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Author Previous Topic: Sliding door reefers? Topic Next Topic: Doom!... Despair!... and Ag-o-ny!
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OK Hogger

Posted - 02/06/2019 :  1:03:10 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote

Yup, it's getting exciting.

I'm hoping to start making sawdust soon after the arrival of my saw horses!


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OK Hogger

Posted - 02/06/2019 :  1:23:36 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Follow up:

Just received an email from Home Depot that my saw horses are due to arrive via UPS Monday, the 11th!

Then it's sawdust time, BAY-beee!


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OK Hogger

Posted - 02/06/2019 :  3:02:31 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote

Whew... that was unexpected.

Happened to think that I need code 70 rail joiners, insulated rail joiners, and small spikes.

Bam: Just spent $87.32 and couldn't get enough insulated joiners, so I'm trying to find more of those which will mean more $$!

The expense to be in model railroading is shocking, at times!


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OK Hogger

Posted - 02/11/2019 :  7:43:13 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote

The saw horses arrived today! AND... I have 5 sheets of Homasote on order that I'll pick up at FS Wednesday or Friday, all of my track laying supplies arrived today, and I'm currently charging the batteries on two of my portable drills, so...

BARRING the unforeseen, tomorrow I'll start installing the lower stage shelf!

Andre "I'm Not Excited" Ming

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Posted - 02/11/2019 :  7:56:59 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Alright!!!! I bet sawdust on the floor already!


It's only make-believe

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Michael Hohn

Posted - 02/11/2019 :  8:57:43 PM  Show Profile  Visit Michael Hohn's Homepage  Reply with Quote
I can feel the excitement building!

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OK Hogger

Posted - 02/12/2019 :  8:35:28 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
February 12, 2019...

It was the best of times, it was the worst of times.

Today, for the first time in about two decades, was The Day to commence with the bench work.

The day started off easy enough: Move EVERYTHING on the left wall over to the right side of the building. EVERYTHING. Also, pack up my work station tools.

That done, it was set up my new saw horses, throw the first piece of plywood thereon, get out the tools...

Where's the box of tools and stuff?

One hour later, I give up. It was NOT in my building, it was NOT in the garage, it was NOT in my computer room closet. It didn't exist. I DID find SOME of my tools, but I haven't a clue about what happened to the various tools that have disappeared to over the decades of disuse.

SO, it was off to the hardware store, Walmart, along with running some other errands.

Almost 2 hours later, I'm back and grab a late lunch. Then it's off to my out building, needed tools in hand. NOW maybe I can make some progress.

Amid all the trips back to the house to find something I'd forgot, EVENTUALLY, I had a plum line snapped, and the L brackets for the lower stage in place:

Over to the sheet of ply on the saw horses, mark the end dimensions for the lower shelf on the 4' ends of the plywood, and snap another chalk line. Presto: The first piece of ply (16" x 8') for the lower shelf is ready to cut. Time to dawn my ear plugs and rip the first piece of plywood.

Of I go... the saw screaming... sawdust flying... I'm really, really building a layout!!

Then... the blade starts turning slower... and slower. Sparks began to come out of the saw's vent... slower... the stops... smoke.

Unbelievable. My saw just burned up its brushes.

A quick look at the watch: IF I take off NOW, I can get to the hardware store before they close. Off I went.

Long story short: For some reason they don't stock brushes for 30 year old Skil circular saws. Imagine that. SO, several $$ lighter I'm walking out the door with a brand new Porter Cable circular.

I finish ripping the ply with my new saw, then slap the shelf against the wall. It is now tacked in place. At long last, there's now TANGIBLE evidence that I'm truly on my way.

May not look like much now... but I was SO GLAD to finally have all the needed items replaced that allowed me to accomplish this little bit before time to go in for supper. What SHOULD have taken MAYBE an hour or so... pretty much consumed the entire afternoon.

After supper I went back out to my room, and decided to place a TOC19 train on the bare plywood to get an idea of size relation. Whoa...

Even though this is only PART of the stage... what stage is there swallows up the little TOC19 train.

To give you an idea of how much more stage is going in, here's this view...

There will be SEVEN stage tracks almost the entire length of that wall!

You see, since I decided to go diesels, the elements had to be totally redesigned, and increased, to accommodate the longer trains diesel modeling requires. Almost all of the 7 stage tracks will accommodate a 10' train or longer. I think there will be enough staging for my TOC19 era!

Alas, though, until I make much more progress on bench work, I'm done being able to use my work station. AND, the right side of the room shows the strain of having to handle all the stuff I had on the left wall:

SO, it was a precarious start, but the essential tools/items are on hand now, so I should do better, time wise. However, I need to remind myself that this isn't a race. I need to calm down and try to enjoy the journey on this, possibly my last, layout.

All fer now!


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Posted - 02/12/2019 :  11:24:42 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
nice start, the rain looks good.

