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Current / future 4mm finescale track option clarification


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Hi All,

 

Long time no post...! Bit of an essay, but I've noticed from a number of other threads like this that context helps to influence the answers.

 

I am planning a painfully stereotypical small GWR terminus layout (based on Churston, which I grew up very close to, with a little artistic licence...like the terminus part!), and have started thinking in earnest about track. I've tried pretty hard to avoid posting questions which will result in "use the damn search..." type responses, but I am finding research on this topic to be very hard work.

 

Realism is important to me, but (as an illustration of where I'm at on that journey) I have only very recently recalled a conversation with an EM/P4 enthusiast at a Warley show a few years ago, and started looking critically at trackwork. And once you see it, you can't unsee it...! I am still firmly in RTR territory when it comes to stock (not least because I want my stock to be portable to friends' layouts), and whilst I buy the EM/P4 arguments and admire how good they look, it's not for me...at least not yet. To my eye (and at the risk of being poked in it by the militant end of the EM/P4 brigade!), the ~2mm gauge issue is easier to overlook than the height of Code 100, or the HO-derived sleepers of 'mainstream' track.

 

To illustrate how new this is to me, only around 6 months ago I was thinking to myself "I should probably look into using whatever that finer Peco track is called...", and that led me down a wormhole of discovering C&L, etc. The other day I picked up my first ever(!) length of Peco Code 75, to compare it with my childhood stock of Code 100. While I was picking that up, I was offered a length of DCC Concepts' Legacy flextrack (which I hadn't heard of before). At the risk of stating the obvious, while the Code 100 looks like a bit of a joke next to the Code 75, the Legacy track is in another league (primarily in terms of the sleepers)...and there's no going back.

 

My track plan is simple, and I was perfectly happy with the appearance (geometry-wise) using Peco's largest-radius Code 75 pointwork (plus double slip). Whilst reading about Templot and the possibilities of turnouts on flowing curves (and very much enjoying Gordon's amazing Eastwood Town thread) was both inspiring and eye-opening, I don't need that level of flexibility for this layout...although the thoughts have been firmly stored ready for the 30-40' straight run main line layout I dream of having the space for! So whilst I am resigned to the fact that I may be forced to build my own pointwork (and may even enjoy it!), I would happily use ready-built turnouts if they are available to match realistic flextrack. However, as far as I can see, the options there are very limited. So far I have looked at C&L, DCC Concepts' Legacy, SMP (Marcway), and Peco Bullhead.

 

Frustratingly, most of the websites involved seem to be somewhere between lacking in info and appalling in design (I'm looking at you, Peco, although in fairness C&L's is probably the best in this regard)...and there are so many forum threads that although I have answered quite a few questions, I am struggling with signal/noise ratio for my specific questions.

 

So, I have a few questions which I've been struggling to get decent answers to:

 

1) I have only tonight discovered Peco's Bullhead range, which looks far better than the flat-bottomed Code 75 (again, especially in terms of the sleepers). Although in theory they could have just changed the rail, it appears that this has been used as an excuse for a redesign of the sleepers, etc, and the result is something far better than the older flat-bottomed Code 75. Is that right?

2) How good is the Peco Bullhead, next to C&L, etc (with those slightly more exotic brands all seeming to be quite similar)? Is it truly comparable, or more or a halfway house? It is attractive to me, in that I could get everything I need off the shelf, but it needs to look "right enough", or I will forever regret cutting a corner. I will get a length of the flextrack as a test, but advance opinions would be appreciated!

3) The Peco Bullhead double slip (and a couple of other pieces) were due to ship in the autumn last year according to an August 2019 Peco press release, but they appear to have been delayed (until late summer this year, and possibly beyond, in the current circumstances!). Is that right?

