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Thread: Transporting Multiple Modules

  1. #1
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    Default Transporting Multiple Modules

    Hey gang,

    I am working on designing some more modules to build. Great, right? The problem is, is that the two modules I own take up the entirety of my hatchback. Not wanting to make two trips to and from shows, I am looking into the possibility of renting a U Haul trailer to do the moving. This has some benefits as I can fit larger modules into their standard 4x8' trailers.

    I am sure other people do this, so I thought that I would ask how do you stack modules into the trailers? Did you make custom shelving built specifically for the trailer?

    Please feel free to chime in even if you use your own trailer.

    I appreciate any/all the feed back!
    Bo D.
    B&O Keyridge Subdivision
    I'm not allowed to run the train, the whistle I can't blow. I'm not allowed to say how fast the Railroad Train can go.
    I'm not allowed to shoot off steam, nor even clang the bell. But let the damned Train jump the track, and see who catches hell!


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    Default

    I use the sandwich method. I have 3/4” plywood end plates for my modules. I set two modules on the ground on their sides and screw the end plates on. When I load them in the trailer, one module sits right side up and the other sits upside down. I use short boards to separate the sandwiched sets in the trailer, and I strap them all to the wall. With a dolly, I can move over twelve feet of module per trip in and out of a show (my modules are 6’3” long each).
    Karl

    CEO of the Skally Line, an Eastern MN Shortline

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    Default

    There really are three ways to transport multiple modules safety:

    1) make them self stacking
    2) make a rack/cart to slide them into
    3) build a crate

    Racks and crates are fairly self explanatory, except to note that the crate method may or may not use the module itself as one side.

    Self stacking modules comes in basically two forms, a box or a stack.

    Boxed modules almost always come in pairs with the scenery facing the other module in the pair. For n-track modules, and other modules with skyboards, many people use the skyboards to form the box. The skyboards are perminantly bolted to one module and bolted to the other module for transport ( in other words two sides of the box are the module itself and the other two sides are the skyboards. ) For modules without skyboards, most people build “transport endplates” to cover the track ends of the modules. Boxed modules may have two open ends or may be completely enclosed. I have seen wheels attached to boxed modules, but most are transported with Dollys.

    The stack method usually involves some protrusions from the module that allows the pieces to stack. The basic difference between boxing and stacking is that stacked modules all face the same direction for transport. The last time I saw this done was for a club owned yard module. It looked like the club had cut a 1x6 or 1x8 into several keyed sections. The keyed sections were screwed to the front and back of the module below the level of the top surface with the keys for the module below extending below the bottom of the frame. In this case there were wheels attached perminantly to the bottom of the bottom section on the stack.

    I do have two sections of a module that stack, but most of mine are transported either in boxed pairs or racks. The one pair of sections that stack are identically shaped, but not mirrors of each other. They effectively have transport endplates attached to facilitate stacking.
    For decoder installation and JMRI services, please visit http://www.bentraildigital.com
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    Default

    I have a 5 X 8 trailer I bought for hauling my (and club) NTRAK modules. I built one rack which holds 4' standard modules. It holds 3 modules and fits crossways in the front of the trailer. Then I have 2 racks that are fitted for my convertible corner, which is 3 pieces with 2 being 5 ft long. The second rack has blocks to hold standard 4 ft modules in place as well. Those 2 racks fit longways behind the smaller rack. The 3 racks are on wheels and I have a ramp (look for a wheelchair ramp). The ramp folds and fits between the racks and the door for transport. This system works well, because in most cases, I can roll the racks in to the setup area,so I can move 9 modules in 3 trips. I have a load binder as well, so if I don't need all the racks , I can lock the ones I need in place in the trailer. I also use the racks as storage shelves for the modules in the garage, so they serve double duty.
    One member of the club has a pair of modules that use the box system pbender mentions. It works pretty well, but the box is too heavy and awkward to be moved by one person and also requires quite a bit of time to assemble/disassemble (this one has end plates AND backboards). I can load/unload my 3 racks (modules on/off racks and racks to/from the trailer) in about the same time. But in theory you could get 4 modules in your hatchback, which eliminates the trailer up to 4 modules. The other issue is you can't just use any 2 modules for the box.....they have to be designed so you aren't crushing your scenery when you put the box together.....your plans may not work. But if they will you eliminate the cost of the racks and the trailer.

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