CP Executive train in Albany

CP Executive train in Albany

Tuesday, March 21, 2017

The L-girder benchwork is finished

After another weekend of sawing, drilling, gluing and screwing together, the "bottom" portion of the benchwork... the L-girders and leg assemblies... is finished on three sides. I cannot build the fourth side until I decide what I want to do for the access gate. Plus, if I finish the fourth side I will need to remove that rolling table serving as my workbench and I will need it for the putting together the open-frame boxes that will be my LDE areas. So, I am at a good stopping point.

As can be seen from the pictures, I arranged the cross girders on their sides. That is because they are really only there to tie the L-girders together at the top, and also provide a smooth supporting surface for the boxes. I won't be using them to support track risers or anything. As luck would have it, I was 4' (or two cross girders) short when I bought the wood so I had to go to the store again for another stick of wood. They are screws but not glued to the L-girders, as I might need to adjust them to allow for access to the undersides of the layout. Also, they do serve a purpose in making sure the L-girders are spaced exactly 22" apart (outer flange to outer flange). While having them parallel isn't critical to L-girder benchwork, it is critical in fitting in the layout in the space I have. As it is, it fits with about 2" to spare. Stupid ceiling support pole.

I also joined the two side structures to the one in the rear with steel corner brackets. To reinforce the wood where the brackets are, I glued and screwed extra 1x4 lumber scraps. It might be overkill, but since I may need to move the layout around a little all by myself it has to be strong. Once it was all joined together, I adjusted the bolts on the bottom of the legs to ensure that everything was at least touching the floor. I won't level everything until LDE's are on it, but for now it is close.

Coming into this weekend, I had spent $300 on the benchwork. All of the diagonal cross braces for the legs, as well as their support gussets, and the cross girders on the top of the L-girders, totaled another $60. So, $360 total. I am pretty content where I am with the layout right now.

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