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One of our WAGRS members, Phil Weller, constructed a nice 180 degree trestle which was a focal point for his layout. It was constructed in early 2005. Three weeks ago, I became aware that Phil was moving and was not going to be taking the trestle with him to his new house.
After learning that the new owners were planning on scrapping it, I asked if I could have it. The elements had taken their toll and the bottom two inches of the tallest trestle had to be removed. Many of the footings had rot and would need to be reinforced. My plan is to repair, restore and upgrade the trestle so that it will be able to be used in a permanent display planned for our club at the Wichita Botanica Gardens.
In order to transport the trestle I had to break it into three separate pieces. The wood was extremely dry and brittle so I made the decision to use a stain to bring back some of the vitality of the wood. I opted for a more Redwood color as this color seems to even out the old and the new equally so that they all look pretty much the same. A sealing satin clear polyurethane coat helps keep the new stain protected from the elements.
I was able to level the two largest pieces so they can be used on a less steep grade. I am going to add the cross-ties to the top of the trestle so that 8ft. dia. sectional track will fit right in as this was what the trestle was designed for.

Here's a shot of Phil's trestle in 2006 on his layout:



I started by repairing the broken cross-beams:



After giving the first two sections a coat of Redwood stain and a satin topcoat, the trestle is looking up.





I'll post pictures of the completed trestle as soon as I am done. I hope you agree with me that it was better than letting it get scrapped by the new owners of the house! ;)
 

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Glad you saved it, Steve! That would have been a terrible waste.
Your projects coming along great!

Matt
 

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Looking great Steve! What type of wood was the original? 3 years doesn't seem that long for how much rot occurred? I like the redwood stain :)
 

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Posted By Steve Stockham on 06/09/2008 9:32 PM

One of our WAGRS members, Phil Weller, constructed a nice 180 degree trestle which was a focal point for his layout. It was constructed in early 2005. Three weeks ago, I became aware that Phil was moving and was not going to be taking the trestle with him to his new house. After learning that the new owners were planning on scrapping it, I asked if I could have it. The elements had taken their toll and the bottom two inches of the tallest trestle had to be removed. Many of the footings had rot and would need to be reinforced. My plan is to repair, restore and upgrade the trestle so that it will be able to be used in a permanent display planned for our club at the Wichita Botanica Gardens. In order to transport the trestle I had to break it into three separate pieces. The wood was extremely dry and brittle so I made the decision to use a stain to bring back some of the vitality of the wood. I opted for a more Redwood color as this color seems to even out the old and the new equally so that they all look pretty much the same. A sealing satin clear polyurethane coat helps keep the new stain protected from the elements. I was able to level the two largest pieces so they can be used on a less steep grade. I am going to add the cross-ties to the top of the trestle so that 8ft. dia. sectional track will fit right in as this was what the trestle was designed for.


What a great project !  We should all be so lucky as to stumble on such a find ! 
 

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Discussion Starter #5
The wood appears to be cedar pine. I have a feeling it was untreated so that it would weather but the soil in the garden area is moist all summer long hence the rot. You will note that the tallest portion of the trestle had the most rot as it was at the bottom of the hill. I have reinforced the footings with marine-grade waterproof glue. There's really no good way to add height to the short section (unless I reconstruct it completely) so I am just going to have to live with it and hope Botanica has a proper slope!
 

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Steve,
You are doing a great job on the Weller trestle. I wonder how soon Botanica will be ready to start building. Let's hope they don't wait until just before the Luminations.

JimC.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Update: The trestle is now complete up to the point where it is ready to be transported to it's final destination and then reassembled. It is still in three major pieces so that it can be transported but I have assembled it for photos. I decided to add the ties on top and spaced them so that Aristo 8' dia. sectional track (European spacing) would set right in. The whole project was very educational and I am now confident that I can build my own trestle when I am ready! :cool:

Here are some shots:







 
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