I have started on the ceiling install as mentioned the other day.
I decided to make a panel for each segment based on the framework as it goes around the curved part of the peninsula.
The first two went up nice and easy as there is no backscene at this point. This will be installed later.
When I did the ceiling for the upper deck above Kankool, I had secured the ceiling panels using screws, but this was a lot of work and used up a lot of screws.
I had intended to keep going with this method so screws were used on the first two panels above.
Again, a lot of screws were used and I thought there had to be another way to do this.
So I looked into using small nails (brads) and looked around for a small nailing gun.
I found one for $40 and also bought a box of 2000 15mm brads for $3.95.
So, the first two panels had their screws removed, panels removed and woodworking glue applied to the joining surfaces, refitted in place and nailed. Much easier and quicker!!
The next panel was a bit trickier as it is starting to go around the curve. Once a piece was roughly cut to size, it was test fitted and the rear curve traced and cut. Because the backscene board is already installed at this location, I had to come up with a way of supporting the back edge of the ceiling panel, so I decided to cut a notch into the rear edge of the ceiling panel and a corresponding cut-out in the top edge of the backscene panel. This worked quite well.
At the same time, the front edge of the ceiling panel is also cut to the shape that the valance will follow.
I have got a bit of a system going now, so the rest of the panels should go up with ease.
It’s been a while between posts!
However, I have been busy. I have been installing more scenery ‘mud’ on the large embankment and partly around the next peninsula towards Ardglen. The track has also been ballasted up to there as well.
I had come to a point where I realised to progress further, I needed to install more lighting.
I had always just moved around temporary fluro lights to where I was working, but this was becoming tiresome.
So the decision was made to install framework for the ceiling and valance from midway above the large embankment all the way through to Ardglen. This will enable me to permanently install the lighting for this section, so that I can continue to work in a well lit area. The same framework was also installed for the future top deck section back to Kankool.
Most of the layout timber work is from DAR pine, 70 x 19mm and 42 x 19mm. However, I was looking to save some money from this point onwards, so I decided to purchase large sheets of 19mm plywood and rip these down into 70mm and 42mm wide strips. The cost of the plywood is about half that of the equivalent DAR pine.
The ceiling will be made from 3mm MDF and painted the sky blue colour. The lighting will then be installed along with the valance up to Ardglen.
More photos will be added as the ceiling installation progresses.
Since my last post, I have been busy with work on the upper deck above the Chilcott’s Ck to Kankool section.
To support the upper deck valance and future lighting, steel brackets were fabricated from second hand 20x20mm square tube, along with bracing made from thin steel plate.
A simple timber jig was made to hold the pieces of tube in place whilst the brace plate was attached using pop rivets.
These brackets were then screwed to the wall at strategic locations at wall studs.
After the initial installation of these brackets, I discovered a potential flaw in my design. The two rivets fixing the brace plate to the vertical tube were shearing off with only minimal downward force being exerted at the outer end of the horizontal tube. Now, I’m not sure whether it was actual rivet failure or what, so I decided to replace these rivets with a 3/16” bolt/spring washer/nut combination. The result is a much stronger feeling bracket.
I had also decided to install a ceiling above each scene, as I didn’t fancy the idea of being able to see the open benchwork when looking along the scene from one end. Once painted, I also think it will assist in spreading the light onto the scene.
The ceiling is made from sheets of 3.2mm MDF (2440x1220mm). This required the installation of a timber sub-frame built around the steel brackets to allow for the securing of the ceiling. 2×1 DAR pine was used.
More framing was also installed in the corner to support the backscene and ceiling.
A ceiling section was cut to size from the MDF and secured to the timber frame using Liquid Nails and small gauge countersunk screws. The adhesive was also applied to the steel tube. Temporary supports were used to hold the ceiling in place whilst fixing the screws. After the screws were installed, extra temporary supports were fitted to force the ceiling against the steel tube whilst the adhesive cured.
The ceiling section in the corner proved to be quite tricky to cut to size, but by using accurate measurements, I ended up with a piece that fitted perfectly.
A couple more sections of backscene was also installed, including the piece in the corner.
These sections of backscene have no need to extend completely down to the benchwork, as the track level will be around where the lower edge of the MDF is in the picture above, and the majority of scenery here behind the track will be hills covered with trees.
I also started playing around with how I will locate the Kankool lever frame into the fascia. The picture below shows a mock-up of what I hope to achieve.
The MDF immediately behind the frame will be the scene fascia and the curved piece in front is to indicate another section of fascia that will serve as ‘protection’ for the frame. More on this later.