Tagged With "Track Accessories"

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Re: Three Rail Track !!

Rusty Traque ·
Guard rail for the track pans. There was another thread about this a few weeks back. Try earlier. This one actually picked up power from the third rail: Rusty
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Re: Three Rail Track !!

Tommy ·
The photo, I believe, was on the early New Haven.
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Re: Three Rail Track !!

Rusty Traque ·
Yup. Rusty
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" Dead tracks"

Jameston ·
Hi there, I have over 300 tracks of Lionel 036 gauge tracks both straight and curves and for some strange reasons my ps 2 engines just " die" when they run on some sections of the tracks. The funny thing here is that, I have used these tracks for over 3 years and this is the first time I'm having issues like this. I recently bought all kinds of track cleaners to clean the tracks but to no avail. I even laid down some new tracks I recently bought from Lionel and have had some of the...
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Thoughts on Track Brands

Dan Padova ·
I would like to start collecting track for a future empire. I have a load of O gauge tubular and a few O22 switches. I have seen some of the other types and brands of track but haven't delved into the pros and cons of them as yet. At the Edison sow a couple of weeks ago, I passed a vender that had what looked like Super O, but I know it was not because it was in three foot lengths. I know alittle about fastrack and MTH's offering. I was hoping to get more detailed info from some of you that...
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Three Rail Track !!

Dan Padova ·
I'm sure i am not the first to have seen this. Have a look at 7:36 into the film. Perhaps three rail track was not invented by Lionel after all.....LOL https://youtu.be/LJ_JLznUJ3I
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Re: Thoughts on Track Brands

TM Terry ·
IMO, the nicest 3-rail is Gargraves track and Ross turnouts for realism. When I bought Ross they required some soldering for electrical continuity, plus switch motors for automation. Gargraves have a nice selection of various diameter curves. I used cork roadbed which turned out pretty nice. But if you get a little too lazy for all that work, Lionel's FasTrack switches with Command Control take no more than 30 seconds to program with no wires needed. It might take an extra 5 minutes to...
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Re: Thoughts on Track Brands

rtr12 ·
I think you are going to get more answers here than there are track systems and they will all like something different. I think all the track these days is pretty good, they all have pros and cons and there will be a train item somewhere that does not like what ever track you have. If you have an LHS, I would go there and look at all the track they have and pick one you like and that also fits your budget. Think about your needs/wants/likes and what all is available with the track you pick.
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Re: Thoughts on Track Brands

AGHRMatt ·
If I was doing a hi-rail build: Outdoor -- Atlas Track with Atlas turnouts. Remove the turnout motors and replace them with something hardier; don't rely on the internal track wiring for electrical continuity. Indoor -- Atlas Track w/Ross turnouts Indoor on a budget -- Gargraves Track w/Ross turnouts Indoor on a tighter budget -- Gargraves Track w/Gargraves turnouts (lay and inspect them carefully/regularly). Indoor with a lower profile and willing to deal with some quirks (plenty of threads...
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Re: Thoughts on Track Brands

Ed Magruder ·
What i have done is looked at all the members layout photos on here and then when something looks spectacular to me i ask them what they are using. Lots of good looking stuff these days.
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Re: Thoughts on Track Brands

bigkid ·
There are tradeoffs with all the types. O gauge tubular is the cheapest (though switches are not exactly cheap), there is a ton of it out there, but also looks like toy train track. You can do a lot with O tubular, you can add extra ties to it or even chuck the metal ties and glue/spike the track to wood ties...but would take a lot of work. Atlas makes nice track, but it isn't cheap, it is pretty realistic looking. Sometimes you can find it used as good prices, but it isn't that easy IME to...
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Re: Thoughts on Track Brands

DoubleDAZ ·
I agree with what RTR122 said, but my advice is to visit layouts using different brands. IMHO, looking at photos and just looking at track in an LHS doesn't tell you much more than how much they cost and what they look like. I wanted ScaleTrax and visited 2 layouts that use it. I even bough 10 pieces of FlexTrack and will use it at some point, perhaps on my 2nd level if I can find some O31 curves. Unfortunately, availability is an issue and very few carry it. I think there might as be some...
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Re: Thoughts on Track Brands

