Saturday, June 2, 2012

Posting No. 49 - I'm boxing!

No, not that kind of boxing! - I'm boxing up the structure for shipment.  I start by using an oversize box and lining the bottom and sides with 2" foam board.  I hot glued the foam board together to make it stronger.  I want this box "armored" to withstand harsh handling.

I've added toothpicks in the bottom piece of foam spaced to the inside 4 corners of the structure to hold it in place.  The cutout is for the wire used for the interior lighting.

Here's the structure set in place on the bottom over the alignment toothpicks.

Now I'll need to hold the structure down gently while also allowing space above it to allow for any crushing of the box.  Here is the foam rubber that I'll use and some small dowel rods.

I cut pieces of the foam rubber to go over the roof peaks and then I cut the dowels to length to allow them to fit in the side walls.  Next I set the foam rubber pieces on the roof peaks and insert the dowels to bow slightly to apply gentle pressure on the foam.  I hot glue everything in place so that it won't shift during shipment.  I still have plenty of clearance above the structure that will be empty.

It's important that the dowels be removed gently so as to not damage the structure.  I add tape with instructions to cut the dowels out with wire cutters.

With the structure firmly in place I add the accessory pack by putting a dab of hot glue on it and gluing it to the bottom piece of foam.

Next I secure the lighting transformer.  If this bad boy got loose and rattled around it the box it could do a great deal of damage.  I insert it in a Ziploc bag and hot glue the bag to the bottom and sides of the container.  I also add dowels to add extra protection just in case the bag comes loose.

I don't want the top of those dowels coming loose so a add a corner foam reinforcement hot glued in place.

I want to make sure that the top of the box is "cave-in proof" so I add a 1" x 2" piece of wood reinforcement set into the foam sides.

Now I need something sturdy for the top insert piece so I use some double thickness cardboard.

Here I've cut it to size and inserted it into the top of the box.  I don't have pictures of the next steps, but I tape a Ziploc back the the inside top piece with unpacking instructions, the kit instructions, and a letter to Kevin.  I seal the whole thing up and put Kevin's address on it. 

Man, I never thought it would take so much to pack this, but I want to make sure that it arrives undamaged.  The delivery people would have to drop it from an airplane or run over it with the truck to mess this up!

Kevin, I'll email you with the shipping information!  I'm hoping to have a future posting showing Grandpa's place on Kevin's layout once installed.  Thanks for watching!


  1. Amazing! You could become a packaging engineer Rick! I'm as excited as a kid at Christmas! What a great structure and fantastic gesture! You will be getting plenty of pictures my friend, no worries!

  2. Kevin,

    Thanks! I had fun trying to figure out an armored container without it weighing a ton. I had such fun building this for you and feel great know that it will be part of your wonderful railroad. I'm looking forward to your pictures - perhaps we can publish them on this blog for all to see?