8x4 board materials?

Discussion of model railway baseboard design and construction
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Oranoco
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8x4 board materials?

Postby Oranoco » Wed Sep 23, 2015 11:16 am

Planning to start my build fairly soon. Intending to do the build with a 9mm ply board on a batton frame boxed into 8 2ft square sections underneath.

Thoughts and opinions?

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Bufferstop
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Re: 8x4 board materials?

Postby Bufferstop » Wed Sep 23, 2015 8:53 pm

Is this to be a fixed structure or will it need to be moved. A 8x4 board with sufficient stiffening not to flex when lifted is all but impossible to move. It will be too heavy to be safely lifted by one person. Even with two to lift it it will only go through a household door stood on one of its long sides, anything attached to its surface will risk damage when negotiating its way through the typical UK house. The general consensus is that with about two feet of clearance all around you need a space of 12x8 to operate it. Given that amount of space it would be better to build a layout around a central operating well, using boards each about 4x2, held together with coach bolts and aligned with patternmakers dowels.
Have a good read through this or look for the book on baseboard construction in the "Aspects of modelling" series.
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Oranoco
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Re: 8x4 board materials?

Postby Oranoco » Thu Sep 24, 2015 11:01 am

Has to be moved and stood on its side behind the bed when not in use. No scope to deviate on board or storage, just need to make the best I can of it.

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Emettman
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Re: 8x4 board materials?

Postby Emettman » Thu Sep 24, 2015 6:31 pm

I'd suggest you need to visit a retail building supplier, Jewson or whoever's handiest and handle some of the sheeting materials available in 8x4 size to see what you are looking at for weight, rigidity etc.

I can't think of a conventional material or construction that's going to be both light and stiff enough to serve.

I can think of a couple of promising unconventional routes, but they would be ones I have not tried *at that scale*, and I could not guarantee them.

One using insulation foamboard and thin plywood, and one using square section PVC downpipe as hollow beams.
(using the second I build outdoor benchwork for my first g-scale garden line. A 10 ft by 2 ft table could be picked up quite easily and was quite rigid.)

Something else I know to exist in US/Singapore I'd wanted to try for a while:
Have a look at some of the pictures here, including an 8' by 4' panel i" thick weighing only 16 pounds.
http://singcore.com/uncategorized/free-shipping-sing-sandwich-sale

I've been having a look for anything similar available in the UK, but so far it seems you can get it only in industrial quantities.

Still thinking, Chris
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whynot
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Re: 8x4 board materials?

Postby whynot » Sat Sep 26, 2015 6:57 pm

Oranoco wrote:Has to be moved and stood on its side behind the bed when not in use. No scope to deviate on board or storage, just need to make the best I can of it.


FWIW, I'd say that only solution is to change the size. Manhandling 32 sq ft of anything that is likely to be sufficiently robust is reall not practical. Good luck!
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Re: 8x4 board materials?

Postby Oranoco » Mon Sep 28, 2015 4:37 pm

Looking at the option of doing 2 slot together boards 4' square.

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Re: 8x4 board materials?

Postby Emettman » Thu Oct 01, 2015 2:09 pm

Oranoco wrote:Looking at the option of doing 2 slot together boards 4' square.


I think that has to be better than trying to move an 8x4 board inside a house.
(Sitting it across the back of a garage is another matter. Even if the front edge lifts to clear the car bonnet.)

Are you happy with how the materials, design and construction of that should go, or would you like suggestions?
My first thought would be to think about what it will be lying or or supported by when in use... That's going to affect how much internal strength the boards need, especially when joined.

Chris
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Oranoco
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Re: 8x4 board materials?

Postby Oranoco » Thu Oct 01, 2015 9:55 pm

It will be spanning the double bed and one side will rest on the bedside drawers and the other I was thinking of using a couple of adjustable kitchen worktop legs.

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Re: 8x4 board materials?

Postby Emettman » Mon Oct 05, 2015 12:42 am

Oranoco wrote:It will be spanning the double bed and one side will rest on the bedside drawers and the other I was thinking of using a couple of adjustable kitchen worktop legs.


So no support for the join at the centre of the board: it will need its own strength and rigidity.
(If the boards were to go on a table (with a protective cloth!) and thus had spread-out support, something lighter could be got away with.)

Answer 1) permanent hinge at bottom edge of the two boards.
Plusses: good reliable join, easy assembly. Wiring could be permanent.
Minuses: full weight of model in one (half size) piece. on both sides track and any scenery ends up on *outside* surfaces: very prone to damage.

Answer 2) hinge as before, but build layout with the majority of the framing forming a wall around the track. This offers protection but the boards would be somewhat more complex and also heavier.

Answer 3) variations on separate boards. Here the critical thing is to make the join first.
If those two pieces are in superb alignment, everything is rather less critical.

Ideally I'd like input from others here I've never made boards this big.
Under-engineer and there will be problems with warping and even fracture.
Over-engineer and the boards will cost more and weigh more than they need to.
(The Tay Bridge was underdone and somewhat poorly done. As a result the Forth Bridge was seriously over engineered: to the point where the visually magnificent structure can be argued as a case of bad design.)

I'm thinking 2 pieces of 4ft by 4 in 12mm ply.
Clamp (or tape) together in perfect alignment. Drill 2 (or more...) holes right through the two pieces, of a size to take brass dowels and cups.
*the positioning of these holes is not critical*, only that they are nicely perpendicular to the wood. If the hole is eccentric, it will be the same on both pieces, still resulting in perfect alignment. It is much easier to do this now than to attempt it after the two boards have been made.

I'm still thinking on strength/weight combinations, from there.

Chris


I'm thinkingtwo pieces of 12mm
"It's his madness that keeps him sane."


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