Large Scale Central

2023 Mik Challenge - Gasoline fuel island

I’m so new at this, I am like a tadpole without any legs yet. Just starting my garden railroad I don’t really have any scenery. My father built my son (now an adult) a garage for his toy cars. Missing it’s roof I still have it. Working as a truck mechanic my whole life I know many towns in the early 1900’s had at least one filling station.

Knowing my current time limitations, I still want to join in this challenge. The challenge did say large or small, so I going to build a fuel island, circa 1920’s.

Living in Pennsylvania I have been collecting LGB Pennsylvania rail cars and engines. Searching, the only narrow gauge railroad the mighty PRR owned for a while was the Ohio River & Western Railway. So that has to be my railroad. I have a lot of Pennsylvania rail history info, and I’ll share more as we go.

Here is my napkin:


Welcome to the Challenge, Wayne. Glad you chose to join us. I like the filling station idea. My father was a mechanic, so I grew up in an auto repair shop. This will bring back some very fond memories and probably some not so fond (me getting my rear chewed out, happened a lot :wink:).

Welcome to the site and thank you for participating in this years Challenge, hope you enjoy the fun of participating in this great event as much as the rest of us do.

Wasn’t the OR&W a narrow gauge line?

Hi Rick,
Yes, the OR&W was a narrow gauge railroad. They would also run on a small section of the B&O track where a third rail was added.

The original name of the OR&W was the Bellair, Zanesville & Cincinnati Rwy. “Like so many other narrow gauge railroads around the country. saw a little bit of boom and a whole lot of bust.” -Nathaniel R. Howard

Thanks Wayne, I thought I was remembering correctly, that’s always suspect now days :smiley:
Yogi Wallace, an old timer in large scale, was telling me a lot about it, long time ago, he lived in that area somewhere, I think Bellair, but not positive.

Welcome!!! Looks like a neat project

Great idea!

Should be a neat building and will be sure to bring back LOTS of memories.

Don’t use wood! :innocent: :innocent:


Well that definitely puts a brake on my long term plan. The one car garage my father made for my son 30+ years ago is wood.

Still able to move forward on the fuel pump island, as my meager entry in the challenge is just the pump island. I plan to use 1/4" aluminum plate to simulate the 6" concrete island. The model pump I already have is diecast and plastic.

Even though the model lists this as 18:1 scale, it is really much closer to 22.5:1. The original hand fuel pumps were 9 feet tall. The model is 5" tall.

I just haven’t had much luck with wood in Virginia - no matter what, it seems to ROT. You may do better! (I sure HOPE SO!)

Those pumps look great!

There are some shots of the gas station I made over here:


Wow, your gas station looks great!

Thanks! It went through a lot of “changes” over the years…

Yes, Yogi Wallace was from Bellaire Ohio. He was quite an inspiration. I miss him.

On the notion of wood. I will throw my 2 cents in. Ships were made out of wood and many of them have been around for 200+ years and are still sea worthy. Houses are built of wood and many of them have stood for over 200+ years. So what does this mean to the modeler. Construction techniques, material choice, and weather sealing.

Now I have not been into Garden railroading long enough, certainly not as long as many other fine builders on here. Their experience is very valuable. But I am convinced that wood “can” be used successfully. Exterior grade or even marine plywoods. Using at a minimum titebond 3 glue if not some other silicone based adhesive or some such thing as liquid nails. And then sealing the entire project in a good oil based paint or exterior stain. And then like a house or deck or a boat you have to continually refinish it and reseal it. Now While I think it can work. I am leaning toward styrene or a combination of styrene and foam.

If wood is what you have then build it out of wood. Just seal it. And then consider making it so you can either cover it or take it in during the winter or harsh climate months.

I think one of the challenges with wood as a modeling medium is that we tend to use smaller cross sections. Say we accept 1/16" of rotting per year on a 2x4. It’s going to be a while before we notice. But that same 1/16 rotten wood on a 1/4" thick piece is going to be noticed a lot faster. That said, I’ve got 1/4" cedar ties that I cut almost 20 years ago. They aren’t perfect but they certainly have wear.

Drainage is the key to keeping wood preserved in my mind (well except on a boat, then it’s keeping it wet). Most folks have a lot of standing water on layouts.

submerged wood doesn’t rot very fast at all. I have always found that fascinating. Look how long pilings last or sunken shipwrecks. its the combination of air and moisture that is the killer.

Very true. I guess I am against it because one of my first buildings was built using exterior grade plywood and it did NOT fare well.

This was only after 8 years!

In retrospect, I suspect the base allowed water to wick up the plywood. Subsequent wood buildings were place on a bunch of rocks for a base

By all means, build with wood if that is what you have!

Plastic, or PVC, is NICE but takes a LOT of work to look like wood. I did NOT give up on wood entirely - this one is made of mostly wood!

Bruce I think hit upon the real issue as did Craig. It won’t be the water falling on it. It will be the water it sits in. The one idea that got mentioned some time ago to me for one of my builds was making a base out of foam or better yet PVC lumber upon which to start your build. I found that the PVC lumber is easy to make the base out of. Buy an available width and just use PVC primer and cement to glue them into panels to the foot print of your building. Then go wood on top of that. This will keep the wicking problem Bruce mentioned at bay.

Bruce, you have to keep in mind in 1:20.3 scale that is 162 years and in 1:29 its 232. Given that time frame I would say it faired pretty well :grin: :stuck_out_tongue: :grinning:

Really nice pump models, Wayne! Very detailed and colorful, they’ll look great!

I can’t help but wonder though, what kind of customer complaint compelled the company to state these were only “replica” pumps? :wink:

Very funny about the marketing of the toy pumps. The other day on a truck forum I read, a guy posted a picture of a current fuel pump with a sticker that stated, “Do not put the hose in your mouth”. Same question, What in the world promoted this fuel pump warning?