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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
My brother-in-law retired from the railroad a few weeks ago and I thought I would make him a little retirement present. He started his career with the Railroad working for Penn Central in Pittsburgh, PA. Then in 1974 they filed for bankruptcy and the government took over as Conrail which operated until 1999. After they started to turnover a profit, Norfolk Southern Railway took over and he finished his career with them.

So anyway I wanted to make him something in tribute to all 3 railroads and the only thing I could think of would be to make him a shadow box with model trains from all three railroads.



I still have a few finishing touches like a 4”x¾” engraved brass label that I'm waiting on and I may on put a coat of gloss polyurethane. I’m not sure if I should add anymore to the inside and still thinking about that.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
What a clever idea. He will just go crazy over that. I like the trains. The display came out very nice. WTG. Don't forget to sign and date it.






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Aw I knew there was something I was forgetting. I wonder if just signing the back with a marker is OK.
Someone here mentioned that they put a label on everything they build and at one time I thought about that since I give most everything away.
 

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Aw I knew there was something I was forgetting. I wonder if just signing the back with a marker is OK.
Someone here mentioned that they put a label on everything they build and at one time I thought about that since I give most everything away.
I just use a Dremel, and carve my name and date. I might even put something like "Handmade for JohnnyB".






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+1 with cabinetman....what a great idea and also a nice thing to do on your part. He will really appreciate that and enjoy it for years to come. :thumbsup:
 

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Discussion Starter #7
I like the Dremel idea!
I forgot to mention it, but the trains are real N-Scale model trains that can be pulled out and actually run on a track with a power supply. I have them held in place with fishing line so that have to be cut 1st. :smile:
 

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That is very cool! I like how you put in the background pictures,
very nice indeed. Where did you find all the models with each company name on them?
 

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Discussion Starter #10
That is very cool! I like how you put in the background pictures,
very nice indeed. Where did you find all the models with each company name on them?
Well the newer ones like the Norfolk Southern and the Conrail you can buy at any Model Train store for about $80 each, but I had a hard time finding the Penn Central. I ended up buying it used from eBay although I'm not realy happy about it being used, but what can you do.
 

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My brother-in-law retired from the railroad a few weeks ago and I thought I would make him a little retirement present. He started his career with the Railroad working for Penn Central in Pittsburgh, PA. Then in 1974 they filed for bankruptcy and the government took over as Conrail which operated until 1999. After they started to turnover a profit, Norfolk Southern Railway took over and he finished his career with them.

So anyway I wanted to make him something in tribute to all 3 railroads and the only thing I could think of would be to make him a shadow box with model trains from all three railroads.



I still have a few finishing touches like a 4”x¾” engraved brass label that I'm waiting on and I may on put a coat of gloss polyurethane. I’m not sure if I should add anymore to the inside and still thinking about that.
IMO you are only half done you should----STOP it's perfect, You done good.
 

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Pretty cool gift. I'm sure he will be greatful.
 

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Thinking of doing the same thing

I'm thinking of doing the same thing for a guy retiring from my work who is a RR hobbiest; we would include the RR's that ran through the town during the time that the company was in business. I don't know if we'll do 4 engines or have one consist with rolling stock representing the various road names with an engine at the head and possibly a caboose.

Anyway, I'd like to get a little more detail on how you made the display case. I might do one long one for an entire train, or four shelves. probably HO too. how did you attach the face frame? the back?

I guessed that I would dado the bottom and any shelves into the sides, rebate the top onto the sides and have a groove all around the top, bottom and sides for the back, like a drawer. since the boards would only about 4" thick, I figure I could ignore any wood movement issues. the front is a little more of a mystery to me though. And I'd like to know how you did it.

Thanks.
 

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Discussion Starter #14 (Edited)
I'm thinking of doing the same thing for a guy retiring from my work who is a RR hobbiest; we would include the RR's that ran through the town during the time that the company was in business. I don't know if we'll do 4 engines or have one consist with rolling stock representing the various road names with an engine at the head and possibly a caboose.

Anyway, I'd like to get a little more detail on how you made the display case. I might do one long one for an entire train, or four shelves. probably HO too. how did you attach the face frame? the back?

I guessed that I would dado the bottom and any shelves into the sides, rebate the top onto the sides and have a groove all around the top, bottom and sides for the back, like a drawer. since the boards would only about 4" thick, I figure I could ignore any wood movement issues. the front is a little more of a mystery to me though. And I'd like to know how you did it.

Thanks.
Hi railaw,
I’m also going to make a long one for myself. I have an N-scale Challenger Steamer that I want to encase. I have it stored away and can’t get to it at the moment, but maybe after Christmas I’ll build it.

To answer your question the face is integrated in with the frame. I used dados to hold the glass and I cut a rabbit for the back panel.



I first had a piece of glass cut at Lowe's and then made the frame to fit. My only real problem was the glass wasn’t exactly square and I didn’t realize it until after I cut everything. I allowed for a little expansion room for the glass, but it wasn’t enough for something out of square so I had to recut the dados.

 
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That is a terrific gift! I've been talking on another thread about gifting my work. He will love it and you will get a lot of satisfaction in the giving.

Bret
 

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Thanks to inspiration of this thread, I put together the below display case for the guy retiring at my office (edit: I don't think I mentioned he's a retired marine lt. Col.) It was a big hit, I am glad to report. image-1766591419.jpg image-956695268.jpg image-2978920895.jpg image-1718643848.jpg The cars represent each of the major roads that have operated through Waterbury in the last 100 years. This was my first time making rebates, or using spray lacquer. Glue only on the rebates; the panel is floating. Learned the hard way what well-ventilated area does not mean. But it came out good and the recipient was happy. We can overlook the warped bottom and lots of other issues that I know but probably aren't obvious.
 

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Discussion Starter #17
Thanks to inspiration of this thread, I put together the below display case for the guy retiring at my office. It was a big hit, I am glad to report.

The cars represent each of the major roads that have operated through Waterbury in the last 100 years.

This was my first time making rebates, or using spray lacquer. Glue only on the rebates; the panel is floating. Learned the hard way what well-ventilated area does not mean. But it came out good and the recipient was happy. We can overlook the warped bottom and lots of other issues that I know but probably aren't obvious.
Looks Great! Wow you did a fantastic job.:thumbsup:
 
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That's very nice. I just finished building one of these also, but a good bit larger. Mine has 11 shelves for holding 21 different engines, 20 individual companies all under one main company. My father in law collects trains and he paid a bunch of money for all of these and wanted them on display so I made him a cabinet for Christmas using poplar wood and plexiglass. The pics of it are in the project showcase forum here.
 

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I've been following that thread and have admired the trim and how the plexi slides out. I had wanted to add glass but did not have the time. I wanted to add a face frame too but similarly ran out of time.
 
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