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 Loco shed, scratchbuild

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T O P I C    R E V I E W
Nelson458 Posted - 08/20/2017 : 3:01:26 PM
I have only recently, after some 5 or 6 years, started building a small layout. Although I am not much into operations, I do enjoy a little switching, and have found Peco insulfrog turnouts just the ticket for me, easy to throw the points, very little wiring. In fact, I might have gotten a little carried away with their turnouts . My 5' by 10' layout, is more destined to be a large diorama than an operating layout. And that was my intention.

Soooo, that being said, I have always wanted a small facility for the engines, nothing big, an engine shed (rather than a roundhouse) and machine shop, coaling station and a source of water. Ever since I built Sierra West's engine house, I thought that might be just the thing for this layout. Since that shed is HOn3, it won't do well here, besides, I have plans for that later.

So I set about planning the actual size of the shed. I already knew from the beginning what I wanted, and where, I just hadn't gotten the track set up and everything 'sized' so it would fit. It will be about 13.5" deep, contain 3 tracks, and one off to the side. I'm building it on 3/16" ply, it is pretty flat now, but after I glue stuff down that might change, so I am going to re-enforce the bottom with some sturdy hardwood. The layout sits on 2" foam, so I would need to cut into that for the added strips underneath.

The engine shed will be built very similarly to the Sierra West model, board by board on a framework of 6x6 stripwood. Or maybe 4x6. The roof will be peaked in the center, and the right hand stall will be set back 4.5" which will be used for small engines.

So far, I made a simple cardboard moch-up to see how it fits. I am glad I did, as the two r/h tracks didn't line up like I wanted. I had a short l/h turnout leading into those stalls and open area, and replaced it with a medium length 'Y' turnout. That proved to be much better. Sometimes a simple change is all that is needed.

So here are a couple of pictures, a birds-eye view and a sketch of the front of the shed. I hope to start on the project soon, but with an upcoming trip to Colorado for the show, not sure how far I will get before the next weekend.

15   L A T E S T    R E P L I E S    (Newest First)
Michael Hohn Posted - 12/10/2018 : 6:47:06 PM
Beautiful rafter work. Looks very real.

Nelson458 Posted - 12/10/2018 : 4:57:21 PM
Thanks Bryon.

I had contracted a cold about 4 days ago, just a head cold, and it got worse up till today when I started to feel human again. So apart from working on a 1000 piece puzzle and resting, didn't get much else done.

But, today, I got the car side rafters up, and please take note, they are not spaced evenly YET, and supporting timbers still need to be added. All this will come.

But here are a couple of pictures.

brownbr Posted - 12/10/2018 : 06:51:23 AM
Wow that is some precise work on those rafters. Great work also on the castings. I got a chuckle out of the nasty toilet bowl.
Nelson458 Posted - 12/09/2018 : 5:01:15 PM
Originally posted by George D

Beautiful work on the rafters, Tony.


Thank you George.
George D Posted - 12/08/2018 : 4:19:22 PM
Beautiful work on the rafters, Tony.

Nelson458 Posted - 12/08/2018 : 11:18:39 AM
Originally posted by ocalicreek


Just catching up on this thread. First, I too find crows fascinating to watch. We have ravens around here that cockle and cluck and they're fun to follow.

Secondly, I have to say I prefer your cabinet. Nothing against the original, but I like the clean look you've achieved.

Finally, I've never seen rafters built in place like that, but you pulled it off really nicely. Bravo.


Galen, thank you. The roof was something I kept banging my head over for some time before I decided on this technique. If it didn't work, well, I could always find another.

We had put out some bird "cakes" this year on a hanging tray made for the purpose, and the woodpeckers love it, as well as the blackbirds, sparrows, and cardinals, along with a few others. We are going to get some more this weekend to help more birds enjoy without over crowding. We hung them on the gutter this year. Amazing how popular this has become, as there have been many birds on the one we have now.

Not wanting to take anything away from Brett's castings, but I do agree, the individually placed items and details make it a little better. I'm trying to use as few castings as I can on this model unless I just really can't pass one up.
ocalicreek Posted - 12/05/2018 : 9:55:48 PM

Just catching up on this thread. First, I too find crows fascinating to watch. We have ravens around here that cockle and cluck and they're fun to follow.

Secondly, I have to say I prefer your cabinet. Nothing against the original, but I like the clean look you've achieved.

Finally, I've never seen rafters built in place like that, but you pulled it off really nicely. Bravo.

Nelson458 Posted - 12/03/2018 : 4:15:36 PM
Carl, thank you, sometimes a lot of trial and error is necessary.

Jerry, thank you, yes, the entire roof is designed to be removable, otherwise, why go to all this trouble?

Bernd, thanks, yes, many days of work on the roof alone.

Mike, thanks, yes, it is rather spindly, but not as much as you might thing. I have a lot of cross bracing to add.

Thank you Robert.
railman28 Posted - 12/03/2018 : 1:48:18 PM
Sharp looking and very impressive
Michael Hohn Posted - 12/02/2018 : 11:57:24 PM

Very impressive. It looks rather spindly at this stage.

Bernd Posted - 12/02/2018 : 9:51:44 PM
WOW, that looks nice. Lot's of work there but it sure looks great.

TRAINS1941 Posted - 12/02/2018 : 8:46:52 PM
Great job on this Tony!

Is the roof removable??
Carl B Posted - 12/02/2018 : 8:24:00 PM
Nice job Tony....and hey, whatever works!
Nelson458 Posted - 12/02/2018 : 7:09:23 PM
The last weekend and this one I finally got to doing some roof construction. I am far from finishing, as I have some cross bracing and spacing to do do.....but, what I have done so far was the biggest hurdle for this model. I changed several techniques as I went along, trying to figure out the best way to proceed, and what I finally ended up with may or may not be the best, and others may do something entirely different, but it is what I came up with and seemed to work.

The best way here is to add a caption to each photo.

I started out by making a long beam and adding some cross braces to it at 1/2" intervals. These pieces were cut on the Jim Byrne's saw and then filed smooth.

They were glued in place to give me something to glue the rafters to.

Then I added it to the structure with some blocks to get it to the height I needed.

I cut all the rafters, using one as a master to cut the notch to all the others. I did this as I went rather than all at once, just in case I needed to make some adjustments.

Testing the fit, which seemed to work just fine throughout the entire structure, as it happened.

I started to add the white styrene to help in holding it up in the center, to keep it even, but it wasn't working.

So I cut up some spare plywood to the exact size I needed, but that wasn't quite right either.

So I cut those down to about 2" long, which worked very well, I just had to scoot them along as I needed it.

Then I found I needed to find a way to keep it level on the top side, as I found one side was riding higher than the other, and I had to remove it all. So a piece of strip wood seemed to do the trick for the shorter section.

Finally, coming along nicely.

Starting on the longer section.

And finished, at least for the rafters. I have the other roof section and some cross braces to do next.

Nelson458 Posted - 11/19/2018 : 7:47:40 PM
Happy thanksgiving everyone. We are taking it easy this time around since I just had a big party this weekend for my birthday, and with some family staying overnight, I didn't get much done. But, I did get a cabinet made. I have a Sierra West casting that I thought about copying and seeing if I could improve it, or just change it a little, plus I really wanted to include some oil or grease cans rather than what was in the casting. The Sierra West one is on the right with the tool box on top.

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