It's only make-believe

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Engine Wiper

Posted - 02/13/2019 :  09:29:07 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Andre, cannot tell you how excited I am for you. Good on ya brother. Enjoy the experience.


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Premium Member

Posted - 02/13/2019 :  09:29:25 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
I think if I bought another circular saw, I'd get a battery version. Less power/less working time, but a lot more convenient.

Anyway, good luck making more sawdust!


Modeling 1890s (because the voices in my head told me to)

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OK Hogger

Posted - 02/13/2019 :  6:51:01 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote

Let's see what ya'll said...

Bob said...

"nice start, the rain looks good."

Thanks! That's a decent length train for a TOC19 layout, but I will actually be able to run much longer ones and still clear up in the pass tracks. However, I doubt I'll run at maximum length. So many things to be determined once I reach the top level.

Ryan said:

Andre, cannot tell you how excited I am for you. Good on ya brother. Enjoy the experience.

Well thanks much, Ryan. For the most part I'm enjoying the experience, but I confess I DO have a tendency to go "GUNG HO!" and want it done NOW. I'm trying to not do that.

Dave said:

I think if I bought another circular saw, I'd get a battery version. Less power/less working time, but a lot more convenient.

As long as you have an extra battery to rotate, yup. Otherwise, I want cords for my saws and batteries for my drills. Sawing is typically on saw horses, so the cord isn't a bother (to me). Drilling is in all sorts of awkward circumstances (like today!), so no cord is VERY handy.


LOT'S of chin scratchin' today. Also, a LOT of piddly diddly stuff that takes time, but you don't really see substantial visible progress. However, by the end of the session I had the remaining portion of the lower stage, as well as the reverse loop area, tacked in place. I will make it final tomorrow. I also need to radius the reverse loop edge, too, but that will wait until the bench work for the lower town is in place so the two can be cut at one time.

Here's a pic of today's accomplishments:

See that little yellow speck over against the wall toward the loop area? That's a Mantua Rogers 10 wheeler (handiest at the moment). It's sitting approximately at the clearance point of the "main" in the stage area. If desired, there could be train behind it all the way past the left edge of the picture!

Need to wrap this up, church beckons. Going motorcycle riding tomorrow, so doubt there will be any progress to speak of on the layout.

All fer now!


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Michael Hohn

Posted - 02/13/2019 :  8:09:50 PM  Show Profile  Visit Michael Hohn's Homepage  Reply with Quote

Iím happy for you on the layout. Itís exciting to start a project that has been in planning for months.


Not everything that is faced can be changed, but nothing can be changed until it is faced. James Baldwin

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OK Hogger

Posted - 02/14/2019 :  5:50:41 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote

Thanks! Yes, it's fun to see it beginning to take shape.

Didn't spend any time working on the layout today. Instead, I hauled my dual sport motorcycle down into Indian Territory (Choctaw Nation) and rode the abandoned roadbed of the Frisco's helper section down in the Ouachita Mountains. COOL BEANS! I may post some pics of that adventure later.

Once back home, I spent a bit of time out in my building cogitating my next moves: How I want to frame it. While there, decided to slap down some switches to see how the compound ladder was going to match my 1.5"/1' scale drawing:

Nailed it!


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OK Hogger

Posted - 02/17/2019 :  7:56:13 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Thursday, 2/14/19...

Didn't do much in my hobby shack, first time rain wasn't threatening in weeks, so I went for a ride on my dual sport motorcycle down in the Ouachita Mountains. I rode a portion of the old Frisco's steam era helper district down near Talihina, OK. I love going to Talihina. I love the country, I love the culture (it's pretty much the capitol of the Choctaw Nation), and I love eating at Pam's Hateful Hussy Diner. It was high overcast and not particularly good for photos, but I enjoyed the outing. Here's a few pics of the old Frisco's line...

An overall view taken during my bike trip on way over Winding Stair Mountain to reach the roadbed portion...

Then I turned onto the roadbed and started upgrade. Here's that view looking upgrade. At this point, the trains w/helpers would be getting a run leaving the little helper town of Bengal, OK (originally "Indian Territory" when the Frisco built through here in 1887) and gathering up as much of a run at Winding Stair Mountain as they could muster. The ascent would involve 2.25%, 2.6%, and even a short stretch of near 3%. The Winding Stair Mountain grades (both sides were helper sections) were short, but steep, and it played havoc with the Frisco's the operations over the Ouachita's.

And lastly, a couple scenes along the grade...

Friday, 2/15/19...

After getting back to the house from a supplies trip to Fort Smith, it was out to the hobby hut and finish installing the angle supports and measure/cut/fit the base for the lower level's "Town A". (I'll get around to naming my towns eventually.) Here it is tacked in place. Still more underpinning work, and still that radius on the return loop shelf to cut.

That stretched out tape measure is 10'. Wanted to see how a 10' train would look on this portion of the bench work. Also visible is my HVAC unit and my stereo unit. I like to have the oldies station rockin' while I'm doin' my thing in my hobby hut.

