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GETS 2011 Models

For the GETS2011 train show, my main project has been a "solid rocket booster factory", and the accompanying special-purpose transport train car. I don't know what triggered this idea - perhaps the knowledge that the Space Shuttles were nearly retired. Whatever it was, my first thought was to build the big train car carrying a complete booster. And yes, I know they were never carried that way - they were carried as smaller sections, and connected together using the O-Rings. But, it made an interesting project.

After the special car was done, I of course had to have some background to show it against. That lead to the factory. The basic idea was governed by my vision of how the train tracks would be laid out. The rest was "just" building. I wanted to use a bunch of black 1x2 grill brick since I had a bag full. What colour should the rest be? I had yellow in my motel, and red for my London row houses. I didn't want to use white or grey for a factory, so that left blue from the basic colours.

Overall Views

The setup consists of the main factory building with two tracks going into it through large red doors. It is constructed in two halves, each one on a 48x48 baseplate, and overhanging a bit on the dock side. The factory has a loading dock along one side with numbered bay doors from it. The small "office" with sloping roof is over one of my connector setups. Beside the dock track is an engine house for the local switcher. It is held on by only a few studs (the rest of the bottom is tile), and so comes off, leaving a pair of baseplates that have nothing on them except plate and tile. The bottom of the dock area is just resting on tile, allowing those two baseplates to slide out from under the main factory building.

Interior Views

I didn't want to do the entire interior of the factory, but I thought it would be nice if you could see stuff through one of the big doors. So, I built some random "machinery" around the first half of the left bay, and put a ladder up one of the pillars half-way down the building.

Door Views

The doors took a couple of attempts. They do open and close, but they are quite stiff, and sometimes the red clip pieces come off of the doors - they are only held by their one stud in the back of a tile.

Minifig-Level Views

Dock Views

The loading dock bay doors went through two iterations - at first they didn't have the white numbers on them. I decided I wanted the numbers fairly late in construction. I didn't want to disassemble half of the structure, so I flipped each half upside-down, peeled off the baseplate, and dug out the bottom of the door support, so I could replace the doors. I could have made the '1' centered on the first door, but that would have required having it mounted at a half-stud offset, which would have required a lot more rebuilding that I was willing to try with the building upside-down.

Miscellaneous Shots

Equipment on the engine-house roof
Long shot of the main doors
Another door shot
Fuel tank

Fuel tank
Engine house
Door closeup
My custom flat-car with quarter-sections


Pictures of the factory in various stages of construction can be found here.

A Real One

These are pictures taken from the Russian Baikonur Cosmodrome.

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