Monday, May 18, 2009

Clear the gap... level 3

Another little step forward, this weekend, on the long road to set steady foundation for the "Valley line": the crew reach Menlo Park border!
The right-of-way still need to be covered by well shaped plywood, but at least the path is ready and shaped with sweet curves and easements, and .... the work team job survived with no damage to an occasional earthquake : a giant helping on the hard work, stumbled over an electric wire on the floor and .. tested the peninsula anti-quake rules ( the region is well know for these accidents, you know! )
Here we go, as one picture is worth thousand words :
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Tuesday, May 12, 2009

How "prewiew" your final layout? Just print it.

As I'm using 3rD PlanIt to design the tracks layout, I've used the capability of this powerful software to experience a 1:1 scale printout of the future place where the 3rd & Townsend Mission style station will be.
As most of you I've at home a printer that print on A4 size paper (document standard size here in Europe), so I've done a grid of sheets and this the result.
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Nearly an SP...line?

Between the two peninsulas holding respectively South SF and Burlingame, the terrain along the room wall will cover a series of curved right of way that crossed in 3 levels.
As the Coast line is a double track main, I consider a simplified way to adopt the "true spline" concept. First simplification was to find a Ready-to-use strips of wood, and I found some "samba wood" strips of 1 x 0.5 cm with 2 meters length. Thats free me from the dirty job to cut (or have cut by the shop) the usual Homasote sheets. This will takes to have a sigle track spline done using "just" 5-6 strips. Good Start!
But ... I'm pondering about the land between two track .... and the double job to have parallel splines ... so I've take the short path: basically I use two strips each side of a double track right of way and ..... fill the land with multilayer plywood (1 cm high).
See here a drawing with a section of what I mean:
This way I still have the "auto-easement" capability of the spline method plus the property of give a natural contour to scenery approaching yards or flat land following the curve.
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In the meantime having a flat continuous support of tracks avoid to have steps or jumps on the junctions from spline to plywood parts.
( well, maybe all these are just reason i give me to justify what I've done? )
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(Left) A detail of the end of the spline intersecting the workbench :
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and (Right) 3 levels nearly finish!