Author Topic: Helix wirgin,,update 12/26  (Read 2459 times)

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soo

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Helix wirgin,,update 12/26
« on: December 23, 2008, 01:49:55 PM »
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Howdy all.. sorry for posting on two forums,,

  I have decided that I need to have a lower level for staging for ops. In the operational world, my layout will be point to point,,, but for vistors and a potenial open house,, I will have a continous run option. So a helix is what is needed,, actaully two helices.

  There will a 16" difference in deck heights... so sitting here typing this,,, I could make a large staging yard and then in another area have some visable layout,, midwestern town,, large industry,, I still need to noodle on that.

   Here you can see the 120 degree sections of the curve. The red looking line is track center line which is a radius of 20". I figured on a sub-roadbed width of 2 1/2". As I was trying to get the most use out of a piece of plywood.  I am using AC grade 1/2" plywood, then will afix cork, then CD 80 track.


  The benchwork came out to be 45 1/8" square. What I did was to set up a complete circle,, then allow for a 3/4" member to be the verticle support. Using a 5/16" dado. Which would leave about 7/16" - 1/2" of verticle member to afix to the base benchwork.

 I also added the 45 degree supports to prevent the frame from tweaking. I kept the outside frame clamped to insure square, then attached each of the corner braces.


  The next step was to create the verticle supports. I decided to use 2 1/4" as a distance from top of the rail to the bottom of the sub-roadbed. Using my plunge router with a 1/2" groove bit set to a depth of 5/16". I did two set of six uprights. I knew that the router would tear the last member so I needed to have a scrap piece for the start and end of the groove. Using a straight edge to guide the router insured of straight groove through all six pieces.


  Here is what I have so far,,, I am pretty pleased with the outcome. On the next helix I will cut the roadbed into 90 degree sections, so I can supports at all the joints. I think for this one I am going to use a biscuit joiner,, with yellow glue and beechnut wood biscuits. Where you see the orange clamp is zero elevation.


  In the grand idea of things,, there will be two helices,,, and one HUGE staging yard on the lower level. I did the work in these pictures in about 2 days,, taking breaks and even watching some TV also. Some people on here know,, that when I get going I will work for hours and hours.

  Ya'll have a merry christmas, and a happy new year.

  Adios, Wyatt
« Last Edit: December 27, 2008, 12:19:49 AM by soo »

asciibaron

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Re: Helix wirgin
« Reply #1 on: December 23, 2008, 01:55:59 PM »
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looks good - i will have to do something like this as well - i not sure how i'll affix the track in the helix - might cheat and use sectional track, not sure i want all those joints though.

-Steve
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soo

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Re: Helix wirgin
« Reply #2 on: December 24, 2008, 10:45:18 AM »
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Steve,,  I was going to affix track and cork a turn at a time. But Seeing that I am the kind of guy that wants to be running trains like last year,, I might do something different to speed up the process.

  Adios

davefoxx

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Re: Helix wirgin
« Reply #3 on: December 24, 2008, 11:00:49 AM »
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Wyatt,

If it were me, I would install cork and flextrack as I built the helix and had access to each level of the loop.  Since you appear to be beyond that stage, I would recommend soldering 2-3 sections of flextrack together and fishing them up through the helix.  I use yellow glue to secure my cork roadbed and track with push pins to hold them in place until the glue sets.

Hope this helps,
Dave Foxx

General Counsel to the Laurel Valley Ry.
Member: ACL/SAL Historical Society
A Proud HOer

soo

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Re: Helix wirgin
« Reply #4 on: December 24, 2008, 01:27:24 PM »
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Dave , thanx for the pointers,,, what you see in the pictures is a mock up.. Nothing is fastened ,, except for the outside verticle supports.

  That is the way I will probally do it,, track and cork by layer,, I am going to going to insure bulletproof and bomb proof operation. I am making it as a stand alone piece of benchwork,, so when it comes to the wiring I will have access to all sides. All track feeders will be going to terminal strips.. once attached to the main layout,, the pwer bus will be ran to those same terminal strips.

  I might be able to get most of it done in the next couple of days.

  Adios

TiVoPrince

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Re: Helix wirgin
« Reply #5 on: December 24, 2008, 02:58:18 PM »
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This
would be a case for the Atlas code 55 sectional track.  An assembly of preformed 20" radius sections that are not inclined to 'spring back' to straight would certainly overcome my aversion to those extra track joints.

I'm wondeing if you will be satisfied with a single track helix?  A huge staging yard served by a long run of single track may not be operationally satisfying.  The few extra inches of floor space and materials required for double track may be worth it in the end...
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MEC_FAN

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Re: Helix wirgin
« Reply #6 on: December 24, 2008, 11:13:12 PM »
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Wyatt, I soldered my feeder wires on as I built each revolution, was easy to drill next to the rail and run the feeders down through the plywood. Not sure how you plan to do it but thats how I did mine.

MEC
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soo

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Re: Helix wirgin
« Reply #7 on: December 25, 2008, 01:02:27 PM »
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Both Tivo and MEC make very good points.

 Tivo makes sense with making double track,,, Since I need two helices,, I may do that on the next one.

  As for MEC, he makes a good point by drilling the holes as it assembled. I do plan doing that.

  I plan to work on it tomorrow.

  Adios, merry christmas.

soo

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Re: Helix wirgin,,update 12/26
« Reply #8 on: December 27, 2008, 12:20:07 AM »
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I did a rough fit of the helix and frame in the place it is going to go,, I held the frame 4" off the wall,, so I will be able to fit a grain lead behind it ( Future expansion across the other side of the garage).

