Rob’s been in touch with his O scale tunnel project:
I fired up the inkjet printer again recently for another project.
I’m modeling O gauge with 027 track and curves, due to my space limitations. In my last update I had redone the front right corner of my layout.
The next area to tackle was the back left corner. I have been procrastinating due to limited access. I’m 6’5″ but even my arms aren’t long enough to reach to the back of a 4X8 sheet of plywood. So just like Bob in Virginia, I had to build a platform first. I had a scrap of 3/4 plywood and cut a couple of blocks of 2X4 for legs. I balanced one end on my ladder and I was ready to go.
So, on to the good stuff. I used your wooden corner tunnel prints and developed my own O scale tunnel and retaining wall to fit the available space.
O gauge trains need a lot of space on 27″ curves so I’m always watching my clearances near the rails. Here’s the first mock up. The outer line is the elevated track and the inner is ground level.
As you can see I am working under the elevated line so I did a lot of test fitting as I went along.
I printed and cut the wall sections as desired. I use matte card-stock paper and mount the prints to thin cardboard. I added balsa wood to the wall sections to add some detail. Extra pieces of the prints were used as well.
Next was to build the terrain behind the walls. I cut and carved blocks of rigid foam board to develop the hills.
Another trip up onto the layout to do a clearance check
Once I had the overall shape I liked, I mounted the tunnel to a piece of 1/4″ plywood. This way I could build it as a diorama and place it on the layout when I was ready. I covered the foam with plaster cloth and began to add ground cover and detailing.
I have a Lionel Lighted American Flag that I wanted to use on top of the hill, but it was too big to fit. I took it apart and set the flagpole and three of the LED’s right into the foam.
Once the flag was done I also added a scratch built light pole and started to get the diorama set on the layout.
I also wanted the road to look like it went somewhere. I found a print of a gravel road online that fit the bill perfectly.
Here’s the mostly finished product (is any project ever really finished? )
The last step was to put the elevated track back in place. I had to remove one of the supports so I made a small bridge to span the gap.
So there you have it. This was a fun project during a very cold and snowy February here in New York.
Thanks for all you do Al.
Bob in L.I., NY, USA”
A huge thanks Bob for sharing his O scale tunnel project.
You all know how much I love an update, and I love the way Bob has done this.
Course, I’m biased, but I think it looks fabulous.
If you want to buy the print out Bob used for this, it’s here right at the bottom.
All the prints are HO scale. FOr N scale just reduce the print size to 54%.
Most people play around with the print sizes.
Take Bob, he’s O scale, so asked him about that and he said:
I went up 125% to get the proper scale. I based it on the tunnel height which is 11 scale feet. O gauge is loosely based around 1:48 scale.
I say loosely due to the various sizes of equipment built over the years. Especially post-war Lionel that was typically bigger or smaller depending on the model.
O gaugers have grown accustomed to these issues.”
That’s all for today folks.
Please do keep ’em coming.
Also, some of you have asked about the back drops. You can find them at the bottom of this post.
I really must get round to putting them in the store.
And don’t forget the Beginner’s Guide is here if you want to get going on your own layout.