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personal challenge for layouts in future

 
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ruedetropal



Joined: 22 Oct 2006
Posts: 814
Location: Accrington, Lancashire

PostPosted: Mon May 09, 2016 5:10 pm    Post subject: personal challenge for layouts in future Reply with quote

I have decided to build all new layouts(unless I have already started and done too much) to fit inside a large suitcase. I have seen one which should allow a layout board of up to 30in by about 18in, and if I build two section which can be put together That gives me a good size, even for bigger scales. It could be smaller, and then a more substantial fiddle yard could be done. I might even go back to my cardboard fruit box as a structure. I can test this out with my St Pons d'Étropal HO layout, which I have dug out and intend to exhibit over the next year.
Idea would then to be to see if it was possible to get to exhibitions by train.
Apart from the size, the other challenge would be to keep weight as low as possible. My lightweight 3D printed buildings may well prove to be a big advantage.

Obvious I would need another smaller bag/case for all the bits, plus stuff for overnight etc.

When I originally built my Port d'Étropal it was planned to take that on trains, but it got too big(and heavy). This time I think I will be successful. My 'Chrismas 1945' layout, used the two half idea, and I had originally hoped to find a period style suitcase or any case, but could not find one, so it was a build to resemble an ammunition box. It was heavy though
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Simon Dawson
Will try anything once, looking for the ultimate easy to set up portable exhibition layout, preferably French narrow gauge and with lots going on, not necessary on the rails.

http://www.rue-d-etropal.com
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giles b



Joined: 25 Oct 2006
Posts: 1964
Location: London

PostPosted: Mon May 09, 2016 5:33 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

An interesting concept, Simon. You should certainly be able to get quite a bit onto a total of 60ins by 18ins.

However it's all the other bits and pieces that takes up so much carry-space. I'd certainly think about building the electrics into each layout so that one controller can plug into any of them, and getting the smallest transformer possible. Alternatively, depending on the electrical complexity of the wiring, you might be able to make one separate control panel able to be used with all the layouts. Fitted with a multi-way connectors, colour or number coded, you could have a layout diagram showing what each circuit does on each layout, as long as the connections always go 1 to 1, 2 to 2, etc.

Have you thought about battery power, I wonder? I believe other modellers have used this successfully, and it certainly helps to keep the weight down.

Protection of the rolling stock while in transit will also be something to consider, particularly if you're planning to work in several different (and large) scales - but all the collections will need to fit the same overall travelling space in a larger container with the other non-layout items, I imagine.

I shall follow progress with interest.
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ruedetropal



Joined: 22 Oct 2006
Posts: 814
Location: Accrington, Lancashire

PostPosted: Mon May 09, 2016 8:11 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

depending on scale I am working on then amount of stock will have to fit the bag I use to transport it all .Much of my HO and OO is relatively new so has boxes, and if they need to be transported loose, I have suitable storage boxes.
Electrics are always basic on my layouts, no worry there, and small Gaugemaster controller does not take up much space. Battery units can end up weighing more.

I would plan to use really light weight but strong materials, no plaster or modrock, no resin r2p buildings.

I have got used to footprint of IKEA APA box(70cm by 40cm), and that should fit. Only thing is that height of box would need to be reduced. I have one box cobbled up from spare parts of an APA box, This would mean scenic section was only 70cm, but I have several layouts on same footprint.


In some ways it was doing Derby exhibition that persuaded me. It might still not have been practical to travel there by train, but the station was right next door, so it got me thinking. It is something I had thought about for Narrow Gauge North as well, but I was thinking about building the box to transport on its own, not in a suitcase. The box would fit in the suitcase, but must keep weight dow, Advantage these days is having wheels on suitcase.

One thing I want also is to use this as a gimmick. I may use it for exhibiting my 3D printed stuff as well. At the moment, I am taking far too much stuff to show(not stuff to sell and that would still need some thought)
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Simon Dawson
Will try anything once, looking for the ultimate easy to set up portable exhibition layout, preferably French narrow gauge and with lots going on, not necessary on the rails.

http://www.rue-d-etropal.com
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giles b



Joined: 25 Oct 2006
Posts: 1964
Location: London

PostPosted: Tue May 10, 2016 6:55 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

ruedetropal wrote:
I am taking far too much stuff to show and that would still need some thought)


Know what you mean. I always take a 50ft reel of mains cable, as well as a 6ft extension, and 9 times out of 10 only use the shorter length. Then, once in a while, you do need to go further for power. Plus, because they all fit in the one box, I take four power units when I only use two. Luckily I travel by car to shows!
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ruedetropal



Joined: 22 Oct 2006
Posts: 814
Location: Accrington, Lancashire

PostPosted: Tue May 10, 2016 9:09 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

at the moment I use a car, but I am thinking forward. We had a member of the Italian railway society at our exhibition. It was not a working display, but he still brought the whole lot by bus.
Things like power cables don't need to take up much space. I am looking at what would fit in one big suitcase,with wheels, one smaller bag or case, and possibly a small shoulder or back pack.

