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Hand laying track.

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Hand laying track.
Posted by Anonymous on Sunday, July 27, 2003 10:15 AM
Where can one find a book on hand laying track? I want to hand lay my new layout that I have planned, and can not find anything on it. We do not have a club or hobby shop in our town and the nearest one is 200 miles away.

HELP!!!!! The Model Railroad Magazine folks offer no help in this area![V]

Bob (BadBart)[:D]
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Hand laying track.
Posted by Anonymous on Sunday, July 27, 2003 10:15 AM
Where can one find a book on hand laying track? I want to hand lay my new layout that I have planned, and can not find anything on it. We do not have a club or hobby shop in our town and the nearest one is 200 miles away.

HELP!!!!! The Model Railroad Magazine folks offer no help in this area![V]

Bob (BadBart)[:D]
  • Member since
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  • From: Nova Scotia, Northumberland Shore
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Posted by der5997 on Sunday, July 27, 2003 9:14 PM
Bob: I've very limited experience in handlaying (a peat tipple in HOn30) but what I've read has all been in MR. So, there are articles out there. The folks with libraries of back issues may respond to this topic and give you the issue numbers. In the mean time, the technique I used to lay the track was contact cement on the base of the rail. Once dry, the rail is laid in place on the ties and heated with a soldering iron. This activates the cement which bonds to the ties. Saves a great deal of fiddling with spikes, which I think still need to be used here and there. Good needle nose pliers I found a help, and better if slightly magnetized. The spikes stay closer to the pliers that way [:-)] I seem to remember some article about laying ties out on strips of masking tape and transfering the strip to the raodbed, but it still is a whole lot more work than I'm prepared to get into personally. Good hunting!

"There are always alternatives, Captain" - Spock.

  • Member since
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Posted by der5997 on Sunday, July 27, 2003 9:14 PM
Bob: I've very limited experience in handlaying (a peat tipple in HOn30) but what I've read has all been in MR. So, there are articles out there. The folks with libraries of back issues may respond to this topic and give you the issue numbers. In the mean time, the technique I used to lay the track was contact cement on the base of the rail. Once dry, the rail is laid in place on the ties and heated with a soldering iron. This activates the cement which bonds to the ties. Saves a great deal of fiddling with spikes, which I think still need to be used here and there. Good needle nose pliers I found a help, and better if slightly magnetized. The spikes stay closer to the pliers that way [:-)] I seem to remember some article about laying ties out on strips of masking tape and transfering the strip to the raodbed, but it still is a whole lot more work than I'm prepared to get into personally. Good hunting!

"There are always alternatives, Captain" - Spock.

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Posted by Sperandeo on Monday, July 28, 2003 9:34 AM
Bob,

Go to the shopping section of this Web site and look for the book, "Trackwork and Lineside Detail" from Kalmbach, the publisher of MODEL RAILROADER. This book reprints several article from past issues of MR, including Tony Koester's "Building a turnout from scratch," which tells how to do it in great detail. I'm pretty much using Tony's methods on my own layout, so I can assure you that they work very well.

Good luck with your track,

Andy

Andy Sperandeo MODEL RAILROADER Magazine

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Posted by Sperandeo on Monday, July 28, 2003 9:34 AM
Bob,

Go to the shopping section of this Web site and look for the book, "Trackwork and Lineside Detail" from Kalmbach, the publisher of MODEL RAILROADER. This book reprints several article from past issues of MR, including Tony Koester's "Building a turnout from scratch," which tells how to do it in great detail. I'm pretty much using Tony's methods on my own layout, so I can assure you that they work very well.

Good luck with your track,

Andy

Andy Sperandeo MODEL RAILROADER Magazine

  • Member since
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Posted by Anonymous on Monday, July 28, 2003 6:08 PM
Hi Andy,

Thanks for the info, I will get one and check it out. Why does not KALMBACH publih a good book on handlaying track. I'm sure there is plenty of Modelers around to give you imput for such a project.

There is still Real Modelers out their that would like one. There is a place for flex track, but up front close, hand layed can't be beat.[:)]

Bob
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Posted by Anonymous on Monday, July 28, 2003 6:08 PM
Hi Andy,

Thanks for the info, I will get one and check it out. Why does not KALMBACH publih a good book on handlaying track. I'm sure there is plenty of Modelers around to give you imput for such a project.

There is still Real Modelers out their that would like one. There is a place for flex track, but up front close, hand layed can't be beat.[:)]

Bob
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  • From: Nova Scotia
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Posted by BentnoseWillie on Tuesday, July 29, 2003 6:34 AM
Is Simplified Trackwork for Model Railroaders (Kalmbach, 1935) still in print? If not, perhaps an excerpt covering the basics would make good fodder for an MR article. I doubt that there's enough market to warrant an update of the whole book.

