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Sheds as Train Depots: Carousel Carver and Train Builder Gives a Tour

Shed turned train depot

Visit the backyard of carver Bob Yorburg and you’ll find a charming space where train tracks intersect with portable sheds built by Sheds Unlimited in Lancaster County, PA. But the charm of his backyard is surpassed by a visit to his carving studio a few steps away from where he crafts and repairs full-sized carousel animals and brings handmade organs to life! Ride along as we explore Bob’s carving shop and backyard.

I got exactly what I wanted!

Buy sheds for a train depot

Carousel Horses: A Millenium of Tradition

Bob’s passion emerged out of an old convention developed in Europe and the Middle East around the time of the Crusades. With skill and superb horsemanship, Knights would gallop in a circle while tossing balls from one to another. This practice eventually evolved into carousels made of hand-carved wooden horses for children to ride.

Bob Yorburg is helping keep alive this tradition which hales back in time hundreds of years. No doubt, riding for ancient knights required more skill than it does to ride one of Bob’s carousel horses. But the skill required to carve the things found in and around Bob's carving shop requires a unique skill retained by only a handful of remaining carousel horse carvers in the nation.

Bob's Homemade Band Organ

Bob’s work certainly fails the test of mass production so common in the current age. He loves challenges that are new and not for the faint of heart. He might work on a project for years and continue adding year by year. Such is the case with his personal band organ which he slowly built over the past 10 years (See more on Youtube).

“It’s something that I’ve wanted to do all my life – to build an organ from the ground up,” says Bob. In another ten years, he hopes to have doubled the size! 

Not that Bob spends day-in-and-day-out with the same project for years at a time, he often jumps from one project to another even in one day. “If I’m carving and find that I reach a dead end, I’ll jump to a different project before I come back, and usually when I come back to it, I find, ‘Aha, here’s how to approach it,” says Bob.  

Band Organ in a Trailer

Restoring Rudolph Wurlitzer Organs

One of the most noteworthy projects he has participated in was restoring three Rudolph Wurlitzer band organs built in the 1800’s. The company built only 25 Wurlitzer 165 band organs and only about half of those exist today. His job was to take three of those unique organs and repair the decorative façades which had been lost due to neglect.

It turned out to be one of his most spectacular jobs ever! “I had to deconstruct a sort of jigsaw puzzle from photographs to see how these organs were created,” Yorburg says. “Then I had to do the patterns and make models to copy all the other organs from. Then I had to glue the pieces together and make sure it all actually worked. Then I had to build it. So the idea that all these little pieces could become something so spectacular, for me, was almost a revelation.”

The collectors were delighted! (source)

Repairing Carousel Horse and More

Most of Yorburg’s carving expertise these days is spent repairing, at times 100-year-old carousel horses, band organs and other carvings which have weathered with age, storm or lack of care. At times, old pieces also need mechanical work, metal work and more.

A visit to Bob’s carving studio is a great experience for sure. But the visit is not complete without a stroll through the backyard of trains, depots, and sheds!

Storage Sheds as Train Depots

A Backyard of Trains and Sheds

Just around the corner from Yorburg’s carving studio, one enters a handmade train world that has been a side hobby of Yorburgs for many years. Three storage sheds from Sheds Unlimited act as train depots and tracks wind through the trees, under a flowering tunnel and make stops along the way.

Three Sheds, One Purpose

Three backyard sheds were carefully designed as train depots for Bob’s one-eighth scale train with stops at Maple Brook, Lindenwood, and Old Mill Junction. Maplebrook houses some of the metal working equipment which Bob uses for some of his restoration projects as well as train cars and other hobby-related paraphernalia. Many carving projects he builds or repairs include both wooden and metal moving parts which means he must be equipped for both wood and metal working.

Steve was pretty terrific

Outside of Maplebrook a 1/8th scale train chug-chugs around the track with Yorburg riding and controlling the forward and backward motion. As Bob gives us a tour of his train world, he explains the details including a mail sign to let passengers know that the train may not stop for passengers. It might only stop to pick up the mail.

The sheds, which he bought from Sheds Unlimited years ago were designed to look like old-time train stations. At Lindenwood, the second backyard shed depot which is named after the wood he uses in his carving,  Bob explains that “the pop-outs were there so the train master could watch for oncoming trains.” There is even a men’s entrance and a women’s entrance to make the shed depots more authentic.

