Thanx John,   I’ll take that good advice.  
A wire above the tracks is a good reason to put telephone poles on the layout and run a ground wire on them!

 

948D4ECD-8F21-4E42-98C7-7619D31E5F061C8AB81F-735F-4B53-9B11-4088C289E809ECA61AB0-B378-418F-99FC-A6F52F8E8B461C8AB81F-735F-4B53-9B11-4088C289E8096F88E689-12F8-4EB4-8114-3F250161FC27E6D22FC4-50F7-467E-905A-DE46063FE9C9B2FA4303-A3E0-4C9C-9961-9FC780F2D287 For my layout I have 2X4 framing, covered with 5/8” 4’x8’ plywood  and then covered with 2” x 4’x8’ sheets of cheap white bead board(Home Depot)

  All my basic landforms are made with this material. Just a Hot glue gun, sharp Utility knife and add some details.

  I have just really started to detail my layout lately. Here are some pics 

Al

 

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Last edited by albertstrains
dogdoc posted:

Only homasote anywhere close to me is special order and I doubt they want to do it for 2 or 3 pieces . Any good homasote substitutes?

I live in Texas and the DIY stores do not carry homasote.  It is available in specialty lumber yards like in Austin but the price is over $30 per sheet.  A forum member suggested wall sheathing(also called sound board) ...$10 per sheet at Lowes.   The sound board I bought is black but It covers well with latex paint.   It is similar to homasote as it too is a paper product.  A Box cutter cuts it easily.  You can saw it with power tools too but I think it will create a mess.  It takes paint well and it muffles sound well.   I put in on top of 5/8 plywood as  I do not care for OSB.  

Trains and DC Power Forever...WooWoo

Stopped by Portland HD to check out their sound board, it's soft and "crumbly" to me.  It would have to sandwiched on all sides to avoid the shedding.  Took brief look at foam insulation and very impressed by how dense it is.  Great excuse to get a hot wire cutter!  

90% sure I'll top off my small pike with 2" foam.  Need cut track supports for the open corners and fill in open strip in the middle.  Legs need more bracing as well.

Here's bench after laying 3/4" birch plywood on top.
Decided to leave some open areas for below grade scenery. 
I'd like to place my Lionel Lighthouse in one of the corners.

IMG_4910

IMG_4911

 

She caught the Katy and left me a mule to ride...

 

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Last edited by Kelunaboy
Allan Miller posted:

For many years and many layouts, I have always used a plywood sub layer with two-inch-thick Extruded Polystyrene (pink or blue) on top, and either cork or Woodland Scenics foam roadbed under the track. There are a number of adhesives available that will glue foam to plywood and foam to foam (or some other material). I cut/carve the foam with saws, old serrated kitchen knives, and hot foam cutters (the latter leave no mess at all). I have never been concerned much about noise reduction because real trains make noise and I don't mind my model trains making some noise as well. I have never found that the noise caused by the underlying materials has detracted much from the train sounds (chuffs, roars, horns, whistles, bells, squealing brakes, etc.).

 

Allen, when you use the hot foam cutters, how is it with fumes/vapors coming off of it? I am thinking of using that in shaping foam based scenery,but my layout is in my basement and doesn't have  the greatest ventilation in the  world (though I could use an exhaust fan in the one window I have to vent it as needed). 

The person who dies with the best toys dies a happy person

First to Albertstrains who posted earlier in this thread - What a Cool Mountain!

Cool Mountain

I decided on using this 2" Styrofoam blue board from Lowe's.  $22 for a 4' x 8' sheet. 
It's light, cuts fairly easy and cleanly.  Looking forward to sculpting some landscapes!

Now to revise my track plan for the placement of accessories and buildings purchased over the years.
Planning on three major focal points.  Lionel Lighthouse.  Lionel CC Gantry Crane. Atlas Suburban Station (20" long).
Layout Accessories

 

She caught the Katy and left me a mule to ride...

 

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Last edited by Kelunaboy
gunrunnerjohn posted:
Harry736 posted:

 Can the foil backing on foam be used to create the “ground plane” that helps TMCC and Legacy signals?  

VERY BAD IDEA!  The ground wire should be above the tracks for best effect.  A huge ground below the tracks can actually couple the signal from the track to the ground and reduce the TMCC signal.  That's too much of a good thing in the wrong location.

Interesting, I recall reading an article about how on a big layout they used narrow, thin copper sheet under the roadbed to maintain the ground plane around the layout and supposedly it worked great if I recall (this was many years ago, might have been OGRR or CTT). Then again, with the TMCC signal going through the electrical wiring as an antenna, what you write makes a lot of sense to me, just wondering why that seemed to work for the people who wrote the article (and for all I know, they later found out it didn't work well). 

The person who dies with the best toys dies a happy person

I'm a little late to this thread, but thought I'd throw my 2 cents in. At the present I'm in the final stages of track-laying and fine-tuning for a layout that goes around the walls of a 10 x 28 foot room. I use a wheelchair (see my earlier thread here: https://ogrforum.ogaugerr.com/...helf-layout-underway) and built a cantilever girder system. It is screwed directly to wall studs and further supported by angled braces. I can roll around freely underneath, yet the benchwork (made with 1 x 3 pine) is extremely sturdy. It is topped with 1/2 inch plywood decking. For those considering the pros and cons of plywood versus foam, it's my position that plywood (or OSB) screwed down to the benchwork adds a lot of lateral strength. Also, anyone building a permanent layout who wants to screw down Fastrack, be aware that it's difficult to find #4 screws any longer than about 1 inch. If you have a half inch of foam underneath your Fastrack, the screws would scarcely penetrate the bottom of the foam and would not bite into the sub-roadbed. 

For that reason, I have decided to experiment with commercial neoprene rubber, purchased from a distributor in a large roll. It is only 1/8 inch thick but surprisingly dense, yet it cuts easily with scissors or a hobby knife and can be glued to the plywood using spray adhesive. There are still a few steps to complete before I start that phase, but I hope to report soon on the performance of the neoprene.

 

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I have 2 small conventional layouts.  Both are hollow core door slabs on sawhorses. On the earlier one I tried weatherstripping on each tie (Marx 034 track) then an occasional screw. Works ok.

On the second one, I bought commercial foam roadbed from the bay pretty cheap. I glued it down with spray adhesive. I added the track, (marx 034 again), connected everything together with Marx track clips. Then I put a piece of two sided tape on one clip at each joint. The tape came from a cheap window winterizing kit. No nails or screws. Quietest layout yet. Been running trains on it since before christmas with no problems. 

gunrunnerjohn posted:

The guys at the NJ-HR club are busy ripping out the sheets they put in to "solve" TMCC issues because they were really screwing things up.

One of the problems with "solving" these signal issues is every layout is unique.  What works on one doesn't necessarily work on another.

Thanks, GRJ,  I appreciate it, will save me a lot of grief when I get around to the wiring portion of my layout. No doubt when I try installing Legacy I'll find out how unique my own layout  is, I am sure the metal support collumns near some of the track are gonna do wonders for reception or something

The person who dies with the best toys dies a happy person

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