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Wednesday, 22 June 2011

Trackwork - Part 5

curved track in painting jigNow turning to the straights and studying these threads I increased sleeper spacing of Peco Streamline to 8.8mm and was staggered at the improvement in appearance just 1.8mm makes! I doubt I'll ever lay Peco track again without making this simple adjustment.

I am replacing code 100 track with weathered code 75 on an already landscaped railway. In this case it is easier to paint the 75 track off layout but how to do this for curved flexi track? One of the issues is that painting is likely to 'fix' the rail to the sleeper making it impossible to bend straight track into a curve.

The photo shows a painting jig for this situation. First, a paper template is made to the length and curvature required. This is placed on a length of chipboard with the straight track laid on top. Starting at one end a track pin is lightly hammered in beside the inner rail (not through a sleeper) to restrain the track as the curve is gradually formed adding further pins every fourth sleeper. A few pins are needed alongside the outer rail to stop spring-back.

Each sleeper, which is independent of the others, is adjusted during the curve formation to maintain the 8.8mm spacing and square to the rails.

Paint mask the top of the rails and rail ends and it is ready for painting.

To Part 1

To Part 6

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