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| | |-+  How to replace a turnout? (glued semi-oval EZ track)
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Author Topic: How to replace a turnout? (glued semi-oval EZ track)  (Read 6549 times)
Comrade

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« on: May 14, 2011, 08:21:30 PM »

Lets say we have a glued on semi-oval EZ track layout with a few turnouts.
If one of the turnouts fails, we have to replace it.

To take it out, we have to pull EZ track away from the turnout. But we have a glued down continues circle track. I am sure we don't have to break off the entire track from the board do we?

What the best way of doing it?

Thanks guys.
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Jim Banner

Enjoying electric model railroading since 1950.


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« Reply #1 on: May 14, 2011, 11:29:47 PM »

One solution is to use an Atlas Hobby Saw (from your local hobby shop) and cut down between the rail ends at all three ends of the turnout, plastic base and all.

Remove the cut off pieces of rail joiner from the regular track next to your cuts.  You will probably have to use a small, flat screw driver to pry them open (carefully!) before you can pull them off with a pair of needle nose pliers.  Pull straight off - DO NOT PULL UP or the rail will come off the ties.

Run the hobby saw between the cut ends of the rails and the ties underneath.  Then slide new rail joiners (from your local hobby shop) all the way on where you have just made room between the bottoms of the rail ends and the tops of the ties.

Remove the rail joiners from the turnout and cut off the plastic hooks flush with the ends of the rails.

Put the turnout in place and slide the new rail joiners half their length onto the turnout rails.

The six rail joiners are normally enough to hold the turnout in place but you can add some glue along the bottom of the base if you really want to.

If you need some photos, let me know.  The photos I have actually show the installation of an Atlas Snap Switch in place of a Bachmann turnout but the process is exactly the same with the exception of having to add a base below the snap switch.

Jim
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Growing older is mandatory but growing up is optional.
Doneldon

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« Reply #2 on: May 15, 2011, 12:29:40 AM »

Comrade-

Lot's of people let their turnouts float, that is, they don't fasten them down. Letting them float makes it easier for the mechanisms to work because attaching the turnouts to the subroadbed can distort them just enough to cause binding or incomplete movement.
                                                                -- D
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Comrade

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« Reply #3 on: May 15, 2011, 01:15:30 AM »

Thanks for the quick reply Jim.
Simple enough solution. Looks like I have to eventually throw away all Bachmann track and go with Atlas. Teaches me a lesson on being cheap.





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poliss

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« Reply #4 on: May 15, 2011, 12:50:50 PM »

Instead of using a hard setting glue, use a latex based glue such as Copydex. This will make it easier to lift the track without damaging it.
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Comrade

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« Reply #5 on: May 15, 2011, 03:08:41 PM »

I used Gorilla glue. It dries in to a foam type material. Easy to remove, it comes right off with minimum effort. Did it on purpose.

It that normal for Bachmann switches to be that unreliable?
Out of 4 switches on my layout, 2 failed right out of the box.

First one had mechanical link skipping teeth on the gear.
Second one stopped passing current to the line.

That's 50% chance of getting a good switch.
Getting tired of destroying my layout every other day.
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Jim Banner

Enjoying electric model railroading since 1950.


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« Reply #6 on: May 15, 2011, 05:11:22 PM »

No need to get rid of all your E-Z Track.  It is compatible with other based and plain H0 track although you may need some shims where you switch brands of based track.  Plain track is usually mounted on cork road bed which matches it nicely with E-Z Track.

With based track, the different brands of bases will not clip together.  However, making transitions by cutting the plastic bases back to the rail ends and aligning the rails with rail joiners (just like when replacing a turnout) works nicely.  Once the joiners are in place, you can slide in shims if the bases are different heights.  Or if you glue the track down.  The glue itself will support the thinner base, eliminating the need for shims.  If you later change your track plan, the track sections with the hooks removed are just as useful as they ever were.

Jim

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CNE Runner


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« Reply #7 on: May 16, 2011, 11:02:55 AM »

Guys, I learned the hard way several years ago that one should never glue down turnouts. Usually a couple of strategically placed spikes will hold the unit in place (although that is optional). Careful ballasting (- carefully applied around the point rail area) will do a fine job in keeping the turnout from 'wandering'.

In addition with the above, never solder the rail joiners to a turnout (or the attached track). Feed wires should be soldered to the turnout at the point facing end. If both of these procedures are followed you can [fairly] easily remove/replace a recalcitrant turnout.

All brands of track work well and all will experience some 'problems' during their lifespan. All brands of track need to be kept clean. Some brands will give you exceptional service while others... I cannot recommend Peco track products more highly (especially their Electrofrog line). Peco track features an oversprung device that holds the point rails tightly against the stock rails - insuring excellent (but not always perfect...nothing is) electrical contact. The powered frogs are a godsend for those short switching locomotives. If you decide to scrap the track you now have I would urge you to look at the Peco line.

Good luck with your project and welcome to the frustrating part of model railroading.

Regards,
Ray
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"Keeping my hand on the throttle...and my eyes on the rail"
Comrade

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« Reply #8 on: May 16, 2011, 11:47:57 AM »

Thanks for the heads up Ray,
So it looks like it's normal to have problems with track and pull off turnouts for repairs once in a while. I will keep that in mind.

Mine layout itself is complete and looks really good. I built Madison Central in N scale. With Woodland Scenics everything on it. Now I am just fine tuning it and experimenting.

I also see that lots of people complain that their cars get derail on EZ track turnouts. I sort of got mine fine tuned where I don't have problems with derailments. I can run HHP-8 Spectrum locomotive at full speed and it stays on.

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Doneldon

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« Reply #9 on: May 16, 2011, 11:49:11 PM »

Comrade-

re: Gorilla Glue. You are using GG incorrectly if it results in your bond line being foam. GG needs to be clamped so that its tendency to expand with foam is contained. That will actually drive it into the materials being glued (if they're porous). Excess glue will squeeze out of the joint as foam. Remove it after the GG has set. Not clamping GG yields a weak joint. If you're going to do that you might as well use adhesive caulk which gives an adequately strong yet removable and somewhat sound deadening joint.
                                                 -- D
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