wood vs styrene (was a very short intro)


Tim O'Connor
 

Ah, so it begins! :-) Bring it on!

Do you really think someone comes along and scrubs down the
decks of flatcars? They are so filthy that the dirt fills all the small
grainy scatches. Sure, you can still get big gouges and broken
boards, but that's easy to simulate in styrene or resin. I can send
you photos of flatcar decks where you can't even see the separation
between the planks!

Your shot.

Tim O'Connor

-------------- Original message ----------------------
From: "Bruce Smith" <smithbf@auburn.edu>

Do you really think that those horizontal, NON-CREOSOTED (revisiting a
more recent battle), UNPAINTED decks on flat cars should look just like
boxcar sheathing? I'll have to disagree! As we have oft stated here, flat
car decks get dinged up PDQ. Horizontal boards exposed to rain develope a
phenomenon called "checking" (or raising of the grain) very quickly.


Bruce Smith
 

On Thu, March 16, 2006 2:55 pm, timboconnor@comcast.net wrote:

Ah, so it begins! :-) Bring it on!

Do you really think someone comes along and scrubs down the
decks of flatcars? They are so filthy that the dirt fills all the small
grainy scatches. Sure, you can still get big gouges and broken
boards, but that's easy to simulate in styrene or resin. I can send
you photos of flatcar decks where you can't even see the separation
between the planks!
Tim,

Actually Tim, I agree.<G> In truth, we shouldn't try to advocate "one
size fits all" for flat car decks. My point was that that in your example
the orientation of the boards and their treatment is very differnent
between flats and box cars. As for the lack of separation between boards,
that's precisely the effect that REAL wood gives <G>. I also don't see
gross grain and the joints on my decks are tight, as they should be.

Regards
Bruce
Bruce Smith
Auburn, AL


Tim Gilbert <tgilbert@...>
 

Bruce Smith wrote:

On Thu, March 16, 2006 2:55 pm, timboconnor@comcast.net wrote:

Ah, so it begins! :-) Bring it on!

Do you really think someone comes along and scrubs down the
decks of flatcars? They are so filthy that the dirt fills all the small
grainy scatches. Sure, you can still get big gouges and broken
boards, but that's easy to simulate in styrene or resin. I can send
you photos of flatcar decks where you can't even see the separation
between the planks!
Tim,

Actually Tim, I agree.<G> In truth, we shouldn't try to advocate "one
size fits all" for flat car decks. My point was that that in your example
the orientation of the boards and their treatment is very differnent
between flats and box cars. As for the lack of separation between boards,
that's precisely the effect that REAL wood gives <G>. I also don't see
gross grain and the joints on my decks are tight, as they should be.
There had to be some accommodation for draining rain water from a flat car's deck. If the deck was flat with no crown, the planks would have popped as there was no room for the planks to expand when wet. Small gaps between hardwood planks would have sufficed to drain the water.

Tim Gilbert


Pieter Roos
 

Tim;

I don't recall later cars, but I think the CBCs (as reprinted as
Trainshed Cyclopedias) from the 1930's show a form of shiplap
planking on may flatcar decks, which would suggest no provision for
drainage between the boards.

Pieter Roos

--- In STMFC@yahoogroups.com, Tim Gilbert <tgilbert@...> wrote:

Bruce Smith wrote:

On Thu, March 16, 2006 2:55 pm, timboconnor@... wrote:

Ah, so it begins! :-) Bring it on!

Do you really think someone comes along and scrubs down the
decks of flatcars? They are so filthy that the dirt fills all
the small
grainy scatches. Sure, you can still get big gouges and broken
boards, but that's easy to simulate in styrene or resin. I can
send
you photos of flatcar decks where you can't even see the
separation
between the planks!
Tim,

Actually Tim, I agree.<G> In truth, we shouldn't try to
advocate "one
size fits all" for flat car decks. My point was that that in
your example
the orientation of the boards and their treatment is very
differnent
between flats and box cars. As for the lack of separation
between boards,
that's precisely the effect that REAL wood gives <G>. I also
don't see
gross grain and the joints on my decks are tight, as they should
be.

There had to be some accommodation for draining rain water from a
flat
car's deck. If the deck was flat with no crown, the planks would
have
popped as there was no room for the planks to expand when wet.
Small
gaps between hardwood planks would have sufficed to drain the
water.

