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Discussion Starter #1
Well guys, I did my homework, did the math, found a plan, found a great old photograph, built the track and left a six-foot gap to be filled by my dream trestle bridge.

Just over 2 feet high and six feet long, and not only double-track width, but substantial enough to take my heaviest loco, the 35+ pound Accucraft Garratt.

A real honest to goodness heavy duty trestle.

That was the plan at ten o'clock this morning when I walked into our local lumber yard.

At five minutes after ten, I walked out again, stunned into near unique silence, my plans blown away in less than ten seconds.

The conversation went like this.....

'Mornin', Barry, I need a price for 500 feet of 3/4" square red cedar, if you have a minute...'

'Whoooooooooooooooooo, that's pricey stuff here, y'know. Rough-sawn, y'say?'

'Yup, it'll look good and hold the preservative better too.'

'True thing, lemme getcha a price on that stuff. Hey, why doncha sit down [heheh], my gues is you'll need to.' He gets on the phone. 'Mmuttermuttermuttermutterutter, ya don't say? Holy Shirt!!!!!!'

He turns to me, 'tac, you'd best be sitting down like I said. With the VAT it comes to just over [converts to $$$], uh, $580.'

















Stunned silence from this side of the counter.

Lasted almost until we got back home, twenty minutes later. mrs tac was very good about it, under the circumstances, and never said a thing.

I'll be looking at the alternatives I have right now during the next couple of days, one of which involves simply continuing the track in the same construction style as the current trackbed.

sigh...................................

tac
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I would suggest seeing if your local gardening shop stocks 3/4" redwood stakes, these can be cut to size and bolted together. Its the collective strenth of all the members together than the individual strenth of any one, wow that sounds so Socialist...[/DesktopModules/NTForums/themes/mls/emoticons/shocked.gif]
 

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Terry,

That SUCKS! When I built my trestle, I used two pieces of redwood. I do not recall the exact dimensions, but it must have been like 6" x 1" x 96". Using a table saw, I cut out all the pieces I needed. It did create a lot of sawdust, and I do not remember it being very cheap. I think for the two boards we paid something like $100 or thereabouts in 1995. Redwood is rare on the east coast. Rarer still in the UK. The price must have been to airfreight a couple of boards.

For that kind of price, you might just as well use garden metal model deck bridges or have someone over there build you one out of steel.

Mark
 

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Hi Tac,

I know, as I had something very like it! Why the stuff is so expensive beats me! I don't know if the following (german) site will be able to assist you but have a look -

http://www.gartenbahnparts.com/cms/front_content.php

There is a link on that to trestles and bridges, the longest of which is 150cm, he makes them so he may also be able to strengthen one for you to take the garratt; the price includes postage to the uk by the way, we just have to wait till (IF!) the darned lousy exchnage rate starts to become a better rate than its (sub?) basement level at the moment!

They are redwood, and a regular painting with the like of Teak Oil should assist in keeping it in good condition.

A final idea, you could try a user of Cedar - like Alton Glasshouses, whose weblink is http://www.altongreenhouses.co.uk , and see if they could help with the timber, perhaps as a special order?
 

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As Mark just alluded to, it may be more cost effective to buy 3/4 inch cedar siding and a small table saw, then rip it yourself. When I was building canoes, I'd buy Cedar siding and rip my own strips from that. I was a heck of a lot of work, but it saved me almost 75% on materials cost. they looked great, cedar is cedar.. the buyers had no idea where the wood came from, all they knew was the had a beautiful, light, good performing canoe. I can't see how a trestle would be any different.

And you can add the position of Sawyer to your resume....
 

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TAC, you could do what Jens Bang did. He used what ever wood that was laying around, cut it to size, soaked it in used motor oil for several days, wiped it dry, then built his trestle. So far, it has lasted more than 15 years.
 

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I have been buying 2x4s for my bridges. I found clear readwood was $30.00 for an 8 foot but the heart 2/4s with some knots went for $10. My son gets them and brings them back with him when he visits (redwood is hard to find in newengland.

A whole lot is wasted in sawdust but you can still get a whole lot of stringers and ties out of a single 2x4.

This is a whole lot less expensiive then using the demensional scale lumber that I also have a lot of.

Hope that helps.

Stan Ames
http://www.tttrains.com/largescale/
 

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Discussion Starter #10
Hmmmmm, good ideas about the redwood stakes. I'll go look tomorrow, after calling to see IF they actually have them, of course.

Just about any kind of cedar or redwood is ferociously expensive here in UK - decks are pretty new here, y'see, and buying scrap from a deck-builder seems to be a no-no. That's why I went to the lumber yard in the fust place.

