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Author Topic: rail care  (Read 1341 times)
macivor

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« on: February 07, 2017, 01:09:44 AM »

is block sanding and polishing ho track, once it is secured in place, a good idea?  I see sun glinting off of well used REAL rails, so it might look good.  I wonder if connectivity would be better?  the clickety clack being silenced would leave ear room for dcc sounds.
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dutchbuilder


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« Reply #1 on: February 07, 2017, 06:36:53 AM »

I use a rubber sanding block used for sued shoos.
Works fine.

Ton
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ebtnut

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« Reply #2 on: February 07, 2017, 10:16:38 AM »

Walthers makes a cleaning block called a "Bright Boy", which does about the same job as the suede block.  Many folks say not to use any abrasive cleaners since they  can leave tiny scratches in the rail head that can attract more dirt.  They use some form of electronic contact cleaner with a cloth or paper towel to remove the dirt and oxidation.  There is a rolling track cleaner out there where you wrap the brass slug with paper towel, soak it with cleaner and push it around the layout.  Oxidation of the rail is more of a problem with brass track.  Not so much with nickle silver.  Stay away from steel - it rusts. 
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K487

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« Reply #3 on: February 07, 2017, 11:07:06 AM »

My 2 cents:

For over 26 years I've put 2 or 3 small drops of Wahl hair-clipper oil close together (from a hypo syringe) on the top of each rail (Code 100) about every 20' apart and just continue running the train(s).  The railcars' wheels spread the oil on the rail heads - very lightly. (Does this make the loco wheels spin?  No.)   Except of for a few very small dots of oil/dirt mix on top of the rails in about 5 places, which occur from a lot of running, and usually show up in the same locations time after time (which are easy to rub off with a cloth or a cloth with a little oil on it) - that's it.  How long between Wahl oiling time?  About 4 to 6 months, and I run one or more trains at least every other day.

As info, I've never used any type of abrasive rail cleaner.  The most "abrasive" cleaner I've ever used has been a piece of thin cloth (often with a drop of oil on it to help loosen the dirt/oil mix on the rail tops) wrapped around my pointer finger.

Hope this is helpful.

K487
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Yardmaster
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« Reply #4 on: February 07, 2017, 12:23:44 PM »

http://shop.bachmanntrains.com/index.php?main_page=index&cPath=258_324_327_1060
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HoModeler

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« Reply #5 on: February 07, 2017, 02:20:46 PM »

is block sanding and polishing ho track, once it is secured in place, a good idea?  I see sun glinting off of well used REAL rails, so it might look good.  I wonder if connectivity would be better?  the clickety clack being silenced would leave ear room for dcc sounds.

I use a Bright Boy Block it works the best for track in my own thoughts... I am thinking of getting a Track cleaning Car though
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Terry Toenges


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« Reply #6 on: February 07, 2017, 02:56:16 PM »

While I do have a track cleaning car, I often use rubber pencil erasers like the long pink ones. They work just fine and are cheap.
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Feel like a fourfouro.
Flare

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« Reply #7 on: February 07, 2017, 03:06:25 PM »

I use a Dapol/Atlas track cleaning car, it has a motorized rail polishing head, a reservoir for cleaning fluid, and the cleaning head can be swapped with a vacuum head to clean dust and debris from your layout.

It also has an 8-pin socket for DCC control of the motor if your layout uses that.

Just keep in mind that the wheels aren't powered, it still needs a locomotive.


http://www.atlasrr.com/HOFreight/hotrackcleaningcar.htm
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Mdaskalos

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« Reply #8 on: February 07, 2017, 05:40:47 PM »

I use a rubber sanding block used for sued shoos.
Works fine.

Ton


I just gotta ask, dutchroadbuilder:

So, the sanding block used for wooden shoes is not recommended?

Sorry, couldn't help myself!
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JNXT 7707

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« Reply #9 on: February 07, 2017, 07:48:27 PM »

My 2 cents:

For over 26 years I've put 2 or 3 small drops of Wahl hair-clipper oil close together (from a hypo syringe) on the top of each rail (Code 100) about every 20' apart and just continue running the train(s).  The railcars' wheels spread the oil on the rail heads - very lightly. (Does this make the loco wheels spin?  No.)   Except of for a few very small dots of oil/dirt mix on top of the rails in about 5 places, which occur from a lot of running, and usually show up in the same locations time after time (which are easy to rub off with a cloth or a cloth with a little oil on it) - that's it.  How long between Wahl oiling time?  About 4 to 6 months, and I run one or more trains at least every other day.

As info, I've never used any type of abrasive rail cleaner.  The most "abrasive" cleaner I've ever used has been a piece of thin cloth (often with a drop of oil on it to help loosen the dirt/oil mix on the rail tops) wrapped around my pointer finger.

Hope this is helpful.

K487

I follow a similar procedure with LaBelle 105 track conditioner - which seems to be very close to Wahl clipper oil.

I clean the rails with alcohol, then rub with a pad soaked with 105 over the entire layout - followed by a wipe with a dry pad to remove the excess.

The trains like it, so I like it.

The only time I've used a Brite Boy is after I paint the rails, to insure all the paint is removed from the rail head.
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Jerry

Modeling the JNXT RR from its headquarters in Buzzardly, Texas.
Future home of the National C-Liner Museum.
macivor

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« Reply #10 on: February 08, 2017, 01:24:37 AM »

thx for all the tips on maintenance!  I'm in the final part of the track laying process, and want to file or sand any elevation differences near the rail joints, but this could result in losing the top rail shape .  one thought is to solder joints as I tweak them to level if they are off a bit. ez track might be forgiving enough.
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ebtnut

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« Reply #11 on: February 08, 2017, 11:00:20 AM »

If you have bumps at rail joints big enough to need filing down, then better check to make sure both rail ends are inserted into the rail joiner.  Especially if you are using a product like EZTrack, the joints don't always line up precisely and one rail will ride up over top of the joiner, leaving a mis-match between the rails. 
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