The limited amount of handlaid track I've seen doesn't have the spike and tie plate detail that newer flextrack has. I'm going to handlay some track on my new modules, but it isn't for better detail, aside from crooked and pulverized ties [:)]. It's more for the sake of the doing, to know that I can, and as a warmup for handlaying some turnouts.
B-Dubya -------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Inside every GE is an Alco trying to get out...apparently, through the exhaust stack!
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Posted by BentnoseWillie on Tuesday, July 29, 2003 6:34 AM
Is Simplified Trackwork for Model Railroaders (Kalmbach, 1935) still in print? If not, perhaps an excerpt covering the basics would make good fodder for an MR article. I doubt that there's enough market to warrant an update of the whole book.

The limited amount of handlaid track I've seen doesn't have the spike and tie plate detail that newer flextrack has. I'm going to handlay some track on my new modules, but it isn't for better detail, aside from crooked and pulverized ties [:)]. It's more for the sake of the doing, to know that I can, and as a warmup for handlaying some turnouts.
B-Dubya -------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Inside every GE is an Alco trying to get out...apparently, through the exhaust stack!
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Posted by Sperandeo on Tuesday, July 29, 2003 9:17 AM
"B-Dubya" wrote:

"Is 'Simplified Trackwork for Model Railroaders' (Kalmbach, 1935) still in print?"

You're kidding, right?

Andy

Andy Sperandeo MODEL RAILROADER Magazine

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Posted by Sperandeo on Tuesday, July 29, 2003 9:17 AM
"B-Dubya" wrote:

"Is 'Simplified Trackwork for Model Railroaders' (Kalmbach, 1935) still in print?"

You're kidding, right?

Andy

Andy Sperandeo MODEL RAILROADER Magazine

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Posted by BentnoseWillie on Tuesday, July 29, 2003 9:33 AM
Anyone got any oats? I seem to have acquired Andy's goat. [:)][}:)]

I did a search in the index, and that was the Kalmbach book that popped up. While the materials have changed drastically over the last 68(!) years, the principles of good tracklaying probably haven't changed much. Perhaps this work or another could be drawn upon for coverage of the basics, using modern materials? I know I'd love to see it, since I'm about to embark on my first adventure in tracklaying. I have the Koester article on turnouts, but I'm winging it for tracklaying based on what I've picked up from MR over the years.
B-Dubya -------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Inside every GE is an Alco trying to get out...apparently, through the exhaust stack!
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Posted by BentnoseWillie on Tuesday, July 29, 2003 9:33 AM
Anyone got any oats? I seem to have acquired Andy's goat. [:)][}:)]

I did a search in the index, and that was the Kalmbach book that popped up. While the materials have changed drastically over the last 68(!) years, the principles of good tracklaying probably haven't changed much. Perhaps this work or another could be drawn upon for coverage of the basics, using modern materials? I know I'd love to see it, since I'm about to embark on my first adventure in tracklaying. I have the Koester article on turnouts, but I'm winging it for tracklaying based on what I've picked up from MR over the years.
B-Dubya -------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Inside every GE is an Alco trying to get out...apparently, through the exhaust stack!
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Posted by Sperandeo on Tuesday, July 29, 2003 11:08 AM
Nobody's upset about anything, "B-Dubya,"

But no, we don't have any 68-year-old hobby books still in print. There is one pretty old book still in our line, "101 Track Plans" from 1956, but none of the pre-WWII stuff.

so long,

Andy

Andy Sperandeo MODEL RAILROADER Magazine

  • Member since
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  • From: US
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Posted by Sperandeo on Tuesday, July 29, 2003 11:08 AM
Nobody's upset about anything, "B-Dubya,"

But no, we don't have any 68-year-old hobby books still in print. There is one pretty old book still in our line, "101 Track Plans" from 1956, but none of the pre-WWII stuff.

so long,

Andy

Andy Sperandeo MODEL RAILROADER Magazine

  • Member since
    January 2002
  • From: Nova Scotia
  • 825 posts
Posted by BentnoseWillie on Tuesday, July 29, 2003 11:25 AM
Well, rats. Here I thought I'd gotten yer goat. [;)]

Does the Trackwork book cover handlaying in general, or just turnouts?
B-Dubya -------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Inside every GE is an Alco trying to get out...apparently, through the exhaust stack!
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Posted by BentnoseWillie on Tuesday, July 29, 2003 11:25 AM
Well, rats. Here I thought I'd gotten yer goat. [;)]