4) If the Peco Bullhead proves to not scratch my recently-acquired track-OCD itch, it looks like I'm going to be building my pointwork...but also that there are levels to that! I feel like if I'm going to this trouble (and for a layout which is, ironically, more likely to examined up close than the 30-40' main line layout I would like to build eventually!), I would like chair detail, and sticking plastic chair pieces onto soldered track doesn't feel quite right. Is there any other advantage to soldered track (assuming that a (fixed-dimension?) plastic kit will fit my proposed track plan)? Is the main advantage of soldered trackwork complete freedom of design, while the plastic turnout kits are something of a halfway house? In other words, where does the snob value lie here?

5) DCC Concepts Legacy range - It would appear that there is no plastic-based, with-chairs option...although I saw references to it in various threads from several years ago. Still in the works? It also looks like you have to do all your own profiling for the frog and blades, etc. I'd rather not...!

6) SMP - They have a plastic option (presumably with moulded chairs?), but I'm struggling for detail, pictures, etc. Are you into filing the frog and blades again?

7) C&L - It looks like a winner for me, as there are off-the-shelf frog and blade components for turnouts of certain dimensions...correct? Am I right in saying that they are the only people to offer those?

8) Anything else I ought to know...?

 

I know there's a lot there, and this is probably a really common set of questions, but I've spent most of the evening searching with only partial success, and I'm starting to lose the will to live! Thanks for your time.

 

cheers

 

James

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Hi James,

 

The basic question you need to answer first is this. Do you regard track as a model of the prototype?

 

If a locomotive had the wrong number of wheels, you probably wouldn't want it, no matter how nicely finished and how much it looked like a real locomotive. Do you regard track the same way? Because the Peco bullhead track is just like that -- it looks like bullhead track, but it's completely fictional and not based on any known prototype. For example you could search the entire UK rail network and not find an inside slip at 1:4.7 crossing angle. It's just too short, and not much more than toy train track.

 

But you might be happy with that? Track might be just a means to run trains and look the part, and you are not bothered about it being a model of anything? If so, go with Peco bullhead. It's reliable and well made. Until the full range is available you could use the Code75 flat-bottom items as temporary placeholders -- the geometry and footprints are the same.

 

But if you know enough about real track to realise that Peco track isn't a model of it, you may never be happy with it. But there is no ready-made alternative track which is a proper model. If you want that you are into kits and bits and handbuilt track. C&L are the premier supplier of all that. If you don't want to fabricate your own crossings and switch blades (and have deep pockets) they can supply the parts ready-made. But you still have to assemble the kits.

 

The SMP Scaleway plastic short turnout kit is a 40-year-old design of poorly-designed geometry, which requires hand fabrication of the crossings and switch blades. There is only the one size. Yes it does have moulded chairs, matching their Scaleway flexible track (which Gordon S uses on Eastwood Town).

 

DCC Concepts track is not their primary interest, the range hasn't changed for years. Their flexible track is rather flimsy, the rail being a very loose fit in the chairs. And using stainless steel rail has caused problems for many users.

 

All the above refers to 00. In EM the EMGS have some ready-made turnouts (made for them by Peco) which are proper models. In P4, Exactoscale have the P4Track Company pointwork kits with all parts fabricated and ready to build (current availability difficult).

 

Hope this helps,

 

cheers,

 

Martin.

 

   

Edited by martin_wynne
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Hello James,

 

So many of us have been through this thought process. It often leads to nothing getting built at all!

 

Unless one is willing to go down the scale route (P4), there is no solution that does not involve some quite serious compromise. You are right to say that some of the best 00 layouts look OK trackwise (look up Leeds MRS' Chapel-en-le-Frith or Tony Wright's Little Bytham as examples) but it involves some trickery for that missing 2.33mm not to show, of which the main one is to reduce the sleeper length by the same amount.

 

The other key factor is to follow the real railway's geometry: no turnouts with a crossing angle less than#6 and preferably #8 and above for any tracks with passenger train running. The Peco 75BH track looks good and the 5' radius turnout just about passes muster. Any turnout of tighter radius and the slips will simply look wrong. To my eyes, better to use the HO Code 75FB.

