Bachmann Message Board

Discussion Boards => Large => Topic started by: Mr. T. on November 11, 2010, 10:43:21 PM



Title: Is it time for Bachmann to introduce new track items?
Post by: Mr. T. on November 11, 2010, 10:43:21 PM
Yeah, I know, it was dumb to even  start down this path... but I'm planning my permanent layout around Bachmann sectional track.  :P

Bachmann track has the major advantage for Newbies like me of being the most cost effective  track option out there right now if you're going for an indoor only layout.

Real fast tho you discover the limitations inherent in that sort of a plan.

First... is Bachmann planning on ever introducing another radius of curve? Like one that allows the construction of a 2 track main line?

As it is, using existing  straights and turnouts it's quite possible to set up passing shunts...  but the moment you hit a curve, church is out.

Next... a 45 degree crossover, to supplement  the existing 90 degree, would be a handy item to have available.

Finally... the MOST valuable thing to produce would be track adaptor sections that would mate Bachmann track to, say, Gargraves flex track.

I fear none of this is ever gonna happen, but I figure it can't hurt to ask!


Mr. T.


Title: Re: Is it time for Bachmann to introduce new track items?
Post by: the Bach-man on November 12, 2010, 12:03:03 AM
Dear Mr. T,
Nothing's been announced, and, to be frank, I doubt it will happen, but I will pass along your request.
Have fun!
the Bach-man


Title: Re: Is it time for Bachmann to introduce new track items?
Post by: Doneldon on November 12, 2010, 03:45:29 AM
Mr. T-

It's usually not too hard to adapt "foreign" track to Bachmann.  The only lingering problem is the change in appearance.  That can generally be ameliorated with the application of ballast and paint.
                                                                                                                    -- D


Title: Re: Is it time for Bachmann to introduce new track items?
Post by: Loco Bill Canelos on November 13, 2010, 02:01:15 PM
I have seen some really nice large layouts using Bachmann Track iindoors.  Some have dual track mainline but Im not sure how they did it.  It involved using a straight section in the middle of the outside curve, or possiblly a shortened straight section. 

Maybe one our track experts will chime in on this, they have some great ideas on modifing existing track.

Bachmann track is a great value, and it is a shame they probably won't add new pieces.

Most of all enjoy your indoor layout.


Title: Re: Is it time for Bachmann to introduce new track items?
Post by: NarrowMinded on November 13, 2010, 02:46:04 PM
You alternate some straights on the outside curve to make it larger.

Making an adaptor from solid track to bachmann track is simple, you just need to file the railhead an base of the track so it fits inside the hollow track.

NM


Title: Re: Is it time for Bachmann to introduce new track items?
Post by: Mr. T. on November 13, 2010, 04:16:31 PM
Actually, after looking over my original post, I notice that I misspoke about the proposed new crossover. A 45 degree won't work with the Bachmann track system.

Instead, a 60 degree crossover would be compatible, since existing curves are 30 degrees each.


Title: Re: Is it time for Bachmann to introduce new track items?
Post by: grayfitz on November 14, 2010, 05:41:30 PM
 Hi everybody, I think its about time BACHMANN introduced in their lineup a better quality track that at least will accomodate their K27 and 2-66-2 ,of course then the people that use their track inside would be able to update then buy and operate a SPECTRUM type loco.  GRAHAM from downunder..


Title: Re: Is it time for Bachmann to introduce new track items?
Post by: Joe Satnik on November 14, 2010, 10:37:19 PM
Dear All,

IF Bachmann were to make an indoor only sectional curve track to accommodate ALL its released and announced Large Scale engines, what size (minimum LGB R#, diameter or radius) would it have to be?

Kevin?

Dear Mr. T.,

You passed Advanced Track Geometry.   Good for you.   

Sincerely,

Joe Satnik

Added note to Mr T.