Does the Trackwork book cover handlaying in general, or just turnouts?
B-Dubya -------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Inside every GE is an Alco trying to get out...apparently, through the exhaust stack!
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Posted by Anonymous on Tuesday, July 29, 2003 12:53 PM
The trackwork book covers both, but concentrates on turnouts (not surprisingly, considering that's the most difficult part).
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Posted by Anonymous on Tuesday, July 29, 2003 12:53 PM
The trackwork book covers both, but concentrates on turnouts (not surprisingly, considering that's the most difficult part).
  • Member since
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Posted by Anonymous on Thursday, July 31, 2003 5:45 AM
Depending on big the layout is if it's asmall layout I would try handlaying track but for a large layout seem it would be asking a lot personally I would not do it.
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Posted by Anonymous on Thursday, July 31, 2003 5:45 AM
Depending on big the layout is if it's asmall layout I would try handlaying track but for a large layout seem it would be asking a lot personally I would not do it.
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Posted by Anonymous on Saturday, August 2, 2003 1:31 PM
Everyone should build track from scratch. Nothing matches the graceful flowing custom lines and curves which can be done with handlaid track. I built a turnout for mainline use which is about 20" from points to frog. Build a tight switching yard full of unconventional switch types and behold a man with an object filled with pride which nobody understands, except others who have done similar things in track.

Handlaying is therapy, really. :)
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Posted by Anonymous on Saturday, August 2, 2003 1:31 PM
Everyone should build track from scratch. Nothing matches the graceful flowing custom lines and curves which can be done with handlaid track. I built a turnout for mainline use which is about 20" from points to frog. Build a tight switching yard full of unconventional switch types and behold a man with an object filled with pride which nobody understands, except others who have done similar things in track.

Handlaying is therapy, really. :)
  • Member since
    April 2003
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Posted by Anonymous on Monday, August 4, 2003 5:55 PM
The guys I model with (a "club" in the most loose sense of the word) got me into handlaying track. I have to agree with previous post: Do it for therepy (and to freak out non-modelers) and most of all it really looks great - he is right on with the comment about the flowing lines. I would have not bought in on this comment untill I saw my own work - and as a beginner, it is really not the best.

Our bible is Paul Mallory's Trackwork Handbook which is now back in print (was out of print for a while). Ol' Paul is pretty anal about his tracklaying, but he is very thourough. We use a home-made jig to hold the ties, place tape on them, then set into glue. Then the rails are spiked in about every 5-8 ties.

Sadly, we have found that there is no financial reward to all the labor in hand laying your own track. Cheap flex blows away the cost of hand laid, good low profile flex is about equal in cost per foot, and hand laying supplies are hard to find in hobby stores around here. The hobby seems to be moving in the direction of the American "I want it now" mentality. HAVE FUN!
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Posted by Anonymous on Monday, August 4, 2003 5:55 PM
The guys I model with (a "club" in the most loose sense of the word) got me into handlaying track. I have to agree with previous post: Do it for therepy (and to freak out non-modelers) and most of all it really looks great - he is right on with the comment about the flowing lines. I would have not bought in on this comment untill I saw my own work - and as a beginner, it is really not the best.

Our bible is Paul Mallory's Trackwork Handbook which is now back in print (was out of print for a while). Ol' Paul is pretty anal about his tracklaying, but he is very thourough. We use a home-made jig to hold the ties, place tape on them, then set into glue. Then the rails are spiked in about every 5-8 ties.

Sadly, we have found that there is no financial reward to all the labor in hand laying your own track. Cheap flex blows away the cost of hand laid, good low profile flex is about equal in cost per foot, and hand laying supplies are hard to find in hobby stores around here. The hobby seems to be moving in the direction of the American "I want it now" mentality. HAVE FUN!
  • Member since
    April 2003
  • 305,206 posts
Posted by Anonymous on Tuesday, August 5, 2003 1:43 AM
I handlay N scale track, where spikes interfere w/ flanges. Rather than use contact cement, which I found didn't work very well, I use PC board ties from cloverhouse (http://cloverhouse.com/) every fourth tie or so. Works like a charm.
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Posted by Anonymous on Tuesday, August 5, 2003 1:43 AM
I handlay N scale track, where spikes interfere w/ flanges. Rather than use contact cement, which I found didn't work very well, I use PC board ties from cloverhouse (http://cloverhouse.com/) every fourth tie or so. Works like a charm.
  • Member since
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Posted by der5997 on Tuesday, August 5, 2003 8:23 AM
and your track power feeders go somewhere between those PC board ties, right frank?

"There are always alternatives, Captain" - Spock.

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Posted by der5997 on Tuesday, August 5, 2003 8:23 AM
and your track power feeders go somewhere between those PC board ties, right frank?

"There are always alternatives, Captain" - Spock.

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