I need to test out idea with a layout I already have. I am then thinking of sources of lightweight but strong enough boards, and simple cork(?) wall post notice boards with an extra layer of thin ply are just big enough I think. 30in might be maximum length, but I will probably only have length of 24in.
Transportation should not be a problem, but from experience a badly designed box type layout can easily get damaged when storing(one reason I like the Ikea APA boxes). In particular when items stick out above, so I am thinking of trying one board flat, one on its side to give some height, but only a narrow space (enough for single track).
I will have to do some messing round with my CAD program.
Novel ideas will be tried out, some might actually work.


Just done this quick sketch of how I could put 2 box halves together, in a novel way so can have both height and width

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Simon Dawson
Will try anything once, looking for the ultimate easy to set up portable exhibition layout, preferably French narrow gauge and with lots going on, not necessary on the rails.

http://www.rue-d-etropal.com
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shortliner2001



Joined: 22 Oct 2006
Posts: 836

PostPosted: Tue May 10, 2016 11:22 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Simon, it has been around since 2002 but have a look at https://groups.yahoo.com/neo/groups/small-layout-design/files/pythag/
which will give you an alternative method of board folding - I had some photos in the group of the one I built - but they seen to have vanished. A handle screwed onto one end and a small board with wheels/casters that bolts to the other end , may be worth considering.
Hope it helps
Jack
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ruedetropal



Joined: 22 Oct 2006
Posts: 814
Location: Accrington, Lancashire

PostPosted: Tue May 10, 2016 12:06 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Jack, could not get that link to work properly, which is odd as I have Yahoo login for groups. No matter.
When I say novel ideas, I mean novel ones, which do not invoice hinges and screws, but work because materials are lightweight and strong. It might not work, but I am hopeful.
I have followed most of the 'layouts in boxes' articles and threads, and get ideas from them, but don't want to copy. I like doing things different.
Maybe I am seeing it from the perspective of a 3d artist(by that I don't mean 3D printing, although that will be used because the models are so light weight), and I intend to use space in a different way I hope.

Just to give a clue, I have tested out stick on Velcro on one layout to attach lightweight additions and hope to use it to hold the boxes together, packed and set up. My own 3D board joining track will sort out problem of track between the two boxes, as well as the connections to fiddle yards.

The design above is more suited to my larger scale projects, as I am more likely to start with something in OO or HO standard gauge, as I have much of what I require. Having said that, I do have one project in 1/32 which could be started without having to fork out on too much money.

got onto yahoo, for some reason I was logged out, but could only see header page.

Another reason for the suitcase idea, is that I am thinking of travel further afield, although explaining what is in the case to some security person who wonders what the electrics and wiring is when it shows up on scanners.
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Simon Dawson
Will try anything once, looking for the ultimate easy to set up portable exhibition layout, preferably French narrow gauge and with lots going on, not necessary on the rails.

http://www.rue-d-etropal.com
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shortliner2001



Joined: 22 Oct 2006
Posts: 836

PostPosted: Tue May 10, 2016 12:36 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Simon - downloaded it - send me an email to chacmool at lineone dot net
and I send it to you
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ruedetropal



Joined: 22 Oct 2006
Posts: 814
Location: Accrington, Lancashire

PostPosted: Wed May 11, 2016 10:16 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

tested one layout in suitcase, fits with space for padding and some other bits. Also tried one of my cut down APA boxes which fits snugly, but does not stretch case , so should be OK.
For new bases, I will probably adopt the 60cm by 40cm cork wall board. Found one in ASDA which has a good solid(MDF?) backing.

Depth is only issue. I did see another suitcase which looks a lot deeper, so possibly I could get one for deeper boxes.
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Simon Dawson
Will try anything once, looking for the ultimate easy to set up portable exhibition layout, preferably French narrow gauge and with lots going on, not necessary on the rails.

http://www.rue-d-etropal.com
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View user's profile Send private message Visit poster's website
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