The helix

I have decided to use a helix to get between the lower and upper levels. The lower level is a small city with a yard and the upper level is a mill valley with loads of trees. As the two are not visually connected, a helix should work. However, I need to preserve as much space inside my loft as possible as the room is only 12′ square.

Therefore, I’m considering putting part of the helix out in the eaves. As my layout is a loft, the roof outside slopes in and the roof in my loft is also sloping. I figure that if I can put part of the helix outside the room then I can save some space inside. In fact, due to the slope, I can only put 9 or so inches of my 52″ diameter circle outside on the upper helix. I can put more outside on the lower levels if I stagger the outside helix bits but keep the inside part of the helix vertically in line. Confused yet?

The layout plan shows the red line as the inner line of the helix. The main line runs inside the room to the side of the helix with a branch running into the helix.


The loft is very messy but I have partly cut out the “wall”.

Helix template in place

The round template is part of the helix – it sure looks big when you get it in place. The actual track radius is 24″ (it’s only a freight branch).

Helix template

You can see the loft slope beyond and the lower level will stick out an additional 15″ into it.

Helix template in eaves

I’m very lucky to have a great friend who is coming to help build it. When I say “help”, I mean he wants to come round when I’m at work and do it for me.