Tim Gilbert


Tony Thompson
 

Tim Gilbert wrote:
There had to be some accommodation for draining rain water from a flat
car's deck. If the deck was flat with no crown, the planks would have
popped as there was no room for the planks to expand when wet. Small
gaps between hardwood planks would have sufficed to drain the water.
Sounds good, Tim, but 'tain't so. Many flat car drawings show interlocking or T&G planking; and every photo I've ever seen sure looks like it is laid real tight. I've never seen any crown, either. Anyway, most expansion from damp is along the grain, and that's across the deck width, not along the deck from board to board.

Tony Thompson Editor, Signature Press, Berkeley, CA
2906 Forest Ave., Berkeley, CA 94705 www.signaturepress.com
(510) 540-6538; fax, (510) 540-1937; e-mail, thompson@signaturepress.com
Publishers of books on railroad history


Dennis Storzek <dstorzek@...>
 

--- In STMFC@yahoogroups.com, Tony Thompson <thompsonmarytony@...> wrote:

Sounds good, Tim, but 'tain't so. Many flat car drawings show
interlocking or T&G planking; and every photo I've ever seen sure looks
like it is laid real tight. I've never seen any crown, either. Anyway,
most expansion from damp is along the grain, and that's across the deck
width, not along the deck from board to board.
I can't let this one pass uncorrected. You've got it exactly backwards, Tony; wood is relatively stable along the length of the grain, but shrinks and swells appreciably across the grain. This is useful for making barrels, water tanks, and hot tubs water tight; simply fit the boards to be a good fit when dry, then fill with water. As the wood swells, it expands against the steel hoops and tightens to the point that it doesn't leak.

How does this affect flatcar decks? It doesn't. Just like the barrel bands and tank hoops, the flatcar frame is so much stronger than the amount of pressure generated by the swelling wood that the wood just compresses. It doesn't tear loose from its fastenings because the fastenings are HUGE; 1/2" or 5/8" diameter bolts as I recall.

Why drain the deck at all? Railroad cars rarely sit dead level, and anyway the water will just shake or blow off a moving car. Years ago, when I worked for the transit authority, we always wedged or jacked platform decking tight; gaps between the boards were considered a tripping hazard. Evaporation was relied on to dry the deck surface.


Dennis Storzek


Anthony Thompson <thompson@...>
 

Dennis Storzek wrote:
I can't let this one pass uncorrected. You've got it exactly backwards,
Tony; wood is relatively stable along the length of the grain, but shrinks
and swells appreciably across the grain.
Dennis is right and I was wrong. I was confusing the shrinkage with strength data I was using recently.

Tony Thompson Editor, Signature Press, Berkeley, CA
2906 Forest Ave., Berkeley, CA 94705 www.signaturepress.com
(510) 540-6538; fax, (510) 540-1937; e-mail, thompson@signaturepress.com
Publishers of books on railroad history


Doug Brown <g.brown1@...>
 

Tony, Just imagine wood trestles if you were right <G>. Doug

-----Original Message-----
From: STMFC@yahoogroups.com [mailto:STMFC@yahoogroups.com] On Behalf Of
Anthony Thompson
Sent: Friday, March 17, 2006 11:16 AM
To: STMFC@yahoogroups.com
Subject: Re: [STMFC] Re: wood vs styrene (was a very short intro)


Dennis Storzek wrote:
I can't let this one pass uncorrected. You've got it exactly
backwards, Tony; wood is relatively stable along the length of the
grain, but shrinks and swells appreciably across the grain.
Dennis is right and I was wrong. I was confusing the shrinkage
with strength data I was using recently.

Tony Thompson Editor, Signature Press, Berkeley, CA
2906 Forest Ave., Berkeley, CA 94705 www.signaturepress.com
(510) 540-6538; fax, (510) 540-1937; e-mail, thompson@signaturepress.com
Publishers of books on railroad history




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Roger Robar <rrobar@...>
 

Thanks Dennis, I couldn't have said it any better myself. We used 5/8" bolts
with large heavy washers on the flat car project I talked about in my
original post.

