New Roof for the Covered Railroad Bridge

Click to enlarge, use back button to returnOne of the more popular articles on this site is my Building a Covered Railroad Bridge, originally published way back in March of 2011. When I build it I had no idea if it would last a few weeks, or few months. It’s held up very well for at least 5 years (so far) with only the need for replacing the occasional popsicle stick and some reinforcing for wind.

 

The roof was created with missing boards and only a few shingle to hint at great age, dilapidation, neglect, etc. In the above picture you see the roof before it was aged and treated with motor oil (a great wood preservative for your outdoor projects).

Click to enlarge, use back button to returnHowever, the roof as originally designed was somewhat delicate and while in the shop for some cleaning was knocked off the bench and suffered extensive damage. That left me with just the modular sidewalls for my front yard display.

Not a great look and so soon I started thinking about a new roof for the covered railroad bridge.

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Yard Art Notes–Head on collision!

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I’ve added another bit of whimsy to my front yard, the “head on” wreck of the west-bound Fast Mail and the east-bound Morning Freight at the old abandoned truss bridge.

Creating these static vignettes in my front yard have been how I’ve kept my hand in the hobby since taking down my Garden layout when the back yard was conceded to the family dogs (keeping them out of the layout was a constant losing battle).

Click to enlarge, use back button to returnOver a year ago I salvaged my trust bridge from the scrap yard and set it up as yard-art in my front yard just off the patio.

Having enjoyed the wreck of the Soggy Bottom Express and gotten a number of positive comments on same, I decided that the bridge needed some “action” as well. The first step was to lay some track. I used Bachmann indoor track as it rusts readily giving a nice abandoned look.

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Site Maintenance Progress

Faithful viewers… the migration to GScale.Net (thanks Tom!) is complete but has required some maintenance and updating. This post will recap the fixes and changes over the next few days for those interested.

DONE:

  • The Contact TJ page has been fixed and updated and appears to now be sending email to TJ without error.
  • The About the Site page has been updated with some long overdue text changes. Nothing to see here.
  • The Request PDF page has been fixed and appears in my testing to be working correctly. Sorry that this has been broken for a few days.
  • The Resource Links page has been updated.
  • Check all posts and remove text strings for some of the old  ads. I think I got them all but need to spot check some more.

STILL TO DO:

  • There may still be some bad links as these things happen on the Web over time. I’ll keep looking for them. If you find one let me know.
  • If you see anything that is not working right or needs correction please use the Contact TJ page or leave a Comment to this post and let me know about it.

Thanks! – TJ

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Yard Art Notes–using Bachmann indoor track outdoors

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Bachmann has a very inexpensive indoor track that most large-scale railroaders have only because it comes in Bachmann train sets. It is bright silver, hollow (meaning not very durable) and is only suitable, for reasons we’ll get to in a moment, for indoor use.

 

For a static display of outdoor yard art where you are not trying to actually run trains, and you want the line to look abandoned and/or unused, nothing beats Bachmann indoor track.

First, as mentioned, it’s really cheap (as am I)! Since the RR scenes I create for my front yard can be subject to vandalism or theft (although I have not yet experienced either) I’ve not wanted to use brass track.

Click to enlarge, use back button to returnSecond, I want a totally abandoned and/or unused siding look for my yard art scenes. Bachmann track, when used for actually running trains, is only suitable for use indoors. When subjected to outdoor weather it quickly rusts and the line looks totally abandoned. Here you can see track that has been out not quite a year.

 

Finally, the hollow nature of the track makes it fairly bendable and since you get a lot of curved pieces in a Bachmann set I often find myself having to straighten out the curved pieces to something less curved to fit some pre-existing trackwork being used for my static display. However, straightening the track and dealing with the gaps this creates requires some simple tools and techniques to resolve.

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