Penrhos1920
I'm looking to extend Penrhos with a few more baseboards.  The current ones are 4' x 2', open frame on 1' centres made entirely from 6mm ply.  The track bed is also 6mm ply with a second laminate of ply shaped to the ballast profile.  Scenery is shaped polystyrene with a thin skim of plaster.  On most boards the top of the scenery is 10 - 12" above the track bed.

Given ideas have moved on since these were built, what is the current best design for portable open frame baseboards?
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AHJAY
Variants exist but my first thought is... how has the current method stood the test of time for you?

If it has been stable and done what you want without problems, then I am not sure that there is necessarily any benefit in change that would be greater than the possible benefit in keeping it consistent across the layout.

If you want boards made for you it is a different story - DIY has become "kit assembled" for many in the area of baseboards. There are many sources of laser or CNC cut boards out there now, some good, some less so.

Ahjay
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Penrhos1920
They have faired okay.  Some of the baseboard joints are not as tight as they were underneath, but are good at track level.  I'm going to modify the  plaster skim by adding a mesh bandage to stop it cracking when it gets knocked.  The polystyrene has been eaten in places by mice when the boards were stored on the garage floor (and it's so messy to cut).
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Paul Ashton Focalplane
In the past I have used Woodland Scenics plaster but for a Gauge O layout this would be very costly.  I have some rabbit hut mesh and plan to staple this to the open frame and when convinced that it is strong enough use kitchen towel sheets soaked in plaster - papier maché.  My layout isn’t portable but I still want it to be strong enough that the skin will not crack, etc.

Paul
Paul Ashton

Penmaenpool in 1959, Gauge O finescale
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LarryG
I used the messy laster of Paris and bandages over a mesh former in the early 1960's. When I came back to layout building in 2000-and-whatever, I 'discovered' Woodland Scenics vinyl ReadyGrass that one uses over crumpled news paper and shapes with a heat gun.  It can be leaned on and it springs back to shape. It can be ripped up and re-shaped to suit other locations and it can be bought in large or small sheets. That said, I find myself being the only modeller around here using it. Dunno why when it is so clean, quick and easy to 'install'. Other ground cover can then be put on top of it where required, but its main usefulness is in forming contoured land....
WEB Vinyl grass 1.jpg 
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Paul Ashton Focalplane
Unfortunately my "local" (50 miles) model shop doesn't stock ReadyGrass, though they can probably special order it.  My philosophy often comes down to using what is available and plaster and kitchen towel are easy to obtain.  I selected the rabbit mesh over the less robust chicken wire as an experiment - we'll see what happens!
Paul Ashton

Penmaenpool in 1959, Gauge O finescale
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