Dennis-LaRock ·
I'll be the *Odd Duck*... I run Lionel Super-O, exclusively ...takes a *special* person. Rock On
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Re: Thoughts on Track Brands

Dan Padova ·
There is some good information in these posts. Thanks to all who wrote. If I didn't mention it, I will now. i plan to run strictly conventional. Most likely post-war stuff and anything produced after 1969 that is conventional.
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Re: Thoughts on Track Brands

Dennis-LaRock ·
Had to jump on eBay and get another Loco... *3985* 4-6-6-4, Challenger, UP, 6-11200 LionMaster - Legacy (2009) is on its' way! As cost is a major factor... I'll divulge my expenditures to give an idea at what one may spend... to live the dream... I do not have a ton of money so I compromise... I have 300 sections of Super-O track and 6 pairs (12) #112 switches and all accompanying Bus Bars, Insulators, Pins etc. I spent a smidgen over 900.00 (including tax & shipping) on...
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Re: Thoughts on Track Brands

aussteve ·
If cost is a factor, then I would go with the tubular track. The cost of the more realistic looking switches and track, stops me in my tracks (no joke). It's a toy no matter how much you want to "model". Try to get the nicest, shiniest (most shiny) track you can get. Sometimes you can get some pretty good deals on nice track. Avoid the older stuff from postwar cause it is usually harder to solder to and has a darker grey color to it, IMHO. I like the older Lionel and Kline track that had 6...
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Re: Thoughts on Track Brands

DoubleDAZ ·
Steve is right. If cost is a big factor, then tubular is the way to go. If so, you might check Menard's . I don't know how it compares to Lionel, but worth looking at.
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Re: Thoughts on Track Brands

Number 90 ·
My thoughts on track are simple: Atlas looks the best. Gar Graves with Ross turnouts gives the least trouble. Paint the track (including the ties) from a spray can with Rust Oleum Camo Green for the main lines and Camo Brown for spurs and yard tracks, before ballasting it. Then, use Brennan's Better Ballast for a realistic looking track.
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Re: Thoughts on Track Brands

Thaddeus ·
I have recently made the switch from Fast Track to all Ross switches and a combination of Ross/Gargraves track and I am very happy with it. Ross has a very large selection and they are of high quality, little noise, and very easy to cut/adjust. Personally, the "made in the USA" part was an extra bonus to an already great product.
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Re: Thoughts on Track Brands

WP ·
We used Ross switches and Gargraves track. Although the Gargraves has large ties and the unprototypical web below that fits into the ties allowing the track to be curved, you get away from all the curves being geometrically the same (a problem with sectional curved track). My son insisted that it would be better to have more prototypical curves if we curved the tracks ourselves, so that's what we did. I am pleased with the fair curves and with how the Gargraves track and Ross switches work ...
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Re: Thoughts on Track Brands

shorling ·
I went with Ross switches, track and crossovers because it looks great and there is a huge selection. Also, track is their business and their owner is passionate about it. You can call them and they will help you out. You can go to their factory/shop located in Connecticut. Wonderful folks.
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Re: Thoughts on Track Brands

John C. ·
several folks here mentioned the over-size of Gargraves ties and tubular rails in general. Obviously, you cannot get a shrink ray and scale them down. However, you may ballast and do a great job with weathering and this will greatly assist in taking the focus away from the track! The greatest compliment that I ever received about my track: Gargraves/Ross was from two Board Members of the Lionel Collector's Club of America. Both of these gentlemen said to me, after viewing the layout, at...
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Re: Thoughts on Track Brands

BigEbmw ·
If you want new and don't care about the look than Menard's track on sale. Just built layout using it that cost me $270 for the track and would have been right at$1000 with others. Be aware though that there track has some dead short problems that may or may not need fixed. I used Ross turnouts and could not be happier with them. When I can afford will replace track with Ross as I got a couple of pieces of it to make crossover and love the way it looks.
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Re: Thoughts on Track Brands

shorling ·
IMO when planning a layout there are top level personal expectations of functionality, realism and layout. For example, do you expect your trains to creep along effortlessly and/or run more than one train at a time ? Are you hi-rail, tin plate or somewhere in-between ? Track radius, switching, sidings, round house, yards, etc to fit the space need envisioning. Are you running a railroad, entertaining the Grandkids or maybe point to point ? Once you have an idea of what you would like to do,...
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Re: Thoughts on Track Brands

