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After sharing my other benchwork design while brainstorming I have come up with that should, in theory, allow me to store a 10' long layout in a very compact space excluding buildings which would have to be removable and stored elsewhere which is an issue I can accept.
The layout would be made up of 6 modules each 20" in length and 10.5" inches across. Each module would be made up of 4 pieces, a 10"x20" piece of 1/4" foam board for the base of the layout. Two 20" side panels made of 1/4" MDF and 1" in height these pieces would have puzzle joints on the ends that will allow the modules to slide together to stay locked in place. These side panels would be attached to 3 cross braces that are 1/2" tall and 10.5" long with the extra 1/2" going into the long edge boards. This will make the foam board flush with the top of the side boards and keep it lined up as an extra precaution though it will still be glued on. Another addition on the short brackets will be 1/8" diameter holes to run wiring and keep it organized. The final item of note is the reason for the short boards only being 1/2" instead of 3/4" tall, this 1/4" less will be on the bottom of the benchwork module and allow the modules to stack while leaving room for the rails and other low details. Storage for the modules will be a lasercut box with an opening on the two short ends for the modules to slide into and stack I'm planning on including carrying handles and likely use bungee cords to hold them in place on the short ends.
Materials and Cost List
12"x24" 1/4" MDF sheet x4 total cost of $12
20"x30" 1/4" foam board x2 total cost in the range of $5
Bottle of wood glue x1 total cost of $4
So ignoring the couple thousand dollar lasercutter this is a cost of only $21 for a pretty large layout benchwork start and on top of that it has compact storage and portability
This article first appeared on model-railroad-hobbyist.com
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