FAIRFORD TURNTABLE The building of the turntable and development of its operation
As it was decided to operate the layout mainly in the era of 1930/40s and considering the 2 foot baseboard width, the 45 foot model was chosen. At first it was thought that it would have to be scratch built, but I found an old Airfix/Dapol kit. The kit's bridge was 12 inches long so that 5 inches had to be removed to bring it down to a scale 45 feet. The bridge was turn over and carefully measured and 2.5 inches were marked off on each side between the center section and the ends. Using a razor saw, these unwanted sections were cut out and the three sections joined back together with plastic solvent then strengthen by two lengths of H beam. The ends were rounded off to the circumference of 3.5 inch radius. 4mm wide phororous bronze wiper strips were soldered to each end of rail before glueing to the bridge.
Underside of bridge Shortened bridge along with sprue shaft and motor
With the rails glued onto the bridge, the phosphorous bronze wipers were bent over the ends and underneath, then a 3 inch long round sprue was attached to the centre spigot. The next job was to cut a 7 and 3/16th inch hole in the baseboard top to form the turntable well. Once this was completed, the base of 10mm MDF was offered up to the well hole and penciled scribed so as to position the centre point for the shaft.
Next an overlay of !.8mm mounting card scribed as to represent longitudinal planking was glued from the outside of the bridge rails to the edge. The wipers were trimmed, the plastic base plate centered and pinned down and hole drilled.
As the bridge when set into the well was below track height a disc of 6mm MDF was cut out and the plastic base plate was re-pinned. A 10mm wide circle of 1.8mm mounting card was cut and glue to the disc and two semi circles of old brass rail glued to the card for pickup power and the wheels of the bridge to run on.
Photos by Ian McEwan