Thanks all for the nice comments.
I didn't have any code 125 rail but Ed Reutling was kind enough to donate two short sections. I have never modeled with steel rail but after this experiment I plan to use it on my shelf micro layout. It's much easier to file, takes weathering great and best of all...looks like the prototype.
This test section is only 6" in length and did not involve an excessive amount of time. Waiting for the glue to dry when applying the static grass is probably the most time consuming part but working in sections would minimize wasted time. Per the article in the Modelers' Annual, using a hair dryer on the ties after the washes are applied speeds things up and adds to the weathering effect.
According to the Blacken-It instructions, it conducts electricity, as on wheels and rails
. The color on the rail tops is mostly Floquil rust. I'll take some super fine sandpaper and see if it polishes up to the original condition.
Adding joint bars, rail braces, loose spikes...etc. are great detail ideas that can be added as time permits. I cannibalized a turnbuckle from a Ye-Olde-Huff-N-Puff reefer kit, cut it in half and mounted each piece on scrap wire to simulate a rail gauge bar...the photo is in my first post. It's a bit large compared to the prototype. An S scale turnbuckle from Tichy Train Group and .015" wire might be closer to scale.
Thanks again for the compliments.