Timber oil-soaking is a good way to go as well, the ties on our 7.25" track, treated the same way, have been in place here in soggy UK for about the same time as Mr Bang's wondrous structures.

I have almost recovered now, thanks guys.

tac
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Tac when I built my first trestle bridge, I used tanalised fencing slats and wood from pallets that I cut myself. As it was all nailed construction, I then painted it with Thompsons. It lived outside for about ten years with no real degradation. I burnt it in the end.
Rod
 
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i would say, if you buy good wood for the bases that is good enough.
the only sensible zone is, where the wood touches the earth.(or concrete)
for the rest of the structure just take any wood. the cheapest does it.
when oiled or treated otherwise any wood withstands the weather.
 

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Don't buy S4S , buy the smooth on one side tight notte 7/8" cedar. I paid $15 for a 8" X 12 1X

you can cut it down your self. of buy dog eared fencing and rip it into good parts.

$580,, think of,,, the entertainment value,, hours on hours of unadaultrated pleasure, I'm me pennies per hour....You can buy an engine for that or creat a one of a kind master piece of realizism.
Now memorize this and go tell your wife.
 

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TAC, I would try cedar fencing, if you go to your local cedar fence company? you might find a whole lot of scraps, I have a Cedar fence company as one of my accounts(garbageman) I get all my cedar from him, in fact today I got beveled edges on 1x3 boards, got 10 of them 5 ft long, enough to do something with.

tom h
 

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Redwood is like gold here in Michigan, so I cut some pine into ties (sleepers), put a lot in a large container, put some screen on them to hold them down, and then filled the container with a mixture of half used motor oil and half kerosene, left them for a couple of days. When I removed them, I place them on top of the screen to drain. And used the container, screen and mixture again and again until I had enough ties for 400 feet of track. They were on the ground for 5 years when I had to "de-track" because of moving. Worked for me.
 

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Tac --

In regard to using 3/4 inch square, that scales out to 15 inches (assuming 1:20). All the plans I have seen were for 12 inch timbers. That's how I built mine, and I think the extra-spidery look would add to the drama, especially for your Garrett. The reason I bring it up is that around here (Southern CA) they sell garden stakes that are 1/2 square.

If you do buy larger pieces and rip them down, buy lots extra, because the smaller bracing pieces mean that you are converting well over half the wood to sawdust.

One other point to think about. I model a logging line that would have done absolutely nothing where the trestle touched the ground. So, at first, that was what I did. That didn't work out so well, because every time I watered or it rained the bottom of the bents stayed wet for 2-3 days. So, I ended up digging out all the dirt around the bottom, lining the trench with weed block to hold the dirt back, back-filling with pea gravel to one inch below ground level, adding another layer of weed block, then covering with an inch of dirt. The bents dry out very quickly now.
 

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Terry,

Is there a building salvage yard somewhere within easy distance? With lumber so expensive over there I'd bet there is. They salvage everything from windows & doors to siding and fence boards. Check it out if you can. Used fence boards might be a little rough but so what if you're going to cut them down anyway?

If worse cpmes to worse we could just build it here next time you come and ship it to the UK knocked down with a "value" of say $50 or so? ;)
 

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Discussion Starter #19
Posted By Chucks_Trains on 11/13/2008 7:53 PM
Pay da' money...


If you can afford a Accucraft Garrett then what's the problem?..




Dear Mr Trains - it's BECAUSE I have the Accucraft Garratt that I can't afford $1/2K for a few bits of wood.....


tac
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Discussion Starter #20
Hey, guys, thanks for all the useful advice, but it seems to me to be in order to enlighten you about being HERE instead of THERE.

As in many part of the USA [as we see from one poster] cedar or redwood is not only passing rare, but also ferociously expensive, and as for cedar fencing, well, it would be cheaper to use gold-leaf-covered gold than cedar here. We also live in a damp old country, and expect, and get, very dank times of year when it is either raining, just stopped or about to start up again. So a naturally waterproof wood like cedar is the first choice for outdoor wooden structures, if available.

Having grown up with cheap lumber over in the GWN, it is always a great shock to me how expensive the stuff is over here, and nothing ever takes away that heart-gripping feeling when something that would cost me $150 from Charley's on Telephone Road costs me at least four times as much here.

So I'm going to trim my sails and lower my expectations - so far, my entire raised double track, ballasted and edged, has cost me less than the price a few sticks of cedar, by a long way. My dear old pal Richard, down in southern Oregon, as well as the rest of you guys, all make good sense to me, it's just that when you have your heart set on using the best stuff, it comes a mite hard to have to go down a peg, or three.

And as for ordinary lumber lasting ten years or so, I guess that'll do me - I'll be long gone by then, no doubt, and won't care too much.

Thanks to all

tac
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