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Thread: Cheap Retaining Walls

  1. #1
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    Default Cheap Retaining Walls

    I bought some suspended ceiling light defuser panels for above the layout some time ago. Being a cheapskate, I got the least expensive I could find. Needless to say, you get what you pay for. These were so flimsy (about 1/8 of an inch thick) a couple fell out and as luck would have it, they kind of floated down onto the layout without any damage. I removed them all and so have an inventory of plastic panels.
    These have the pattern generally referred to as "cracked ice". Seeing that they reminded me of random stonework, I came up with an idea.
    I took a panel like this:

    Dug around my junk boxes and found the remnants of an old Atlas viaduct, like this except with the piers added:

    I then backed up the openings with a piece of the plastic panel, painted in grey primer. The plastic is quite brittle, so the score and snap method turned into an explosion of shards of broken plastic. The next attempt was with a new blade in a utility knife, which cut right through with a couple of strokes. I added a balsa wood edge to the top, painted concrete, then a light coat of 3M spray adhesive. Stuck some "burnt grass" ground foam on the sides and ended up with a unique retaining wall for a couple of cents.


    I used the same method for the retaining wall behind the Port Carbon station, only this time using balsa strips as pillars instead of the viaduct pieces.

    Jim

    It's not the voices themselves that drive me crazy. It's that they end their sentences with prepositions!

  2. The Following 5 Users Say Thank You to Jimmi For This Useful Post:


  3. #2
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    Thanks Jimmi for a great tip!
    Yours,

    Gene

    Turtle Creek Industrial RR

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    Jimmi That is a really cool idea !!!
    Thanks , Mike
    “When I was 5 years old, my mother always told me that happiness was the key to life.
    When I went to school, they asked me what I wanted to be when I grew up.
    I wrote ‘happy’.
    They told me I didn’t understand the assignment, and I told them they didn’t understand life.”
    -- John Lennon


    Mike & Robin at Fifer Hobby

    Southern New Mexico N Scalers

    Fifer Hobby Supply


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    Jimmi
    I also have both of those. 2 old Atlas viaducts and some plastic pannels but mine are a little thicker.

    Good I'll try it on my new layout.

    See ya
    "Men go and come,
    but earth abides." Ecclesiastes 1:4

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    Those ceiling light panels come in other patterns that are also interesting shapes for modelling.

    Broken pieces and cut offs can sometimes be found at the home improvement stores or construction/remodeling sites.
    (The voices I hear in my head may not be real, but sometimes they come up with a good idea.)

    Have fun.

    Moose

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    Jimmi,

    This is fantastic. Thanks for sharing! Awesome work!
    My flickr account... "collection of N scale city structures"
    http://www.flickr.com/photos/5506372...7612768739708/


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    Rats! I just replaced 6 of those in our kitchen and tossed the old ones. Oh well, still learning,
    Phil Olmsted
    San Francisco

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    Default recyclers

    Model rairoaders are serious recyclers. My wife often ask me if i can use something on my layout before she throws it out. I have a special bins for most of it. I have been looking fo some retainig wall ideas.

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    my wife is the opposite. She is always after me to throw things out and not save the *junk* that I have here and there in the garage or shop. But then she'll come around with *can you fix this?* and well I go to the scrap pile and see what I have. Go figure!
    Yours,

    Gene

    Turtle Creek Industrial RR

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    Quote Originally Posted by russtrnmn View Post
    Model rairoaders are serious recyclers...
    I am coming to believe this is a very true statement! My wife will also ask if I can use something she thinks may have some potential use before throwing it out!

    Does this mean that we are "green" model railroaders?

    An interesting excursion from Retaining Walls!

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    Quote Originally Posted by BryanC View Post
    Does this mean that we are "green" model railroaders?
    I chucked some empty beer bottles into a glass bin the other day, does that count?
    "Do Not Hump!?!?! Does that mean what I think it means?!?"--Michelle Blanchard

    "People saw wood and say nothing, but railroad men saw trains and say things that are better left unprinted."--Charles De Lano Hine

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    Jimmi,

    I picked up this product from an industrial plastic shop here in town. It's a large sheet. 4'x2' feet. It's completely flexible and is crack proof. It's called cracked ice. Its got all kinds of small cracks all through it and would work perfect for an N scale retaining wall. It can be cut with scissors too.

    I'll photograph it and post it here later.

    Thanks for the brilliant idea.

    Cheers, Bob
    My flickr account... "collection of N scale city structures"
    http://www.flickr.com/photos/5506372...7612768739708/


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