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system of the model and still have a considerable amount of leftovers. Unfortunately, when I started this model many years ago I did not take any pictures during construction. As a result, I only have “in-progress” photos for the last stages of construction and the drawings I did back in the late 1970’s to show how it all goes together. This is not a construction article but a description of how I proceeded through the project. As a result, you will not find a complete set of plans or instructions here. If you are moved to attempt building a float bridge of your own I will be happy to supply you with a set of the scanned drawings on a CD as PDF files for $5.00; it also has copies of the slides I took back in 1976. (See the sidebar.)


Planning


If you intend to build a transfer or float bridge for use on your layout, the first thing to decide is if you are going to use a commercial car float kit (Walthers, Frenchman River, or possi- bly others) or scratchbuild your own. If you use a commercial kit, you must get one first to determine the track spac- ing, then build your float bridge to match. If you are scratchbuilding everything you can start with either the bridge or the float. When I started


The construction of the bridge bearing seat (above) was a mystery to the author until the B&O RR Historical Society ran an article on moving the very same bridge from Jersey City to St. George. The article contained some great shots, including some that showed details of the bridge bearing. The portion in the foreground is the cradle that supports the “log,” which is just behind it (shown upside down). The log is constructed of four 12″×12″ tim- bers bolted together. The ends are fully rounded, while the bits in-between which rest in the cradle are only rounded on the lower side, the balance of the log is left square. The log is bolted across the underside of the bridge, right at the end of the trusses.


this project there were no commercial car float kits available, so it never en- tered my mind that track spacing


might be important. It was. It is. Do make the “one half” match the “other half” of the pair or you will be building


RAILROAD MODEL CRAFTSMAN


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