Another productive weekend and although I did not get to finish everything, most of the subroadbed has been cut and fitted on the lower level. I did not get to cut the peninsula blob as I ran out of time.
Today marks a milestone achievement for the layout! All backdrops and uprights have been painted and the benchwork is ready for the next step.
After coming home today, I installed the last few twin track uprights on the peninsula head, completing the major portion of the benchwork. For the kicks, I put couple of brackets on to see what it all looks like together. And it looks good! My crazy idea with a wooden stud cut on angles worked out pretty well.
If I was thinking in 3D space, I would’ve realized that Lockport sits below the normal benchwork height, which is a deliberate action on my part since it’s on the coast. Thus my original height for the uprights in that area was wrong because I couldn’t go any lower with brackets than the rest of the layout. So, off I went to pull 9 uprights out, and re-attach them at their new height. Had to fix the walls in the process, meh.
Oh and for future layouts, and to anyone building theirs using these uprights – you need to put something between the upright and the wall. A piece of 1/8″ hardboard will do, otherwise once you screw these tightly they will damage whatever surface they touch. A piece of hardboard in-between would prevent that. Live and learn on my part…
It was a productive day on the layout. In the morning, we finally figured out what the minimum height should be for the middle level, which was a needed parameter to start installing uprights. Then I proceeded to cut couple of 70″ twin track standards I bought the day before into 3 equal parts, about 23-5/16″ long. I had to drill an additional hole in every two pieces, so they all have 3 holes for screws.
My current plan for building the middle and upper level is to use twin track shelving system that many modellers have used before to build their layouts. I opted for it since it offers some flexibility in adjusting the benchwork height (at ~1.25″ increments). I knew I had to figure out some way around the peninsula, so today I decided to build a custom stud that would hold the shelving standards and allow curving around.