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Suggestions for cutting roadbed

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Suggestions for cutting roadbed
Posted by Anonymous on Friday, November 30, 2001 9:57 PM
I am about ready to begin constructing my roadbed using a 1/2 inch plywood base for scenery and roadbed (the layout will be 9'x14') My question is what do you think is the best (and easist) method to cut the roadbed. I have Linn Westcott's book on benchwork, but it doesn't really cover how to cut large size plywood tops (by yourself) that are then joined together. Also I can't seem to decide if I have to attach the flat tops first using risers and then crawl on top on my knees to cut the roadbed, or try to do it in sections on another surface that is lower (and easier on the old body). I am confident my benchwork frame will hold me (at 200 lbs).

The only way I can complete the layout top is with two 5x7'1/2" plywood sheets through the door.

Is their a better way? Any advice is appreciated. John

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Posted by Anonymous on Saturday, December 01, 2001 4:39 PM
I have cut the roadbed at my workbench and then attached it to the layout and I have also cut the roadbed on the layout. I assume that you are using the "ccokie cutter" plywood roadbed.

I will be starting my next layout in January. I plan to build the benchwork, place the plywood surface and cur the roadbed out on the bench with either a scroll saw or a roto-zip saw. As I will be having an urban layout, the amounts of grades and hard shell scenery will be minimal. If you will have extensive hard shell scenery, you might want to separately cut the roadbed to conserve plywood and install it after you have cut it.
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Posted by Anonymous on Sunday, December 02, 2001 11:00 PM
thanks Jim for the reply. Yes, I was going to use the cookie cutter method. And I will have alot of hard shell scenery since my layout is entirely countryside. I just think it will be ackward and cumbersome trying to get two 4'x7' 1/2 plywood pieces up on top of my benchwork, and then crawl up on top to cut the roadbed. There is no way I could do this on my workbench, but I have thought about slightly raising them up enough on my garage floor to cut the roadbed. Also, I am not familiar with a scroll saw or roto-zip saw. How do those differ from a jig saw? The only thing I have to cut with right now is a jig saw. Are they better and easier to use?
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Posted by Anonymous on Monday, December 03, 2001 12:43 AM
A jig saw will work just fine!A roto-zip is a tool almost like a router but it has a cutting bit in it(dremel on steroids)I use it in my line of work for cutting drywall but it will work on wood as well!Scroll saw is basicly a bandsaw that can do curves!Hope that helps
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Posted by Anonymous on Tuesday, December 04, 2001 8:06 AM
It does! Thanks for the infor.
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Posted by Anonymous on Thursday, December 06, 2001 12:40 PM
Actually, a bandsaw is a bandsaw that can do curves....and a scroll saw is not basically a bandsaw. Aside from that,no problem.
With all the new methods in use today [see Jan 2002 Model Railroader new project layout for example ], it's a bit of a waste of plywood and of effort, to use the old 'cookie-cutter' method for anything but a minimal-grade urban type layout.Regards and good luck.

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