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I'm reviving my 40 year old 1/32 scale Revell set. 55 feet of track on a light weight 5'X12' torsion box table in my garage. The table will be on an electric winch that will raise up to the ceiling. I've selected a layout and am now about half way finished building the table.



Track layout





Test of 1/4" Ventura tape on track





Test of soldering brass strip into track for power tap



I pulled the stock Revell contact rail out of the track and cut a notch in it



Brass strip under track. From here I can solder a wire on





Track numbered and awaiting table



Baltic birch plywood for table top and bottom



Taping tool for laying down tape. Sweet!



Pins on bottom of taping tool slide in track to assure easy alignment of tape on track



Laying out the 5'X12' torsion box table



Ripping the ribs for the torsion box. I don't have a table saw so I built a sled for my circular saw. Now I get nice straight consistent cuts





Pile of ribs. Main ribs (2 - 12' and 5 - 5') are 1X 1 3/4" KD pine. Secondary ribs will be 1/4" ply.
 

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Mike
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I wonder with all the work you have put into an old track why you didn't go the routed route?
 

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Martyn
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Wow I haven't seen any Revell track for 44 years. I always thought it was a really good track system grey in colour and rigid which I thought was a great idea,being easy to store my cousin used to hang his track on the back of his bedroom door. I guess not recommended but it didn't seem to do the track any harm. Anyway really pleased to see you bring your Revell track back to life after all this time. I hope you enjoy it as much this time around as you did the first time.

Athrlyth
 

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Thanks for the feedback.

A torsion box is basically like a hollow core door. Light weight interior structure with a skin on both sides: Torsion box
My torsion box will be 5'X12'X2". The perimeter and main ribs are 1"X1 3/4" kiln dried pine. Light and straight. The secondary ribs will be 1/4'X1 3/4" baltic birch plywood. The top skin is 1/4" baltic birch ply and the bottom skin 1/8" bb ply.
I'm guessing now it will be under 1 pound a square foot or 60 pounds total. Everything will be glued and brad nailed.

As for not doing routed - I needed something light to hang from the joists in my garage. Routed adds a lot of beef in material. And perhaps the biggest reason is I had the 60+ feet of track for 40 years and always enjoyed it. With continuous tape and a new Pyramid power supply it should be pretty sweet.
 

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Looking good here

Nice layout,good engineering on the table,great thinking on the sled for the circular saw.
Never much enjoyed ripping long strips from 4 x 8 sheets on a table saw by myself

Hope you continue to enjoy the track.....we be watchin'
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Finished all the ripping and dados today. Learned a lot about woodworking and tolerances... and double checking everything. Bottom line a couple of bad dados. No problem.

Tomorrow I assemble the skeleton!
 

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Great topic Mike! Posts like this, that illustrate ideas and techniques with high-quality photos, are a fantastic resource. Thanks for taking the time to take the photos, AND post them!
 

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excellent design, well-executed...and very nice to see such a nice Revell layout. As for "Torsion box", I agree it's commonly called by that name...but one might as well call it a "Shear Panel" cause it does that too. The point is, actually, that it is designed to resist bending in 2 planes, efficiently...and a natural by-product is that it resists torsion and shear. If a "Torsion box" were actually idealized for torsion, it would have a square cross-section (even more idealized, round). Just like if it were optimized for shear, it would be thinner. *grin* My 2 cents.

Meanwhile, to bring this back to Slot applications, the point is...you can do this even more efficiently for a routed track...where the table top is a thin material (1/8"-1/4" sheet) and the upper layer is the routed mdf itself. The trick is to elevate much of the track to a greater or lesser extent and allow the track supports to act as your middle ribbing and carry the shear (between top and bottom). I've done this on my own layout and it creates a remarkably stiff track layout with very little weight or material cost.

John
 

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Basic skeleton complet. And surprising (since I am not a woodworker) it turned out pretty flat and square. tomorrow the top 1/4" baltic birch goes on. Then flip it over and add secondary ribs and bottom skin.







Since I didn't have a 5'X12' flat surface to build the table I did it on my 4'X8' work table. clamped everything down as I worked to keep it square and flat. I built out from the middle and added thes blocks of 3/4" ply to keep thing square.



These blocks will be the hoist mounts.



These are the secondary ribs that go in after the top is on.
 

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All the overlap joints are dados. Like I said I'm not a woodworker and I'm learning as I go. I don't have a table saw so I notched the lumber with a router. Learned a lot. Nice snug fits are important and fractions of an inch add up fast. I learned from mistakes and moved on. Everything is glued and 18 gauge brad nailed. A brad nailer is a wonderful tool if you work alone. All in all very rewarding experience so far.

Just a guess but I'ld say 25lbs for the skeleton so far. Very happy with that.

Thanks for the feedback.
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
Got the Pyramid 26XK power supply today. Change of plans. The PS weighs 25 lbs! I was going to inset it into the table but that's too heavy. My idea was to have the track ready to race when it was lowered from the ceiling. Now I'm thinking making the PS a stand alone unit that will set on a shelf until it is needed then moved to the floor beneath the track and hooked up. No big deal really just not as slick.
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
Finished the top skin of 1/4" ply. Also added handles to the Pyramid power supply. I was going to hang the ps with the table but now I will keep it on a shelf when not in use.





1 1/4" 18 gauge brads and TightbondIII



 

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Greg Gaub
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Nice handles on the PSU! That monster needs them!
Hey, if you want slick, I remember seeing a guy that made a complete power and control station on wheels. One shelf had the PSU, another had all the wiring from the PSU to the controllers, with reverse switches and everything. He might have even added individual voltage regulators so that each lane could have its own voltage. Anyway, then he had the controllers themselves, and then on the backside he had output hookups to the track. I don't recall if he had a lifting track, but he might have had several tracks that he put up from time to time, and so the separate power and control made sense. In your case, this scheme would be good because all that weight can stay on the floor on a compact little rollaway shelf thingy, tucked in a corner or under a bench until the track comes down. A couple quick hookups for the power to the track and it's ready to race!
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
I'm so tempted to lift the table but have to wait 24hrs for the glue. But it seems really rigid already. And light. I swear the Pyramid PS weighs more than the table so far.
 
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