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Discussion Starter #1
I have started to build my sub Roadbed, and loosely attach track to check the ladders for fit.
The ladders are made of 3/4 X 1.5 PVC trim, PVC cement glued and screwed every 6 inches.
The layout is loosely defined as an L shaped loop
Attached are a couple of pictures, all input and comments welcomed,

Thanks for looking,
Aflyer
 

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Looks good, it is suggested to have a 1' section of straight track between reverse curves. Looks like that could happen where the curve comes out from under tree.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Looks good, it is suggested to have a 1' section of straight track between reverse curves. Looks like that could happen where the curve comes out from under tree.
Thanks John,
That is the challenge of free lancing with no software designed track plan. Once I get the straight section down the wall and that 8' diameter circle under the tree I am hoping a nice sweeping curve comes together to join the two.
I also want to add a siding to the semi-straight section that parallels the sidewalk.
Aflyer
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Mike,
Thanks for the reply.
I completely agree, it is 5 LGB 5' curve sections with an 8' section coming out of the turn.
Too expensive to tear up the sidewalk, LOL.
I plan to run mostly a Consolidated and wood sides era freight cars.
Aflyer
 

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it is 5 LGB 5' curve sections
Now I see why you needed the plywood to hold the curve while the glue set. :eek:

However, I'm not sure glue is a good idea, and I think your spacers are too wide. The glue issue is purely for future maintenance. A 1x1 pressure-treated wood strip, cut into 1" squares, lets you screw the pvc strip to the wood, and you can unscrew it to make modifications later.
And the pvc strip should be under the rails. Yours seem quite wide apart and supporting the ends of the ties, not the rails. The weight is carried on the rails, and that's what you should be supporting. (The strip doesn't have to centered under the rail, but some part of it should be supporting the rail, not the tie.) Hence the 1" piece of wood as a spacer - with 3/4" of pvc strip either side it will be under the rails. :rolleyes:
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Now I see why you needed the plywood to hold the curve while the glue set. :eek:

However, I'm not sure glue is a good idea, and I think your spacers are too wide. The glue issue is purely for future maintenance. A 1x1 pressure-treated wood strip, cut into 1" squares, lets you screw the pvc strip to the wood, and you can unscrew it to make modifications later.
And the pvc strip should be under the rails. Yours seem quite wide apart and supporting the ends of the ties, not the rails. The weight is carried on the rails, and that's what you should be supporting. (The strip doesn't have to centered under the rail, but some part of it should be supporting the rail, not the tie.) Hence the 1" piece of wood as a spacer - with 3/4" of pvc strip either side it will be under the rails. :rolleyes:
Pete,
Thank you for your comments, I do appreciate your input.
The plywood jig was something I learned from reading on this forum as well as gluing and screwing the PVC together. I do see your point about the downfalls of gluing it together, and I see as you noted that the ties are supported and not the rails. .

I made the roadbed the size I did intentionally to allow 1/4" space outside of each tie,
I was planning to fill the openings in the sub roadbed and ballast right to the edges of the PVC.

With 48' of roadbed done, I am hard pressed to rip it apart and narrow it, but will give it some thought.
Thanks again,
Aflyer
 

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With 48' of roadbed done, I am hard pressed to rip it apart and narrow it, but will give it some thought.
Don't take it apart. It will work fine. My comments were for your phase 2 track - and there will be a phase 2, I bet.
 

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I like how you are placing your track up in the air on plastic. I put mine on actual stone ballast and the weeds were a pain in the butt. Actually gave up on my layout for a few years, getting back into it soon.

If I were to add any suggestions it would be to add a passing siding on the inside of my main line. Couple of switch really add a lot to a layout. A nice train station would look good on this siding.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
I like how you are placing your track up in the air on plastic. I put mine on actual stone ballast and the weeds were a pain in the butt. Actually gave up on my layout for a few years, getting back into it soon.

If I were to add any suggestions it would be to add a passing siding on the inside of my main line. Couple of switch really add a lot to a layout. A nice train station would look good on this siding.
Blk69,
Thanks for the input, yes the track will be just above the mulch level in the area.
Agree with your input on a passing siding. I added a picture from todays work, if you look at the lower right side of the photo you can see the first switch in there.
Thank you,
Aflyer
 

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Discussion Starter #12
Hello all,
I have made a little more progress on the layout. The loop is temporary to create the sub roadbed.

