my first attempt at a permanent board

Discussion of model railway baseboard design and construction
jay123
Posts: 27
Joined: Mon Jan 07, 2013 3:06 pm

my first attempt at a permanent board

Postby jay123 » Fri Jan 25, 2013 10:29 am

As im sure you all know, im new to this railway stuff, well anyway it started off as building a railway for my 5 year old son Toby. I soon found out that there was more to all of this than meets the eye and the bug soon takes a grip and away you go. So what started as a basic oval with the flying scotsman that i baught for my wife a few years ago (at here request) turned into a big board 12x10 in fact and a multi level. This was ok until i found this forum and all the pretty pictures of what others had done. So as one does, i ripped out all the paper and chicken wire that had been placed as hills and i had a go at bandages and plaster so here are some photoes of what i have started doing. I know to some of you hardened rail modelers this will all look pretty basic but please be gentil with the comments lol, ive never tryed any of this before! Any comments on how to improve what i have started are verry welcome tho. The dark area under the photo of the flying scott will be re-painted and is going to become my lake bed. (my next attempt at something new) Oh and im now looking at using blonde wigs to create my long grass as i feel i need some on the layout. So here goes.....
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rock2.jpg
my second engine coming through the rockface
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rock1.jpg
the flying scotsman on the top track
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jay123
Posts: 27
Joined: Mon Jan 07, 2013 3:06 pm

Re: my first attempt at a permanent board

Postby jay123 » Fri Jan 25, 2013 10:37 am

and some more of the build
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jay123
Posts: 27
Joined: Mon Jan 07, 2013 3:06 pm

Re: my first attempt at a permanent board

Postby jay123 » Fri Jan 25, 2013 10:43 am

and yet a couple more
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jay123
Posts: 27
Joined: Mon Jan 07, 2013 3:06 pm

Re: my first attempt at a permanent board

Postby jay123 » Fri Jan 25, 2013 4:43 pm

Today saw a little more work done on the layout. I finnished the back incline, a small section next to my home made road tunnel, the lake bed was painted ready for som water effect and a few other small rock faces that needed to be finnished. So here is what got done today.
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buz
Posts: 794
Joined: Sat Jul 17, 2010 6:46 am
Location: Kalgoorlie West Australia

Re: my first attempt at a permanent board

Postby buz » Sun Jan 27, 2013 2:12 am

Hi jay123
First off welcome to the asylum :lol: :D
This should really have been posted in the personal layouts under construction section.
You will get a much better response there.
So its a little basic so what, the BIG idea is to enjoy the hobby as long as that is happening all is right with the world.
I certainly was no first class modeler when I started that takes time and I still have not got there all these years later.
A couple of points that will I hope help.
This is based on your pictures
Your track work looks a bit rough this is one of the most important jobs you will do on your railway
It is a job for great care and the best you can do to get it right leave nothing to chance there is no room for as we Aussies
would say "she al be right mate" it is a case of "she will be right mate because you will make D##### sure she is mate"
Bench work is the other important job same applies.
Get these two jobs right and it don't matter what kind of mess goes on top because the trains will always run reliably
The rest can be sorted at any time but you only get one chance with the other two.
Your scenery needs some attention as well I can see a lot of white spots, what I do is paint the land form its base color
Then go back a couple of times to do the white spot patrol and get as many as I can.
Having got the white spots I then do the finishing painting and after that add the textures and greenery.
More care is needed around the track to keep the stuff off it and clean up the over spill.
Also think about whats in the scene does it look right.
Just take your time don't rush (its not an Olympic sport) do the best you can and most importantly enjoy the hobby
If you don't know something don't be afraid to ask some one on the forums will be able to tell you
hope I haven't been to harsh.
regards John
A model railway can be completed but it's never finished

jay123
Posts: 27
Joined: Mon Jan 07, 2013 3:06 pm

Re: my first attempt at a permanent board

Postby jay123 » Sun Jan 27, 2013 7:05 am

Thanks John, no its not to harsh at all, like i said i wasnt a rail modeler at all befor i started this. Yes the track looks a little rough but befor it was secured to the board, the trains were run to check reliability and all four trains do run without fault. with the exeption of the oval none of the track is new it all came from donation or the dreaded 'car boot' lol. Every joint is silver soldered so connection and electric flow should be no problem and stay consistant, i have also soldered wire 'droppers i think you all call them' to almost every section of track (a few more to do). As for the scenery, well this was always going to be problem, specially when you have a 5 yearold changing his mind how he wants it to look lol. I plan on building a board for myself after this one so thats the one that will get all my attention to detail (i guess ill be asking lots of questions for that one).

buz
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Location: Kalgoorlie West Australia

