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Sweethome Alabama

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  • Sweethome Alabama

    I've made a start on the baseboards for the new HO layout, so I can run some of my more modern locos and freight cars. Set in Northern Alabama during the 90s-00s, It will be a small switching layout - 10ft scenic and 4ft fiddle yard at one end, but with the option of adding another scenic layout to the other end of the fiddle yard. I will be running NS, Southern, CSX and BN/BNSF diesels on the layout (one at a time on a switch job) and the freight cars will reflect the area - mostly NS/SOU, BN and CSX/CSX predecessors.

    I am constructing the boards with integral legs and the 2 scenic boards will bolt together into a box structure so I can fit it into the car. The layout will use Tortoise switches and run with a NCE ProCab and be operated from the front. The backscenes will be removable to keep weight down and location dowels used to mate the boards together. The fiddle yard has been buiklt to use the cassette tracks that I retired from Sweethome Chicago.

    First job was to cut the end pieces for each of the three boards and fit the location dowels








    I made the basic frame deep enough to fit the Tortoise motors and to house the folding legs. The frame was cut from 2-by-1 pine.






    Next job is to fit the lid (track bed)


    Jon
    Sweethome Chicago is now on Facebook



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  • #2
    What happened to the other layout Jon?

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    • #3
      Jon, I can't wait to see the next installment! I've always enjoyed watching your efforts, but seeing you build a layout start to finish will be a real treat!
      Mark

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      • #4
        Is this a recap Jon, or DeJaVue, what happened to the other Sweethome???? I noticed the 30 or so year date change, I guess switching out the vehicles and such last year wasnt enough for you All or nothin......

        The chance to follow a new layout build by you will certainly be a treat to relish.....

        Karl.A

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        • #5
          Once the frames had been cobbled together, I added the Sundeala baseboard. At the moment it is a solid rectangle (5ft x 21in) but the intention is to remove the unwanted bits as and when the scenery is added, to reduce the overall weight.




          The two main boards were supported on Sweethome Chicago's exhibition legs to get an idea of the overall size and height of the layout. I intend to add one pair of legs to each board which will fold inside the structure for transit. Only 1 pair is needed as the boards will piggyback together.






          Now for the fiddle yard

          Jon
          Sweethome Chicago is now on Facebook



          Sweethome Alabama is now on Facebook



          Hudson Road is now on Facebook



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          • #6
            Another layout! You have a bit of a stable now don't you? I can see sections of the layout you built before Sweethome Chicago in the background of some of your shots.

            This will be good to watch. It sounds interesting already (and I have ideas for the legs on my layout now!)

            p.s. You've got to change that carpet one of these days [:P]
            Built a waterfront HO layout in Ireland http://www.railroad-line.com/forum/topic.asp?TOPIC_ID=22161 but now making a start in On30 in Australia http://www.railroad-line.com/forum/topic.asp?TOPIC_ID=52273

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            • #7
              Hi, Jon --

              Those location dowels look like they would be a great addition to FreeMo modules. Could you tell anything about a source? (Sorry, but I can't afford to fly over and buy them from your local hardware store. )

              Don

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              • #8
                Jon, as always, its looking great! I'm curious though, what is 'Sundeala baseboard'? It looks like homasoate. The reason I ask is that I noticed you are placing that directly on the frames, or modules, without any additional support such as plywood. My experience is that over time, that will begin to sag between the supports of the frames as homasoate doesn't have any supporting qualities. Perhaps the material you are using is different?
                Mark

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                • #9
                  quote:


                  Originally posted by MarkF


                  what is 'Sundeala baseboard'? It looks like homasoate. The reason I ask is that I noticed you are placing that directly on the frames, or modules, without any additional support such as plywood.



                  It probably is the same stuff - a high-density fibre board, Sundeala being the trade name over here.

                  It is already sagging, but I will be adding cross-bracing to it eventually. I want to add the Tortoise motors first - ie after laying the track. I'll then add the cross bracing to avoid the motors.

                  That's the theory, anyway.

