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Track Soldering Jig

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  • Member since
    September, 2003
  • From: Cork, Ireland
  • 34 posts
Track Soldering Jig
Posted by colin_mcleod on Friday, April 15, 2005 10:42 AM
The thread about the helix refered to a track soldering jig. I presume this is a jig of some sort to hold track in alignment while rails are soldered together. Can anyone tell me more about these things?
Many thanks in anticipation.
Colin
  • Member since
    April, 2003
  • 282,435 posts
Posted by Anonymous on Friday, April 15, 2005 11:14 AM
One such jig that I am familiar with is made by MLR as part of their Track Tool line. It is a small block of hard plastic with grooves that fit over the rails. There are notches on both sides that allow you to solder joiners together or solder feeder wires to the side of the rails.

For fancier stuff like custom building switches and crossings there are also jigs. Check out Fast Tracks at handlaidtracks.com.

John Timm

  • Member since
    April, 2003
  • 282,435 posts
Posted by Anonymous on Friday, April 15, 2005 3:22 PM
For me a jig is not needed.

When laying track around a corner, start the track around the corner. When you have 6" of track to lay around the corner, cut the rails (one will be longer than the other) and solder the next section on. Continue laying track around the corner. This will give you good smooth track.

You can't solder track that is already flexed around a corner as it'll be kinked.

Mark in Utah
  • Member since
    April, 2003
  • 282,435 posts
Posted by Anonymous on Friday, April 15, 2005 4:25 PM
QUOTE: Originally posted by mark_in_utah

...When laying track around a corner, start the track around the corner. When you have 6" of track to lay around the corner, cut the rails (one will be longer than the other) and solder the next section on. Continue laying track around the corner. This will give you good smooth track. You can't solder track that is already flexed around a corner as it'll be kinked. Mark in Utah

[#ditto]
Have you read Laying flexible track without putting a kink in your plans. Going beyond the basic oval by Jim Hediger
  • Member since
    July, 2003
  • From: Northern Ca
  • 1,008 posts
Posted by jwar on Friday, April 15, 2005 7:13 PM
Perhaps my thread is what your refering to. If you have some scrap 1/8 in plywood, six track nails and a sabre saw, your in bussiness to have one made in about ten minits.

Cut one piece about 4 or so inches wide by 7 or 8 in long for a base plate, edges dont have to be straight.

Then cut two strips from the side or edge of the plywood, using the factory cut edge (this is an accurate straight cut ) to make a percision jig. Cut both 1 in wide and to the lenght of the base you cut beforhand.

Nail one strip accross the top edge of the base plate with track nails, being sure to keep the factory cut towards the center of the base plate.

Lay your track ties against the nailed edge, hold the second ply strip against the other side of the ties, then nail in place. The track slot should be snug, but not to tight.

Now you have a perfectely straight sodering jig, that is 1/4 in thick that can easely slide under the track.

When sodering curved track nail the track up to 18 or so inches from the end, slide the jig under the track and soder the rail joiners, the groove prevents misalignment both horzizonal and vertical. and will be a perfect straight joint.

Takes a few second to get use to, but is easier to hold both tracks, sodering gun and soder, I tried the MFG type and is now a paper weight, this is much easier to use and hold track when in awkward positions.

If you use different brands of track you may have to make one for each, just mark the brand in the slot.
Hope this helps...John
John Warren's, Feather River Route WP and SP in HO

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