Proposed Large Shelf Layout

Discussion in 'Track Planning' started by Gary S., Dec 8, 2005.

  1. MasonJar

    MasonJar It's not rocket surgery


    If all you have is 3/4" foam, then I agree it is a good idea to laminate it with something else, and lay that laminate on some sort of gridwork. I don't know if pegboard would be my first choice - I think something like doorskin (1/4" luaun/mahogany ply) would be better. The pegboard is too close to cardboard for me. I suppose you could experiment and see...

  2. Gary S.

    Gary S. Senior Member

    Thanks for the replies from both of the Andrews!

    I am off to the Home depot in just a few minutes. Will get some 1/4" birch plywood or some other decent hardwood plywood instead of the pegboard.

    Also, for the 1x2s, I am going to get some 3/4 plywood and cut it into 1x2s, the HD had some really nice 3/4 birch plywood, smooth as a baby's butt and straight and flat like glass, for only $29 bucks! Mason Jar, thanks for this suggestion! To get an equivalent amount of decent grade 1x2s would cost $70 bucks.

    Benchwork starts today! I'll take some photos and post them in a new thread in the HO scale forum.

  3. Yard Goat

    Yard Goat New Member

    Good luck Gary.

    Going with the plywood for your major benchwork components is a good move. I don't know much about your part of Texas, but I guess it must get pretty humid in the summer. Up here in Ottawa, with our cold, dry winters and hot, humid summers, we've seen all kinds of problems with benchwork built from dimensional lumber warping and throwing all kinds of alignment problems into our trackwork.

    Looking forward to seeing your progress.

  4. Gary S.

    Gary S. Senior Member

    Well, got started on the benchwork. I have over half the shelf rails attached to the walls, will keep working tomorrow and post some pics Monday... in the HO scale forum.

    Those heavy duty shelf tracks and brackets are EXPENSIVE:eek:
  5. zedob

    zedob Member

    Oh yeah, I forgot to tell you...:rolleyes:

    They do put a dent in the old wallet. :( But they do go up alot faster than scratchbuilt framing and are pretty easy on the eyes (the wife's, I could care less). I was able to install brackets and bench/shelf work in a few hours (spread over a weekend).

    As for wall irregularities, there's not much we can do, but build around them. Just don't rely on being able to attach to a stud and where you thought you could attach to the layout. I built my layout with this in mind. Basically, my layout is a seperate entity, which floated in place until I mounted it to the brackets (where ever they landed). This keeps the layout part in alignment with itself, without relying on the brackets for anything except support. I had to do alot of shimming to make sure the layout shelf was leveled, even though I had leveled the brackets, but it seems to work rather well.

    I also recommend buying a length of "rope lights". I mounted a string of these under the layout right behind the facial board to help light up the shelves and work area (my computer resides here) that I have underneath my layout. Works great. I'd take a pic, but I really don't want to advertise to others that my work area is a pig stye (like any MRRrs have room to talk;) ).
  6. MasonJar

    MasonJar It's not rocket surgery

    Sounds great Gary... glad to hear of your progress, and looking forward to those pictures!

    Andrew1 ;)
  7. Gary S.

    Gary S. Senior Member

    The pics aren't much at this point, just a bunch of shelving track and brackets stuck on the wall. One of the good things about the brackets is that if the layout width changes anytime soon, I can just swap out the brackets!

    I've never built conventional benchwork before, but have to believe the shelf brackets are the way to go for ease of installation.

    I am going to do as zedob suggested and make the layout "free-floating" and then attach it to the brackets. It all seems pretty simple in my head right now and am excited to start cutting plywood and foam and such, but am holdoing off until the layout is finalized.
  8. FiveFlat

    FiveFlat Member

    Not sure if I missed something. I read through this thread twice...
    What scale is this?
  9. FiveFlat

    FiveFlat Member

    Yard Goat:
    Thanks for the link to the M&ETrr. I never knew about it and I live 45 minutes from Modesto!
  10. Gary S.

    Gary S. Senior Member

    It is HO scale.

    The shelf rails are installed. When the plan is finalized, I'll get started on the benchwork. I may drag out the saw and rip the plywood into some 1x2s this afternoon.

    Attached Files:

  11. kchronister

    kchronister Member

    Hey Gary,

    My only comment really boils down to a matter of taste - I would probably use more of the "floor space" to achieve longer runs. Specifically I'd add one or two peninsulas (probably one extending from the right side, one from the left, offset... It would almost end up looking like a lower-case e "e" with the middle leg not connecting to the rear, if you take my meaning.

    Also, regarding the brackets... to the fellow who mentioned 18" at the max: I know Home Depot carries 20" ultra-heavy-duty screw-in brackets, as well as 24" brackets for the "rail" type systems (like the one Gary shows above), if you're using that.

  12. Gary S.

    Gary S. Senior Member

    I agree with you and even considered extending a peninsula into the room as you mention. But, I had to be honest with myself (and the wife)... the room is used for other activities and the peninsula just won't work. :(

    Those are the 24 inchers as you mention, from HD. And as I mentioned they are amazingly expensive!

    It will be interesting to see how this turns out.... I'll do my best within my real estate constraints, hopefully I will end up with a layout that is very operational.

    Is your layout built on shelf brackets?
  13. kchronister

    kchronister Member

    Well, it is in the process of being built on shelf brackets... I'm using the "screw in" version, not the rail system version. But I'm also building my layout in a purpose-built 'train room' in the basement, not in a dual-purpose living space, so I can sacrifice a certain amount of "elegance" in appearance.

    The 20" 'regular' brackets are not amazingly expensive... just plain old expensive... But I did redo a closet with that rail-and-bracket system a while back, and do recall some rather insane pricing for what is, essentially, bent metal. I'd simply forgot that part, to be honest about it.
  14. Gary S.

    Gary S. Senior Member

    I recently saw an article where the screw-in brackets were used, and a piece of 1x2 was attached to extend them even further. I think they were pretty short to start with, not the 20" variety you mention. The wood extended them out to around 18" or so.

    The 24" heavy duty rail mounted brackets were around $8 EACH :cry:

    And as you say, all they are is a hunk of stamped sheet metal bent into a u-shaped profile.

    Oh, the money we spend on our hobbies... but it is all worth it, life is too short to be worrying about a few dollars.... (my wife says "a few???")
  15. kchronister

    kchronister Member

    Well, here's what I'm doing (have tested it a bit, but nothing photograph-able: I took them back down after playing):

    20" brackets (very heavy duty stuff) screwed into studs. These particular brackets are triangle-shaped, to a 20" bracked extends out 20" AND down the wall 20" with a 45-degree support from end to end. Then I have 1x4 screwed to the top (laying flat) to extend them out anywhere from 24" to 36". 2" foam gets glued down on top of that.

    The brackets run $6 each, so it's still a pretty hefty endeavor... I'm looking at $250+ just for brackets...Urgh.

    It's surprisingly stable, even when you run the reach out to 36". Definitely no problem with supporting more than enough weight (my 50 lb. daughter perched on one bracket without a creak or sag). There is some very slight side-to-side play, which I think is inherent in any of these setups, and I imagine that will largely end once the 'surface' is attached, and all the bracket assemblies are essentially tied together (and getting lateral-motion support from the side walls).

    The peninsula portion will have to have legs, of course...

Share This Page