                  Jon
                  Sweethome Chicago is now on Facebook



                  Sweethome Alabama is now on Facebook



                  Hudson Road is now on Facebook



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                  • #10
                    quote:


                    Originally posted by AVRR-PA


                    Hi, Jon --

                    Those location dowels look like they would be a great addition to FreeMo modules. Could you tell anything about a source? (Sorry, but I can't afford to fly over and buy them from your local hardware store. )

                    Don


                    Shame, you could have come round for an operating session.


                    Enter 'pattern makers dowels' into google (or similar, and it should give you a link to someone that sells them. Let me know how you get on.

                    Jon
                    Sweethome Chicago is now on Facebook



                    Sweethome Alabama is now on Facebook



                    Hudson Road is now on Facebook



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                    • #11
                      With the main scenic boards done, I painted the top, bottom and sides of the Sundeala/Homasote and set them aside to dry, before adding integral legs. I will be adding cross-bracing under the Homasote to stop it sagging, but only after I have laid the track and fixed the Tortoise motors in place.

                      I then set to work on the fiddle yard. This is just a flat board to support the fiddle cassettes that were retired from Sweethome Chicago when I upgraded to turntable fiddle yards - waste not, want not.




                      The new fiddle yard for SWA has 2 sets of integral legs so it stands independently, the legs being braced with metal bars




                      I also built a fascia panel - to hide the 'magic and mystery' that goes on 'Stage Left'






                      Finally, a shot of the legs folded into the fiddle yard - the whole thing folds flat to only 4in wide.




                      Now for some integral legs and backscenes for the scenic boards

                      Jon
                      Sweethome Chicago is now on Facebook



                      Sweethome Alabama is now on Facebook



                      Hudson Road is now on Facebook



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                      • #12
                        Things are starting to take shape quickly now the big jobs are out of the way.

                        Here's a shot of the metal bracing for the fiddle yard legs, held in place with wing nuts for speed of removal





                        I also got a delivery of adjustable feet so that the boards can be easily levelled on uneven floor, a must-have for my cellar






                        The newly-painted scenic boards now have their folding legs and adjustable feet, one pair of legs per board, as they piggy-back onto the free-standing fiddle yard. Here is the first shot of the layout in its entirity - just under 15ft long by 21in wide - and it didn't collapse under the weight.




                        Next for some backscenes....

                        Jon
                        Sweethome Chicago is now on Facebook



                        Sweethome Alabama is now on Facebook



                        Hudson Road is now on Facebook



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                        • #13
                          We're bang up to date with the layout, now.

                          I took these photos this evening with the painted backscenes and fascia board in place. I've included a shot of me to indicate the track height - I'm 5'10" and the track height is about 46"






                          I've also added the drapes to give an impression of the overall presentation. So far it has taken just over three weeks and I havent laid a single piece of track yet.






                          The wooden support sticking up above the view block will be part of the name board and lighting rig.




                          So, that's Sweethome Alabama completely up to date. I want to make the lighting supports and name board next before painting the backscene sky, which should be done by the weekend. Then I can start laying some track.

                          Jon
                          Sweethome Chicago is now on Facebook



                          Sweethome Alabama is now on Facebook



                          Hudson Road is now on Facebook



                          My Videos



                          My Railimages

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                          • #14
                            Finally for now, some of you may be wondering what happened to Sweethome Chicago, to get the room to build Sweethome Alabama. Maybe it was shelved, sold, scrapped for parts, or given a Viking funeral?

                            To answer the question I took a panned photo of my cellar this evening......


                            Sweethome Alabama




                            Wall




                            Sweethome Chicago




                            I realise the basement/cellar looks tatty but, hey, there's a layout to build.

                            Jon
                            Sweethome Chicago is now on Facebook



                            Sweethome Alabama is now on Facebook



                            Hudson Road is now on Facebook



                            My Videos



                            My Railimages

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                            • #15
                              Thanks for sharing this jon. Will be following on closely. Already have a few ides im going to borrow for my layout construction. I love Sweethome Chicago and often go looking at your pictures of it and find myself lost for an hour or so.

                              You don't mess around much either. I think thats a quick start to a layout
                              Owen Pass Lumber Company

                              HO Logging Layout in a Shed.

                              https://owenpass.blogspot.com/

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