Title: Re: Is it time for Bachmann to introduce new track items?
Post by: Kevin Strong on November 15, 2010, 02:41:06 AM
The 1:20.3 rolling stock requires a minimum 4' radius, so that's what I'd shoot for. The stuff I have fits LGB's "R3" curve, which is a few inches shy of 4' radius.

I don't know about Bachmann track being all that much cheaper, really. Whenever I see it in the stores, it's still going for $4 - $5/foot or thereabouts. There's a seller on ebay asking $25 for four 12" sections! That's $6.25/foot! For lousy track! If you're spending that kind of money, buy the good stuff. If you're a little strapped for cash, look for folks selling used track. I did a quick search on ebay, and found more lots of used *good* track going for around $2 - $3/foot than I found the lousy Bachmann track. Don't waste your money. Be patient and buy the good stuff. You'll be far better off down the road.

Later,

K


Title: Re: Is it time for Bachmann to introduce new track items?
Post by: NarrowMinded on November 15, 2010, 09:59:46 PM
Wow lousy? Nice way to talk about your hosts products :o
NM


Title: Re: Is it time for Bachmann to introduce new track items?
Post by: Sleeping Bear on November 16, 2010, 12:11:06 AM
  ya.....what they said.....NOT nice man


Title: Re: Is it time for Bachmann to introduce new track items?
Post by: charon on November 16, 2010, 01:51:49 AM
Kevin, Kevin, Kevin,
for shame


Title: Re: Is it time for Bachmann to introduce new track items?
Post by: Kevin Strong on November 16, 2010, 12:49:38 PM
The hosts of this site (and their bosses) have long advocated buying the other guys' track. Perhaps they wouldn't use the word "lousy," but they're on the payroll. I'm not. They make no apologies for their track being of inferior quality; it's not intended to be equal. It's "job" is to give the consumer something cheap upon which they can run the company's trains straight out of the box. The problem is, the track costs as much as the good stuff, which makes it a comparatively poor choice in terms of value for quality and value for the dollar. If you're spending good money for track, don't buy the stuff the manufacturer makes no bones about being inferior to the others' track. Buy the stuff they recommend you buy, instead.

Track has always been a weak spot in Bachmann's large scale product line-up. We know it, and the guys in Philly know it. Given the upgrades they've done to the rest of the product line to continually improve it and make it some of the best stuff on the market, I think that speaks volumes to where improvements to track products sit on their list of priorities. Bachmann's engineers could design track compatible with the others' in their sleep. It's just not on the radar screen.

Personally, I think if Bachmann isn't going to produce better quality, compatible track to include with their starter sets (and since the head honchos spend so much time advocating buying Aristo's track anyway), they should enter into an agreement to include Aristo's track with their starter sets. We know Aristo and Bachmann(UK) have struck agreements for cross marketing. The avenue for dialog exists. Bachmann clearly doesn't care about large scale track, and this way the consumer starts off with track that is already compatible with a whole world of products--not just the very limited-in-scope, not-suitable-for-outdoor-use, pretty-darned-flimsy stuff the consumer pretty much has to chuck out the window if they want to expand beyond the basic oval.

Later,

K


Title: Re: Is it time for Bachmann to introduce new track items?
Post by: Doneldon on November 16, 2010, 03:06:07 PM
Kevin-

I do think you were a bit harsh in calling Bachmann's track "lousy," but I also think you've opened an excellent argument for including Aristo track with Bachmann sets.  I'm not so sure this would be controversial at Bachmann, nor do I think it would cause a significant profit loss.  But it would be a truly customer-friendly action on Bachmann's part.  And, Bachmann could devote the freed-up manufacturing capacity to the locos and rolling stock which they do so well.  So, excellent point but please take it easy on the inflammatory rhetoric.

                                                                                           -- D


Bachmann-

How 'bout it?

          -- D



Title: Re: Is it time for Bachmann to introduce new track items?
Post by: Loco Bill Canelos on November 17, 2010, 08:23:29 PM
I have seen Bachmann Track go for as little as .50 per foot at swap meets and no shipping to pay. 

