A giant milestone was reached on Saturday, November 7, 2015. David tightened the bolts that hold the aluminum structural members for the Ohio River bridge down for “keeps.” Barring an unforeseen reason, the big screws won’t come out again for the life of the layout.
Next to David’s hands is a short stack of Vince’s reference photos of OC Bridge in Pittsburgh, used as inspiration for his build in urethane of the massive O-scale bridge’s superstructure.
The top of the aluminum box sections have been covered with a thin veneer of wood that David cut on his table saw. On these he will lay the bridge ties, tie plates and rails. Once that is finished, and pipe details are added to the side to carry DCC bus wires to the end behind the camera, trains will run across the bridge (no fear!) even though it will be a high wire act without a net.
Inside are laminations of black styrene, the purpose for which should become clear as the bridge build progresses. Here we look north across the Ohio River. That’s Ohio on the far side and CP Jackson in the background. Not visible: David painted the bottom of the aluminum box sections flat black. Once that was accomplished, the bridge could be permanently bolted in place.
Here’s the view across the bridge heading south. In the foreground Vince plans a pin-connected truss that connects to the main bridge over the navigable river channel.
In the background, through the arched “people tunnel” Vince builds turnouts in dimly-lit Linnwood, the last major town on the layout to be built. This is a spot formerly known as “Darwin”, a/k/a where “the sun don’t shine” because that room perpetually experiences a raging thunderstorm.