This last week I have been finishing off the fascia. I had been putting it off for a couple of months whilst work and Christmas got in the way. What I also could not work out was exactly how the fascia should fit together. I had the idea that the front lighting beam should be removable for maintenance but it had already started to come loose from having manoeuvred the layout holding onto it.
Then the question was how to handle the 'wings' of the layout. The main board was designed to fit into the back of the car and to ensure there was no join in the visible part. Would these line up with the front or just be flat behind? Eventually I started cutting wood and it came together. The sides of the main fascia were glued on and braced with balsa. The bracing does not carry any load but is there to limit flexing.
The wings were cut and I selected a trapezium shape to try and limit the amount of flat surface the public would see and to help it stand out from the traditional square blob. I realised that I could effectively fix the wings to the sides of the main fascia by gluing strips of wood to the back of both boards and have then stick out. Imagine alternate pegs that push together by a lattice.
I then tried some velcro on the edge but it came away so a block of timber on the face of the wing provides the main weight support.
The next task was the front curtain. I went and bought some black material but it clashes with the muted green of the fascia so I will have to go out and buy another colour, probably grey.
The other task done is I have filled in the roof of the layout with mounting board. A layout like this is best viewed from just under eye level. My personal preference, however, is to set the layout height so people in wheelchairs and mobility scooters can see it. It means the majority of people have to stoop for the best view but many lean on barriers anyway. There isn't a good solution to this situation.
What I realised when standing up was that you could see down through the roof and that distracted from looking through the front s I filled it in.
Is it ready to go out now? Yes, I believe it is. I'll sort the curtain this week then there will be no bare boards visible and it runs. There is plenty to do on detailing and I need to build up enough stock but it can now go to exhibitions. I've contacted a couple of local shows and offered it as a fill-in should someone drop out at the last minute. A couple of shows should iron out anything I've missed!
A look back through this blog showed that I started this in Jan 2017 so a little over 2 years for a layout that has one track on it! I confess thought I had taken longer and wonder if I didn't start blogging until much later - who knows!
If you are interested then pop across to the Melin Dolryhd page on my website where there are details and an exhibition flyer you can download.
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