Simple answer to your question is yes, try using a 12mm ply board these are 1220 x 2440 but you can also get larger boards, i would sagest that you form a frame work under the board out off 48 x 23 soft wood and glue and screw the board to the frame work, this will help prevent the board from twisting, you can then either pin your track to the board, or lay it loose, hope it all woks out fine for you.
I made a pair out of 2x1 framework, then cross braced it every 30cm. Then i glued and screwd a piece of 12mm ply over it. Where the two boards join, I put two dowels an two hinges with the pins taken out so they are aligned, then I pinned the track down on top.
I think your question has been answered ok but bear in mind that if you are adding anything but track, such as buildings, scenery etc then it will have to be well stuck down if the layout is to be stood on end. Obvious I know but I have made so many obvious mistakes myself that I see no harm in warning others.
Thanks for the help, will proberbly get my friendly chippie to build something for me. Not shaw when this will happen, as we are thinking of moving out of our loftroom and turning that into a games room for the girls, with room for the track.
QUOTE as we are thinking of moving out of our loftroom and turning that into a games room for the girls
WHAT!!!!!! Good lord! I can believe it!!!!
You can buy ready made (Kit form - simply glue and pin together) baseboards if you're not happy making your own.
Check out prices from suppliers such as Red Dog etc or this link http://www.modelshopuk.com/
Anyway good luck but don't let the model railway slip!!
QUOTE (the volebender general @ 20 Jan 2006, 11:11)... heavy Lisa design baseboards...
Hardly, my usual is 6mm ply throughout, with some 20x20mm to strengthen the corners, I only used 9mm for the baseboard on the present layout because a. I had a spare sheet b. it's better for screwing into than 6mm c. I didn't have enough 6mm. Still quite light though, even I can carry the boards without complaining.
All good advise. Several other things to think about.
1. Weight. Big boards can be very heavy by the time you have all the bits attached to them.
2. Stiffness. A small board needs to be a lot less stiff than a big one because the loads when moving it are less . This makes point one worse. Boards that flex will damage your railway & buildings etc may fall of due to their mountings failing.
3. Awkwardness. Moving big boards is physically very awkward compounding any weight considerations. Your finished railway board will not appreciate being bashed around & your partner/ wife/ mother will not appreciate you banging into things with it.
4. Consider the underside carefully. If the table you are going to stand it on is a family heirloom make sure the table is well padded before you put the board on and make sure there is nothing sticking out of the bottom of your board.
5. If you are going to use more than one board to alleviate the problems above remember that they will need to line up the rails perfectly and every time. As I have never built a layout where this was necessary I will let others tell you the best way to achieve this.
6. Storage. You will need to store your boards as well as use them. By the time buildings etc are involved they are not the easiest things to store in a way that will not damage them.
I would recommend that before you put any railway stuff onto your board & possibly before you even put the bracing pieces in place you try it & make sure that the size works for you. Your can always tape a few cereal boxes to the board to simulate buildings etc. This really isn't time wasted.
Don't let this put you off - it can all be achieved by a beginner. It is just that thinking it through first can save a lot of heartache/ wasted time & expense later. Asking the question was a good step to achieving success.
Somebody please comment on the best way to join boards
Agree with all of that. I like the idea that the three of us suggest that a beginner just builds a 'shunting plank' on one old door, takes your practical points on board (in particular design with point 4 in mind) and doesn't invest too much in scenery.
Whilst a shunting door might be a good idea from a practical point of view it is advise that I would never have followed. I am a "watching the trains go by" sort of guy & endless shunting is not really my idea of a good time. I suspect with absolutely no evidence that most beginners would be thinking of a tailchaser. For me the door idea would thus work in N but not in 00. I also think that a door is the wrong shape for 00. If we are talking about shunting long & narrow is a workable solution whilst for a tailchaser a door is not wide enough.
The problem is the variety of beginners. Some are older & have DIY skills whilst some are young & do not. Some have space as a real constraint & others do not, some fancy shunting but some don't, some are rich most are not, etc etc etc. If a beginner has a constraint that will effectively prevent them from building what they think they want the sooner they face up to that fact the better.
I have seen built a small 6x3'6'' layout in 00 with a high level station that is about as small as would work for me. 18" Radius curves & 36" straights are about as small as I would ever consider. I have a hand drawn track plan copied from an unknown old magazine so whilst I would like to be able to acknowledge the source I cannot. The high level station is actually a small shunting yard and 6'x15" so perhaps it could be built first & added to the full layout later. If you are interested & tell me how to post it I will scan it & do so or better I can send it to one of you guys with software who can make it look nice!
As we all know there are endless books of track plans & presumably they all appeal to someone.
It will be unlikely that we would be able to persuade any beginner to dcc to build a test track - shunting plank; before they embark on the chailchaser of their dreams.
My layout, like yours, is a tailchaser and I never thought of end to end, of any size, for more than about half an hour (not my finest statement, I know).
But that is why I suggest it nevertheless. I wish I had, back then, someone who had persuaded me to do just that! I may have only bought two of a particular brand of points instead of twenty, etc, etc. I blame MMD!
My idea and the door itself are entirely throw away after a year!
As you may know I haven't the gear to get pics onto this system. I like the idea of a good beginners design here. I wish I could have put a Freezer up to help another poster. perhaps one of the mods can help get your plan up for further discussion.
Unfortunately I have spent the last hour looking for the track plan that I mentioned & I cannot find it. We have recently moved house & it is chaos around here. It does seem like a good idea to talk about a track plan to recommend to newbies however. If someone would be willing to draw up the ideas into plans it would make a good topic.
Thanks for the advice, Is shell be starting small to begin with, as the layout was my 7 year olds xmas presant, it comes with a 'track mat' so that is the size at the moment, may just lay it all out on a board on the floor as it will be easy for her to reach.
A forum community dedicated to Model train and railway owners and enthusiasts. Come join the discussion about collections, displays, models, styles, scales, motors, reviews, accessories, classifieds, and more!