 

Ironically, Peco have shown, by way of the turnout they have produced for EMGS, what their 75BH could have been.

 

Taking the pragmatic view, your GW BLT is small enough not to need a lot of locos and stock. Your best option may be to have just 2 or 3 locos for this layout and keep others to run on your friends' layouts. And then if/when you get your large space to build a big layout, you can look again at the standards you will follow for that layout. As you rightly say, these details become less significant on a bigger layout as the eye is looking over a wider vista. 

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2 hours ago, Paul Cram said:

As far as I am aware only C&L do the correct pattern 2 bolt chair the GWR used.

Not so, I think you will find that Exactoscale also produce a 2 bolt chair, the C&L version has  rounded plates as opposed to the rectangular ones of the Exactoscales. A quick flick through GWR Switch and Crossing Practice will reveal you can mix the two though quite easily but remember that unlike 3 and 4 bolt track the checkrail chairs were also 2 bolt.

As far as I know neither produce  2 bolt slide chairs but you can obtain them from Modelu. Of course there is always Masokits if you really want to....

Edited by Stephen Freeman
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1 hour ago, Stephen Freeman said:

Not so, I think you will find that Exactoscale also produce a 2 bolt chair, the C&L version has  rounded plates as opposed to the rectangular ones of the Exactoscales. A quick flick through GWR Switch and Crossing Practice will reveal you can mix the two though quite easily but remember that unlike 3 and 4 bolt track the checkrail chairs were also 2 bolt.

As far as I know neither produce  2 bolt slide chairs but you can obtain them from Modelu. Of course there is always Masokits if you really want to....

Yes I always group the 2 together as they were all Len Newman productions and ended up in the same place

Edited by Paul Cram
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8 hours ago, Joseph_Pestell said:

Hello James,

 

So many of us have been through this thought process. It often leads to nothing getting built at all!

 

Unless one is willing to go down the scale route (P4), there is no solution that does not involve some quite serious compromise. You are right to say that some of the best 00 layouts look OK trackwise (look up Leeds MRS' Chapel-en-le-Frith or Tony Wright's Little Bytham as examples) but it involves some trickery for that missing 2.33mm not to show, of which the main one is to reduce the sleeper length by the same amount.

 

The other key factor is to follow the real railway's geometry: no turnouts with a crossing angle less than#6 and preferably #8 and above for any tracks with passenger train running. The Peco 75BH track looks good and the 5' radius turnout just about passes muster. Any turnout of tighter radius and the slips will simply look wrong. To my eyes, better to use the HO Code 75FB.

 

Ironically, Peco have shown, by way of the turnout they have produced for EMGS, what their 75BH could have been.

 

Taking the pragmatic view, your GW BLT is small enough not to need a lot of locos and stock. Your best option may be to have just 2 or 3 locos for this layout and keep others to run on your friends' layouts. And then if/when you get your large space to build a big layout, you can look again at the standards you will follow for that layout. As you rightly say, these details become less significant on a bigger layout as the eye is looking over a wider vista. 

Re Chapel en le Frith Leeds MRS layout. The track was drawn on Templot, the main lines are on a 40ft radius through the platforms going down to 6ft at the ends of the visible area. It was all built to 16.2mm gauge through the paintwork and using C&L for the plain track. No attempt was made to reduce the sleeper length. I think it is the sleeper spacing and narrow flangeways which makes it look "right". Some years ago on another club layout at an exhibition a well known trader tried to run his EM loco on our 16.5mm layout.

Thanks for the compliment. 

Nick

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Thanks for your thoughts, everyone!

