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Old 11-06-2018, 08:24 PM   #11
4VEP
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I have an idea - get a cork faced pinboard. There are quite a lot of types and sizes which vary in quality. The largest I have found online is 90 x 120cm. Good quality pin boards hold pins well. I think what you could do is mount the pinboard onto a sub-baseboard which would conceal the wiring. However it would be possible to separate the pinboard and the sub baseboard when the layout was dismantled. Good idea?
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Old 11-06-2018, 08:27 PM   #12
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So basically you are suggesting covering a sub baseboard with cork?
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Old 11-06-2018, 08:31 PM   #13
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A layout doesn’t have to be complicated, my layout goes around an 8ft square room. I have lots of points and they are all hand operated, not a motor in sight.
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Old 11-06-2018, 09:37 PM   #14
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You don't have to have all the wiring on the top. Make a baseboard out of your preferred material and then give it a wooden under-frame. Make the frame underneath substantial enough so that the frame can be drilled to allow wires to pass through it, yet small enough to keep the portability aspect. and there you are! Extra rigidity as a bonus and hidden wiring. Unlike the original Thunderbirds puppets! The rubber feet can, of course be put on the bottom of the frame at strategic intervals.
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Old 11-06-2018, 10:41 PM   #15
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The problem with portable layouts is to keep the weight down. A piece of 9mm plywood evan at the modest size of a trakmat will be extremely heavy. The problem with lighter materials like foam core board is they are weak. I think you could glue 4mm ply to loft insulation board, which would be strong and light.
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Old 11-06-2018, 11:58 PM   #16
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(I hope This is correct!)

To suit a trakmat @6x4
(using standard 9mm)
I make it about 12-13kgs
A bit closer to 15kgs for 9mm marine ply.

Granted the 4mm composite would be about 25% lighter than the 9mm
But that would pretty much be negated by the strengthening timbers which would be used in all examples. You’d probably only be 10-15% lighter overall.
(Depending on insulation board thickness)

I’m not sure the weight saved would be worth the extra effort involved in laminating the boards and cutting the insulation for wiring/point motors etc.

Edit-
I made a removable door to hide the refugium on a fish tank build.
I used aluminium profile as a means of strengthening the board (to prevent warping)
This has held for years. Lovely and flat, like the day it was constructed.
(I may try something like this under my layout as I am confident it works)
T and L profiles are very useful and very light.
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Last edited by AviatorAtHeart; 12-06-2018 at 12:03 AM.
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Old 12-06-2018, 07:00 AM   #17
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The size of board I am looking to do is only about 110cmx50cm. Would plywood weight be an issue at this size? Also are there any advantages of 12mm over 9mm?
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Old 12-06-2018, 08:18 AM   #18
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That size will be perfectly manageable. My portable boards are a similar width but range from 4’ to 6’ in length and are easily shifted around.
I would go with 9mm ply with a suitable frame .
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Old 12-06-2018, 10:25 AM   #19
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Weight is something I'd never considered in the past as all past layouts I'd built (Or rather, mostly my dad built for me as he was a carpenter) were permanent layouts. My dad used to insist they had to hold both his and my weights if we crawled on the top.
With portable layouts, if one tries to make them like this, they will be really heavy! My current layout is portable and it uses MDF. MDF is not light and needs taking outdoors to cut as the fibres are not safe to breathe. (Similar to aspestos in that they are very fine). It does however make a nice surface fore me as my layout has no internal bracing due to the provision of its legs which fold underneath it. There is an external frame to the boards to give some strength to it.
There are many different ways to build a layout and many different materials. As a general suitable material, plywood is good. You can't go wrong with it. The key is to not go too thick that the thing will be too heavy to lift, but at the same time not go too thin that it becomes too flexible to use without an excess on the framework.
I've heard of many using polystyrene sheets and glueing them to use as lightweight boards but I'd not want to go down that route. For me the effort I put in has to be built solid enough to last a long time or I'd not want to bother, buti am impressed that some have done it. Its just not something I'd use!
An interesting material is the plastic type material used for conservative roofing. I once saw an article where someone had been experimenting with this. To me though, the weight savings of the material can only be used if one ignores its disadvantages. Is rather like a carbon fibre frame is to a bicycle. Brilliantly light. Does the job but one has to take extra care around servicing it. The old style spanner wielding bicycle mechanics like me could easily wreck the things if we treated them like a steel or an aluminium framed bicycle!
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Old 12-06-2018, 02:49 PM   #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mcleod4569 View Post
The size of board I am looking to do is only about 110cmx50cm. Would plywood weight be an issue at this size? Also are there any advantages of 12mm over 9mm?
Google 1200 x 900 pin board for ideas.
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