The San Juan & Tellurton Railroad TC&W Relocation


TC&W Relocation



TC&W Relocation

The photos below show the process involved in relocating Jeff Dutton's original TC&W layout to its new home in Shelly Levy's basement.    The relocation was complicated by several factors.  First, Jeff's layout had been built on an ‘add benchwork as you go’ basis, and had not been designed to be broken down and moved.  Second, a small section containing two buildings had to be removed (the buildings were dear to the Dutton family and remained with them).  Finally, the sections had to be small enough to allow passage through doorways.   Click on the images below to see full-size versions of each photo.


Removal - November 1998


Jeff's Original Tellurton, Cascade & Western (68 kb)

Jeff’s Original Tellurton, Cascade & Western RR

This view of the TC&W was taken before removal from Jeff’s basement.   The orange marked area is the area were retained by Suzie Dutton.   (SL)


First Piece Cut and Removed (76 kb)

First piece cut and removed.

After removal of the first “module”.  Notice Jeff’s ‘add benchwork as you go’ approach. (SL) 

Origin of Current SJ&T Modules from Original TC&W (70 kb)

Origin of Current SJ&T Modules from Original TC&W

Modules (sections, pieces cut) numbered 1 through 10 were in Jeff’s layout.  (SL)


Exterior Frames Used (67 kb)

Module 8 - Exterior Frames Used

Jeff’s scenery stretched from the front benchwork to the Upson  board backdrops cemented to the wall.  Exterior frames had to be added to support the plaster scenery before its removal.   The original backdrop was cut just above where it met the plaster.  (SL)


Removal Progress (78 kb)

Progress in piecing the TC&W.

Dale Carver helped me in the disassembly and is shown with Module 6 on the ground.  Notice the cut of the backdrop above the scenery level.  The wall behind Dale shows were the backdrop was removed and the residue of its attachment to the wall.  (SL)


Problems with the Back Corner (73 kb)

Module 9 the back corner – Yipes!

Jeff had made a rounded corner by installing a full sheet of Upson board in the corner of the basement.  This stiff, cardboard like material is used in theatrical scenery because it is strong yet flexible.  By suspending the board at each end, and building the benchwork about a foot from the backdrop, the “module”  came apart.  It's appearance after removal is seen in the upper left corner of the photograph.  In the lower right, bands of binding tape are visible that were used to keep the plaster intact. (SL)


Reconstruction - November 1998 to 2002

The reconstruction to allow expansion of the TC&W into the San Juan and Tellurton Railroad was complicated by a number of factors.  First, Jeff's layout had occupied a "C" shaped area in a room, without intervening support columns measuring 17’ x 25’.   The area to house the relocated layout was 40' x 22' and had two columns which restricted the placement options, especially if the layout was to remain intact.  Jeff had not left any documentation of his track plan.  Shelly Levy took "aerial" photos of each segment and used them as background images in CADRail™ to prepare CAD drawings of each segment.  Shelly then spent approximately two years examining alternatives and working with the placement of the various sections to retain as much of Jeff's work as possible in the reconstructed layout.   With the initial planning work complete, Shelly proceeded with the reassembly of the "jigsaw" puzzle.  Improvements made during the reconstruction included new, modular benchwork which would facilitate relocation of the layout, if it became necessary.   2002 saw the completion of the reconstruction and restoration of the sections of the current SJ&T which were derived from Jeff's layout. 


Positioning a Section (71 kb)

Positioning a Section

Support dollies at each end of a section allowed that section to be positioned in height and tilt.   If needed the section sub structure (bench work) and backdrop along with the frame to support the backdrop was built.  After the section was in place legs were added to complete the section.   (SL)


Major Repair in Section Restoration (87 kb)

Major repair in Section Restoration

Because original bench work was sometimes lost in the cuts (to make sections), some major pieces of the scenery broke off.  These were replaced and structural support added.   (SL)


Fixing Damage (188 kb)

Fixing Damage

Careful use of the Sawsall to cut the roadbed and trackage minimized requirements to repair the trackwork.  At the interface between sections, the track was further stabilized by adding spikes.  


Small Areas Replaced (96 kb)

Small areas replaced

After major pieces that had broken off were restored, there were small gaps to be restored.    (SL)


Area Restoration Complete (91 kb)

Area restoration complete

The results, after completion of the previous steps, was the restoration of Jeff's original modeling.  (SL)


Module Map (70 kb)

Module Map

Modules numbered 1 through 10 were pieces (sections, modules) cut from Jeff’s layout. The photos above show a glimpse of the process of restoration of these sections.   (SL)


Photo Credits:

(SL)  Shelly Levy      (RM)  Ron Morse, MMR


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