A Bridge Build for the Little River RR

Discussion in 'G / O / S Scale Model Trains' started by Doctor G, Feb 17, 2013.

  1. Doctor G

    Doctor G Active Member

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    I wanted to build some of the steel bridges constructed for the Little River RR in the early part of the 20th century. The Little River RR, a logging RR, ran in the mountains of East Tennessee connecting the mill in Townsend with the logging sites higher in the Smoky Mountains. It also moved tourists and passengers escaping the cities of Tennessee for the cool of the mountains.

    I am trying to model a bit of this interesting RR in my back yard in Large Scale.

    The Little River RR built several riveted double-intersection Warren deck truss bridges about 1906 - 1910 as the rail road followed the Little River gorge up in to the mountains. The riveted construction technique made for very strong bridges.

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    I was quite fortunate to find an existing LRRR bridge on the very interesting web site http://bridgehunter.com This bridge built with the same technology as the Titanic in 1908 is still standing near Elkmont high in the Smokies.

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    The pictures posted on bridgehunter.com included all kinds of angles and close ups that allowed measurements to be made for a 1:20.3 model of the bridge.

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    After much thought I elected to use ABS and styrene plastic to build the bridge. I was particularly thrilled to find a Plastruct ABS product that allowed construction of fairly robust "t" girders using a web and flange that are glued using their specialty solvent for ABS plastic

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    To cross this part of the Little River, "Nelson's Gap" I elected to build two spans of 40 scale feet.

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    I constructed a jig and began to assemble the pieces trying to follow the prototype pictures from bridgehunter.com

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    There is much more to come and I hope to continue with updates as progress slowly takes place.

    Thanks for looking.

    Doc Tom


    Doc Tom and the Little River RR guys in East Tennessee.[​IMG]
  2. Doctor G

    Doctor G Active Member

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    Forgot a few pictures of the Bridge Build

    I realized I forgot several pictures from yesterdays build session out in the shed.

    Here is an overall shot of one completed side of the bridge. I think the Plastruct ABS will be strong enough to support my 1:20.3 Shay.

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    A close up

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    An extreme close up showing the "double" bracing.

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    Hopefully this is capturing the character of this prototype shot.

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    I am not including rivets as I would be at this build for a year or more and I do have a RR to build.

    Tom



    Doc Tom and the Little River RR guys in East Tennessee.[​IMG] Tom Grabenstein
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  3. gbwdude

    gbwdude Member

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    Doc Tom,

    Next time you post a website that has cool old stuff on it like your Bridgehunter website, be sure to include a warning of some sort. I had things to get done this morning and now I want to hunt down the bridges on the site that are listed but don't have photos. Mainly this one: http://bridgehunter.com/tn/davidson/bh54225/

    Maybe one weekend when we're not busy we'll just have to do that.

    Your bridge is looking great, keep up the amazing work and keep posting the progress.

    Tyler
  4. Doctor G

    Doctor G Active Member

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    Neat old bridges

    Isn't that a neat web site? I almost flipped when I found the pictures of a Little River Bridge still standing a 105 years later.

    That looks like a fairly easy to get to bridge you found for the Tennessee Central. Looks like it is off HWY 12 and HWY 41 A.

    I like the the coordinates they give for GPS also. Heck get one of your buddies to loan us a Black Hawk and we can do a little aerial recon.

    A springtime field trip in the making maybe??

    Doc Tom

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  5. cool_marxcat

    cool_marxcat cool_marxcat

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    Looking good, good luck with you efforts.
  6. Doctor G

    Doctor G Active Member

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    welcome to Zealot

    Thanks Cool M. Welcome to Zealot.

    Tom

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