Monday, 17 February 2014

Divided it stands.

Once I had installed an old dining table into the corner to use as a modelling table, I was at the point where I was itching to get on with construction, I cut joists to length and laid them on the base units to see what it might look like.

I then put some very basic box frames together at the wall end with some batten timber attached to the wall to give and guide the correct level. I attached the frames to the base units and the walls and then bolted them together. This gave a very strong and sturdy structure.

You can see from the last photograph, gaps to the wall, but this is the dry lining wall that is out and not the frame. I have never found a completely square house.
Next I put a frame to the door. This was a little more involved as it tapers down to the door frame but no more complicated than cutting a few different sized joists and screwing them in place where they fitted.
Next was the return to the window. Once I had it glued and screwed I located it on the level batten and attached it to the wall. I put a 3x2 leg at the window end for support, as from here it will span the window over the radiator so needs to be secure. I will have to put a floor to ceiling  leg here later, to support the upper two decks as well.  I also added 45degree sections to round out the inside corners for support for the eventual facia.
I was at this point I looked at it from a point of view of putting my Terminus station and village on it. The peninsula is 11'x4' at it's widest and I had a feeling that this might be to open for what I had in mind. I then put out a question on the Model Rail Radio Facebook page. Which might be better, open or divided ?
The general consensus was overwhelming in favour of a scenic divide that would prevent you seeing the whole layout at once and at the same time giving me more track space. I first thought I might keep this to the first level but it soon became apparent to me that if I could gain that much trackage on one level I could do the same for the upper levels as well. So I put the kettle on and thought of ways to achieve this with what I had already constructed.
The use of the base units turned out to be a key factor in this. I could put in upright timbers that attached   to the frames of the units with roughly with 18" centres. I only had to space out two of them that weren't attached to the units but they were to the floor and the other uprights.

It wasn't until this point I fixed, and boxed in the joists for the first deck. A minimum of 1.5 inches overhanging the units was left for hanging curtains to cover the lower shelves and storage. This overall gives a very strong and very secure base. Each joist is attached to the framing and the base units with screws, also to the uprights where possible.

The divided peninsula has the disadvantage of me having to replace and relocate the room lighting but the room always needed more light anyway so no major problem there. I will finish this post here to keep it from being too long but I will add that all the wood I've used here is machined dimensional  wood bought in packs from B&Q which is a large hardware retailer here in the UK. I plan on a separate post giving wood and screw sizes and also tools used but I've not collated that yet.
Next I'll describe the process I went through to install the second and third decks of the peninsula but until then happy modelling.

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