 

I fully appreciate that there's no 'magic' answer, and there's a compromise in every direction (principally, as far as I can see, accuracy vs construction time/ease vs stock compatibility with those still happy with 16.5mm)...and that it can be an emotive subject! For me, right now, I think the right answer is to stick with 16.5mm gauge (not to take anything away from the merits of EM and P4), but do the best I can outside of that one (major) compromise. I am aware that it's still not going to be "right", but given that until six months ago I was still planning (from a position of ignorance) to use Code 100 Setrack, I think even Peco's Bullhead (and the message I'm getting here is that it's better than their older efforts, but still not great) would be a big improvement. It's "how good is good enough for my tastes right now", isn't it?

 

I possibly led you all up the garden path by mentioning the GWR...Churston is simply a convenient and personally significant location, but I have stock from multiple eras and regions...and that probably tells you everything you need to know about where I am on the train-set-to-proper-prototypical-model scale!

 

Some really useful information in your replies, thank you. I think you make a key ideological point, Martin, about whether I view the track as a critical part of "the model", or an accessory to it. I think that is a useful way of looking at the subject in the decision-making process.

 

I suspect I'm going to end up comparing C&L with Peco's Bullhead, and my best course of action will be to buy a length of flextrack and a turnout from each range, and decide whether the faff (or should that be enjoyment?!) of building the C&L points (even if the hard parts are pre-made, if you're willing to pay) is worth the improvement in appearance. If I fall on the C&L side of the fence, the next decision will be whether to dig into my pockets to buy the pre-made components, or to buy jigs and get soldering! Again, cost/benefit, I guess.

 

Very helpful, thank you, all.

 

cheers

 

James

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27 minutes ago, foggyjames said:

I suspect I'm going to end up comparing C&L with Peco's Bullhead, and my best course of action will be to buy a length of flextrack and a turnout from each range, and decide whether the faff (or should that be enjoyment?!) of building the C&L points (even if the hard parts are pre-made, if you're willing to pay) is worth the improvement in appearance. If I fall on the C&L side of the fence, the next decision will be whether to dig into my pockets to buy the pre-made components, or to buy jigs and get soldering! Again, cost/benefit, I guess.

Hi James,

That is pretty much what i have been doing this year, buying bits off different companies and see what suits me best. Peco BH and C&L thick base will all work together so nothing will be wasted. I ended up going for the Legacy track as it is a really good price on Hattons, i dont find it a problem to solder but it does have a thin base.

The EMGS Peco track is really good but they only do flexi and LH / RH B6 points.

I am currently building 2 layouts, one in EM and the other 00, so i am enjoying both worlds.

Paul.

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As you've said the 2mm difference doesn't bother you so go ahead and make your track by hand to oo gauge with code 75 rail, it's really easy to do, and is quite relaxing. Templot will give you an accurate plan with all the sleeper placings and rail positions, whether you use C&L or Exactoscale track parts it's your choice, or even print your own with a 3d printer. 

Start off with a rough plan or a photo, and see what you can draw up in Templot. Once you get the jist of it Templot is pretty easy to use and gives amazing results. When you've got exactly what you want, have the whole plan printed on a big printer, stick the plan down on the baseboard and just lay the track on top of the plan, it really is that simple. Everything is aligned perfectly and i guarantee it will look great.....even in "oo".

 

PS. do not use flexitrack, it's isn't that good. Build your own, it looks so much better.

Edited by rdr
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1 hour ago, Nicktoix said:

No attempt was made to reduce the sleeper length.

 

Puzzled by these comments. All 00 flexible track already has shorter 8ft sleepers (instead of 8ft-6in for EM and P4). Templot templates for 00 already use 8ft timbering. If you are building 00 you don't need to think about shortening sleepers, or whether to do it or not. Just use 00 stuff as-is.

 

00 sleepers have been 8ft (32mm) long for over 60 years. One of the effects of Peco's 00/H0 existing track becoming so dominant in the hobby is that folks have forgotten proper 00 track ever existed.

 

Martin

Edited by martin_wynne
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2 hours ago, martin_wynne said:

 

Puzzled by these comments. All 00 flexible track already has shorter 8ft sleepers (instead of 8ft-6in for EM and P4). Templot templates for 00 already use 8ft timbering. If you are building 00 you don't need to think about shortening sleepers, or whether to do it or not. Just use 00 stuff as-is.

