Fastrack Switches

I am considering using fastrack for a layout.  How reliable are the fastrack switches and any comments on fastrack in general. How easy is it to cut special sized sections.  I have used  MTH realtrak and reaktrak switches in the past and the switches are total junk. Hopefully the fastrack switches are not in the same category.

Original Post

Everything that has already been stated I agree with. These switches are very reliable. I really like the nonderailing feature and the fact that I can throw them with my tmcc remote. The only problem is with an old Hershey’s choclate steam engine from a ready to run set. That thing derails on the switches constantly. It’s frustrating but not a big deal as I am more focused on  modern, scale trains which run perfectly on Fastrack. 

The complaints about Fastrack being noisy are also very true. It doesn’t bother me that much, but if you like to be able to hear yourself think, it would be wise to put something underneath to deaden the noise a bit.

One thing that I found to help keep my RK Hudson from picking the switch rail was to add a straight section before the switch. Of course that only applies if the switch is installed coming out of a curve, but as little as 5" helped the problem.


Located in the real Upstate NY

I made my own double crossover with O-72 switches.I can run a Big Boy almost wide open forward or reverse through with no problem.The anti-derail feature is great the way I run trains  Nick


Hump Yard Mike posted:

Question on this.  The manual version of the fast track switches, can they be run through lined against the movement ( trailed) with out derailing?   I am debating what to buy for a kids floor layout with O36 switches.

They work fine for that application.  One little issue, the switch stand on the manual ones is very fragile, I'd consider remote ones and just use some removable glue to stick the lantern on.

Appreciate the comments.  Not to hi-jack this thread, but I am looking for a floor layout for my kids that can be assembled on plywood skeleton base similar to Kitt Works, with the intention of storing chucks behind the couch.  My hi-rail layout does not provide the hands on interaction I think my kids (all very young) are looking for with accessories and access to all parts of the layout where they can learn about running train and perhaps lessons on being careful (I am also out of rooms for another layout).  I decided to make the plunge tonight with powered switches.  Diagram below.  Blue lines indicate where the different part of the layout will be cut. 




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   I use O Gauge FasTrack for 90% of my multi-Level layouts, Engineering with Command Control FasTrack, 1st Generation Switches and Track.  The 1st Generation CCFT Switches and Track were made correctly and work great on all my different Engines and Rolling Stock including my large Tin Plate Engines and Rolling stock, even the big Lionel Prewar Tin Plate Crane Cars.  The  layout here at our new home in the new Train Room will be a permanent type layout, Engineered with mostly FasTrack and Command Control Switches, however the inner most Track will be engineered with RealTrax and maybe some Conventional Lionel Tin Track  also, due to the inability of 036 FasTrack to go inside itself.  

Further Command Control Lionel FasTrack Switches are just fantastic Engineering, the CCFT switches are low voltage and can be run directly from Track Power, as many as 99 of them from a single Legacy Hand Held Remote Control or your TMCC remote.  This is some of Lionel's greatest engineering.  With Transition Tracks the Lionel CCFT Switches can be Engineered into inner circles of RealTraxs also, which turns out pretty cool.  

Later Lionel FasTrack and Switches do have some problems, however they can be over come by the layout builder, as noted in this thread.   One other engineering note, 2 pieces of FasTrack will not fit thru the Lionel Big Hell Gate Metal Bridge, without Altering/Cutting the FasTrack Road Bed to custom fit the pieces.

 I also recommend some sound suppression for your new FasTrack layout, it makes even more noise than RealTrax as the Trains run.  I recommend used Acustic Ceiling Tile or indoor/outdoor carpet, using both deadens the sound almost completely.  To me there is nothing worse then not being able to hear your O Gauge Trains run.  I love FT for this reason alone, when one of the visitors or kids starts running my layouts I instantly know it.

FasTrack can be Custom Cut absolutely perfectly, any size and curvature,  with the X2 Rockwell Portable Table saw. It makes perfect custom size pieces for close out or for in front of your FTCC Switches.  Make sure to purchase some extra FT Pins for your custom close out work.  

I highly recommend FasTrack, especially if you are running all the different makers products.  Especially for both Original Lionel Tin Plate and newer remade Lionel/ MTH Tin Plate Trains.  They run smooth as glass on FasTrack!


The old Churchill Home Christmas Layout 2014, look closely for all the different trains running at the same time, including the P2 Pittsburgh Street Car and inside RealTrax loop, with Military Transport Train on the 1st level.   The different levels have CCFT Switches Engineered into them. 

Merry Christmas




Never worry about what other people think, be strong and walk in the way of the Lord.


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