Saturday, October 31, 2009

Wood rack

There is a wood rack in the room that I hoped I could use for getting the track around to the places that I wanted it to go. I wanted to minimize the modifications so that I could still store wood for the wood shop. I originally had a plan that would require a small duck under that wouldn't require you to duck to far, but it always bothered me that any duct under would be too much.
While I was working on the benchwork it occurred to me that the best bet would be to remove, move or modifying the wood rack would be the best bet. So, now I'm rethinking this and see if it will change anything for the better.
Another option would be to make a swinging door for the track and it happens that I have a door that I could use like a dutch door. Time put put on my thinking cap again.

Upper Level progress

The upper level benchwork is completed in the main area. Where is two towns will be located the benchwork is 24" deep and the, other is 20". It is only 15" deep where the trains just run through.
The benchwork was 62 1/2" high and for the widest area where switching would take place, it seemed too deep for me, with no stool. I had to decide how important the height was and whether a stool would be a problem with a low ceiling. I settled on lowering the benchwork down to 60". This gives me a 15" separation between decks, which really doesn't seem to be a problem on the lower deck except for a area where the trains will just run through.
I also can lower the lower level benchwork by as much as 3", just by loosening the supports. Some adjusting will need to be done as I put the grade into the lower level.

Thursday, October 29, 2009

Upper Level Benchwork Started

The ceiling in phase 1 is complete. Trying to merge one room into the other was a pain. I got down to the last piece and it wouldn't fit around all those corners. I ended up adding an extra divider and made the last piece into two.

Now that the ceiling is out of the way I have started the second level benchwork. I have gone around two of the four walls. I have a few adjustments and brackets to put in place to ensure everything stays level and secure.

I'll still have the fun of trying to get past the water heater and still be removable, you know, "just in case". Hopefully, I'm thinking ahead for all the gotcha's.

I don't have all the details to get from one level to the other, but I'll at least be able to get the benchwork in and mostly adjusted, until I get into the other room.

Thursday, October 22, 2009

It's a little low but....

it is a ceiling. No more worries about insulation falling on your head. I just have to finish a funny corner by the door and splice it into the next section.

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

The rest of the ceiling in the alcove

I went to the store and got the rest of the materials for suspended ceiling. I am in the process of building the grid so that I can install the ceiling panels. I decided to go with the highest ceiling I could get for the rest of the alcove.

Monday, October 19, 2009

Testing upper level heights

I completed to drop ceiling for the area over Rockland. It is at 6' 3" of clearance. I am now playing with an old section of benchwork for the upper level. I knew going in that things might be tight. This section of benchwork was 2 1/2", plus the 1/2" plywood top.

I started thinking I would have only 11" clearance from the road bed to the lights. I did some measuring and figured I could start with a 13" clearance to the top of the bench work. I started with 18" deep, which is slightly less that the 20 1/2" of the lower level. Since I would not be having a town in this area on the upper level, I reduced that to 15". I could go to 12" deep, but 15" seems good for now.

The bottom picture shows the first try with a 13" clearance on the top and 17" on the bottom. There appeared to be room to lower the upper level a little so I came down an inch to the top of the backdrop I had installed. The upper picture shows this new arrangemeny. You could still see the back buildings on the lower level real good, so I think this is were it will stay.

Now I have to see how well I like this upper level clearance, because the next decision is whether or not to have a valence all the way around this section or just raise the rest of the ceiling higher because I can.

Decisions, decisions....

Sunday, October 18, 2009

Drop Ceiling and Upper Valence

I finally got around to figuring out what was needed for a drop ceiling in the layout room. I am trying for two levels. It is made complicated by an already low ceiling and duct work in the way. I made some measurements and the best I could do would be 6' 4", which would be unacceptable for a single height ceiling.
The first thing I did was move the ventilation around to the perimeter of the room. This gave me more height in the middle of the room. I then had to build a valence over one side of the layout to hide the duct work and lights. This turned out to be about 6' 3", which is OK because it is over the edge of the layout. The upper level might only have about 11" of clearance. This is not as good as I want, but a single deck layout is just not acceptable at this time.
I will set up a temporary upper deck and play with the heights and clearances and see how it looks. The area I'm most concerned with is just going to be countryside. This might be a slightly lower, lower deck, but we'll see how it goes. If it turns out that I can live with the clearances, then I'll decide if I have a valence all the way around the room.

Saturday, October 10, 2009

New turntable

The turntable base has been installed at Rigby Yard on the south end. I hope I didn't mess up to bad. For some reason I thought it was the same size as the old turntable. It didn't look small until after I installed it. The big disadvantage is I won't be able to place two diesels on it at one time. I'm not sure if this will be a problem or not. We'll see

South end of RIgby Yard

I finally got around to finishing the south end of Rigby, so that I could install the new turntable. I ended up with yard tracks that were all roughly equal in the length to the original longest track. This will add about 7 - 10 cars more storage in the yard.

I also added a yard lead and the ability to get to the mainline tracks. This can be done from boh ends of the yard. This should add a lot of flexibility to Rigby yard.