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Old 07-02-2018, 02:32 PM   #1
Bobzilla
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Default Baseboards - help please

So I'm looking at a loft layout. I have a BIG loft and can probably put up a layout of something like 24ft x 18 ft without much trouble at all - at the minute there are chimneys in the way but that will be rectified soon. So we're talking about a very big layout, subject to the usual caveats of explaining costs to wife, availability of suitably priced track (probably going second hand, but with the suitable caveats known and understood).

But the big issue is sizing for baseboards, and material. I want them to be light but sturdy. It'll be a permanent layout - not looking to move it anywhere.

So what material and thickness? I was looking at 8x4 boards and cutting into 8x2 boards. Is 2ft deep enough for 3 lines plus scenery? Not looking to go overboard on the scenery, but one or two lines into a tunnel and the third on a mountain ledge is in the plan.

And yes, I know the frame is as important, if not more so, than the board.

Thanks.

As a left-field option, what about styrofoam/expanded polystyrene?

Last edited by Bobzilla; 07-02-2018 at 02:47 PM.
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Old 07-02-2018, 03:11 PM   #2
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Hi
If you're unable to access the rear of the layout once its secured in place, then 2 foot to 2'6"inches is about the maximum reach across from the front that you can manage without causing problems (damage possibly) to any items towards the front of the layout.
You will have to access the rear areas for track cleaning, derailments and generally keeping the layout clean and tidy!
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Old 07-02-2018, 03:23 PM   #3
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Bobzilla..........assuming your loft is not full of trussed rafters, the first most important question is this.....in the loft are you walking on ceiling joists of only 3ins (75mm) or proper floor joists 8in (200mm)?......if ceiling joists then the loading weight you will eventually reach when the layout is fully fitted plus your boxes of stuff, tools etc will far exceed the loading capacity of the joists and you will end up with bowed bedroom ceilings so best to get professional advice..............HB

Last edited by cadman; 07-02-2018 at 03:28 PM.
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Old 07-02-2018, 04:53 PM   #4
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Quote:
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Bobzilla..........assuming your loft is not full of trussed rafters, the first most important question is this.....in the loft are you walking on ceiling joists of only 3ins (75mm) or proper floor joists 8in (200mm)?......if ceiling joists then the loading weight you will eventually reach when the layout is fully fitted plus your boxes of stuff, tools etc will far exceed the loading capacity of the joists and you will end up with bowed bedroom ceilings so best to get professional advice..............HB
Good points. Can't recall joist size off the top of my head, but between support points for the joists, we're talking about 4.5m all around. There would clearly have to be some serious consideration of weight restrictions.
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Old 07-02-2018, 05:21 PM   #5
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I have a loft layout and a couple of things you should consider, insulate the roof i used fiber glass and 1/8th ply, the floors been mentioned mine has 4" X 2" timbers across i laid further 4" x 2" timbers the other way then floored it over with chipboard 3/4" flooring, the second half of the loft is now ready for a expansion of the layout and i have a 48" X 24" radiator installed keeps it around 60f this time of the year, as for the layout board 1/2" ply with a 3" x 1" supports with suitable uprights.....a picture might help..
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Last edited by Tinker; 07-02-2018 at 05:52 PM. Reason: Loft temp adjustment
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Old 07-02-2018, 05:29 PM   #6
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It also depends how you are going to get into it. A metal loft ladder still makes it a loft. The minute you put in any fixed staircase, council will insist on re joisting, or double joisting, dependent on their regs.as most ceilings, simply are not strong enough. I have had 4 loft layouts, and had to add joists/ hangers, on 3 of them to meet council regs. It is also something you need to talk to house insurers about. Mine classed 2 as additional rooms, and one wanted to inspect. If you go about it with professional guidance, its usually fine, but costly. john
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Old 07-02-2018, 05:31 PM   #7
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I’m not sure putting joists the opposite direction on top of the ceiling joists does any good. The ceiling joists are still supporting all the extra weight, in fact even more weight. Shouldn’t they be fixed along the full length of the ceiling joists to take the weight off them?
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Old 07-02-2018, 05:46 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Walkingthedog View Post
I’m not sure putting joists the opposite direction on top of the ceiling joists does any good. The ceiling joists are still supporting all the extra weight, in fact even more weight. Shouldn’t they be fixed along the full length of the ceiling joists to take the weight off them?
I would suggest supporting on the walls rather than the ceiling joists, otherwise there is still a risk that you haven't improved the structural situation but added further weight to the original joists.
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Old 07-02-2018, 05:56 PM   #9
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That is what I meant, the full length of the ceiling joist resting on the outer and inner walls.
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Old 07-02-2018, 05:58 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Walkingthedog View Post
I’m not sure putting joists the opposite direction on top of the ceiling joists does any good. The ceiling joists are still supporting all the extra weight, in fact even more weight. Shouldn’t they be fixed along the full length of the ceiling joists to take the weight off them?
I understand what your saying, the ceiling/loft joists rest on various walls, my second layer just spread the weight, the layout extension when built in my case will not rest on the floor.
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