Wood Bridges and Decking for Model Trains
Plastic and Wood O Scale Trackside Structures
Custom Model Building Services
Kits and Details
Our Bridge and decking portfolio.
All Bridge designs have been modified to add extra support for both the tie and posts so that the structures can be shipped with more confidence in their integrity. The deck ties are now sunk deeper into the chords and reinforcement strips have been added to the bottom of the ties for added strength. Spacers have been added in between posts on both the bottom and top chords to add glue surface plus strength to the post assembly. Modifications have also been made to the specialty bridges such as the angle post girder bridge to strengthen these also. Please see the photos below for sample modifications.
Wood bridges and decking represent the core of our product group. We have available Warren Through Truss bridges, girder bridges trestle decking and trestle bents for HO and O and On30 scale as standard product in various lengths. Please read below for comments on S scale product. Any structure can be made to a custom width/length per your specification.
Notes on bridge, trestle deck and trestle bent designs -
Truss and Girder Bridges:
A prototypical truss bridge design has sets of three to six floor ties attached to bottom stringers with a top stringer attached to the top of the floor ties. A trestle deck is then built to sit on top of this structure. To model this a customer would need to purchase the truss bridge and a trestle deck. To keep costs down the truss bridge has been designed with a continuous tie bar (floor tie) so that a trestle deck is not necessary.
Typical post height for older style truss bridges was about 15 feet. Newer style bridges can go to 30 feet. We have standardized on about 24 foot height (see more below).
The Truss bridge comes in three basic configurations. The Underslung Truss is the truss design upside down. The Half-Through Truss has a post height about the same as the locomotive height. The Through Truss has a post height higher than the height of the locomotive.
Typical length to height ratio for a Through Truss bridge is 3.14. Therefore the post height will be the length divided by 3.14. To keep costs down we standardize the height within each scale. We use the Half-Through configuration as our standard girder bridge design and the Through configuration as our standard truss design.
Top and bottom chords (stringers) are usually single timbers. However this would involve butt joints glued together which would not make a strong design. We use a two timber approach with posts sandwiched in-between.
Prototypical design for a trestle deck involves two or more sets of three stringers spaced apart 2 inches. To cut cost our design uses two solid stringers. one at each end of the deck. We can design and build a prototypical stringer design for added cost.
For prototypical design the stringer assemblies are built about 16 feet long and butt joined. The strength comes from the fact that each section is mounted on top of a trestle bent. As mentioned before the butt joint is a weak joint. Also this design will entail a customer purchasing the appropriate number of bents for his/her trestle deck. To alleviate this issue the deck is designed with one piece stringers to the desired length.
Trestle bents are usually designed with four to six posts depending on a load rating. Ours is the square bent design standardized on a five post configuration for all heights. Post angles (which will vary with bent height) have also been standardized to allow for girts to be attached inside the bent structure regardless of the height of the bent.
Prototypical design has single top caps and bottom sills again necessitating a butt joint. Our approach is called the 'false bent design' commonly used in modeling where two caps/sills are used and the posts sandwiched in-between. Prototypical design also entails a high bent (30 feet or more) to be built in short post sections with each section butt joined to the lower one. Our design again employs the false bent procedure using one piece posts for strength.
Please select bridge product from below or click on the tabs at the top of this page to see our offerings.
As mentioned on the S scale page for customers who model in S scale the choice of using either the HO or O scale product is purely a personal decision. While all O scale product will fit all S scale track with ease it may appear too big for true scale. At the other end of the scale some HO scale product may not be able to accommodate all S scale track. A good example is the HO Trestle deck. While it is wide enough for standard S track without ballast the distance between the Guard Timbers is too narrow to fit track with built-in ballast. A better choice for track with built-in ballast would be the narrower of the two O scale decks offered for sale. More information is available on the S scale page. Please remember the HO truss bridges can be made with taller posts to add more realism to S scale railroading.
The wood we use is naturally dark brown to black with high density. All product sold is assembled and finished with a coat of oil. If you would like an unfinished piece please contact us. Please remember custom lengths are available for all product. To order any product please click the "ON LINE STORE" button on the Navigation bar at the top of this page.
Custom Girder Bridge
Angled Post Girder Bridge on
Custom Trestle Bent and Bulkhead
Custom Double Track Warren Truss Bridge
Custom Warren Truss Bridges for Wall Mounted Layout