Friday, March 25, 2011

The Straco Layout, Part 5 - Bracing for Impact

Read all the installments of the Straco Express layout project here.

While I was happy overall with using the pegboard as the base for the Straco Express layout,  there was still one problem: stability.

Because of the inherently flimsy nature of both the rolling stock and the track, everything has to be optimal for this cheap little Japanese train to do more than one circuit around. For that reason, I added bracing to the pegboard.

As you can see, it's nothing fancy -- just some screen door molding repurposed. I was also trying to balance between adding  strips to firm up the pegboard and keeping the whole thing as light as possible for portability.

The solution was to go around the outer edges with the molding, and then cross-brace through the middle. I used the existing holes in the pegboard for my screws, which helped keep the whole thing symmetrical, as you can see from the pattern of screw heads when viewing from the top.

I'm still straightening out track sections, but the next significant step is to get the layout board finished. After that, I'll start laying down said track.


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