New Garden Railway - Under Construction

LGB333

LGB333

Active Member
I posted these photos on another large scale forum but thought I'd also share them here, too. I've hired a masonry contractor to build the support base for my garden railway due to my sloping backyard.........and my arthritus! The three of the four day project has been completed........they return Tuesday to finish it. Here's the photo chronology of the work:

1. Day One progress. Photo #1 - 3.

2. Day Two Progress. Photo #4 - 8.

4. Day Three Progress. Photo #9- 13.

5. Last photo shows my contractor's tractor driver.

Comments: My contractor originally estimated 2 1/2 dump truck loads of dirt to fill in the retaining wall to be level. It required FOUR - costing me $350 per load. To get around two large trees and their roots, I'm using two double LGB truss bridges which are four feet length each, so for the two main lines around the perimeter of the new RR will require four LGB bridges per bridge (eight total for traversing the two trees)............but it will actually add character to the layout. There will be 3 inches of crushed stone #9 on top of the dirt within the retaining wall. Bill, my contractor's tractor operator........he moved the four dump truck loads of dirt into the retaining wall and then the crushed stone #9.

5. Day Four: The contractor will finish the work next Tuesday.

Ground Slope/Grade: My contractor has done an amazing job of extending the track line from the left side of the new retaining wall area, i.e., building the two raised block structures that will house the two 8 foot bridges. I bought at Home Depot yesterday a $60 24 inch Husky digital level and measured the level of those two structures and they are "0" grade! I want to keep the slope to 2% max from that point going up to my patio area......same from the right side of the retaining wall area. See photos #12 & #13. So, on Tuesday when they return for the final work, I'm going to have them take out more dirt to get the slope down to 2%. It currently measures about 5%.

I'm located in Northern Virginia, Washington DC Metropolitan Area, in case you're interested.
 

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DRG11

Registered
14 May 2011
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Roman City of Bath
Hi, Looking good so far , keep it and please post more pics, looking foward to the finale
 
P

Paul M

Registered
25 Oct 2016
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Royston
Certainly a good start, you're not doing things by half either! The blocks that you're using are they self supporting, it doesn't seem like you've use cement
 
PhilP

PhilP

G Scale, 7/8th's, Electronics
5 Jun 2013
22,735
237
Tamworth, Staffs.
Certainly a good start, you're not doing things by half either! The blocks that you're using are they self supporting, it doesn't seem like you've use cement
I think they have a slight lip on the lower-back edge? - So they step-back very slightly, and the load is transferred down the wall??
 
LGB333

LGB333

Active Member
Paul and Philp - Yes, these landscaping blocks are self-supporting, and there is a lip to lock in each one, thus the tiered look. The mason did use a glue, Loctite PL500 Landscaping glue, suitable for block, brick, stone and wood. He compacted the soil around the high retaining wall to give it added strength.......for such a height usually larger sized blocks are used but the soil and glue should work. He also told me that these type blocks, curved front, will allow water to drain through them so there's no need to install water drain piping into the retaining wall that some other type blocks require. The cap stones on top of the retaining wall are also glued. You can see the design of these blocks in a couple of the photos with the spare blocks piled up.

I'm using 8 foot 1 inch square aluminum rods to support the bridges, four for each double bridge but I'm also going to install some type of support unit at the half way point for added strength. One of my locomotives, a diecast metal USA Trains J1 Hudson weighs 40 pounds, then tender 20 points........would never make it across those rods without additional support to the middle of each bridge section. These rods cost me $19 at Home Depot........Lowe's had them for $28 different brand......so I obviously got the Home Depot ones.
 

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idlemarvel

idlemarvel

Registered
13 Jul 2015
1,588
71
Ascot
They are like the Marshall Croft Stone Walling available in the UK which is "mortar free". You can only built to a certain height and they have to be stepped back not vertical. See here:
Croft Stone Garden Walling | Marshalls.co.uk
 
Rhinochugger

Rhinochugger

Retired Oik
27 Oct 2009
24,464
298
North West Norfolk
I'm using 8 foot 1 inch square aluminum rods to support the bridges, four for each double bridge but I'm also going to install some type of support unit at the half way point for added strength. .
What is the span?

have you thought of using 'T' section aluminium? I used two 2" deep 'T' sections over an 8 foot span for a single track and it's rock solid :nod::nod::nod:
 
Greg Elmassian

Greg Elmassian

Registered
8 Mar 2014
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117
San Diego
www.elmassian.com
Ahh, replied on the other forum, but you did not state your preference for siamesed wire.

I don't recommend siamesed wire unless you must direct bury it, and then you are limited to "landscape wire" which is ridiculously expensive in 12 and 10 gauge.

