HO Model Railroad Steam Central

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Kit Bashing a Helijan 6 STALL Roundhouse to 11 STALLS Good project for a seasoned modeler.

Phase I   In the Beginning,  Phase II   The Wiring.  Phase III   The Layout,   Phase IV   The Finished Product

I started this project several months ago, knowing it wasn't going to be done in a weekend.   As usual, it took quite a few weekends, but the end result and challenges are well worth the effort.   Make sure to view this next image at full size to appreciate the final product.

Full Size Image of Roundhouse with 4-8-8-4 on Turntable

In the Beginning - Phase I

The first new-construction hurdle was to break one of the outside walls, preferably the left side, leaving the storage shed that is attached to the right-hand side of the original first stall of 6 stalls intact.  This little venture took several hours, since the glue, which had hardened over probably 15 years, was very secure.  I used force to break what I could, along with my faithful dremel tool to release the left supporting wall from the sixth stall.   After getting the old wall free with minimal damage, I filed and sanded down the surfaces that seemed rough, compared to the adjacent new stall, which I used as a test fit to get the juncture of the new and old buildings to adhere.  Once in place, I then glued the two together by using various adjustable C-clamps purchased from Micro-mark at http://www.micromark.com

As I later learned, it helps to have something stabilizing the top of the building.  I used the middle roof pieces, with the skylights removed, to help with the top alignment. This was more of a problem where I joined the old sixth stall with the new seventh stall.  It helped to add the front walls with the doors in place for each stall (FIG 4).   If you donít do this, itís impossible to lift this creation.   Shortly after I had the new eleven stalls in a movable configuration (FIG 11),  I decided to connect all of the interior lighting, which included 3 lights in each bay.   Do the math; including the additional tool shed, this was 35 lights.   The power consumption on one DC transformer will require full power to illuminate all of the lights.  
size=59.5KB, Full Size Image Fig 1 Beginning Construction Figure 1
size=51.0KB, Full Size Image Fig 2 Using C-Clamps Figure 2
size=50.1KB, Full size Image Fig 3 Bottom View Adding New Doors Figure 3
size=42.7KB, Full size Image Fig 4 Front Door Alignment Figure 4

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Last modified: 08-04-2001
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