Roger Robar



_____

From: STMFC@yahoogroups.com [mailto:STMFC@yahoogroups.com] On Behalf Of
Dennis Storzek
Sent: Friday, March 17, 2006 11:26 AM
To: STMFC@yahoogroups.com
Subject: [STMFC] Re: wood vs styrene (was a very short intro)



--- In STMFC@yahoogroups.com, Tony Thompson <thompsonmarytony@...> wrote:

Sounds good, Tim, but 'tain't so. Many flat car drawings show
interlocking or T&G planking; and every photo I've ever seen sure looks
like it is laid real tight. I've never seen any crown, either. Anyway,
most expansion from damp is along the grain, and that's across the deck
width, not along the deck from board to board.
I can't let this one pass uncorrected. You've got it exactly backwards,
Tony; wood is relatively stable along the length of the grain, but shrinks
and swells appreciably across the grain. This is useful for making barrels,
water tanks, and hot tubs water tight; simply fit the boards to be a good
fit when dry, then fill with water. As the wood swells, it expands against
the steel hoops and tightens to the point that it doesn't leak.

How does this affect flatcar decks? It doesn't. Just like the barrel bands
and tank hoops, the flatcar frame is so much stronger than the amount of
pressure generated by the swelling wood that the wood just compresses. It
doesn't tear loose from its fastenings because the fastenings are HUGE;
1/2" or 5/8" diameter bolts as I recall.

Why drain the deck at all? Railroad cars rarely sit dead level, and anyway
the water will just shake or blow off a moving car. Years ago, when I
worked for the transit authority, we always wedged or jacked platform
decking tight; gaps between the boards were considered a tripping hazard.
Evaporation was relied on to dry the deck surface.


Dennis Storzek




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David Smith <dsmith@...>
 

So, I'm his older brother and rarely miss the opportunity to put my
little brother in his place, but I definitely have to give him this one.
I've got the advantage of having actually seen Bruce's wood flatcar
decks and it's about as realistic an effect as I have even seen on a
model.

I think wood grain is a red herring here. Wood grain is not
scale-independent, unlike rock textures (for which real rock molds
provide an incredible match to full-scale outcrop texture). What I
believe makes wood on a model so realistic is that wood can be stained
instead of painted and the slight translucency of the stained wood gives
the best match for the slight translucency of the real thing. Painted
styrene makes a fine match for painted wood, because the surface
reflectivity and translucency that you are modeling is that of paint,
but for modeling unpainted wood, what I have seen of Bruce's models
makes me a believer in unpainted wood.

Dave Smith

-----Original Message-----
From: STMFC@yahoogroups.com [mailto:STMFC@yahoogroups.com] On Behalf Of
Bruce Smith
Sent: Thursday, March 16, 2006 5:07 PM
To: STMFC@yahoogroups.com
Subject: Re: [STMFC] Re: wood vs styrene (was a very short intro)


On Thu, March 16, 2006 2:55 pm, timboconnor@comcast.net wrote:

Ah, so it begins! :-) Bring it on!

Do you really think someone comes along and scrubs down the
decks of flatcars? They are so filthy that the dirt fills all the
small
grainy scatches. Sure, you can still get big gouges and broken
boards, but that's easy to simulate in styrene or resin. I can send
you photos of flatcar decks where you can't even see the separation
between the planks!
Tim,

Actually Tim, I agree.<G> In truth, we shouldn't try to advocate "one
size fits all" for flat car decks. My point was that that in your
example
the orientation of the boards and their treatment is very differnent
between flats and box cars. As for the lack of separation between
boards,
that's precisely the effect that REAL wood gives <G>. I also don't see
gross grain and the joints on my decks are tight, as they should be.

Regards
Bruce
Bruce Smith
Auburn, AL




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James Eckman
 



From: "David Smith" <dsmith@davinci-center.org>

I've got the advantage of having actually seen Bruce's wood flatcar
decks and it's about as realistic an effect as I have even seen on a
model.
I use both, For decks in O scale I think wood works well but styrene is faster to assemble and prep!

On Thu, March 16, 2006 2:55 pm, timboconnor@comcast.net wrote:

Do you really think someone comes along and scrubs down the decks of flatcars?
Didn't the Westside Lumber company used to wash off their lumber flats? I remember reading it somewhere. There's a prototype for almost everything ;) There may have been other special reasons for this as well.

Jim Eckman