Grade Crossing

damaged_1200I was gapping the rails for another project when I noticed that using a track eraser had scuffed the black off the asphalt revealing the white plaster underneath. Oops! Yeah .. should have colored the plaster so such doings would only reveal more gray color. Oh well. I had been moderately happy with the crossing but the way the asphalt ran right up to the flange grooving bothered me .. should be something in there. That gives me reason for a ‘re-do’.
Jack Hammer Time
Jack Hammering_1200Someone commented that someone crooked has substituted chalk for asphalt! Here, I’m starting to remove the old road. The poor thing had been rougher then I had originally meant it to be and this is an opportunity to smooth it out .. just a bit. Looking at it I found that I was really too high approaching the crossing so that was a reason also to take some off the top.
All gone
All Gone_1200With the old crossing removed along with a good bit more on either end the area of the track that had been buried in plaster is revealed.
Ready Freddy
Ready_1200Everything has been cleared out, rails and ties weathered. I painted them black and came back with an emery board to get the ties and ballast flat .. which also grayed up the ties nicely. Next will be determining exactly how I am going to make the grade crossing. I thought to use rail on the inside to form the flange opening but I’m leaning more toward timbers with perhaps just a bit of asphalt to fill in the spaces.
Wood Timber Grade Crossing
Her's the grade crossing as created by Shawn Branstetter

Her’s the grade crossing as created by Shawn Branstetter

Shawn Branstetter wrote a SBS titled “Detailing a Wood Timber Grade Crossing” for Shortline Modelers. He used … for his 75 pound or code 100 rail in O scale. His timbers started out at 5 inches by seven inches wide. He is modeling P48 so this means he had around 42 inches width between the crossing timbers for his road surface.

I’m modeling On30. My crossing timbers will be made using On30 switch ties. Each is .110 inch high by .140 inch wide. That is 5-1/4 inch by 6-3/4 inches wide. On30 has a gauge of 16.5 mm (0.65 in). That is 31.2 inches full size. Subtracting two tie width from that (6-3/4 inch x 2 = 13.5 inches) and we get 17.7 inches. The question then is .. would it make more sense to fill that 17.7 inches with timbers (that would require ripping ties to fit and angle cut in the center. I don’t think that the track gang would have thought too long about it .. much simpler to tamp asphalt into the areas around and between the timbers.

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