For the author, this would have been a academic question 15 years ago. At that time I hadn’t actually ‘finished’ a layout. This has only happened after joining ESNG and going ‘N’ gauge (after forays in OO, EM, OO9 and O). Since then there’s been a 4×2 foot module built ‘for’ son Michael. This was close to completion, but scrapped. Then a quicky 4×1 foot scenic module ‘Two Bridges’ that has been to a number of shows with the ESNG N-mod circuit. This module was simple, but very much complete and still exists. It looks a bit tired, and is 3-track N-mod rather than the 4-track that we currently run.
Finally, there is Earl’s Wood, that can truly be said to have been completed.
Earl’s Wood started as a 4×2 foot continuous run module, but was later modified to a terminus to fiddle yard layout. It also had three different fiddle yards, none totally successful. But it does have working point motors, ballast, full scenery, a backscene, lots of people and animals. (Including a dog that is walking along the parapet of the factory shown above. My eyesight couldn’t tell the difference between an N-gauge dog and cat.)
So it runs, and is effectively complete. To keep it running, I need to relay the tracks into the station so that I can build a better, fourth, fiddle yard. It also occupies some prime real estate in my loft room. Do I keep it, or do I scrap it and re-use the baseboard? It’s a difficult choice, but at the moment I am leaning towards scrapping. There are some buildings that can be re-used, to say nothing of all the vehicles and people and cats and dogs. I have learnt a lot, had a lot of fun, and exhibited it four times.
Maybe I just need to suppress the squirrel in me, that wants to keep it. But I forgot – there’s also 12 foot of ‘O’ gauge stored in the back loft….