Re: my first attempt at a permanent board

Postby buz » Sun Jan 27, 2013 8:31 am

Hi jay123
Plenty of track feed droppers is a very good thing.
Not sure I agree with soldering the rail joint's (Or have I read it wrong), that will make it a PITA to add to and alter to improve the track layout.
Even in the adult world these things are prone to change extension and improvement untill its just right.
It may even cause expantion and contraction problems.
5Yo's Change there mind never Hmm maybe thats why I have such a miss matched load of rolling stock and loco's now :lol:
Or could it just be I am train mad :roll:
My own opinion (not to be confused with any semblance to reality) is this is a great hobby for the whole family to share.
Perhaps when the son is a year or two older you could both build a layout together.
With each working in accordance to their own abilities and pushing it just a little at a time
My fondest childhood memories are when Dad and I shared time with my train set as it was then or time together with the real railways.
My father worked for the railways so I was lucky i got the best of both worlds
Glad I was not to harsh.
regards John
A model railway can be completed but it's never finished

jay123
Posts: 27
Joined: Mon Jan 07, 2013 3:06 pm

Re: my first attempt at a permanent board

Postby jay123 » Wed Feb 13, 2013 6:30 pm

Hi, yes in some way the rails are soldered together but not at fishplate points (this would stop expansion and contraction as stated). What i have done is look at the real rails of my local line and noticed that they have a loop of wire between the rails. Being as this is a loop, it will have pleanty of give in expansion cases. So this is what i have done. It allows a solid link between each rail but at the same time should i need to remove a section it is only a snip or de-solder job to remove.

ive placed a small drawing to show.
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buz
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Location: Kalgoorlie West Australia

Re: my first attempt at a permanent board

Postby buz » Thu Feb 14, 2013 9:30 am

Hi jay123
AH!! :idea: I see what you mean "you have electrically bonded the rails together"across the fish plates.
You have been studying the real railways haven't you :D
That also is a good idea all the droppers and bonds can be hidden under the board and ballast
and you have an unbroken electrical CCT.
regards John
A model railway can be completed but it's never finished

jay123
Posts: 27
Joined: Mon Jan 07, 2013 3:06 pm

Re: my first attempt at a permanent board

Postby jay123 » Fri Feb 15, 2013 9:18 am

BONDING, thats the word i was looking for lol. :lol:

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Essex2Visuvesi
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Re: my first attempt at a permanent board

Postby Essex2Visuvesi » Fri Feb 15, 2013 9:38 am

I believe that is what my dear old dad would call belt and braces! :). Others might call it building in redundancy. Either way it's a good thing

Most people use either link wires (red in your diagram) or droppers (green) but rarely do you see both except maybe on a Garden railway. That's going to make for an extremely reliable setup.

The other alternative is to solder wires to the fishplates themselves.... Some people swear by this whereas others say its a bad thing. My n gauge Xmas layout used soldered fishplates as the track was preballasted (Fleischmann piccolo). I then soldered the fishplate to one rail, this means one fishplate at each end is bonded to the rail, allowing for expansion.

Looks to be a nice layout, like others have said take your time, think about what you're doing and most of all have fun!
Si quam primum vos operor non successio , impono

The only stupid question is the one I didn't ask

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jay123
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Joined: Mon Jan 07, 2013 3:06 pm

Re: my first attempt at a permanent board

Postby jay123 » Sat Feb 16, 2013 8:28 am

Thanks essex. The only reason that i have done what i have is due to the layout being in the loft. The down side to that is that the loft was insulated and floor boarded long before the layout came so it gets cold up there. Had the layout been first then i would have insulated the roof rather than the floor allowing heat to pass from down stairs. Cold = damp air and a normal layout i think would suffer poor running so decided to eliminate what i could from the start. However now that the layout has been decided (the final size of the board) i can start to think about back sceine boarding. Once i have the piccy of that in mind i was thinking of boxing the layout which would enclose the two sides and back. I would the construct sliding door to allow access to the front for use. I could the roof over the layout too. This might all sound overkill but it would allow me then to install a couple of pipe heaters. These would run for all the cold months and allow air temp to stay stable and keep abay the dreaded damp air.

I must be mad i know, all this work for a layout tht started as something for my son lol, but what do you do? do you do all this work and enjoy doing it for the damp air to hold you back or do you do the work, enjoy and try and stay trouble fee AND have a warmer environment in which to play at the end of it. Lol the wife thinks im nuts but my argument is that its cheaper than my other hobby which is Drag racing and im home doing it. At leaste the train means im only up a ladder away and the wife and kids can still come and play without leaving the house BONUS.

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Essex2Visuvesi
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Re: my first attempt at a permanent board

Postby Essex2Visuvesi » Sat Feb 16, 2013 9:25 am

jay123 wrote: Lol the wife thinks im nuts but my argument is that its cheaper than my other hobby which is Drag racing and im home doing it.


Quite.... it's a nightmare trying to get the smell of burnt rubber out of the axminster :)
Si quam primum vos operor non successio , impono

The only stupid question is the one I didn't ask

Proud member of the OAM
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jay123
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Joined: Mon Jan 07, 2013 3:06 pm

Re: my first attempt at a permanent board

Postby jay123 » Sat Feb 16, 2013 9:46 am

lol burn rubber isnt the problem, its the 2 foot flames that do the damage :lol:

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Essex2Visuvesi
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Re: my first attempt at a permanent board

Postby Essex2Visuvesi » Sat Feb 16, 2013 11:54 am

jay123 wrote:lol burn rubber isnt the problem, its the 2 foot flames that do the damage :lol:


only 2 foot? you should see me after a vindaloo :oops:

back on topic.
what you were saying about the loft insulation, you will want to keep an eye on expansion in the summer so that the track doesn't buckle. Luckily you can do an easy fix as you have lots of droppers by simply cutting some slots into the rail anywhere there is an issue
Si quam primum vos operor non successio , impono

The only stupid question is the one I didn't ask

Proud member of the OAM
(Order of the Armchair Modeller


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