Tuesday, May 29, 2018

St-Pie Layout - Benchwork Completed and Installed

I didn't promise extensive reports about this project, but I'm glad to announce the benchwork is now built and found its way in Jérôme's home.

The benchwork was built in three separate modules in Louis-Marie's workshop that could be easily loaded in Jérôme's car for a 2-mile trip to their final destination. Benchwork is quite lightweight and built with a typical ladder-style 1" x 4" frame. 1/4" lauan plywood was used. I know it's not bullet proof, but I used it with success on my Harlem Station layout and given the abuse this layout has suffered, it behaved extremely well under such circumstances.

Wooden legs were also built with T-nuts and bolts for height ajustment. It came really handy since Jérôme's basement floor is a roller coaster. Legs were painted in black to minimize their visual impact. Meanwhile, we haven't decided yet on the fascia color, but white is starting to be a serious option. We initially thought about painting it black, or tan, or simply Pullman green, but when installing the layout, it became apparent the white primer made the layout disappears. We rarely hear about using this color, but we will give it a shot. It seems promising.

Sorry for the extremely crappy photos. I didn't have my camera and Louis shot a few ones with his phone under very bad lighting conditions.

I'm glad to see the project moving forward. Next step will be to lay the cork roadbed and tracks, then add the bridge deck. Then wiring and operation will start. I also started to weather the grain car fleet, starting with old Blue Box kits to hone my skills before moving on pricier and more detail ones.

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