Build Journal: 'City Drag'

MightyTwo Friday, 6/3/2022

Hello, everyone!  I guess it's time for me to jump in with a build journal.  This is, I have to say it, literally my first build since the early 90s and back then they were plastic kits for HO scale railroading.  I've got this one and another that I'm trying to get working nicely, but this one seems to be the only one working lol so it's the first one I'll be posting.

By the title, I assume you might figure out that I am calling this the city drag, for now.  Once I finish it, and it will be completed, including a handful of businesses, several houses and a delightful little field that may or may not include a pond but definitely not a bridge.

Again, first DIY project since the early 90s and I am really doing a lot of this by my own consideration so there are a lot of mistakes lol

Fig 1. some Elmer's foam boards I picked up at Walmart & some angled cardboard I cut out from a delivery box.

Fig 2. cutting another set of cardboard after measuring the correct length

Fig 3. Just using some $1.25 tape to hold them temporarily.

Fig 4. Glued one side and had them held in place while drying, then in this image you can see the second side being held in place while drying.  Wife didn't appreciate that I used her things lol

So first thing is I really like how it turned out with the cardboard, but I think one on each side is not going to be enough because the center inevitably will curve inward.  For now that's fine, this is cheapo learning track that I will definitely be using for some competitions and in the future, perhaps, some mail-ins if I drum up the interest ;)

Second thing is using tape first is not a good idea.  Later on I started putting the $1.25 glue on the pieces, putting the pieces together, then using items to hold them in place. When I tried to pull the tape off from these specific places it also pulled up some of the black part of the foam board.  Not only that, but it also moved the cardboard a bit.  In the future, not on this track, probably, I'll use at least three with one in the center to keep it as even as possible.

Track Information:

So I've already mentioned it's presently called 'City Drag'.  That name will not remain as eventually I will name the city and give this track a suitable name.  At the moment, the length is three of these foam boards which is about 90 inches.  Unless my math is wrong, and it often is, that's almost exactly 1/11th of a mile. When I get around to redoing the track from the beginning, I might add a 4th board which is just a smidge over 1/8th and that sounds a lot better.

As mentioned, I intend to have a housing district, a small downtown shopping area, and a field.  The starting line is at the downtown district (board 1), goes through the empty fields (board 2), and ends just shy of the last house (board 3).  I am using this opportunity to truly give an attempt at numerous skills as this will all be scratch built.

There will be sidewalks at both the downtown and housing districts, with scratch built lighting in both areas, as well as scratch built buildings.  The field area will be fairly empty but for grass and perhaps some cows. If I remember, I might even get electric poles in each of the three districts.

But most importantly the races run on this track will be ran at night. The street lights on districts 1 & 3, as well as any lighting in the houses & businesses will be the only light aside from any headlights/taillights added to the cars that race (I will not be attempting this until I've completed my tracks...).

Updating the track.

Well, if I am going to be rebuilding it, what of all the buildings?  Easy... I'm using the sidewalk to raise the elevation of the business & housing districts, then cutting out a foundation from another piece of foam board to build on.  That way, I can just pick up & move each building individually. :)

That's all for now. This is more time consuming that I thought it would be, building & waiting for glue to dry!

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