The objective is to make a removable closet module that acts as the engine servicing facility for my home layout, but can also be connected up to the Houston S Gaugers' club layout. The club has a branch line configuration with is basically a dead-end section separate from the normal layout loop. The idea is that this turntable module can be connected to the end of that dead-end section. While I was building three modules for that dead-end section for the club's layout, I took the opportunity to also build this module's frame work (after all, I already had all the tools out!). This first photo shows the module frame built. Instead of the typical 3/4" plywood sheet as the flat "ground" surface, I'm using a 1/2" foam insulation sheet. This was inset into the frame, hence the need for the plywood strips inside the frame. Needless to say, you are looking at the underside of the frame in this photo.
With the frame built, the next step is to install it into the closet. The closet seems to have been built to just barely fit a standard 2' x 4' module. It actually is 55 inches wide, but the last 7 inches have a small inset wall that narrows the depth of the closet to just under 24 inches. However, I could get the module in there, which is the most important part. I made an "L-girder" out of two strips of plywood glued together. The L-girder was attached to the side of the closet after I determined its vertical position such that the top of the module would line up with the height of the rest of my layout. This took quite a bit of measuring, measuring again, and then measuring some more. And, hopefully, I won't be off too much!
The L-girder on the right is now installed as well. Here you can see the stub wall I mentioned above.
I then built another two L-girders to span the width of the closet. I made a small cut out on their ends to fit over the ones attached to the walls. I thought about attaching these to the L-girders on the wall, but it turns out that I need to actually remove the front one to be able to get the module in and out of the closet due to the shelf in upper part of the closet. Also, the bi-fold doors have to be removed to gain enough access space. It is therefore not a trivial process to get the module in and out.
The module has been placed on the supports. This still allows for the normal use of the closet below and above. I had previously installed a fluorescent light under the closet's shelf, so that will come in handy when I start to actually work on this module.
As I mentioned above, there is about a 7-inch gap on the right hand side. I plan to build a simple frame work that can be placed on top of the support to provide some additional track later on. My plan is to have four tracks on the right hand side here that will line up with the four tracks on the club's modules mentioned above. When the module is used at the club, it will connect to the normal four tracks. When it is used at home, these four tracks will provide storage tracks for my layout's equipment.