 

00 sleepers have been 8ft (32mm) long for over 60 years. One of the effects of Peco's 00/H0 existing track becoming so dominant in the hobby is that folks have forgotten proper 00 track ever existed.

 

Martin

Thanks for that information.  I never noticed you had done that.

The newer versions of Templot are much easier to use than the older ones which Chapel was drawn with.

Nick

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Thanks for your further thoughts, all!

 

3 hours ago, rdr said:

As you've said the 2mm difference doesn't bother you so go ahead and make your track by hand to oo gauge with code 75 rail, it's really easy to do, and is quite relaxing.

...

Templot is pretty easy to use and gives amazing results.

...

PS. do not use flexitrack, it's isn't that good. Build your own, it looks so much better.

 

Excuse the selective quoting!

 

I am certainly going to have a good think about making my own track. I think I will pick up a single C&L kit as a starting point, and consider going full free-form if I take to that OK. The track plan doesn't "need" to be free of the restrictions of standard kits, but I don't doubt that it would be an improvement - as always, though, it's a matter of cost / benefit. I was very impressed with Gordon's thread, and his use of Templot on it. It certainly gives me some food for thought; for the future, if not for now.

 

Interesting comment about flexitrack. I thought the length of Legacy I got looked amazing, but I'm only a beginner! I was assuming that, having chairs, it would look better than soldered track. Or are you talking about a plastic option, either using track base (is that any better than flexi?), or gluing plastic chairs to plastic sleepers? I was assuming that flexi was a no-brainer for plain track, but the best route ahead (mainly plastic and chairs vs copper-clad and soldering) became a bit more debatable once you start looking at pointwork. But, as I'm sure you're very well aware, I'm still trying to navigate the received wisdom on the topic!

 

Thanks again, all.

 

cheers

 

James

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49 minutes ago, Nicktoix1 said:

Thanks for that information.  I never noticed you had done that.

The newer versions of Templot are much easier to use than the older ones which Chapel was drawn with.

 

Hi Nick,

 

Thanks, but I haven't done anything. Templot has always used 8ft timbering on 00 templates, going right back to the beginning, 40 years ago. :)

 

(And the same with the pointwork kits and components which I was manufacturing back in the 1970s.)

 

cheers,

 

Martin.

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4 hours ago, Nicktoix said:

Re Chapel en le Frith Leeds MRS layout. The track was drawn on Templot, the main lines are on a 40ft radius through the platforms going down to 6ft at the ends of the visible area. It was all built to 16.2mm gauge through the paintwork and using C&L for the plain track. No attempt was made to reduce the sleeper length. I think it is the sleeper spacing and narrow flangeways which makes it look "right". Some years ago on another club layout at an exhibition a well known trader tried to run his EM loco on our 16.5mm layout.

Thanks for the compliment. 

Nick

 

I forgot to mention 16.2mm turnouts. I agree that this is a big part of the "trompe l'oeuil" and makes operation much smoother.

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6 hours ago, foggyjames said:

Thanks for your further thoughts, all!

 

 

Excuse the selective quoting!

 

I am certainly going to have a good think about making my own track. I think I will pick up a single C&L kit as a starting point, and consider going full free-form if I take to that OK. The track plan doesn't "need" to be free of the restrictions of standard kits, but I don't doubt that it would be an improvement - as always, though, it's a matter of cost / benefit. I was very impressed with Gordon's thread, and his use of Templot on it. It certainly gives me some food for thought; for the future, if not for now.

 

Interesting comment about flexitrack. I thought the length of Legacy I got looked amazing, but I'm only a beginner! I was assuming that, having chairs, it would look better than soldered track. Or are you talking about a plastic option, either using track base (is that any better than flexi?), or gluing plastic chairs to plastic sleepers? I was assuming that flexi was a no-brainer for plain track, but the best route ahead (mainly plastic and chairs vs copper-clad and soldering) became a bit more debatable once you start looking at pointwork. But, as I'm sure you're very well aware, I'm still trying to navigate the received wisdom on the topic!

