Base of Operations

By the time I started work on the Jersey City Industrial, I'd established a preferred method of constructing small layout bases. Gatorfoam had become my material of choice: strong, lightweight and reasonably waterproof. I found that layouts up to around two by four feet could be built on two layers of half-inch Gatorfoam. Ordinarily I laminated the two layers together; for the JCIR, I chose to separate them to provide space for switch machines.

Basically I made a long, shallow box, the bottom of which had large access openings so I could easily work on the underside. This also permitted me to drop the scenery below track grade at one corner for added visual interest.

The track was attached to the base using double-stick foam tape, a technique I've used for decades.

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