Rolling stock storage - what do you do?

Discussion in 'FAQs' started by dhutch, Dec 22, 2004.

  1. dhutch

    dhutch Member

    I was wondering what people useally do to store there rolling stock, i currently only have 12 waggons/vans and 5 coaches

    - i have boxes for about 1/2 of them, but puting it in therre after avery time i run them, just never happens and they and up geting left and damaged

    - i had though of makeing an airtight siding out of perspex, so i should just shunt it all together and gentaly roll in into the perspex tunnel, and then seal then cover the entrance, bingo.

    but i was wodnering what other people do for storage, when there not packing it all up into a box (ie taking it to an exhibition or longterm)

  2. docsnavely

    docsnavely Member


    that's an awesome idea! what about an entire siding boxed in plexiglass? i'm sure someone has done/thought/posted this idea already, but since I'm a beginner, I have the excuse of ignorance!:rolleyes: If any salty MRR's out there have any pics or stories, please share!!!! Thanks!

  3. jetrock

    jetrock Member

    Personally I built a fairly large yard so I would have a place to store cars not in use. At least in my house anything left on the layout isn't going to get touched except by dust, so breakage isn't an issue if it is on the layout--if you share your layout space with cats, this could be a risk (Try sprinkling cayenne pepper on the layout--the cats will find other places to play!)

    The main problem with the perspex tube is, what happens when one of your cars derails inside the tube??
  4. CalFlash

    CalFlash Member

    I bought one of the ProtoPower sets with the zippered bag and boxes and some additional boxes. They came in handy when I needed to take some to my friend's layout or when we changed eras by swapping equipment. I made some similiar ones a little shorter out of a bunch of cardboard boxes cut up and redone.
  5. dhutch

    dhutch Member

    jetrock, the perspex (plexiglass) sidding might be a problem if i got a derailment, but if its just stright track, and im Only using it as storage - ie not shunting into it all the time, just out and back in once a day.

    - but, thinking about it, i guess there not reason why it would have to be fixed, it could just be a lift of cover from the dust, and if that was the case, it could be just wood i guess, then it would stop the UV as well.

  6. jetrock

    jetrock Member

    Just keep in mind Murphy's Law--sure, just sliding the cars in and out might not cause a derailment, but someone bumping into the tube almost certainly would.

    Is dust and UV a big issue where you have your layout? Mine is in a garage and while it does get dusty, I don't mind a little dust .

    What is it that is damaging your cars when you leave them out? Heat? Cold? Your cat? Kids playing smash 'em up derby with them?
  7. 60103

    60103 Pooh Bah

    I always leave a lot of rolling stock out in the open. I call the dust "weathering".
    My first instinct is to put stock back in the box it came in. However, lately the padding in the boxes has been made very tight to the locos, and just taking them out of the box can case damage. (This is OO, but I suspect N is the same.) If you add little details (steps, class lights, handrails, couplings) the original packing is dangerous. There are other problems where kit-built cars no longer fit in the kit box.
    I made little trays out of cardboard just wide enough for the cars, deep enough for the highest cars, with a small piece for a roof to keep it together.
  8. CalFlash

    CalFlash Member

    I used to run on an N-scale layout whose owner had a removable section of track he could run cars onto, and then put it on shelf brackets on a nearby wall he setup for the purpose. I believe it had plexiglass sides for protection.
  9. dhutch

    dhutch Member

    Yeah, most of the layout hinges up, with yard at the back saying flat, proteced by the rest of the layout, so its not in direct light, and semi shealded from dust, and we dont have a cat. So there not a great deal of threat its just that it it does get left out for along time, 8mouths at time somtimes. and it not like i can pack it away, becuase i never know when i'll next have time.

  10. kchronister

    kchronister Member

    Not the most elegant solution, and certainly not on-track storage, but I picked up an old architect's chest-of-drawers at a garage sale. Think like your basic dresser, but with drawers about 3" tall (it's used to store blueprints and drawings). Since I have a lot of rolling stock and absolutely no chance of ever building enough yard/staging area to hold it all, off-layout storage was always part of the plan. This works beautifully and keeps dust to a minimum - I'm sure it's not as good as "sealing them up" but I haven't noticed any significant dust accumulation.

    I have original boxes for much of my RS, but as noted above, there are various problems with using them for storage, especially when it's not long-term storage, but rather storage of regularly used cars... Here's what I did:

    I originally glued track into one of the drawers, but that turned out to be a royal pain in the caboose - hard to settle the cars on it and they tended to jump off with the slightest drawer movement anyway... I've since bought 1/2" plywood, cut it to fit the drawers and then used a Dado blade to cut 1/4" deep channels into it to hold the cars in place... I cut the grooves to "tie width" which gives enough "play" to set the cars in easily, but still holds them fine without trucks twisting around, cars, banging around, etc. One tip - make sure you cut the grooves parallel to the front of the dresser, not perpendicular. I did one drawer perpendicular for longer items (locos, 80' pullmans, etc.) and every time you open and close the drawer things roll around, bang into each other, etc. I replaced a lot of couplers before I ripped that out and made it "parallel" too.

    I also have friends who just use an old dresser for the same purpose, though it's less efficient as the drawers are your standard 4-6" in height and a lot of space is wasted.
  11. jim currie

    jim currie Active Member

  12. kchronister

    kchronister Member

    He he he... I've toyed with the idea of starting a business to make purpose-built train storage like this (as opposed to the "display cases" one can easily find out there). Always backed off it because, to be blunt, we're all a bunch of cheap bastiges with a big helping of DIY, and I'm sure I'd only sell 1 for every 40 that would get copied and hand-built. Oh well, one of these days I'll find a way to make this hobby into a business (any ideas?)

  13. CalFlash

    CalFlash Member

    I think it's like the old expression "The way to make a million is to start with 2 (million)".
  14. jcami

    jcami New Member


    What's wrong with a home-made display-case with sliding glass or perspex? At least you can still see and enjoy your precious rolling stock when in storage! (Admitedly, you need some wall space for this!)

  15. ezdays

    ezdays Out AZ way

    After buying up a bunch of used equipment, I figured I wouldn't have enough storage space on a layout or if I built any display cases, I wouldn't have any wall space left, so I went and bought a tool cabinet. I like the idea of an engineer's drawing file like kchronister bought, but they take up a lot more floor space and I don't have that any to spare. I have a drawers for locos, drawers for rolling stock and a few drawers for parts or other small stuff to store. I have all the empty boxes in the bottom compartment.

    Attached Files:

  16. fec827

    fec827 New Member

    I am fairly new to the "Gauge." From time-to time I buy empty boxes through the ebay connection and develop my own labels. I do like the large tool box storage system seen i nthe picture above.
  17. sumpter250

    sumpter250 multiscale modelbuilder

    Each new piece of rolling stock, if it won't go back in its original box, gets a custom box. Each box has a label with the type, road name, and number.
    Yeah it's a little extra work, but it helps with inventory at the end of each show.......each car has its own unique box.....if there's an empty box, I know which car is missing.

Share This Page