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I decided to build a short 36" long siding off a long Fastrack straight that goes above and across my workbench to hold an engine and tender, including a UP Big Boy and used an O-72 FT Command Control switch to help keep the siding as close to the straight as possible. Because the main track is about 8 " above the level of the workbench, in order to keep the siding level with the main track, it needed to be elevated. The first few pic's show the siding mocked up with scrap wood pieces.

After fitting the siding up with the necessary FT track pieces, I cut the center rail in the first piece of FT after the switch and drilled out a hole in the side to insert a push button switch to turn the siding on and off (a toggle switch can also be used, but I didn't have any in my parts bin). I epoxied the switch in place from the underside and soldered a wire to each side of the switch. A lighted bumper at the end of the siding lets me know whether the siding is powered or not.

I know from experience that elevated FT can flex a little between supports, especially at the joints, and I didn't want that since a very heavy engine could be parked there. I figured if I could create a "plate" of some sort to attach to the underside of the FT it would help make the siding more rigid. I had some 1/8" "luan" plywood laying around so I traced the siding onto the plywood and then cut out the siding shape with a jigsaw and sanded the "plate" smooth and stained it. I used blue tape along the cut lines to minimize chip outs. I then screwed the FT to the wood "plate" and painted the heads of the screws with "Fastrack Gray" paint (I've gone to Lowes with a piece of FT and had them color match it in a sample size for small touch-up type jobs).

I wanted a simple support structure for the siding that I could put together over a weekend (including drying time) and had some extra 1" square stock that I decided to use to make simple upside down "U" shaped trestles. For bases for the uprights, I cut up an old broomstick into 3/8" slices. I then cut the uprights to length allowing an additional 1/2" or so for the tops to come about level with the height of the siding rails. The workbench top is not completely level, so the uprights for each set of the four (4) trestles had to be cut to a slightly different height.

The trestle crosspieces were cut to 1/8" longer than the width of the FT (1/16" per side) to allow a little play and set with construction adhesive between each upright at the correct height. I then drilled and countersunk 1" screws in the upright sides and into the crosspieces to solidly mount them and used wood filler to cover the holes. I also screwed and countersunk the broomstick bases into the bottom of each upright.

After the wood filler dried overnight, I stained all of the trestles with Minwax "Gunstock" stain and left them "raw" with no finish coat for a rustic look. I then spaced the trestles out evenly under the siding and just put them in place. One of the trestles was a little short and had some play in it, so I placed a couple of tiny adhesive rubber bumpers on top of its crosspiece to take up the slack.   

I like the way it came out and it was a relatively simple project. Of course, after viewing it I then thought, "why not just install a yard lead and turn that whole section of workbench into an elevated yard with several sidings ", but that's a project for another time.   

NEW SIDING 1NEW SIDING 2NEW SIDING 3NEW SIDING 4NEW SIDING 5NEW SIDING 6NEW SIDING 7NEW SIDING 8

 

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  • NEW SIDING 1
  • NEW SIDING 2
  • NEW SIDING 3
  • NEW SIDING 4
  • NEW SIDING 5
  • NEW SIDING 6
  • NEW SIDING 7
  • NEW SIDING 8
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OGR Publishing, Inc., 1310 Eastside Centre Ct, Suite 6, Mountain Home, AR 72653
330-757-3020

www.ogaugerr.com
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