storage Yard brings us to another terrific (but not well understood) capability: having shadow yard beneath you layout! Shadow yard is a capability to store on tracks below layout more trains, so you can run trains from main layout down to shadow yard, and up again, providing you an ability to rotate trains in and out. To implement this, you get aluminum framing (later about those) and a storage yard board , add a helix and viola!


Storage Yard with Helix

Let's now talk about alluminum framing. It is lightweight, yet very sturdy  support for NOCH layouts and it is a must if you plan to setup Shadow Station as previously described.

Framing





For
Luzern or Silvretta without extenstions you will want item number 62220 
For Storage Yard extension you will add item number 62212
For Left Turntable extension you will add item number 62210

But if you go for Harbor, then you are looking at  different/additional configuration.
You will need item number 62218 to support the Harbor. Because of now mandatory front extensions (see above), you will need: 62240 to support main front extension and you will need 62230 if you also getting left Turntable extension - to support its front extension.

Luzern or Silvretta with both extensions offer 4.4 meters (14.4' feet)  of amazing railroading!


3.2      Medium/Small HO Layouts

They may be medium, or even small, but these layouts still offer plenty of actions. And you can still extend them with their own left/right extensions.

 
Resenheim
81600 Rosenheim HO Layout  160x100x23,5 cm   62"x40"
This layout can be equipped with the FALLER Car System!


Mittenwald
81610 Mittenwald HO Layout  200x120x41 cm 78"x48"



Muhltal
81660 Muhltal HO Layout 200x100x36 cm 78" x 40"


Schonmuhlen
81710 Schonmuhlen HO Layout 160x100x25 cm 63"x 40"


All of the above layouts can be further extended, as already mentioned.

Extentions
Shown: left 81950 Turntable 70 x 120 cm 28"x 47"  and right 81970 Sweep Extension 100 x 120 cm 40" x 47"

Cable RailwayWorkshopStorage Yard
Also available: left 81990 Cabe Railway 100x120 cm, 40"x47"   left 81890 Workshop  100x120 cm  40" x 47"  and right 81960 Storage Yard 100 x 120 cm   40"x47

Consult below chart when considering alluminum framing:

Layout Left Cable railway Left Turntable Left Workshop Right Storage Yard Right Sweep  Extension
81600 Rosenheim 62610 62100 62070 62100 62100 62100
81610 Mittenwald 62200 62100 62070 62100 62100 62100
81660 Muhltal 62200 62100 62070 62100 62100 62100
81710 Schonmuhlen 62160 62100 62070 62100 62100 62100


4.0     N & Z Scale Layouts

Layouts in this group are suitable for either N or Z scale. Detailed track diagrams with Marklin Z track and Fleischmann, Kato, Arnold, Minitrix N scale tracks are included.

NZ Layouts

This should give you an idea what's possible with N/Z scale layouts - plenty of room for expansion!


Baden-Baden Noch Layout
84830 Baden-Baden N/Z Scale  Layout 175x100cm  69"x40"
This is, by far, the biggest and the best N/Z layout from NOCH. It will keep you busy for a long time!


Staufen
83870 Staufen N/Z Layout  140 x 69 55" x 27"



   
Traunstein
84810 Traunstein Layout 125x69 cm  50" x 27"


All of these layouts could be expanded as follows:


84350
Left Extension 84350  69 x 100 cm 27"x 39"

84320  
Right Extension 84320 69x100cm  27"x 39"

Consult below chart when considering alluminum framing:


Layout 84350 Left 84320 Right Need Front Extension ?
84830 Baden-Baden 62475 62369 62369 NO
83870 Staufen 62440 62369 62369 YES
84810 Traunstein 62425 62369 62369 YES




Sonnenalpe
87050 Sonnenalpe N Scale Board 74 x 51 cm 29"x20"

4.0     Z Scale Layouts and Boards


Cortina
85880 Cortina Layout 100 x 69cm 39" x 27"

Always popular, Cortina requires special front extension  when expanding with 84350/84320. Use 62400 aluminum frame for Cortina layout.


Blumenau
87060 Blumenau Z Board 47 x 34 cm   18" x  13"


Tannheim
87065 Tannheim Z Board 47 x 34 cm  18" x  13"


Tessin

87080 Tessin Z Board 74 x 51 cm  29" x 20"


Tirol
87090 Tirol Z Board 74 x 51 cm  29" x 20"




5.0     Z & N Scale Briefcase Layouts

Unlike layout board, NOCH briefcase layouts are completely finished with track and all the scenery. They come in sturdy aluminum case and have shelves to store trains; also battery boxes and speed regulators are included.

Tessin
88280 Tessin Z Scale  78 x 54 cm 30"x 21"
   





Tirol
88290 Tirol Z Scale  78 x 54 cm  30"x 21"

Sonnenalpe
88270 Sonnenalpe N Scale  78 x 54 cm 30"x 21"


Blumenau
88100 Blumenau Z Scale 50 x 37 cm  19" x 14.5"


Tannheim
88110 Tannheim Z Scale 50 x 37 cm 19" x 14.5"



6.0     Layout Assembly Tips


Click on below image to see PDF document from NOCH (in English) with some helpful tips & tricks:

Layout Tips