Rainier Great Western Railway & Navigation Company

The Route of the Thunderbird


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Northwest view of new curved boxes and corner sections.
The Home and Design of the RGW....

This Page Currently Under Construction (Literally)

Train Room (Shell)  -  Train Room (Interior)  -  Layout Design

Layout Construction:  (click on pictures for full view)

April 2007:  

As we touched on in the March report, this work session was devoted to the construction of our "curved" boxes and the NW corner of the layout.  As you can see in the three pictures below, we didn't exactly create a curved box.  That would have required us to laminate thin strips of plywood and construct a curved form to tie it all together.  Way too much work for this stage of construction.  Therefore, we built conventional boxes with a twist.  We will ultimately use masonite to form the fascia, so we decided to let the fascia create an illusion of a curved box. 

In the first view, there are three design elements I want to draw your attention to.  The first is in the upper level box.  You can see that the front-facing side does not run the full length of the box.  Compare it to the box immediately to its right, you can see the screws holding it together.  Our new box lets the side perpendicular to the wall run long.  This allows us to maintain the use of the bolts that are threaded through the brackets we have outlined in our previous updates.  We then can look at the second level and see how the real box has been shortened by approximately 3".  We then added a non-structural bump-out that equals the depth of the other standard boxes.  The final element is that the middle shelf ends with the box shown.  If we were to continue with another box, we would run into untenable separation issues with our grade and subroadbed.  As such, we needed a filler strip to accommodate the bolts.

The second and third pics shown provide a clearer view of our illusion of a curved box.  In the two views shown, using a scrap strip of masonite and a couple of clamps, I hopefully illustrated how the flexibility of the mason fills the void in the box and gives us a nice curved effect.  Please also note how this method follows our original plan, outlined on the floor in masking tape.  When the time comes, we will cut the masonite to follow the terrain of the railroad and affix the masonite to the boxes with glue and screws.

 Multiple level view of new "curved boxes".        NW view of fascia demonstration.        NE view of fascia demonstration.       

The pictures below provide other views of our finished product.  The second picture needs some explanation.  When we addressed the issue of constructing special boxes to fit these corner sections, we quickly decided another option was necessary.  We came to the conclusion that cutting out 5/8" plywood in the shape of the corner was more than sufficient for our needs.  Why?  First, the corners do not need to be structural, we could easily span the subroadbed from the NW wall to the N wall.  Second, assuming we wanted to use the corner as a location for an industry that required switching, the risers for the subroadbed can be connected to the flat surface of the plywood using multiple means.  And lastly, the only thing we really needed a form in the corner for was to hang fascia.  The plywood can easily handle that job, but if necessary, small backer blocks can be added to give us additional area to attach the fascia.  All that considered, we skipped building special boxes and went to the jigsaw.  (Thanks Bob!).

N and NW walls with new "curved" boxes installed.        NW view of plywood corner sections.

It is clear from the results that we will have some unique lighting issues, but that's a problem for another day.  In our next report, we tackle the "North Blob".


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