And the same deal with the stage area: Wanted to see about what the visual impact of a 10' train would be like...

(That's my temporarily re-purposed work bench over there on the left.)

Good time to mention layout particulars:

I've learned by experience that building a multi level is an exercise of compromise. I learned from my tri-level layout that a lower level can be too low, and an upper level can be too high. The idea is to find the compromise for your stature, and the "givens n' druthers" the layout imposes. In this case, that ended up being:

* Lower level railhead sits at 39" above the floor.

* Upper level railhead sits at 58" above the floor.

The lower level height will give "acceptible" viewing of the lower level when standing, and EXCELLENT viewing when seated in my comfy rolling office chair.

The upper level height I've dealt with before on another layout, and operationally it's fine for me when standing, but when it's time to work on the upper level, a small step up is nice.

No, it's not ideal, but 'ya do what' cha' gotta' do when 'ya gotta do's it so's you kin have what 'ya wanna' have when 'ya wanna' do's it.

At least, that's my story an' I'm a' stickin' to it like tick on a dog's ear!

Saturday, 2/16/19...

I only spent some of Saturday (sister visited) in my hobby hut fabricating L-girder supports, replacing one of the L-brackets with an L-girder support, screwing down (finalizing) all the plywood, installing the last L-girder over on the back (long) wall, plotted the track for the reverse loop and trimmed the reverse loop area, along with other odds and ends. On my supplies trip, I struck out on L-brackets at Southerland's. I need ONE more in order to finish the current bench work.

Here's a view looking from the lower stage area toward the reverse loop:

Here's a closer look at the reverse loop area with some sectional track in place to check my trammeled radius line.

(Ho-hum, again I nailed it. )

And here's a view from the current end of bench work looking back over the completed portion:

Couldn't resist setting some elements in their place to get an idea of equipment/structures-to-layout proportion:

And, a closer look at the above place holding mini-scene:

I guess I'm ready for Homasote on this portion of the bench work. I expect the L-brackets won't be at Southerland's until mid, or latter part, of next week. (I still need to install ONE more L-bracket in the Town A location.)

I was able to stabilize the reverse loop area without undue encroachment to the underside. This will mean HEAD CLEARANCE when I scooter under the bench work for access within during the construction, and later for maintenance. (That's a GOOD thing!) I also beveled the ends of the supporting L-girders, and will eventually pad them with a section of foam water pipe insulation. (Thinkin' ahead about me ol' noggin.)

The framework/bench work will be as light as practical, as will be the scenery itself. (Extruded foam and such.) I want to keep the layout as lightweight as practical in deference to the joist floor.

Soon I need to do some research to ascertain what parameters need to be observed for stringing wiring for DCC. I think that time is at hand now as well.

This week in recap:

SO... I installed my FIRST L-bracket on Tuesday, and as of today, I have the stage and most of Town A ready for Homasote. Once the Homasote is in place, I can lay track if I want, or start the bench work on the peninsula, or I can lay some of the track (stage, for example, and part of Town A), AND... if I have the needed wire on hand by then, power it. Why... I could switch some cars after that!

All fer this 'un. I'll go to work on a post showing some mock-ups I couldn't resist setting up last night.

All fer a bit...


Edited by - OK Hogger on 02/17/2019 7:57:42 PM

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OK Hogger

Posted - 02/17/2019 :  8:03:58 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
After returning home from eating supper in Fort Smith last night, I got a hankerin' to go out to the hobby hut and pencil-in Town A.

Soon, I had the essential center lines drawn onto the plywood. I then placed switches in their locations (everything lines up as it did on my track plan), and as a final touch, I populated the town with cars on each of the yard/service/industry spurs as a visual aid to how the elements would look together. (An empty Atlas engine box sleeve stands in for the engine house!)

Here's looking toward the reversing loop:

Understand that immediately this side of the reverse loop access hole, there will be a full-width backdrop scene divider to lop off the utilitarian reverse loop/stage throat scene from view when operating at Town A.

And here's a view from the opposite end of Town A:

I breathed a sigh of relief to see that my mental visions of what I was designing on paper are shaping up like I envisioned. (That doesn't always happen with layouts, 'ya know.)

Life is good!

I've sort of worked myself to a stalemate at this point. I need to either:

* Start on the peninsula, which will involve moving BUNCH of really important junk back over toward the left wall (where my new bench work sits), along with the need for more lumber (1x2's and three sheets of plywood).

* OR, start laying the Homasote, which will mean no progress until I make a trip to Fort Smith to pickup/transport same, said trip taking take place tomorrow.

An aside:

Reality slapped the ever livin' snot of out me as I set up the above mock-up: The layout is going to swallow up rolling stock at an alarming rate. I don't have NEAR enough, either era, to the "ready for paint/decals/n' weathering" stage as I smugly thought.

All the updates fer tonight!


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