  I was thinking about putting an industrial park in the center,,maybe making the first lap visable,, with some retaining walls, or what not.

  Nothing is fastened together yet,,just a rough idea.



   I am going to start assembling this weekend,, doing the wiring and track loop by loop to insure quality. And also to insure ease of construction.

  Adios

MEC_FAN

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Re: Helix wirgin,,update 12/26
« Reply #9 on: December 27, 2008, 09:17:00 AM »
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Wyatt looking good so far, how many uprights are there going to be, looks like four to me. I would be concerned with the amount of space between them and the plywood doing some funky things with the climate change. I would do a minimum of six uprights if I were you. I did my helix with six threaded rods and still the plywood moves with the change in climate.

  Edit,
 You could cut some narrow blocks to fit between the plywood halfway between the uprights and glue them in to make the plywood behave also. One other thing, when I soldered three pieces of Code 55 together I removed to many ties. When the temp changes the c 55 rail is pretty flexable due to its small size and it can go out of gauge at that point causing problems with narrow tread wheelsets ( ask me how I know and six wheel trucks Locos).
   When I double tracked it later on after it was all built ( should of right at the begining like Tivo said ) I put in two peices of flex then a peice of sectional curve and  left a little gap for expansion contraction between them. One problem with the Atlas sectioal is some lo-pro wheels just hit the spike heads and sound like a rumble strip on the edge of the highway. Didn't know that until it was done. You can knock off the spike heads a little just enough to get rid of this problem before but not after its built. Hope all this info helps just passing it on from my own expeirience.


John
« Last Edit: December 27, 2008, 09:37:08 AM by MEC_FAN »
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davefoxx

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Re: Helix wirgin,,update 12/26
« Reply #10 on: December 27, 2008, 10:04:37 AM »
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Wyatt,

Here's a possible space-saving idea.  On the square base upon which the helix sits, you framed in an "octagon."  You could move the two legs on the outside corners (near the aisle) to inside the "octagon" and then cut off the two corners of the square frame.  By doing this, you could now run your fascia around the base and helix in a more circular shape, getting back some of the space the helix's frame takes up.

Dave Foxx

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Member: ACL/SAL Historical Society
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wm3798

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Re: Helix wirgin,,update 12/26
« Reply #11 on: December 27, 2008, 10:44:29 AM »
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Now hold on, Dave... Those corners will be a mighty handy place to put down your beer!  I'm envious of your space, Wyatt.  One thing I'm wondering, if the lower level is only for staging, couldn't you get away with dropping about a foot instead of what looks like 2'?  If you raise the level of your staging, you could take the one helix you have and make it into the two that you need!

Get those trains running even faster!

Lee
Route of the Alpha Jets

Lee Weldon www.wmrywesternlines.net

soo

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Re: Helix wirgin,,update 12/26
« Reply #12 on: December 27, 2008, 01:05:57 PM »
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 Lee,,, my space is actaully shrinking,, wife says she needs more storage space,, so the part of the expansion you can't see is coming down. The deck height is 15 1/2" lower than the top deck,,Now seeing that I am losing the other end of the expansion,, I might turn this into a second level/staging. I was trying to keep from have a huge grade so that is why I used so many turns.

  Dave,, You bring a good point,,, the corners can be cut off,,making more of a pleasing transition. After looking at the helix roughed in,, it sure does take alot of floor space. The box you see is 45 1/8" x 45 1/8"

  John,, There are going to be 8 verticle pieces. In looking back I should have cut the subroadbed in 90 degree sections and not 120. With the 90 degrees it would make it easier to make the joints stronger with the verticle to support them. Now I am going to use a biscuit joiner to do that. I plan on using the CD80 I have from the last layout for the helix.

  Like I mentioned at first in response to Lee,, Seeing that I am losing the expansion to the wife and assorted junk,, I am looking at making the second (lower) level visable railroad,, I could have staging on one end,,,along with a reverse loop.

  I know one thing I was wanting continous running for shows and open houses.. So we will see.

 Adios

wm3798

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Re: Helix wirgin,,update 12/26
« Reply #13 on: December 27, 2008, 01:48:02 PM »
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Wyatt!  You have to explain to the missus that there is plenty of storage space available under the layout!  The bigger the layout, the more storage space you have!  I designed mine so that it was high enough to stack two of those big Sterilite tubs underneath... there's enough room under there for about 10 tubs now, and when Hagerstown is built, I'll be able to hide another 12 - 16 of them.  That's a lot of baby clothes, Easter Baskets and Christmas lights!

Lee
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Lee Weldon www.wmrywesternlines.net

Ian MacMillan

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Re: Helix wirgin,,update 12/26
« Reply #14 on: December 27, 2008, 02:02:06 PM »
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Wyatt!  You have to explain to the missus that there is plenty of storage space available under the layout!  The bigger the layout, the more storage space you have!  I designed mine so that it was high enough to stack two of those big Sterilite tubs underneath... there's enough room under there for about 10 tubs now, and when Hagerstown is built, I'll be able to hide another 12 - 16 of them.  That's a lot of baby clothes, Easter Baskets and Christmas lights!

Lee

Exactly! I've designed the layout room the same way so that items are easily stored under the layout and out of the way. However now that I am working on filling the backyard with speeders and railroad equipment I think I may be on thin ice!
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