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Need Some Opinions On my New Train set Project

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  • Member since
    April 2003
  • 305,205 posts
Need Some Opinions On my New Train set Project
Posted by Anonymous on Saturday, September 13, 2003 10:24 PM
Hey, I finally finshed putting all my wood together for my train set and wanna know waht you guys think of it so far. I have quit a bit to do still, adding scenry and stuff, and buying new trains, I'm train to get alot of the NJ Trainsit loctoives and passenger/freight cars. Please Tell Me what you think of it so far thanks.

http://www.mw-gaming.com/Trains2k3005.jpg
  • Member since
    April 2003
  • 305,205 posts
Need Some Opinions On my New Train set Project
Posted by Anonymous on Saturday, September 13, 2003 10:24 PM
Hey, I finally finshed putting all my wood together for my train set and wanna know waht you guys think of it so far. I have quit a bit to do still, adding scenry and stuff, and buying new trains, I'm train to get alot of the NJ Trainsit loctoives and passenger/freight cars. Please Tell Me what you think of it so far thanks.

http://www.mw-gaming.com/Trains2k3005.jpg
  • Member since
    June 2003
  • From: Culpeper, Va
  • 8,198 posts
Posted by IRONROOSTER on Sunday, September 14, 2003 7:39 AM
I would add some diagonal supports (1x2s or 1x3s). Run them in both directions. This will make everything more stable. Since you're not boxing in under the narrow table tops, I would limit the spans to 3 feet (or less) to avoid possible sagging. (Better would be to box them in.) Also, you appear to have a small lip between two pieces at the front corner. This will cause problems when tracklaying (not insurmountable, but better avoided if possible). The NMRA website www.nmra.org has a beginners section you might want to take a look at.
Good luck
Paul
If you're having fun, you're doing it the right way.
  • Member since
    June 2003
  • From: Culpeper, Va
  • 8,198 posts
Posted by IRONROOSTER on Sunday, September 14, 2003 7:39 AM
I would add some diagonal supports (1x2s or 1x3s). Run them in both directions. This will make everything more stable. Since you're not boxing in under the narrow table tops, I would limit the spans to 3 feet (or less) to avoid possible sagging. (Better would be to box them in.) Also, you appear to have a small lip between two pieces at the front corner. This will cause problems when tracklaying (not insurmountable, but better avoided if possible). The NMRA website www.nmra.org has a beginners section you might want to take a look at.
Good luck
Paul
If you're having fun, you're doing it the right way.
  • Member since
    April 2003
  • 305,205 posts
Posted by Anonymous on Sunday, September 14, 2003 8:44 AM
I have to run out and buy more 2 by 4s im gonna be adding a frame under it like how it is for the ply wood.
  • Member since
    April 2003
  • 305,205 posts
Posted by Anonymous on Sunday, September 14, 2003 8:44 AM
I have to run out and buy more 2 by 4s im gonna be adding a frame under it like how it is for the ply wood.
  • Member since
    April 2002
  • From: Nashville TN
  • 1,306 posts
Posted by Wdlgln005 on Tuesday, September 16, 2003 10:32 PM
I'd advise you to have some T or Lgirder under the layout. Makes it easier to attach legs and braces under the layout. Then you can cut supports for the roadbed. Depends on what kind of scenery you want to use & if you will have any deep valleys or cuts under the track. You may want to make 1 section removable to make it easier to reach the center & don't always do the duckunder.
Glenn Woodle
  • Member since
    April 2002
  • From: Nashville TN
  • 1,306 posts
Posted by Wdlgln005 on Tuesday, September 16, 2003 10:32 PM
I'd advise you to have some T or Lgirder under the layout. Makes it easier to attach legs and braces under the layout. Then you can cut supports for the roadbed. Depends on what kind of scenery you want to use & if you will have any deep valleys or cuts under the track. You may want to make 1 section removable to make it easier to reach the center & don't always do the duckunder.
Glenn Woodle
  • Member since
    April 2003
  • 305,205 posts
Posted by Anonymous on Tuesday, September 16, 2003 10:44 PM
Assuming that at some point you will want to add some hills / terrain beyond just the flat top, you should think about what will happen at the edge. A 4" wide strip of paneling or hardboard (masonite) is easy to cut, to match your scenery profile, but you need to plan for it by including some mounting points. An easy solution would be to run a 2x2 along the outer edge, just under the plywood, perhaps in 6" blocks rather than continuous; once you've got scenery roughed in, you can rough-cut a piece of paneling, screw it onto those blocks, trace your scenery contour with a pencil, then take it down and cut out that profile. After it is cut, remount it, and then put your finishing scenery right up to it (however you intend to do scenery). Even the cheapest paneling can do so much to dress up the edge! And it'll make it look more solid with a few inches of depth.
  • Member since
    April 2003
  • 305,205 posts
Posted by Anonymous on Tuesday, September 16, 2003 10:44 PM
Assuming that at some point you will want to add some hills / terrain beyond just the flat top, you should think about what will happen at the edge. A 4" wide strip of paneling or hardboard (masonite) is easy to cut, to match your scenery profile, but you need to plan for it by including some mounting points. An easy solution would be to run a 2x2 along the outer edge, just under the plywood, perhaps in 6" blocks rather than continuous; once you've got scenery roughed in, you can rough-cut a piece of paneling, screw it onto those blocks, trace your scenery contour with a pencil, then take it down and cut out that profile. After it is cut, remount it, and then put your finishing scenery right up to it (however you intend to do scenery). Even the cheapest paneling can do so much to dress up the edge! And it'll make it look more solid with a few inches of depth.
  • Member since
    April 2003
  • 305,205 posts
Posted by Anonymous on Tuesday, September 16, 2003 11:02 PM
Also, you might consider placing some uprights to hold up a backdrop panel, unless you have the requisite permissions to go ahead and paint your walls sky blue! A simple light blue sky does wonders for extending your railroad real-estate. To get a smooth, seamless backdrop, though, requires some forethought.

