Presentation on theme: "Lightweight Baseboard Construction Presented at VMRS Meeting 18 September 2013 by John de la Lande Photo Gippsford."— Presentation transcript:
Lightweight Baseboard Construction Presented at VMRS Meeting 18 September 2013 by John de la Lande Photo Gippsford
Baseboard Design Criteria When I decided to build Gippsford, for showing at the AMRA Exhibition last year, I focused on meeting these criteria: for the baseboard: Lightweight Easy to build Easy to dismantle for transport Least amount of work Eliminate warping Use perfectly straight structural members Keep cost down (as much as possible) Hide point mechanisms from damage Minimise wiring issues Easy alignment of track from one board to the next
Materials Decided on Aluminium structural members as: Lightweight. Easy to work with. Relatively cheap. Free cutting to length (Action Aluminium). Quick to build and dismantle (using Aculok system and 25.4mm square Aluminium tube). Height adjusting feet available (and casters if required).
Materials (2) Decided to use extruded polystyrene for the base of the layout as: It is lightweight. Relatively strong. Deadens noise very effectively. Can be easily shaped and cut. Has a range of thicknesses available. Can be glued together using PVA (I used 2 part epoxy to glue to the ply base).
Materials (3) Used building plywood under the extruded polystyrene as: It added structural rigidity to the baseboard frame. Provided support for the extruded polystyrene and minimised cross structural members required. Allowed wiring and connectors to be easily attached underneath using a hot glue gun.
Baseboard Construction Layers Extruded Polystyrene Square Al Tubing Plywood Rect Al Tube bolted To square tubing to Reduce sag.
Materials (4) Aculok connectors.
Baseboard Framing Underneath layout showing framing and wiring.
Lighting (1) Support poles were clipped onto the legs to enable LED strip lighting to be installed. The LEDs come in a 5m roll with a sticky back enabling them to be stuck onto an aluminium L shaped strip of aluminium. Very light weight and very easy to install and dismantle.
Lighting (2) Brackets were made from 3mm acrylic to connect the L aluminium to the Uprights and made such that there angle could be adjusted to obtain optimum lighting. For a permanent layout the lights can be suspended on Fishing line.
Cost Comparison (1) Aculok connectors cost on average $1.30 each but cost depends on how many ways it is designed to support (eg: 3 way, 4 way). Square tubing to match the Aculok connectors costs $20.80 per 6.5m lengths – that is $3.20 per m. Action Aluminium were by far the cheapest for aluminium I could find and would cut the tube to the lengths I required for free (just needed to provide them with a cutting list).
Cost Comparison (2) MaterialDescriptionCost/m Aluminium Square25.4 x 25.4 (1 x 1)$3.20 Dressed Pine64 x 19$2.80 Dressed Pine Framing42 x 30$3.34 Tas Oak Hardwood65 x 19$5.68 Structural Framing Pine Walls 2 x 1$2.50 Wood prices are from Bunnings Mentone
Issues & Conclusions The span between legs can be an issue. If too long the aluminium can sag. This can be resolved by: Adding more legs. Bolting (and gluing) a length of Aluminium under the Aculok square tubing. Note that it is the combined depth of the beam that determines its rigidity over the length of the span. Ballast weighs more than the boards! The baseboards were easy to erect, dismantle and transport. Easy to align track from one board to the other.