I need to complete roadbed for the last corner, and then the passing siding.

I have attached a couple photos of last nights test run.

Once these last two sections of roadbed are completed I will remove all the track to paint the PVC sub roadbed, and then install the track with joiner locks and grease in the joiners.

Thanks for looking,
George
 

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I hope I am not late with these suggestions. PVC has a major expansion-contraction factor and looking at your photos my concern is that 1) you have not left enough room around the plant on the side of the garage for plant growth and PVC expansion and 2) will the track be free floating on the PVC ladder? Again expansion/contraction factors of the PVC and track are not equal. I made the ladders in my yard a minimum of 8" inside edge to inside edge and here in the bay area that was JUST enough. If track is floating use the corners to handle the expansion. Bay Area temp run from approx 30F to 105F ambient, track can reach 120F in direct sunlight.
 

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Discussion Starter #14
I hope I am not late with these suggestions. PVC has a major expansion-contraction factor and looking at your photos my concern is that 1) you have not left enough room around the plant on the side of the garage for plant growth and PVC expansion and 2) will the track be free floating on the PVC ladder? Again expansion/contraction factors of the PVC and track are not equal. I made the ladders in my yard a minimum of 8" inside edge to inside edge and here in the bay area that was JUST enough. If track is floating use the corners to handle the expansion. Bay Area temp run from approx 30F to 105F ambient, track can reach 120F in direct sunlight.
Mike,
Never too late for input, I appreciate all I can get, this is my first attempt at an outdoor railroad.

That plant on the garage wall is about 18 years old, and is a pretty slow grower. In the new picture I attached you can see I kind of did an S curve around it. The sub roadbed and track will also be raised about two inches above where it is sitting in the photos, which will add more clearance for the Camellia.

Now if you are asking about the flowers near the little black fence section, they are expendable per my Gardner wife, as were the 6 Abelia shrubs that I cut down and ran through the wood chipper, LOL.

I do have more concern about your expansion/contraction comments. I read a great article on this forum about building PVC sub roadbed. One of the things that helped me decide to use it was reading that it would expand and contract at the same rate as LGB track. I sure hope that information is accurate.

The article gave instructions on how to build sub roadbed sing 2X4 PVC board, I have tried to find it again, and not been successful yet.

Thank you,
George
 

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I think it looks great! I miss my ground level line sometimes, but with 4 large breed dogs, it became impracticle and my back and knees got tired of weeding and track up keep for live steam operation(they prefer pretty level ground and larger radius curves than I could fit on the ground. So.....I built this, 10' diameter curves and nearly 50 feet long, using LGB and Piko(for the proper curve diameter as LGB doesn't have 10' dia). Its a blast running live steam and battery engines! Keep the pics coming!
 

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Discussion Starter #16
Mike,
I can understand the dogs influence on your elevated layout, and I can relate to the back and knees liking your elevated layout.
That benchwork looks wide enough for another Main Line.
George
 

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Aflyer, that roadbed is looking really good!
If I may make a suggestion based on my experience with my very similar subroadbed...

Do yourself a favor and paint the subroadbed a color that blends in with the dirt or ground cover.
I didn't do that and any time the dirt/ballast settles I have a brilliant white subroadbed peeking at me from under the rails.
 

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Discussion Starter #18
Matt,
Hello, and funny you should mention that. I had built the sub roadbed and loosely attached the track to confirm the shape of the loop.
After a week of vacation I got back to work yesterday. I have attached two photos, showing the paint work.

As well as painting, the sub roadbed is now leveled and anchored just above the level of the garden mulch. Planting and rocks and whatever else we do will be added later.
Thanks for your message,
George
 

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Discussion Starter #19
I am delinquent with posting an update.
I have completed the loop, which is about 85' of track with a 14' passing siding.
The track is completed and mulch laid out around the sub roadbed.
I will be adding a dry creek bed somewhere in the loop, and begin adding some plantings as the weather cools down some.
I will update with photos soon.
 
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