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I have noted that Argos are currently doing a sizable 4m x 3m (13ft x 10ft in English) galvanized steel shed for what seems a very reasonable £400. Now I could do an awful lot within a shed of this size. Has anybody any experience of railway modelling within a garden shed and has anybody any thoughts on the use of a steel shed rather than one of timber?

vintagemodeller
 

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QUOTE (vintagemodeller @ 5 May 2005, 15:04)I have noted that Argos are currently doing a sizable 4m x 3m (13ft x 10ft in English) galvanized steel shed for what seems a very reasonable £400. Now I could do an awful lot within a shed of this size. Has anybody any experience of railway modelling within a garden shed and has anybody any thoughts on the use of a steel shed rather than one of timber?

vintagemodeller
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When I was but a little tyke, my family's house had a garden shed that was about 5m x 5m (roughly 16ft x 16ft), walls and roof of corrugated-iron sheets with a rough brick floor. Then, about thirty years later, I built a carport which incorporated a small shed (about 4ft x 8ft) at one end; the shed had metal walls and roof, and stood on a concrete slab. Both of these sheds were extremely damp inside; condensation formed on the inside of the roof and walls and dripped on everything in there, and anything metallic stored in these sheds rusted immediately. I remember being persuaded to lay my Hornby gauge 0 tinplate track in the first shed, only to find a thick coating of rust on the bottoms of all the sleepers the next day. I think the situation might have been a bit better if there had been an air space below the sheds' floors, but even so, as soon as warm air hit cold metal, a LOT of condensation would form.

I now have had a timber shed (10ft x 12ft) for about six months, and have not seen any condensation or moisture problems (yet, anyway!). Based on these experiences, I would be very hesitant about using a steel shed to house a model railway, even in Britain's mild (but damp) climate. Sorry to put a damper (!!) on your project, but that's my experience. Another alternative might be heavy-duty plastic (PVC, I think), but I don't have any experience with sheds built of this material.

Roger Lewis
 

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I am building my model in a wooden shed 12 x 8. The cost was very little if anything more than £400. I have to agree that the galvanised steel shed would certainly be damp with condensation destroying your equipment. If your prepared to invest this type of money then go for a good wooden shed. I also lined mine with plasterboard.
Jim
 

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Hi guys, I'm still new to the forum at the moment, but if I can offer any advice on sheds please ask me. I own a timber buildings company ( we manufacture sheds, summer houses, garages etc ). If I can offer any help, just ask!
 

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The main issue with a garden shed is temperature and condensation. Unless very well insulated a metal shed will be a small oven in summer and a freezer in winter. Changes in temperature will result in condensation - especially in a metal shed.

Remember also that any shed is only as good as its foundations which need to be as substantial as you can make them and as level as possible.

At least a metal shed would be secure and fire-proof!

60134
 

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Two years ago I was involved in putting up a metal shed on a concrete base for housing mowers and tools used for churchyard maintenance. We had condensation for 6 months after erection, even with vents top and bottom. But we've had none since. I think the damp was actually from the concrete floor drying out and the adequate ventilation has kept it dry thereafter. But yes - there are extremes of temperature without any insulation.
As for security, we are not aware of any attempts to break in. But you wouldn't need much more than a large can-opener of the old type to cut through the steel walls!
The old wooden shed in my late parents' garden was subject to noticeably less variation. But needed more maintenance, of course.
 
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