Greg
 
LGB333

LGB333

Active Member
What is the span?

have you thought of using 'T' section aluminium? I used two 2" deep 'T' sections over an 8 foot span for a single track and it's rock solid :nod::nod::nod:
I don't know what T Section Aluminium looks like or where to get it...........some additional details would be appreciated. It sounds like a good rock solid material.
 
dunnyrail

dunnyrail

DOGS, Garden Railways, Steam Trains, Jive Dancing,
25 Oct 2009
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St.Neots Cambridgeshire UK
I don't know what T Section Aluminium looks like or where to get it...........some additional details would be appreciated. It sounds like a good rock solid material.
Your Rods look like extruded aluminium square section. The T will be similar stuff that is also extruded through a form so that it looks like a letter ‘T” end on. You ought to be able to source it at Home Depot or any other Metal or Builders Yard. Another good source of strong Metal for such jobs is old Bed Metal, will be Steel and Rust some but last for years if you can find any at a Recycle Yard or Dump.
 
Rhinochugger

Rhinochugger

Retired Oik
27 Oct 2009
24,464
298
North West Norfolk
I don't know what T Section Aluminium looks like or where to get it...........some additional details would be appreciated. It sounds like a good rock solid material.
Hi, yes, I'm not sure who your stockists of aluminium section are likely to be in the US, but over here I simply googled 'aluminium section' and worked through suppliers' lists.

As Jon (Dunnyrail) says, on end, it's a 'T' shape, and will be listed as T section.

The principle is that the depth of the vertical section is where the strength of the span will be, resisting the bending moment. So your 1" deep box section is going in the right direction, but a 2" deep section will be even stronger.

For a single track span, I found 8ft lengths was the longest standard length I could buy, so I used 2 x 2" T sections held together bu 1" x 1" box sections 4" long, and with a 1/4" bolt running though them.

This picture also shows the small aluminium angles that I then fitted to the outside edge of the 'T's in order to provide an edge (whether I'll ever get around to making a parapet remains to be seen.

This is a lift out section to allow the lawn mower to be taken through.

125057_e5a74b9208a16edf196d124153bdf041.jpg
 
P

perpetualnewbie

Registered
30 Apr 2019
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22
36
United Kingdom
That's some serious landscaping. I can only look on in awe. Hope it all goes smoothly!
 
wandgrudd

wandgrudd

Registered
24 Oct 2009
284
12
....
I don't know what T Section Aluminium looks like or where to get it...........some additional details would be appreciated. It sounds like a good rock solid material.
 
Madman

Madman

Registered
25 Oct 2009
12,906
83
Pennsylvania, USA
I'm glad you decided to post your build here. I don't frequent the other forum you mentioned too much any more. These Brits have a better sense of humor, I suppose. So there is a gas can under the bridge.....:mad:.....Are you planning a Gomez Adams type of railway.....:rofl:
 
LGB333

LGB333

Active Member
Hi, yes, I'm not sure who your stockists of aluminium section are likely to be in the US, but over here I simply googled 'aluminium section' and worked through suppliers' lists.

As Jon (Dunnyrail) says, on end, it's a 'T' shape, and will be listed as T section.

The principle is that the depth of the vertical section is where the strength of the span will be, resisting the bending moment. So your 1" deep box section is going in the right direction, but a 2" deep section will be even stronger.

For a single track span, I found 8ft lengths was the longest standard length I could buy, so I used 2 x 2" T sections held together bu 1" x 1" box sections 4" long, and with a 1/4" bolt running though them.

This picture also shows the small aluminium angles that I then fitted to the outside edge of the 'T's in order to provide an edge (whether I'll ever get around to making a parapet remains to be seen.

This is a lift out section to allow the lawn mower to be taken through.

View attachment 252947
Wow........that's really neat! This can be used as a bridge itself whereas two LGB 50610 4 foot bridges will span the support beams. Thanks for the photo.
 
LGB333

LGB333

Active Member
Ahh, replied on the other forum, but you did not state your preference for siamesed wire.

I don't recommend siamesed wire unless you must direct bury it, and then you are limited to "landscape wire" which is ridiculously expensive in 12 and 10 gauge.

Greg
Okay, a boater friend and customer of mine recommended to use marine grade tinned duplex caqble available in various sizes including 10 and 12 AWG. The strands are tinned to withstand water corrosion. The brand he uses for his boats is Ancor Marine Grade Tinned Duplex Cable. It's available online from WalMart and other dealers in 50, 100, 250 and 500 foot lengths. The online price at WalMart for the 100 foot 10 AWG is $95. This appears to be much better than the landscape wire for years of reliable garden railway use.
 
LGB333

LGB333

Active Member
Day Four - Final Day of Contractor's Work started this morning. I'm having them lower the base by the patio and going down each side to be about 2% slope on the grade. I'll post additional photos at the end of their work today.
 

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