BUILDING A SMALL BRIDGE
SEPTEMBER 21, 2009
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Because of the washout (2 pages back) we knew we needed better drainage.  Plus the plastic culvert pipe is
the ideal material for a boiler for our next project, an 0-4-0 Camelback locomotive.  Here's how we built a new
bridge.
PARTS - A couple of 25-inch 4x4's notched to support the ends of the ties,
and pair of 4-foot 2x8's with ends cut in a diagonal.
BALLAST AND SOIL REMOVED - The soil was damp so it was easy to
remove the ballast and soil.  The top of the culvert was only an inch under the
ties.
OUT WITH THE CULVERT - Just a few taps with the back side of an axe.
DIGGING IT OUT - The only problem was a few tree roots, easily chopped
off.
NORTH ABUTMENT - Tight up against the newly dug sides.
SOUTH ABUTMENT - I had to dig out a large rock and cut a tree root.
SIDE PANELS INSTALLED - Temporarily offset because of a mismatched
tie.
BASIC BRIDGE COMPLETED - Soil replaced and tamped, ballast
reapplied.
VIEW FROM BELOW - The opening is 14 inches wide and 8 inches deep.
VIEW FROM THE TRAIN - It certainly looks like it fits!
STRENGTHENING - The next day I built and installed this frame, which will
close the gap between the abutments and the ties, and keep the abutments
vertical.
TEST DRIVING - The Critter is posing on the new bridge.  In a few minutes,
Charlotte and I will be riding across the new bridge.  It works great.