Backyard Sheds and Carving Studio

A Great Experience with Sheds Unlimited

“Steve was pretty terrific,” says Bob as he describes his experience of contacting Sheds Unlimited in his search for a shed that resembled a model train depot he has sitting on the porch of Maplebrook. Bob sent a pic of a model train station and Steve said, “we can do that.” He even had some ideas of his own and when they combined the two, it turned out great!

Whether it is a train or a carousel horse or a band organ, building things by hand is Bob’s specialty. But watching his homemade band organ play a tune is a highlight of the tour around Bob’s property. Sheds Unlimited is honored to have their portable buildings in Bob’s backyard as the backdrop to a man with talent that is preserving a millennium of history! 

Read more about Bob Yorburg on his website, or find another story here. And don't miss the youtube videos below showing more of his talent. 

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We purchased a 24 x 34 legacy 3 car garage.  To say anything other than the experience being spectacular would be a lie.  From our first meeting with Mark through the final design meeting with Kyle the professionalism of the staff at Sheds Unlimited is unapparelled. Just when I didn’t think the experience could get any better, installation day started at 6:30 am on a cold rainy Thursday in October. The 3-man crew from Sheds Unlimited worked tirelessly throughout the day overcoming several small challenges including having a new set of steps made and delivered the same day.  By the end of day one the garage was under roof including the tar paper.  Day two started again at 6:30 am and by 2:00 pm the garage was completed, yard cleaned up.  I have recommended Sheds to several of my buddies to have their garages built as well.  In this day of no customer service I say hats off to the entire team at Sheds Unlimited. I have included the URL to an 11-minute time-lapse video of the garage being built. https://youtu.be/tyfLowJvU3M

Wes P from Sykesville MD

Good experience from start to finish. Salesperson was patient in working through the final design, and delivery department was very helpful in re-scheduling due to weather. Actual delivery was seamless.

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Alan Silberman from Bechtelsville, PA

The shed looks wonderful in the garden and yes, has been a better convenience to access mowers and tools.  Locking and unlocking and the ramp usage are terrific.

Victoria from Heidelberg twp

Awesome company - so easy to work with in ordering my new shed. The shed was built with quality and durability. It should last me a long, long time! I would definiterly recommend Sheds Unlimited and would gladly do business with them in the future if the need arises. A special shoutout to their delivery - seemless!

James LaGarde from Laurel, DE

Super sweet shed should suffice significantly, seriously!

Chip from Newark, Delaware

Choosing Sheds Unlimitedwas the best decision we made to finish our property. From the first phone call to finished product was a great smooth process. They worked with our town rules our contractor and many calls from us. So many options to choose from giving us exactly what we were looking for. We built a 24x32 two car garage with a room above. The guys arrived  Wednesday at 6 am got right to work until 8pm, returned same time next day were gone by mid day. The whole process is amazing to watch, so fast, so nice and professional. We couldn't be happier and have highly recommended them to everyone that sees our garage. Thank you!!

Courtney VanGelder from Mashpee,MA

I simply can not say enough about the design, purchase, and quality of my shed! The experience was outstanding.  I worked closely with Ben my SU sales and design rep and he was professional and truly accommodating.  The experience started out online and migrated to telephone and email communication, which felt more like I was  purchasing from a fine craftsman in small town USA.   The shed was delivered as scheduled and is a beautiful addition to my yard.  I am considering moving into it rather than store my lawn mower! 

Steven H from Bethlehem, PA

Shed was delivered on time and looks great. The staff is responsive and helpful. We has a very positive experience. Sheds Unlimited was referred to us by a family member and they have the best pricing in the tri state area.

Sue Lippert from Voorhees, NJ

I am amazed at the delivery of our shed.   We had a few tight places and the delivery man amazingly got it into place.   Everyone was kind throughout the entire process.   We appreciate all the help getting us the biggest shed we could fit into our yard into place.   Can not recommend them enough. 

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We received our shed few months ago, and we LOVE it. Due to our neighborhood restrictions, it was a long process to make sure everything was just right. The team at Sheds Unlimited were extremely helpful and stood behind us every step of the way. They were AWESOME. When the shed was delivered, there ended up being an error, but they took care of it immediately. We LOVE our new shed, and I HIGHLY recommend these guys to EVERYONE! Well done! Thank you so much for all of your patience and assistance!