Birch Ply

Discussion in 'Baseboards' started by Bonky, Jul 31, 2020.

  1. Bonky

    Bonky Full Member

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    I'm planning (during an extended lockdown) to build 2 or 3 layouts using the same plywood carcass.I will need 3,6 and 9mm thickness boards.

    My question is: Are Wickes/B&Q etc sufficient or should I pay (much more) for Baltic ply from a specialised supplier?


    The layouts will be small ones - perhaps a max of 2.4m in length.


    Thanks,


    Richard
     
  2. Toto

    Toto I'm best ignored Staff Member Founder Administrator

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    I've always just bought from B and Q. Try and select the best sheets which are as flat as possible free from obvious scarring and large glue build ups on the edges of the ply.

    Once cut to size and installed, seal it with a good matt varnish. That should stop any real dampness being drawn up into it.

    Plenty of structural carcassing to help stop it twisting but be mindful of where you intend to position turnouts etc.

    Toto
     
    Last edited: Jul 31, 2020
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  3. York Paul

    York Paul Staff Member Moderator

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    Can't really add much more than Toto already has, if you buy from a trade outlet such as Travis Perkin the birch ply you will buy will be moisture resistant that's all, I suspect the B&Q equivalent size will be much the same pricing but may de-laminate over time due to the glue they specify being inferior but sealed with an oil varnish should give many years of good service. Obviously to prevent warping a good skeletal under frame will keep a nice level top for the layout. Good luck and do let us know how you get on.
     
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  4. Bonky

    Bonky Full Member

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    Thanks everyone; understood.


    Richard.
     
  5. jakesdad13

    jakesdad13 Staff Member Moderator

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    Wherever you purchase your ply, try and find one that will cut it to size for you. If you draw up a cut list and work it into the size of board you buy it will finish up like a kit but much much cheaper and the parts should be square, ready for assembly.
    Let us know how you get on, we love builds like this mate!!

    Cheers, Pete.
     
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  6. Toto

    Toto I'm best ignored Staff Member Founder Administrator

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    One of my favourite parts .... baseboard construction. Bring it on.:avatar::tophat:
     
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  7. jakesdad13

    jakesdad13 Staff Member Moderator

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    Me too! You can always learn new ways of doing the same job, I'm going to build my next exhibition layout using 9mm ply rather than P,S,E, pine. Especially now I struggle with moving the heavy-ish boards my existing layouts are built of. I'm also looking at using foam for the top same as Gary has used. I think the term is "simplicate and add lightness"!
    I'm quite fancying using the wire in tube point operation but all working from one spot using model aircraft nylon cranks and rods on the top of the boards with the cranks hidden inside the scenics. I really like Gormos point operating levers so they will probably be included too!

    Cheers, Pete.
     
  8. paul_l

    paul_l Staff Member Administrator

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    Aye, and you love using your rubber rule, where 20" can be anything from 20" to 22" - or even 28" :avatar:

    My Another Bridge layout, used ply and expanded polystyrene insulation material,

    [​IMG]

    And came out very Light and so far held together quite well, it's attended a couple of exhibitions and survived to tell the tale.

    [​IMG]

    Easily lifted by one person for weight but a PITA to carry as its so bulky the height is over 18", two baseboards both 4'6" long by 20" deep (Toto thats 20" at both ends).

    Paul
     
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  9. Keith M

    Keith M Staff Member Moderator

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    I tend to use "Far Eastern" ply, which is hardwood rather than softwood, a bit dearer, but worth it in my opinion, 9mm seems to be about the right balance between strength and weight, although with my existing 00 gauge layout and my "yet to be constructed" layout, both baseboards are fixed not portable so in my case, weight isn't an issue. I am perhaps fortunate in having both a table and portable circular saws, so I buy full sheets and cut to my requirements, offcuts usually coming in handy at some point in the future.
    Keith.
     
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