August 12, 2012

50 Tons of Hardtack

Stacks of hardtack boxes, barrels and grain sacks begin to fill the loading docks at Stoneman's Station

I made about 50 O Scale tons worth of hardtack boxes today. Fifty tons of hardtack (Army bread) is about one quarter of the daily requirement for the Army of the Potomac in winter quarters. Each box hold 50 pounds of bread. So a stack 4 by 5 by 6 is 3 tons.

These boxes are the Mark II version. I had earlier made a large number of bread boxes using laser cut one-quarter inch aspen wood. These looked OK, even though the grain on the boxes was not correct, especially the end grain and the sides had a noticeable draft angle.

The Mark II versions use a laser cut 1/8-inch plywood core with laser engraved and cut cedar veneer on the surface. The Mark II design builds up quickly and makes a nice stack. I may try some basswood later, as the grain on the cedar is fairly pronounced. I made stacks 4 by 5 by 6, but they can stack on top of each other. Prototype photos show these stacks 16 boxes high.

I also made some single and double boxes for miscellaneous detailing.

Two  hundred twenty new boxes at the Falmouth Depot.

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