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I use Gargraves flex track but I match the diameters to the common diameters (2 X radii) available from Ross Custom switches. That way the flow is consistent when entering sidings, yards or curved mainline switches.                                                                                                                                                                                                        One thing I learned from my HO and N scale days is to make an easement from the curves to the straights so the transition is smoother when approaching or leaving a curve. For instance, If I lay a 72" diameter 180 degree curve on my roadbed, I actually position the straights it connects to about 73" or 74" apart so the curve becomes an increasingly wider diameter, or spiral, as it joins the straight track. That small design tweak makes the moving trains seem less toy-like.

TJ

I used Gargraves Flex for most of my track, and some Ross O72 sectional track.  My flex curves range from around O99 to O72.

John...I love the huge white industrial smoke stack! (LOL...!)  Seriously, this is a nice looking track layout.  Can't wait to see it progress.  You should be taking lots of pictures since I would like to see it in the magazine!

Flex almost exclusively for both my two rail and three rail.

IMG_7693Cosmetic curves can add interest

Although real RRs build along the shortest straight line which is more economical (and boring IMO).

IMG_7706IMG_8682 [2)The gentle bends coming off the wye

were formed by bending along the curved benchwork.

IMG_8683 [2)IMG_9715The shop vac upper lip forms this curve

Two pieces of flex from the shop vac make an 031 return loop

IMG_9671IMG_9678Just add a 031 LH switch, short straight and a full 031 curve

And you have a return loop.

IMG_9718

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Last edited by Tom Tee

Such as Gargraves, Atlas or others. and any radius you want.

I notice on the what is your radius thread everyone had standard sectional track radius.

I did a small layout with a friend using 5 rail (O and Standard gauge combo) Gargraves flex track.

Difficult to work especially on the ends of the curves. But the final result worked out great.

I would imagine that 2 or 3 rail O gauge Gargraves, or HO and S would be a lot easier

I use both.

Ross sectional for any curve longer than one piece of GarGraves flex or for any radius larger than Ross makes.

For short sections to make up the distance between a turnout and siding, or just for curves of random nonstandard radii, I use GarGraves.

I like both products very much and I’m glad we have both to choose from.  A little competition and the customer wins!

You're right Rich, Atlas with Ross switches was my first choice.  However, the availability and cost of Atlas track made it easy to decide on Gargraves.  FWIW, once you've done a few, or maybe quite a few, Gargraves flex bends, it gets pretty easy.  Also, I could totally customize the curves to fit whatever I desired, and I could do some stuff that's hard to do with sectional track.  Prior to this layout, I had only a passing acquaintance with flex track, but I'm a believer now.

@Craftech posted:

Unless you have a square water heater like mine.  But I do have a shop vac to try.

I used my Mark 1 Belly Bender for the Gargraves flex.

@Tugboat15 posted:

Hey Gunrunnerjohn, I see you have one of those ductless ac units. How do you like it? Ive been looking to put one of those setups in my garage and workshop.

They work well, and have pretty high efficiency, I believe mine are rated at 22 SEER for A/C.

One caveat to note.  If you have widely differing heat/cool needs in two or more locations, having a single outdoor unit and multiple ductless indoor units, there is a limitation.  All the units have to be either doing A/C or heating, you can't have one heating and one air conditioning.  Our second unit is in the 3rd story loft, so in the warmer weather, it requires A/C with the sun load.  In the spring, sometimes it would be nice to have a little heat in the basement, but that would preclude A/C in the loft.  To compensate, I just have to run more trains to generate heat.

They work well, and have pretty high efficiency, I believe mine are rated at 22 SEER for A/C.

One caveat to note.  If you have widely differing heat/cool needs in two or more locations, having a single outdoor unit and multiple ductless indoor units, there is a limitation.  All the units have to be either doing A/C or heating, you can't have one heating and one air conditioning.  Our second unit is in the 3rd story loft, so in the warmer weather, it requires A/C with the sun load.  In the spring, sometimes it would be nice to have a little heat in the basement, but that would preclude A/C in the loft.  To compensate, I just have to run more trains to generate heat.

Well, down here in Texas, no basements, and no flux in zones of house. Its usually baking hot. We rarely use the heater. Wish I knew about these systems sooner. Down here, they push to sell window units, by the pallet. Use 110v and drink some juice. Nice to see some of these are 220v units.  Dad and I were seeing what else is out there, and found these setups. Wish I had a basement to setup a large layout like some of you. Also wish I knew of someone with O gauge layout just to see some trains in action.

@Tugboat15 posted:

Well, down here in Texas, no basements, and no flux in zones of house. Its usually baking hot. We rarely use the heater. Wish I knew about these systems sooner. Down here, they push to sell window units, by the pallet. Use 110v and drink some juice. Nice to see some of these are 220v units.  Dad and I were seeing what else is out there, and found these setups. Wish I had a basement to setup a large layout like some of you. Also wish I knew of someone with O gauge layout just to see some trains in action.

The ductless mini-split typically has a better EER than any window unit, so that's a plus.  Also, you don't have an ugly box hanging out of the window!

In my case, I was finishing the loft for my daughter, so adding the second inside unit was not a huge increase in cost.  It has been nice to have the ability to climate control the basement.

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