My first step was to try enlarging the building, keeping it two stories throughout, and shortening the platform by the same amount as the building was lengthened. This was done with some scrap cardboard. Here is how it looked (depot in background), ignoring for the moment the issue of whether and how much to roof the platform.
The two reefers are spotted here to show that two cars could still be loaded at the shorter platform.
This immediately convinced me that I did not want the building this big. It is rather prominent in the layout foreground, sort of dwarfs the one-story depot behind it, and is probably too big in proportion to the imagined business of a seasonal fruit packer.
My next idea was to revert to the original, smaller main building, and use the shorter platform (shown above) with it. This was an easy change, as I just had to un-tape the added pieces of the larger building, and reassemble it in original form. In this view, I tried adding the platform roof, but don’t think I would actually build this tapered roof structure (which would not be entirely fun for a 1:1-scale carpenter either).
The structure here is also moved somewhat to the left, away from Bromela Road at right, which would permit a truck unloading dock at that side of the building. Here is a side view, with the two reefers behind the platform.
Another possibility surfaced in a search of back issues of model magazines. In the July 1987 issue of Model Railroader (pages 79–81), Eugene S. Martin had an article about the H.M. Young fruit-packing shed in Lodi, California, which was a single-story structure. The building was arranged to receive harvested table grapes on one side, and load refrigerator cars on the other side, and the article even included scale drawings of the prototype. Here is Eugene Martin’s photo of the structure in Lodi in 1971, used with permission from Model Railroader.
This structure almost goes too far the other way, being a genuinely small building (60 percent of the structure’s length is the open platform) and also was set up for loading lugs of grapes right from field trucks into refrigerator cars, with no “packing house” intervention. That is something that can be done with table grapes, but usually not for stone fruit, the intended product of the packing house I am going to build.
My interim conclusion is that I do want to build the two-story packing house building as I originally mocked it up, but I like the platform design from the Lodi shed, and can use the Model Railroader drawings for dimensions. My next step is to begin construction, and I will address that in my next post on this topic.
Indeed that tapered roof would be a bear to build full size. I've done it, in my former life as a stage set builder. The key is to keep the ridge and the eaves level, which requires that every pair of rafters have a different rise and run from the pair adjacent. Not terribly hard for an experienced carpenter, just very, very tedious.
Thanks for the insight, PIerre. Thinking about it, it sure does sound tedious to have to juggle every rafter pair.ReplyDelete
Another photo of the HM Young packing shed is here: http://coastdaylight.com/lodi/lodi_2.htmlReplyDelete
Photos of models are here: http://coastdaylight.com/lodi/lodi_models.html
Thanks, Jim. Excellent coverage of Lodi at the site for which you provided a link. I should have thought of checking there! I do know and use the site.Delete
There's an avocado loading dock with a flat-roof here:ReplyDelete
Thanks again, Jim. A very attractive modern-looking packing house, and the detached platform is interesting too. I will have to mull this one over a bit.Delete