Track Expansion Project of 2006:




For more information on the roadbed and construction see this link:  Roadbed




The first 50ft are down of the total 1000ft. 


Building in the switches and cross-over for the bypass lines.


Work ground to an immediate halt when a newly cut section of SS track cut my hand requiring six stitches.   The curved track missing ties is the end I was working on. 


Back to work after a couple of days (now with only one useable hand).  The entire length has been leveled, smoothed and properly spaced... all ready for the roofing layer.


The switch interchange has been complete, just a few final touches are needed now.


Wasn't quite crazy about the overall look of the feeder to mains switch arrangement so some modifications were made to the design.


This corner is ready to go with 12 - 10ft Hardi-planks cut in sections for the other corners.  Each section is cut with a three degree angle and the outside/longest section is 1' 3/4" long.  Also, each cut is done at 45 degrees (instead of the normal 90 degrees) to provide additional end to end strength. 

Additional change was made to the first bypass, a 20ft diameter curve section was used from the outside switch to the cross-over.  This gives a better look and should be more gentle of a curve than the 10ft diameter one I used before.  This change required the switch be moved back a few inches and new intermediate straight cut on the other side.

Progress is still slow because of the stitches as I'm having to do everything with only one hand.  However, I'm pulling them out Monday.    

Also picked up an inexpensive 4" angle grinder and thin blade for cutting the track.  Best $30 I've spent yet.  Makes quick, clean cuts. 


All the wiring is laid and is ready to go.  


The ring terminals are all soldered and connected to the track.  Some progress was made in spacing the other switch interchange/bypass on the other side of the yard, but no pictures of that.


The straights and curves are screwed in place and are all ready for leveling.  Next, feeder wires will be put in place and will then be ready for the rolled roofing.

These pictures reveal the steps I use.  First the property (mow line) was determined, then the outside line boards were placed 29 inches from the line.  (This will allow 1 push mower wide path down the side.)  The inside path was then laid 12 inches (outside edge to outside edge) from the outer.  Then starting from one end, the plastic was rolled on top (one ten foot pair at a time) and once covered, the now covered boards were slid out from under and placed back on top.  Once laid, a board was placed on the plastic sides to keep them from blowing around.

After that was done, the removed track was put back in place and the rest of the needed track lengths were installed.  Next, the whole line will be leveled and evened up.

Part 1:

What isn't pictured is the corner Hardi-planks are in place and screwed down.

Part 2:


Loops are almost connected. 


Hardi-plank is now under the entire length of both ovals.  Only one cut left on the inside track in one corner.  All that is left is to level and smooth out the grade on the straights and lay the feeder lines and they will be ready to run.  The rolled roofing will be final step.

This part of the layout is really starting to come together.



The first test run.  MTH DCS signal has some issues, but overall runs great and no derailments.  The leveling and smoothing of the grades is complete for now, feeder wires in place and ring terminals soldered.


The first multi-train test.  Freedom and Challenger on the outer loop with the Hudson on the inner.  Ran for a few hours with no issues.


Three corners done with some additional wiring done.


Completed the final rolled roofing sections a week or two ago.  With the rolled roofing in place there is no weed whacking required, just push mow down the sides and use the rider on the rest.  The layout is basically maintenance free.  


Here are the final completion pics. 



2006 - Basement Ramp Rebuild page



Return to Garden Railroad 2006 page.


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