C.P.R. CG Tower

Overview
On page 296 of Railroad Structures and Estimates by J.W. Orrock published in 1918 …. we find this crossing tower. The following is taken directly from the book:

drawingTower for Crossing Gates. – The C.P.R. standard tower for crossing gates is illustrated, Fig. 111, and consists of foure old steel rails bent and shaped so as to form a solid post on which the small frame enclosure is set. The rail post is supported on an 8-ft. square slab of concrete, tapering to about 3 ft. square at the ground line. The frame house on top of the tower is made up of 4″ x 6″ joists, 2″ x 4″ wall plates, 2″ x 4″ roof joists and 7/8-in. sheathing and lining for the walls and roof covering; the roof is finished with asbestos shingles. A trap door and an ordinary signal tower ladder is provided including a cast iron smoke stack.
<&nbsp>The estimated cost of this tower complete is $250.

Using the $DollarTimes Inflation Calculator we find that $250.00 in 1918 had the same buying power as $4,405.69 in 2017.

Lots of Windows
lotsofwindowshis was one of the things that caught my eye .. the structure is basically windows connected by bits of stuff in-between. This makes sense .. after all .. this was the purpose of the structure .. to let the operator see ‘stuff’. The question I had was how to do it in a way that it didn’t look ‘heavy’ (read that .. ‘fake’).

I was looking at an article in Shortline Modelers titled “Scratchbuilding Sash Windows” by Peter Smith. I thought that I could a variation of this for my Crossing Gate Tower. The problem that I saw was simply there would be very narrow (relatively speaking) separation between the windows. Trying (and succeeding) in cutting the .040″ plastic without breaking something .. seemed to me to be .. probable at best.

I think though .. that I might be able to do something using Evergreen strip styrene – modify the structure to use stock (aka – pre formed) styrene.

Jigs
windowJigsThis may work .. and it may not. The idea is that the two jigs to the left will be used to fit the vertical/horizontal areas for the windows with the other two jigs will be used to glue up a sandwich of Styrene to create the vertical bits between the windows. That’s the plan at least …
Making a wall
lumber_dim_1Continuing with the plan ..

This is one of the short walls. The green pieces are .040x.080 in pieces .. approximately a 2×4 and will form the window openings. They butt up against the yellow piece .. that’s a piece of .040 in sheet – forming the wall beneath the windows. The other pieces .. the pink, purple and orange pieces form a .040 in / 2″ wide insert behind the window openings.

lumber_dim_2From behind you can see what I am doing. Across the top .. there is the pink piece, a .040x.060 strip. The two orange strips on the end ar .020x.125 and the purple strips .020x.080.

The idea is thta I will build up pieces separately using some jigs to keep them aligned and then later join everything together. In this case if you look at the front view the green strips in the center of the wall will bond to the two purple strips you can see in the rear view. The two green strips on the ends will bond to the orange strips. Once this is done I can bond them to that yellow piece of .040 in sheet.



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