The Truck Yard

After assembling the truck kits, I had to have a place to put them. I’d planned a truck yard for the Pacific Storage warehouse, but the arrangement was complicated by the fact the warehouse had been built on 1/4″ foam board to accommodate the loading dock for the rail siding. I finally decided to build the parking lot on foam board, and treat it as a raised lot relative to the surroundings.

I wanted to simulate a concrete surface for the lot, and looked at images on the web. I couldn’t find a surface that I was happy with when tiled, so I played around until I got a surface I liked:

NPP warehouse truck park surface

That’s a medium grey surface with joint lines printed on #110 card. Civil engineering works indicated that the most common dimensions for concrete ‘pads’ in this type of construction was 10′ x 15′, and that’s what I used.

Simulated stone wall from other projects was used for the road and rail faces, while the rest was blended into the scenery. The foam board and cardstock were attached with full-strength white glue:

Warehouse 2_truck yard prep

NPP warehouse truck park 1

NPP warehouse truck park 2

The chain-link fence surrounding the lot was made of material from the fence kit I used for the team track, but for this application I used 0.5 mm styrene rod rather than the kit-supplied posts. 0.5 mm scales to about 3″ in N-scale. A bit large, but much better than the kit posts. I built the gates from 0.5 mm rod using MEK for the adhesive:

Truck yard gates

Using period photos as guides, I built some light standards to represent the incandescent fixtures in use at the time, again out of 0.5 mm rod:

Warehouse 2_lamp standards

The pushpins hold the parts in place while the MEK sets.

Warehouse_2 overview 1 Warehouse_2 overhead 2 Warehouse_2 overhead 1

The fence posts and lights were painted Dove Grey, and everything was dusted with Black powdered pastel. The gate drag marks were drawn with a compass, and white glue and Weed ground foam was applied to the pavement joints. The concrete surface could probably use additional weathering, but I’ve found it’s far too easy to over apply weathering, so I erred on the side of caution.

I’d envisioned the area to the rear of the warehouse as a ‘back lot’, so I put in a fence and added some warehouse junk:

Warehouse_2 rear fence Warehouse_2 rear

Except for decaling the trucks, this scene is finished. As with nearly everything on a model railroad, the final product isn’t exactly what was initially envisioned, but I’m happy with the result. The area is a focal point that helps establish the location for this part of the layout, and provides a look at the relationship between trucks and railroads in the late 1940’s.

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