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Is there a difference between LGB,

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Is there a difference between LGB,
Posted by Anonymous on Tuesday, June 24, 2003 5:36 PM
USA trains and Aristocraft "G" scale track? I am monitoring Ebay and these brands seem about the same in the pictures and descriptions. I wanted to know if they can be used interchangeably. I am only interested in the solid brass track which sell around $2-$3 per foot.
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Posted by vsmith on Tuesday, June 24, 2003 6:30 PM
Hello, before u buy-beware! aristo and USA are by the same manufacturer and work perfectly together, but FYI, LGB rail joiners dont like the other brands. I believe its because the web between the base and the top is thinner with LGB rail so you really have to force the LGB and Aristo/USA together. I really like Aristo/USA (USA is slightly cheaper new) because they have screws that tie the pieces together, this works very well for me. Bear in mind to plan out your layout and get the longest sections you can get (5' work best) This cuts down on the number of joiners to screw together and makes for very good condutivity, also its cheaper per linear foot than smaller sections (use LGB conductive grease in the joiners). The problem is with the switches, if you are running LGB 0-4-0's or other 2 axles locos, I guarentee they will stall on Aristo/USA switches EVERY SINGLE TIME. Something about the way LGB undercarrages and aristo frogs interact just makes me crazy. The best solution I have found is to use LGB switches, nothing stalls on them and use Hillman or Split-rail type rail clamps (whichever brand you use) to connect to the USA track. These babies really work, and allow you to remove the switch for mantainence. If you really want to use Aristo/USA switches, I'm willing to sell my 4'D switches, as I'm converting over to LGB. Also check out Garden RR magazine advertisements, see what the price of track you like is, factor in the retailer shipping cost and use that as a basis for your maximum bid (including the ebay sellers shipping cost). Doesnt make any sense to get into a bidding war over something you can get new for less. Good Luck

   Have fun with your trains

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Posted by Anonymous on Wednesday, July 9, 2003 8:52 AM
I would agree with the previous post in a couple of regards. First, do your shopping and plan your track purchases. Aristocraft seems to always offer free track as their January - Februrary sale. The comment about purchasing the longest sections possible is very good also. However, I run on all Aristocraft track (switches included) and have no problems whatsoever. I use all manual switches since my garden railroad is relatively small. This also helps to keep down worries about electrical connections, too.

I would also concur with regards to joining Aristocraft and LGB: it's really very difficult and ends up being not very satisfactory. Also there is one difference between USA track and Aristocraft. The USA track has a little flange the goes down into the plastic that makes the joiner very difficult to remove (if you want to use conductivity grease for example). Otherwise USA and Aristocraft are totally interchangeable.

Good luck!
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Posted by Anonymous on Wednesday, July 9, 2003 2:36 PM
I'm new to the hobby and I've been trying to decide between LGB and Aristo as well. Haven't purchased any tracks but am itching to. What about stainless steel vs. brass? Is one better than the other? I've read in another forum that a number of brass trackers are switching over to stainless. Why is that? Better conductivity? Easier maintenance? And I read that Aristo's ties are getting delivered broken. Maybe I'll get some answers when I go to Sacramento this weekend.
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Posted by Anonymous on Saturday, July 12, 2003 8:38 PM
Stainless is great if you can afford it! So far I am using both LGB and Aristo-Craft, I did have to remove the LGB joiner (s) and replaced it with the Aristo type. I cannot speak of turn-outs, I'm not using them. I am using Hillman type clamps, they work good.
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Posted by Anonymous on Monday, July 14, 2003 10:52 PM
I use all LGB track, but mostly because I am modeling 1920-30's narrow gauge. LGB track has wider spacing between ties that more closely resembles narrow gauge. Aristo track has a closer tie spacing matching American standard gauge track. I also use Hillman railclamps. They work great. Hillman makes a clamp that fill fit over the LGB connectors, but I just use a pair of pliers and pull the LGB connectors off, then use the railclamps.

I haven't seen Aristo track after it weathers outside. LGB track turns a very nice brown patina that in my opinion resembles protypical track better than the forever shiny stainless steel track. Aristo track always seems brighter when new, so I wonder how it looks after one season.

Regarding stainless steel track, there are advantages and disadvantages. SS track is less apt to scratch from abrasive cleaners. It is less prone to pitting (which can occur with brass) and corrosion. Many model railroaders also like the shiny rail. I assume they prefer the look of track under constant use, highlighting the shiny rails. The downside, other than cost, is it is much harder to bend if you plan to use flex track, it doesn't solder well (if you plan to use wire connectors for electrical connectivity and it is much harder to cut.
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Posted by Anonymous on Saturday, December 6, 2003 3:06 PM
I built my first Garden RR this Spring (5' x 17', double track, Train Engineer wireless remote control) using Aristocraft Nickel SS track and Manual small radius switches. I also experienced derailment of my Aristocraft 242 Rogers Loco on the switches, which I solved to some degree by getting a replacement front wheel from Aristocraft and also by reaming down the base of the plastic frog which raised the wheels and caused the loco to stall at the switch. I also tried to follow Schreyer and another internet article on soldering rail to improve connectivity. This totally failed as in spite of what those articles said, the nickel stainless steel rails would not take the solder, which would just ball up. I used some Hillman clamps, the rest AristoCraft rail joiners. I plan to replace all of the Aristocraft joiners with Hillman clamps when I reopen the layout this spring.

I'd welcome any comments on similar experiences.

Marvin Gersten
Westfield, NJ
December 6, 2003
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Posted by BudSteinhoff on Saturday, December 6, 2003 3:30 PM
Personally I prefer Aristo brass track over LGB.
The Aristo track does not oxidize as quickly as LGB (less cleaning) but will turn a acceptable brown over a period of time and good sales beginning of year.
I prefer LGB turnouts due to a better design, less trouble and they last.
All my track joints are only the original Aristo jointers with conductive grease and screws.
All my feeders are soldered directly to the rails.
I have 1200 feet of track that has been down for over 4 years in a very humid, rainy, hot climate and have had no problems running track power and on board receivers.
Stainless requires less cleaning but my brass is no problem with the cleaning cars I push with a SD45, 2 times around wide open and ready to go[8D].
Bud
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Posted by Anonymous on Sunday, December 7, 2003 1:57 PM
Well, I appear to be a minority here. I use LGB track and have found that it works well for my purposes. I am curretly using LGB 1600 sections as my smallest with matching switches. I will be changing everything to flex track as soon as my loop is finished and will be replacing all the mainline switches with #6 turnouts by Sunset Valley as the vast majority of garden RRs in my area highly reccomend them. Aside from cleaning the track more often with brass, I have found no disadvatages to it and it is easy to use flex track. LGB track is very, very durable and could quite possibly survive a tital wave. I walk on it all the time, it doesn't hurt it, and it has worked very well for me. My reccomendation is that if you have the room, use flex track, and Sunset Valley #6 or larger turnouts. Otherwise, LGB works great for me at least. Goodluck finding something to work for you!

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