 

Thanks again, all.

 

cheers

 

James

You'll love making the point, and yes all plastic looks great.

I love the way in templot you can just add a slight curve in a point to get the sidings or routes exactly right, and vary the angle or length of it to make it fit perfectly. No need to buy templates if you design the layout in Templot.

Curves are there in most track station/yard formations, it's straights that are the rarity. Track normally fits the terrain.

I have about 200 versions of my layout saved in Templot, a slight alteration there, a touch of curve there, a longer point just by there, would a slip be better in place of those points, a three way point could save me a bit of space. So many ways to improve and you could replicate a plan of the place you wish to model exactly.

This is the second layout i've built and i would never use flexi, it just doesn't look right, and it doesn't have the cant on the rail.

I'm trying to use my 3d printer to print the track for this new layout, as the cost of track parts is quite high. Bit of a steep learning curve but worth the effort.

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One if the major difficulties with comparing different ways of achieving "looking right"(but actually wrong)  track work is that there are almost no layouts with two different such versions side by side for direct comparison. The separate excellence of colouring, ballasting, track edge scenic boundary and sweeping wide radius curvature contribute as much as to "realism" of not to scale track as the cleverness of the compromises.

 

On any particular layout, the "looking right" effect is in the eye of the beholder.

 

Andy

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Thanks again for your further thoughts, all.

 

8 hours ago, rdr said:

You'll love making the point, and yes all plastic looks great.

 

I love the way in templot you can just add a slight curve in a point to get the sidings or routes exactly right, and vary the angle or length of it to make it fit perfectly. No need to buy templates if you design the layout in Templot.

Curves are there in most track station/yard formations, it's straights that are the rarity. Track normally fits the terrain.

 

This is the second layout i've built and i would never use flexi, it just doesn't look right, and it doesn't have the cant on the rail.

 

Much as I'm not sure I want to admit to it in polite company, I think I will love making the point...! :D To return briefly to one of my original questions, what are the pros and code of copper-clad (etc) vs plastic? Cost? Is plastic inherently more realistic?

Learning about Templot has certainly been a bit of an eye-opener! I was admiring Gordon's layout prior to posting this thread. For this particular layout, I think I would have very limited need for curved pointwork, although it might tidy up one end of the layout. I suppose there's nothing to stop me using a mixture of kit-build and free-form, depending on how sensitive it is. I'm not at the point of starting trackwork yet anyway, so there's time to ponder. Even if I don't use Templot for this layout, I am certainly interested in using it in the future.

 

Interesting comment about flexi. The Legacy stuff definitely does have cant, and I was under the impression that at least the latest C&L product does too. I can't find any information about Peco Bullhead, but I suspect that doesn't!

 

cheers

 

James

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4 hours ago, foggyjames said:

what are the pros and code of copper-clad (etc) vs plastic?

 

The Legacy stuff definitely does have cant, and I was under the impression that at least the latest C&L product does too. I can't find any information about Peco Bullhead, but I suspect that doesn't!

 

Hi James,

 

A feature of bullhead track is that the chair lifts the rail 1.3/4" above the sleeper. With the result that there is daylight showing between the rail and the ballast. This is very noticeable on bullhead track. If you solder rail directly to coper-clad sleepers you lose that effect. It also makes it very difficult to add cosmetic plastic half-chairs to the rails, they won't fit into the rail web as intended, and risk fouling wheel flanges.

