Friday, March 25, 2016

Gas Meter Nuicance

I know I've mentioned it before but it's worth repeating, I hate my gas meter. Well in better terms I'm displeased where it is located.

Revenge of the Gas Meter.
At least the meter will be hidden with a thin backdrop that comes very close to the tracks. Yes that scenery is not the SE Ohio hills but the farmlands of NW Ohio, a leftover from my Bellevue modeling plans.
When I placed the Adena yard along the wall with the gas meter, I did so thinking the tracks would simply bump out around it. This differs from the prototype flow of the yard, but sticking to the real design went out the window when the yard had to curve around the corner to fit the east end.

I'm okay with design deviations of the east end because the real star of the show anyways was the west end of Adena with the wye, bridges, depot and other buildings.

The real problem the meter causes is combining the bump out back into a curve where the east yard ladder starts out of sight to the right of the photo. If the gas meter wasn't there this wouldn't be an issue of course.

The hoppers you see in the above photo barely fit under the meter. So I could go under the meter but I would have to rip out and alter all the benchwork in place to add more clearance for anything else like a boxcar or engine. That's not going to happen at this point. Plus I can't really make that level any lower as that would pinch more space from the lower deck and most importantly part of the laundry area.

I'll figure it out, but I might finally have to turn to a CAD program to do so.

I suppose every layout has at least one major obstacle to overcome. Whether that turns out to be a gas meter, furnace, water heater, chimney, support column or solid wall, something similar is present in almost every layout I've visited so far. Many people could check off that whole list when designing their track plan.  Luckily? I only have half that list.


  1. If you were modeling an urban area I'd say encase it in a large building. Every couple years or so they're going to want to come in and read the dials though.

    1. Good point, I'll leave the dial box open. The benchwork/foam will be segmented in front of the meter for removal if necessary. This area of Adena is a forested hill transitioning to a corn field/tiny farm before a river crossing at the end of the yard ladder. Unfortunately no buildings to camouflage the meter.

  2. Hi Chris ... is there any possibility you can move the layout away from the meter to give yourself a bit more working space ... maybe 3-5"? Are you planning on using photos you've taken for the backdrop or a commercial one? I can recommend a commercial backdrop that is no longer available but one I have which can legally be copied (if interested contact me offline). Speaking of obstacles, I have a soil pipe which is located in an inconvenient spot so I built National Lime and Stone around it and used it as a storage silo. I realize your gas meter problem is much more severe than that though and Jeff is correct about access. I also had issues with 2 electrical panels ... painted them sky blue and mounted a backdrop on them carefully cutting around the door so it could be opened. Where there's a will there's a way. With your capabilities the solution will be forthcoming ... of that I have no doubt!

    1. If the layout intrudes anymore on the laundry area I will upset the balance of cooperation that has so far benefited this project :) So no, the room you see is what I have to work with. After more work this weekend it doesn't seem as bad as I first thought, we'll see.

      I like your electrical box solution, very clever with the mounted backdrop!