A quick guide to creating a slip in Templot version 078e and later


Update August 2014 -- This below is an old page, left here for reference only. It is out of date for Templot2.

There is a new single-slip tutorial video for Templot2 available here: single slip tutorial for Templot2 and there are some notes about it here: new video.


Please ignore the rest of this page and click the above links instead.






Slip roads are added to a diamond-crossing to provide a direct connection between the two tracks. A diamond-crossing with one slip road is called a single-slip. A diamond-crossing with two slip roads is called a double-slip. The underlying diamond-crossing remains the same and is the base formation which is used for all the geometrical layout-planning design work.

A slip road (shown above in red) comprises a pair of switches, one of each hand, and the two rails linking them. In Templot a diamond-crossing is comprised of two half-diamond templates, and a slip road links from the main road of one half-diamond to the diagonal road of the other half-diamond. The slip road is overlaid on the diamond-crossing as three partial templates. The slip switch templates are created by shortening ordinary turnout templates. The linking rails are an ordinary plain track template without any timbering.

The slip switches must be matched to any curving through the diamond-crossing, and the rails linking them must be adjusted for both length and curving to fit between the switches. This tutorial shows how to do this.

If the design of the diamond-crossing is changed, the slip road will need to be re-done to match. It makes sense therefore to wait until the track plan is finalized before adding the slip road(s) to a diamond-crossing for the final single-slip or double-slip construction template.

Assuming you have a half-diamond template from which to start (if not click the template > convert turnout to half-diamond menu item), this is how to add the slip road(s) and convert it to a single or double slip. The starting diamond-crossing can be straight or on a curve. In the screenshot above it is on a curve.

  1. First make some changes to the half-diamond template to accommodate the slip roads. Click the real > customize V-crossing > half-diamond check rails > menu options to shorten the check rail(s) if necessary (not needed for 1:8 slips).

  2. Click the real > timbering > half-diamond timbering > menu options to extend the timbers to carry the slip road(s).

  3. Click the tools > make diamond-crossing menu item to create a full diamond-crossing.

  4. Put the fixing peg at the TCP or the MCP position, according to which side of the diamond-crossing you want the slip road. (geometry > peg positions > menu options). (For a double-slip each slip road is done separately. Restart here when you have completed a single-slip.)

  5. Click the control > store & background menu item.

  6. Get a mint turnout template, e.g. an A-5. (Click the template > quick set... menu item. The hand and curving radius are immaterial.) It doesn't matter where this turnout is located on the drawing pad.

  7. Then click the template > switch options... menu item which in version 0.78.e now includes a range of special slip switches. Scroll down the list and select the appropriate slip switch for the angle of the diamond-crossing.

  8. Click the do > snap to switch heel menu item to shorten the turnout to the heel of the switch. For these slip switches you now have just the planed part of the switch rails.

  9. Put a copy of this template in the parking bay (do > parking bay > park template menu item), you will need another one later (or three more, if doing a double-slip).

  10. Click on the last-stored half-diamond template. On its pop-up menu click the peg/align tools > align current template and snake onto peg > facing-trailing menu item. If the peg is on the TCP Templot will be surprised, and ask you if you really want to do this. Click yes - continue.

  11. Click the do > blank up to switch toe menu item.

  12. Press the SPACEBAR to zoom in and look at the switch. If the hand is wrong, click the template > invert handing menu item.

  13. If it is on the TCP and the match to the diamond rails is a fraction out, use the F6 curving mouse action to correct it.

  14. Now click the geometry > peg positions > peg on switch heel menu item.

  15. Put the notch under the peg (geometry > notch > notch under peg menu item).

  16. Click the control > store & background menu item.

  17. Click on the other half-diamond and then on its pop-up menu click the delete to current menu item.

  18. Repeat the above process from item 4 above, except that you can simply retrieve the slip switch from the parking bay (do > parking bay > retrieve menu item, instead of items 6,7,8,9 above), and there is no need to do anything with the peg or notch (omit items 14,15 above).

  19. Now click template > quick set... menu item to get a length of plain track. The hand and curving radius are immaterial.

  20. Click the real > timbering > no timbering menu item.

  21. Peg it onto the notch (geometry > notch > shift onto notch menu item).

  22. Shorten the length (F4 overall length mouse action) and adjust the radius (F6 curving mouse action) until it just lines up with the heel of the second switch. Zoom in to get the best alignment (a slight overlap is of no consequence).

  23. Click the control > store & background menu item.

The above sequence works regardless of whether the starting diamond-crossing is straight or on a curve. If it is on a transition curve, the plain track slip road may also need to be a transition. Align its transition zone markers as nearly as practicable to those for the diamond-crossing.

If you are using overscale flangeway gaps, you may find that the slip road rails conflict with the K-crossing check rails. Shorten the check rails to clear by clicking the real > K-crossing options > K-crossing check rails... menu item.

If both half-diamond templates are already on the background, you will need to make the changes to the V-crossing check rails and the timbering (items 1 and 2 above) separately for each.

If a double-slip is required, delete each half-diamond to current in turn, swap the TCP and MCP peg positions for each, and then store again. Then repeat the above process to add the second slip road.

 For the switch blade rail-edges and planing guide-marks to be correctly shown on the printed templates it is important that the overlaid switch templates have higher numbers in the storage box list than the underlying half-diamond templates.

If the suggested sequence above is followed, this will be the case for a single-slip. However, if the half-diamonds have been subsequently deleted to current and stored again (for a double-slip, or perhaps to shove the timbers), this will not be the case. To correct this you can either:

a) in turn simply delete each switch to current and then store it again on the background, or

b) when storing the modified half-diamond, click the control > restore & background menu item, or

c) in the storage box, change the list order using the brown up and down arrow buttons.

When creating multiple overlaid templates like this, the template name labels can be a nuisance. You can temporarily switch them off (pad > pad background templates detail... menu item), or drag them out of the way (click on a template and then move name label on its pop-up menu). Even when they are switched off, you can find them by holding down the SHIFT key and running the mouse pointer over their position. Then clicking the label selects the template. This is a convenient way of getting the right pop-up menu when several templates are superimposed.

If you are still at the track design stage it is a good idea to leave your slips as diamond-crossings until the track plan is finalised. This saves re-doing a lot of work if you change the design later. Add the slip roads when you are satisfied that the design won't change. This also ensures that the slip switches will be higher-numbered for correct printing.


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