Build #04: First Stress Test, I Meant the Module

Yes, it was about time to do some stress tests on my module. After spending 2 weekends cutting and putting the parts together, I should test my module construction before I proceed. I do not want to repeat the same mistakes that I made during the last 2 weeks. So here are my self-evaluations. If you could also evaluate through the photos that I have uploaded and what I have described, all the better. I welcome your comments.

Standard Module per Segment B-D, F-H (92cm x 30cm x 15cm)
This is how the segments would look like when I join them together (I am only showing 2 modules, instead of 3). For a home-layout, this 30cm width is sufficient as I try to accommodate the balcony space that I have. It may not look like a lot of space for modelling but trust me, it would be just nice. In fact, I pushed for 30cm width after experimenting with 20cm width on ICE diorama.

So far, using the finger test, the modules are pretty straight. Some rough edges would need to be smoothen with coarse sandpaper and check with an L-square. You will notice that I drilled a hole on one of the end profiles and not the rest. I do not have a hand drill machine, I had difficulty using my IKEA screwdriver drill. After drilling the first hole, I decided not to proceed until I get or borrow one.

IMG_6363

Standing/Stability Test
Tonight I put the support legs on one of the modules to test its stability. Okay, you might be wondering why the positions of the screws are not the same, that the right legs are deeper into the module. Naturally, this would cause the module to tilt and tumble.

IMG_6366

One reason is that Segment F-H modules rest against the windows and because of the position of the heating elements, the right legs would have to be indented about 8cm from the edge of the modules (see picture below) Yes, I know it was a weird design. I have been thinking how best to support the modules as they lean against the windows: (1) I will add cross bars to fix the position of the legs at 17cm apart just below the modules as well at the bottom of the legs, (2) additional pieces of square blocks about 18cm long at each end of the modules. The purpose is to provide additional support as the modules rest against the window pillar.

IMG_6369 IMG_6370
IMG_6371 IMG_6372 IMG_6373 IMG_6374 IMG_6375 IMG_6376

The last photo (above) shows how I tried to adjust the support legs to accommodate the heating elements and to make sure I still have space between the two sides (Segment F-H and Segment B-D) to move around. The walk-around space between segments would be 76cm (30 inches), a typical recommended space.

My next aim is to install Segment F-H  (standard modules) to Segment E and Segment A (end modules) and retest their support strengths and stability. These modules would be important to ensure the integrity of the whole layout. If any of these modules fail to give the needed support strengths and stability to the whole layout, it would be back to the drawing board or scale down my layout size.

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