Joe Fauty ·
Dan: I would suggest buying the book Trackwork for Toy Trains - Peter H Riddle. It goes over all the O scale track manufactured so will give you valuable info in making your choice. Joe
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Re: Thoughts on Track Brands

rtr12 ·
That is a good book. I don't think I mentioned it, but this book also helped me select a track system for my layout. I think it's well worth reading.
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Re: Thoughts on Track Brands

AGHRMatt ·
When we started the AGHR layout in 1996, everything was conventional. Now, everyone runs command, especially the "AGHR Kids" (command is all they've known); three of us run Kadees and scale wheels on rolling stock. My point is that what you end up running on the layout over time is often not what you planned on when you started, so build for the future when you might see that 3rd Rail Jawn Henry or that big Northern at a meet for a price you can't resist.
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Re: Thoughts on Track Brands

shorling ·
I'm with Dan, alway include plans for the future and to make change easier. I always do that in spades but I can see areas where I fell short. There is always new stuff we are going to want.
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Re: Thoughts on Track Brands

phillyreading ·
I am using Gargraves and Lionel tubular track with some Ross Custom switches. The newer Lionel switches(1992 & newer) don't last long with me before they burn out for some reason. I am a huge fan of tubular track because it can be cut to fit, file off the unsmooth areas and add track pins. I have noticed some differences with Gargraves and Ross track in the curve diameters, Gargraves curves are a little larger in diameter then Ross curves; example Gargraves 042 curve is closer to 042.70...
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Re: Thoughts on Track Brands

wb47 ·
If you stick with tubular, ross makes the switch to go with that, very good quality. Atlas is hard to beat for appearance. I like the flex track but you have to work with cutting the lengths at time when you make into a curve. Any nice dremel tool works good with a little practice. Large thick metal cutoff wheel works for me.
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Re: Thoughts on Track Brands

Ferroequinologist 1 ·
In a word, ATLAS - for a permanent layout. For a temporary layout, as in under the Christmas tree, Lionel FastTrack.
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Re: " Dead tracks"

chessie1971 ·
I assume you are using lionel fastrack. Bend your center pin inward on your track that will cure your problem and also put some feeders wires in to help with power.
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Re: " Dead tracks"

Jameston ·
Hi Folks..... Thanks for your quick responses to my post the last time. But unfortunately, the issue still persist...........My engines are going dead on certain tracks . As of my last count I had 15 straights and 10 curves Lionel fast tracks that are "dead". I tried bending the center pin to fix the issue as suggested but didn't work. I recently replaced my TIU and bought a new MTH Z4000 to replace by my Lionel ZW75. Just eliminating all possible causes but to no avail. Could it be that,...
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Re: " Dead tracks"

RickO ·
How big is the layout? How may feeders do you have going to the track, what guage is the wire? You said you tried all kinds of track cleaners, does this include an abrasive block like the one in Lionels track cleaning kit, or a Bright Boy abrasive block. I find it necessary to occasionally "scrub" stubborn buildup from fastrack , then I wipe it with 91% isopropyl on a paper towel. I've found "bottled track cleaners" sold in hobby shops ineffective. My experience with fastrack has been...
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Re: " Dead tracks"

Gerald Marafioti ·
I would try & take sections of track out & test it off of the layout & see if there are any dead spots ,even though you didn't have any issues for three years some pins may have come loose ,engines don't stop completely unless there is no power to that section of track ,also did you check with a meter to see if there is any power the that section where the engines stop ? I don't know much myself ,but these are things i would try first ,they are simple to do .Let us know how you...
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Re: " Dead tracks"

rockstars1989 ·
I hate to be the devils advocate but bending the center pin may just be a temporary fix.I have had continuity problems years after installing it.You need feeds every 2 or 3 sections on fastrak.Nick
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Re: " Dead tracks"

ED-RRR ·
"Track Continuity Problems" Hello: Jameston You stated that you have over 300 of Lionel Fastrack (036) gauge tracks. The (x2) outside rails of the track, each have (x1) long pin connection. The (x1) center rail of track, has (x2) very short wiper plates. Lionel Fastrack (036) There are many different replies and options in this posting, concerning electrical track shortages. It seems that the (x1) center rail of the track, that has (x2) very short pin connections, is the biggest problem.
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Re: " Dead tracks"