 

Peco track has vertical rail. And very sensible too. If you build track, canted rail makes life 10 times more difficult. The rail can't easily be curved or bent without losing the cant, or held down firmly. It also means that many track gauge tools don't work properly. It's all a lot of trouble to no practical purpose, because no-one in the entire history of 4mm/ft modelling ever noticed that the rail on a layout wasn't canted. The only way to see it is to take a close-up photo of the end of a check rail* or wing rail. It can't be seen from any normal viewing distance. Or even half a normal viewing distance. In the larger scales it might be visible, but not in 4mm.

 

*prototype check rails are always vertical, except on some pre-grouping designs.

 

cheers,

 

Martin.

Edited by martin_wynne
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James

 

The new C&L flexi track is the only flexible trackbase that has keys in the chairs, plus it has migrated to having a thick type of sleeper, another benefit is that some have reported difficulty in soldering stainless steel. C&L use a HiNi rail which is much less yellow than traditional nicklesilver rail

 

803.jpg.a917e8f348ac6b5a5a2be691c1b834c1.jpg

 

C&L have recently released new 2 and 3 bolt chairs, the sprues include 2 bridge and two J (large) chairs per sprue ( both useful in turnout building) also on the sprue are two functional fishplates

127.jpeg.bda24b6a967f260284984f9247777a63.jpeg

 

The new sprue

 

128.jpeg.9de6769d3339e536cd6a8420af057046.jpeg

 

From left to right b

ridge, J , standard chairs

130.jpeg.913925cad280e5f69f6140cab59e2df3.jpeg

 

Fishplates, delicate but very functional

 

Don't forget (especially for 3 bolt chairs) Exactoscale produce a selection of special chairs for both turnouts, diamonds and slips, again many being functionable

 

 

Edited by hayfield
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Thanks both - much appreciated!

 

I was struggling to get a clear consensus on the received wisdom of plastic & chairs vs copper clad & soldering. That clears it up nicely (and fits with my assumptions)!

I will pick up some Peco Bullhead samples and a length of C&L flexi plus a turnout kit, and compare notes! I already think I know the answer - that it will be C&L.

 

At some point, you might just see a thread detailing my progress (or lack thereof!) with not-quite-Churston!

 

cheers

 

James

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1 hour ago, foggyjames said:

I was struggling to get a clear consensus on the received wisdom of plastic & chairs vs copper clad & soldering.

 

Hi James,

 

If you want to have chaired soldered copper-clad, you might like to look at the Masokits etched chair system. There is a topic about it here:

 

 https://85a.co.uk/forum/view_topic.php?id=3713&forum_id=6

 

Or for soldered copper-clad with cosmetic plastic half-chairs, there is the Vero pin system.

 

Both methods are by no means mainstream, but great for anyone who prefers the fumes from phosphoric flux to the awful pong of butanone solvent. And the ease of making adjustments to the track with a soldering iron.

 

cheers,

 

Martin.

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You could also use what I would describe as the composite method, using copperclad timbers at strategic places lifting the rail off the copperclad timber by either a sliver of 0.5 mm copperclad strip or 0.5 mm metal shim, trimming/grinding the risers back to the rail sides and supergluing half chairs to hide the solder joins, The other timbers being plastic or ply of the same thickness with chairs being thread on to the rail prior to soldering but kept out of the way. Vero or track pins of the correct size and thickness could also be used instead of copperclad or metal strip 

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Thanks, both!

 

I hadn't seen the etched chairs before. With that detail issue out of the way, is there any further pro/con to plastic and glue over copper-clad and soldered constrution (beyond "adjustability" with solder)?

 

I've just ordered some Peco Bullhead samples. I will get in touch with C&L in the coming days to get a length of flexi on the way, along with a turnout kit.

 

cheers

 

James

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Just for interest James. This is a mixed method point. Mainly C+L 9 foot plastic sleepers and 4 bolt plastic chairs, but with 6 copperclad ones with a bit of narrow scrap etch as a riser in strategic places for strength.  Rail is the HiNI stuff which is a better silver colour ( to my eye anyway ).

 

 

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Ok, its pre grouping Caley but it shows that once down and painted you can hardly tell the difference between the two sorts. 

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