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Wednesday, 13 January 2016

Project 16 - Track Laying

My aim is to complete track laying for the 'down main' first so that trains can be run around again.

Hitherto track was stuck down with double sided tape. Double sided tape was used as it is unobtrusive compared to pinning and it reduces train motor noise. Pinning can convey noise to the baseboard, which acts as a sounding board. No special measures were applied where the track bridges modular baseboard joins. The downside is that the track has a tendency to move/slide causing misalignment at baseboard joins. The track can also become damaged when removed if the tape bond is strong.

This time I decided to pin the track, not by passing the pin through the sleepers but  trapping the ends of the sleeper by half the pin head. (see 4th sleeper from left in photo). I did this to avoid drilling holes in sleepers. When the ballast is laid I may either paint the overhanging pin head same colour as the ballast to disguise it or, if the ballast gluing holds the track firm enough then remove the pins altogether.

At baseboard joins I am replacing plastic sleepers each side of the join with copper clad board that is glued to the ground and then the rail soldered to it. This provides a strong bond to stop misalignment or track damage should the boards be separated for transit. An insulating cut in the copper is made in the middle of the sleeper. The rail is cut through after soldering. Drop wires are soldered to the copper clad sleepers for electrical continuity.

By the way, the plastic sleepers are home made, 3D printed.

To Part 4.

To Part 1.

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