Thursday, September 29, 2011

Great Prototype Video for the Mississippi River Bridges

I ran across this great prototype video taken from the cab of a maintence truck crossing the Mississipp River.  Its very cool and extremely helpful since it shows the westbound signals at the approach to the rotating bridge.  These signal are normally impossible to see due to the tree cover and no road access.  This is the first time i've seen them.  I had assumed that they were similar to the east bound signals.  Its good to see that I was right!

Sunday, September 25, 2011

Mississippi Bridge Video

I'm not quite done yet, but I thought a video would be appropriate at this time.  The video give a closer idea of what the finished scene will look like when complete.

Here's a list of things yet to be done, in order.
1. Complete diagonal bracing on the backdrop side of the bridge.
2. Complete bracing on the ends of the bridge.
3. Paint the bridge and weather all three bridges.
4. Remove bottom two rows of stonework on the round pier.
5. Paint piers and glue in place.
6. Paint river bottom and apply clear epoxy finish.
7. Add code 40 guard rails to bridge track.
8. Pain bridge track
9. Re-install bridges.
10. Install Highway 30 photo backdrop.

I guess I'm not as finished as I thought.

Sunday, September 18, 2011

More Support Sections Completed for Mississippi River Rotating Bridge

While watching my two favorite NFL teams, the Bears and the Chiefs, lose on TV, I completed five more support sections for the Mississippi River rotating bridge.  I now have eleven out of fourteen support sections done.  I would have done all of them, but I ran out of 1/16" and 3/32" I-Beams that are used for diagonal bracing.  Its starting to look more and more like a bridge!  Once I get the bridge completely assembled I will remove it from the layout for painting with my airbrush.  I will need to remove the control house during the painting, so I did not glue the support section immediately to the right of the main center support sections that hold the control house.  This will allow for the removal of the house.  While the bridge is removed, I will remove the other two bridges and work on the piers and water.  I still need to reduce the height of the round pier and paint all of them.  Before the bridges are re-installed, I will need to work on the bridge track.  The bridge track will need code 40 guard rails installed and will also need to be painted.  Once all that is done, I re-install the bridges and turn my attention to the photo backdrop of the Highway 30 bridge.  If I'm lucky, I'll get it all done by Thanksgiving.

Saturday, September 17, 2011

Control House for Mississippi River Rotating Bridge

Spent sometime building the control house for the rotating bridge.  Used sheet styrene, paint and grant line windows for the structure.

Sunday, September 11, 2011

Mississippi River Bridge Progress II

   Six of the fourteen support sections have been assembled and installed.   I built these six sections first because of the design of the bridge.  The six sections, three on each side of the main support and shown below, allowed for the installation of the top girders.  I was also able to install the angled braces on each end of the bridge.  While there is still lots to do, the progress shows the overall shape of the bridge.  I feel pretty good about how the proportions match up with the prototype.
   Next I will build the control house that goes in the main support sections.

Monday, September 5, 2011

Mississippi River Bridge Progress

Work is continuing, although slowly, on the Mississippi River Rotating bridge.  This is one of those projects that you just have to work on it bit by bit, section by section and figure it will be done when its done.  Since my last post, I have completed the bridge decking along with the end plates on each of the crossbeams (white upside down trapezoids).  I glued two beams on top of the end plates/crossbeams along the entire length of the bridge.  The two main center support sections have been assembled and glued in place.  I also have all the piers in place along with the two plate girder bridges on the Iowa side of the bridge.  From here I will build support sections to go on top of each end plate/crossbeam and add the horizontal/vertical beams.  The last picture is the prototype for reference.