Now, as I mentioned in my other post, I don't know how you intend to do the scenery, but if you want a little relief (in the sculptural sense of the word), you'll need to either cut away some of the plywood from your top, or you could do what I do. My approach is to create a level, flat top like this, and then build up from it: all my subroadbed is lifted off of it by a small amount. I use 1/2" foamcore (I model in N-scale, this might be too flimsy for a larger scale) which I can cut easily with a utility knife or X-acto, to any shape needed. I place foamcore supports at 1-foot intervals or wherever necessary, again cut with a knife, and then I use expanding foam insulation (like what you seal the cracks around a door frame with - "Great Stuff" at hardware stores) to fill in around and under the remainder of the foam. Because it expands, it fills up the space between table top and foamcore roadbed, but you have to have some heavy books like encyclopedias to weight it down, to prevent the foam from warping things.

I use Great Stuff also as my base for scenery; it carves easily with a large kitchen knife once cured, and as it cures it expands into funky blobby shapes. You can usually find some interesting scenic features in amongst all those blobs, and if it gets out of hand you can just carve it back with the knife. The rigid piece of foam that you carve away can be reused somewhere else, by inserting it into freshly-applied Great Stuff; I "recycle" like this so that I don't waste foam by building up solid mountains; you can stitch together the discarded slivers to make a shell.

The beauty of this method is that it is all easily worked with non-powered cutting tools, and it can be easily reworked even long after the track is in place and running. Plus, it is lightweight, which is a factor for me. And, you can make hills of any shape, and let them plunge below the track height at whim; a drainage ditch is as simple as two angled cuts with the kitchen knife.
  • Member since
    April 2003
  • 305,205 posts
Posted by Anonymous on Tuesday, September 16, 2003 11:02 PM
Also, you might consider placing some uprights to hold up a backdrop panel, unless you have the requisite permissions to go ahead and paint your walls sky blue! A simple light blue sky does wonders for extending your railroad real-estate. To get a smooth, seamless backdrop, though, requires some forethought.

Now, as I mentioned in my other post, I don't know how you intend to do the scenery, but if you want a little relief (in the sculptural sense of the word), you'll need to either cut away some of the plywood from your top, or you could do what I do. My approach is to create a level, flat top like this, and then build up from it: all my subroadbed is lifted off of it by a small amount. I use 1/2" foamcore (I model in N-scale, this might be too flimsy for a larger scale) which I can cut easily with a utility knife or X-acto, to any shape needed. I place foamcore supports at 1-foot intervals or wherever necessary, again cut with a knife, and then I use expanding foam insulation (like what you seal the cracks around a door frame with - "Great Stuff" at hardware stores) to fill in around and under the remainder of the foam. Because it expands, it fills up the space between table top and foamcore roadbed, but you have to have some heavy books like encyclopedias to weight it down, to prevent the foam from warping things.

I use Great Stuff also as my base for scenery; it carves easily with a large kitchen knife once cured, and as it cures it expands into funky blobby shapes. You can usually find some interesting scenic features in amongst all those blobs, and if it gets out of hand you can just carve it back with the knife. The rigid piece of foam that you carve away can be reused somewhere else, by inserting it into freshly-applied Great Stuff; I "recycle" like this so that I don't waste foam by building up solid mountains; you can stitch together the discarded slivers to make a shell.

The beauty of this method is that it is all easily worked with non-powered cutting tools, and it can be easily reworked even long after the track is in place and running. Plus, it is lightweight, which is a factor for me. And, you can make hills of any shape, and let them plunge below the track height at whim; a drainage ditch is as simple as two angled cuts with the kitchen knife.
  • Member since
    February 2001
  • From: East Lansing, MI, US
  • 223 posts
Posted by GerFust on Wednesday, September 17, 2003 11:14 AM
Before you start laying track, you might change some of those 90 degree corner into two 45 degree corners, to reduct the liklihood that someone will bump the layout when walking by. Rounding them would even be better, but is much more difficult.
[ ]===^=====xx o o O O O O o o The Northern-er (info on the layout, http://www.msu.edu/~fust/)
  • Member since
    February 2001
  • From: East Lansing, MI, US
  • 223 posts
Posted by GerFust on Wednesday, September 17, 2003 11:14 AM
Before you start laying track, you might change some of those 90 degree corner into two 45 degree corners, to reduct the liklihood that someone will bump the layout when walking by. Rounding them would even be better, but is much more difficult.
[ ]===^=====xx o o O O O O o o The Northern-er (info on the layout, http://www.msu.edu/~fust/)

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