ED-RRR ·
"Track Cleaning" Since this subject was brought up in this posting, I felt I should inform you why and how to clean any model railroad track. As the Locomotive runs down the track, small tiny voltage arks will occur, between the Locomotive powered wheels and the track. This will cause "Metal Oxidation" on the track = (Poor Electrical Conductivity). Metal Oxidation: Most metals are oxidized by the oxygen in air. This process is called corrosion. Electrons leap from the metal to the oxygen...
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Re: " Dead tracks"

SantaFeJim ·
Once again it is Mike Reagan to the rescue.
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Re: " Dead tracks"

Arthur P. Bloom ·
1. Mark the areas where the train loses power. 2. Turn on track power. 3. Use voltmeter to find dead spots. 4. Turn off track power. 5. Solder jumpers from live area to dead area. 6. Repeat as necessary until you have no dead spots. 7. Drink beer and run trains.
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Re: " Dead tracks"

ED-RRR ·
"Repairing Track Continuity" Procedure: (#1) Credit: Arthur P. Bloom Author: Arthur P. Bloom 1. Mark the areas where the train loses power. 2. Turn on track power. 3. Use voltmeter to find dead spots. 4. Turn off track power. 5. Solder jumpers from live area to dead area. 6. Repeat as necessary until you have no dead spots. This is "Only" a " Repair Procedure " for a required non-powered track section. This "Procedure" will "Not" totally eliminate any " Future " non-powered track sections.
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Re: " Dead tracks"

ED-RRR ·
"Repairing Track Continuity" Procedure: (#2) Credit: Ricko Author: Mike Reagan (Lionel Technician) As I had previously stated, the center rail connections are made from "Spring Steel", otherwise there would be no tension when mating the (x2) parts together. Video above shows how the center rail actually springs back. Here is an example of a similar product. Spring Steel Slappers: Spring steel is made from special metal properties, to allow for it to return to it's original location. But...
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Re: " Dead tracks"

ED-RRR ·
"Repairing Track Continuity" Procedure: (#3) Credit: Paul A. Romsky Jr. Author: Paul A. Romsky Jr. Lionel O-Gauge FasTrack: http://paul.romsky.com/index_model_trains.htm This procedure will insure (100%) track conductivity. Mounted Internal Jumper Wires: [ED-RRR]......
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Re: " Dead tracks"

BobbyD ·
Isn't this Non Conductive grease? The same as you use on a spark plug boot or a sealed connector gasket to keep moisture out yet not conduct electricity?
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Re: " Dead tracks"

carsntrains ·
Without running feeders every 6 or 8 joints, I reckon all long tracks would have a problem.. 300 sections of track? Amazing it ever worked!!!
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Re: " Dead tracks"

wvgca ·
Yes, dielectric basically means an insulator .. not a conductor Once the connections are adjusted and cleaned for proper contact the application of the CRC , or the old standby No-Ox ID A, will help keep moisture out, and significantly reduce oxidation over long time periods .. and help to insure reliable running .
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Re: " Dead tracks"

RickO ·
Well, ( as I stated above) my layout has worked ( amazingly) for over 12 years now, with 14ga feeders spaced a whopping 10' apart , soldered directly to the tabs under the track. I would think after 12 years my trains would have stopped running. My voltage is the same on the output side of the TPC unit as it is on the track, anywhere on the layout. I don't know what other folks have causing their fastrack issues, humidity, inadequate wiring/transformer, poor choice of cleaner etc? Or am I...
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Re: " Dead tracks"

rockstars1989 ·
Well Ricko some of my track was bought used and some I have re configured a bunch of times so some may not have gone together as tight as new.I still love my Fast Trak though.No regrets.Nick
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Re: " Dead tracks"

Dave Ripp. ·
Your lucky, I've had a lot of issues with dead tracks with similar wiring to yours. I have one right now and if your tracks screwed down with ballast added to the edges Mike Regans fix won't work. I just solder small jumpers track to track.
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Re: " Dead tracks"

Railrunnin ·
I thought he was talking about a Jerry Garcia Bootleg
 
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