Sunday, 11 January 2015

Tunnel Portals - Modern - USA

I purchased several single and double track portals but found I needed a few extra. With the encouragement of a fellow modeller I decided to make the portals from plastic.
The end result is one that took less than an hour to make and would cost less than $1 each.
Here is a method you may try if you need concrete portals.
Here is a purchased portal painted a cement colour. This example does not have any tunnel liner.

 Here is a single track portal I made and installed and prior to scenery colouring and foliage added. it was made from plastic sheets and strips.
 Start by cutting out the pieces from sheets of 2-4 mm thick. My plastic sheet was 2mm thick so I made a double thickness to make the portal 4mm thick. I model in N Scale so you may need additional thickness if you model in larger scales.
Here are the pieces cut out. The strengthening front pieces were also doubled to give a bigger thickness.
 Each of the sections were glued and held together whilst the glue dried.
 The braces on the portal were sanded to create a uniform shape and correct any irregularities in the two sections. If you find a joint line this can be filled with plastic putty.
 At the rear of the portal I attached a tunnel liner 4 inches ( 10 cm) long. To do this attach brackets on the rear to support the liner which will need to be bent to shape. The reason the liner is only 4 inches or 10cm. is so when a tunnel is longer I can gain access to the tracks to clean them or heaven forbid, pick up a derailment.
I used 1mm thick plastic for the tunnel liner as this bends easily but thinner plastic would work as well. A rubber band does the job of holding the portal liner roughly in shape.
When the shape of the liner is about right glue using either plastic cement or super glue and use weights to hold until dry.
The inside of the liner can then be painted black and the concrete portal your favourite concrete colour.
Here is a finished concrete portal installed. Hope you find this valuable. 

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