Building The New Layout at 569 High Mountain Road

On November 20, 2015, the Club voted to take over and lease the space vacated by the O scale Model Engineers' Railroad Club of North Jersey. On July 21, 2017, after 18 months of research, discussion, and planning, the Club formally approved a design for the new HO railroad. One week later, the Club broke ground.
Pencil lines marking the benchwork base July 2017 1000X750
At the first work session on July 29, 2017, white soap chalk lines were put down to approximate the location of the support walls and then retraced with pencil.

Benchwork base being secured to the concrete floor 1000X750
Jim secures the base of the support walls to the concrete floor with special nails.

Completed benchwork base 1000X665
A look at the nearly completed base that will make up one of the peninsulas.

Support stud installation August 2017 1000X665
The next work session consisted of installing the support studs connecting the base to the ceiling. Here the first couple are installed.

Support stud installation August 2017 1000X665
After a few hours, many of the studs are in place.

Support stud installation August 2017 1000X665
A reverse angle shows members continuing to install studs.

Completed support studs 1000X750
Here is a look inside on September 4, 2017 showing the completed support studs. Shortly after, 120V armored BX wiring and outlets were installed along the bottom of the walls.

Helix construction 714X960
The Club decided to tackle the helix next due to its complexity. Twelve trapezoids of plywood with the ends cut at 15 degree angles will make up one rotation. Here you can see the support structure for the helix with one set of trapezoids laid flat to test the fit and another set stacked to the side.

Helix construction 1000X648
On December 10, 2017 during the Open House, visitors were able to see the beginnigs of cross bracing extending from the support studs. Some of the shelving along the curved wall was also installed.

120 Volt Wiring 1000X648
The 120 Volt wiring under the layout was also completed toward the end of 2017. Armored BX cable was chosen over Romex to eliminate any possible interference with the sensitive DCC signals.

2nd Peninsula Benchwork 1000X665
Fast forward to April 28, 2018, benchwork for the second peninsula is in place. A cardboard mockup of the reverse loop at the end of the 2nd peninsula is in place.

1st Aisle View 1000X665
On the right will be the four track west staging yard. The cross bracings were all redesigned with gussets for additional support. On the left is the three track approaches into the helix which will eventually be the far west end of the railroad.

Lower level staging entrance 1000X665
Coming out of the helix, the paper mockup shows the junction at the entrance to the lower level staging yards. Two tracks against the far wall will bypass staging while two tracks head into staging.

Special Fasttracks crossover 1000X665
This special #6 crossover was made in a Fasttracks fixture and will be used at the far left side of the photo above entering the lower level staging yards.

Lower level staging throat mockup 1000X665
On May 26, 2018, most benchwork for the west staging yard on the lower level has been completed. A mockup of the throat has been laid out. Nine tracks will converge into two. The special #6 crossover from the April photo above is in place.

1st Aisle View 1000X665
Roadbed for the west staging yard is in place and the pencil lines are drawn.

Lower level staging entrance 1000X665
At the end of the 2nd peninsula, the cardboard mockup from April has been replaced with roadbed.

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