These pictures show us getting the exhibition layout ready for a show. If everything goes to plan it takes about 45 minutes to put everything together from the time we unload the trailer to having two or three trains running. You'll find details on how it's put together in the Exhibtion Layout page.
Click on any image to enlarge it
If the modules are not in line with one another there will be humps and valleys in the track where they join. To ensure alignment we stretch string along the length of the layout, over two pieces of wood at each end. Both pieces are the same height. A third, identical piece of wood is then placed under the string close to each module joint. If there is a space between the wood and string then the module needs to be raised. If the wood pushed the string up then the module needs to be lowered. When the third piece of wood doesn't push the string up or there is no gap then the modules are properly aligned.
The track is cut short 3" from the end of each module, leaving a 6"' gap. We fill this with 6" track 'fillers' that have 16ga wire soldered on to the end. When these lengths of track are snapped into place, they povide continuity for the track as well as electrical continuity. The 16ga wire on the ends can be bent to ensure the filler track is snug to the fixed track.