Saturday, July 2, 2011

Coal Dump and Conveyor Pt.1

In the previous post I dummied-up the Conveyor into the Transfer House to determine the angles and size of the Coal Dump. Now it was time to make the pad that would support the Dump and anchor the Conveyor. I started by taking the three grates from the kits, removing the side panel, and gluing them end to end. If you  look closely, you will notice the inner ends of the two outer grates have been trimmed by half, and both ends of the center grate have been removed entirely. I think it looks better that way.)  A straight-edge kept the whole assembly lined up while the glue dried. Next I used a full sheet of Plastruct .040 styrene to simulate the concrete pad that surrounds the Dump. As you can see, a full sheet is not quite long enough, so I had to add an extension. I then made the cutout that would allow the grates to sit flush in the styrene.

The grates actually sit a little proud of the surrounding plastic, and despite my best attempt at precision, there were slight gaps between them as well. So, I used some small quarter-round to represent a curb that hid the gaps.

This is a pan made of styrene that will fit under the grates. It will be filled with coal and attached during final assembly.

As the angle of the Conveyor could not be determined exactly until final assembly, I couldn't just glue it to the styrene pad. But I still needed to be able to attach it securely during the preliminary construction. If I made it pivot, my problem would be solved. This three-sided box is just big enough to fit the bottom end of the conveyor. For the pivot, two pieces of tubing (one fitting snuggly inside the other) would work. This, the larger tube, was glued along the center-line of the box. Then a tapered reamer was used to open the hole through the bottom.

Here the bottom of the Conveyor is glued to the box.

Here is the smaller tube. It is placed so that even if the Conveyor was positioned at right angles to the track, it would not cover the grates. A hole was drilled and reamed to the exact diameter of this tube, so it sits through the pad. This gives more glue surface and a stronger joint. The position of the control room was determined at this time, too.

I may want to light up the control room, so I made a cut-out underneath it. The tape (Tamiya's masking tape, the BEST I've used) will prevent paint from covering the styrene where the control room will be glued. I masked for the AC unit as well, but since the era I'm modelling is late '60s-early '70s, I'm not sure it's appropriate. Anyone out there have any thoughts on that?

Everything in its place, the Conveyor slipped over the pivot perfectly. Oh, and the supports now leave plenty of room for a line of track.

I think the time is approaching where all the various sub-assemblies need to be brought together. I just know it's going to take up a lot more space than I originally thought . Thanks for looking.  Don

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