Large Scale Central

C.V.S.Ry. Mik 2022 Build Log

After much gnashing of teeth, hemming, and some hawing, I finally decided to throw my napkin into the ring and join this year’s Mik Challenge.

The theme lends itself to numerous projects on my someday list. When examining a few of those I decided I would not be happy if I didn’t super detail them which would ultimately lead to my more often then not DNF.

Then the stars aligned. Chris Coleman posted a photo of the ‘privy’ that used to be located in the EBT’s Rockhill Furnace yard. Within a few hours, our Challenge Curator suggested that an outhouse would be an easy build. So there you have it.

I present for your viewing pleasure the official Napkin Drawing for this years challenge. The Pine Summit Privy…

Fortunately, I have no plans or measurements, so I won’t get bogged down in details. The privy will follow a long standing tradition on the C.V.S.Ry. - If you don’t have a shelter for your passengers, at least provide them with an outhouse and sign it for the station stop. That precedent was set somewhere around 2013 at WALL…

For reference, here is the prototype photo from Chris Coleman…

Some interesting items in that photo…

The stack: I don’t think this privy was big enough for a stove, so that is probably venting the pit.

The big insulators feeding knob and tube wiring: The privy was lit! I may need to add a power pole in the vicinity :grin:

I like this idea, Jon. Can never have to many privies :wink:. Looking forward to seeing how you detail it.

I’m not sure I want to know exactly how a person would super detail a privy. . . Brown sculpy clay comes to mind.

Are those power insulators or telephone/telegraph insulators. Maybe in the 1880’s people sat on the toilet on there phones just like we do today

They appear to me to be power, however on the Facebook post where the picture came from, one of the resident experts said this building was a section house, NOT a privy and that the wires were telegraph lines. I’m not sure I buy that as there still exists a section shed (much larger) on the other side of the tracks and the main office is only a hundred yards or so away, so would they need a telegraph there?

Well I can’t argue the history thats for sure. But the stove pipe and electric and/or telegraph insulators would make a lot more sense for a section house than a privy. Thats an outsiders perspective with no dog in the fight.

From a modeling standpoint it would, at least for me, be more fun as a section house.

Doesn’t much matter what it’s called, it will still look the same!

The explanation of the vent pipe was to vent off the methane gas from the pit. While I’ve seen that on modern porta-potties, it’s not something I’ve ever seen on an outhouse.

Then there is the picture of the Pogue section house that looks nearly identical!

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Yeah I realize new outhouses have them but like you said I don’t think that was a thing back in the day. The next picture and your description of it being a section really does make it a good candidate for the section house.

And yes either way it will look the same. And either way is a great little trackside detail.

Would really have some character if it was a leaner like the lower one. :laughing:

So, I think I’m staying within the rules by creating this plan.

I imported the photo into Visio and then scaled the photo until the door was approximately 7 foot tall. I then used Visio’s dimension tools to measure various parts. I use metric measurements because it makes working in 1:20.3 pretty easy. 1 Foot = 15MM.

Because of the angle of the photo, I really needed to guess at the width. Assuming the door is 30" wide and the door frame is 4x material I allowed about 6" on the outside of the door frame to the corner. That gave me a width of 50" which I rounded down to 48" for simplicity. The side, or building depth, measures 4’6" on the photo. That might be a bit shallow. I’m leaning more toward a 4’x6 footprint.

However, I count 8 planks on the side. If it is assumed that the board and batten siding is 8" planks with 2" battens, then the side would calculate out to 64" or 5’4" which is a little less than 6’ but more than 4’6. If the planks are 12", which was not a rare size in the 1920’s , then the side depth would be 8’ which sounds a lot more logical.

Here is the measured drawing…

for some reason LSC limited the width of this picture. Probably because it is in portrait orientation. You can click on it for a larger copy.

Critique of my measurements is welcome.

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I would think that as a privvy 3 X 5 would be a nice large size but as a section shed 5 X 8 would look better and you wouldn’t have to explain to everone that it’s not a privvy

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If this was a section shed, it is pretty much just a telegraph booth. Across the tracks, still extant and restored, is a much larger section house with room for a speeder, stove, tools and storage plus space for the yard section crew to hang out in the winter. Next to that is another speeder shed. Both were restored by the FEBT in the early 2000’s. These sheds were very lightly constructed. No frame, the plank siding held up the roof and was nailed to a deck style floor.

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If you look at the tin roof, I see 3 whole width sheets plus a partial sheet… if they are standard 2ft wide sheets thennnnn…

As An out house no need for a smoke jack… but as a telegraph relay station… they would have had the old glass jar batteries, and they would need the heat…


Thanks Dave -

You eyes are definitely better than mine when it comes to finding those seams! I can possibly see two, but the third, or partial sheet alludes me. No matter.

Based on what you propose, we can assume the roof is about 8 foot and the building probably about 6.

So between the planks and the roof sections I think we can guesstimate that footprint of the building to be 4x6 and the rectangle containing the roof to be about 6x8. That works for me!

Discussion continues on what this was. The person who called it a section house was a bit confused on the terminology. It’s a telegraph/telephone booth. The section house is much larger and across the tracks.

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Here’s what an outhouse looks like:

No, that’s just what that outhouse looks like :smiley:

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make it slightly bigger and make it a section house/outhouse combination, with sound and vapor barrier between the 2 rooms.

OK - Let’s all repeat after me: It’s a telegraph booth :sunglasses:

:rooster: No one can convince me to change it. Do I need to update my napkin and
remove the word Privy?

I’m really happy with the size and purpose. Fits perfectly in my scheme and will identify the control point - call sign PINE.

I like that it has no windows to hang me up and the construction method is super simple. I can concentrate my skills on fabricating the door hinges and a latch as well as the insulators and telegraph wires.

Did you notice the small insulator down low at the left of the door?

Mine has an insulator:

I still say it can be both. I can see the telegraph operorator pants at his knees tapping away next to the stove