A friend of mine has a very elaborate indoor layout using over 600 feet of the track.  He thinks it is great stuff and it most certainly works well for him.  While I do not personally use it I would not refer to it as "lousy"   I have never visited his layout to find that his trains did not run. 

I have seen other layouts which use it as well, one is even outdoors at Christmas.  He sprays the track with electronics cleaner when he puts it out, and when he takes it down three weeks later he sprays it with WD-40.  I think he sprays it each week.   He has been doing it for years with the original track!!   


Title: Re: Is it time for Bachmann to introduce new track items?
Post by: the Bach-man on November 17, 2010, 10:55:01 PM
Dear All,
Our track is fine for indoor use, contrary to Kevin's opinion which is, I think, a little rude. It makes it possible to keep the price of starter sets lower, which will hopefully bring more folks into the hobby.  As for outdoor track, unless we can make it at considerably less expense, or significantly better, why would we develop a line of track to mirror Aristo's?
Have fun!
the Bach-man


Title: Re: Is it time for Bachmann to introduce new track items?
Post by: Sleeping Bear on November 18, 2010, 01:44:56 AM
  to get back to one of the original questions.... could a rail bender be used to straighten the curves a bit as to make a wider radius? I mean if it can be used to make curves out of straight then why wouldn't it work the other way?....Later all         S.B.


Title: Re: Is it time for Bachmann to introduce new track items?
Post by: Kevin Strong on November 18, 2010, 03:22:15 AM
Maybe describing Bachmann's track as "lousy" without proper context for the criteria for making that assessment wasn't the clearest way to put forth an argument. My apologies for any ruffled feathers. Bachmann's track is certainly capable of running trains within the confines of the product line's capabilities. But when you consider what you get for what you pay, compared to what you get with other track products for the same money, it completely pales by comparison. In my opinion; dollar for dollar, function for function, Bachmann's track is, well, how about we call it "inferior in terms of overall value." That's the point I was trying to make. Both lines of track are very similar in price, so there's virtually no advantage there. If you're going to spend $6 - $7/foot for track, buy the stuff that already gives you what you want, instead of waiting--and waiting--for Bachmann to do something they've stated--and demonstrated--they're not going to do (i.e., add to their line of track). Instead, do what they suggest you do, and buy the other guys' stuff.

Later,

K

(edit for clarity)


Title: Re: Is it time for Bachmann to introduce new track items?
Post by: mudhen on November 18, 2010, 08:32:47 AM
Well said by The Bach man, couldn't have said it any better.


Title: Re: Is it time for Bachmann to introduce new track items?
Post by: Joe Satnik on November 18, 2010, 03:55:27 PM
Dear S.B. and All,

Just a little math for "unbending" G-curves.   Rails first, ties on another post:

The inner rail would stay the same length, the outer rail would be cut down.  

Bachmann large scale curve track imitates LGB R1 sectional curves.  

(12 sections/circle = 30 degrees each section, Radius = 600mm to center-line of track.)

Assuming you want to still be able to turn 90 degrees with "unbent" curve track,

you would have to add 4 sections per circle each step larger,  which would give 16, 20, 24 etc. sections per circle, or

4, 5, 6 etc. sections per 90 degree corner.

Sections per circle, Radius (mm):

12s, 600 mm  (LGB R1 = 600 mm Radius)
                      (LGB R2 = 780 mm R)
16s, 792 mm

20s, 984 mm

24s, 1176 mm
                        (LGB R3 = 1195 mm R) (Bachmann LS Spectrum locos and rolling stock (1:20.3) can all run on R3.)
28s, 1368 mm

32s, 1560 mm

36s, 1752 mm

40s, 1944 mm

44s, 2136 mm
                          (LGB R5 = 2320 mm R)
48s, 2328 mm

Double the radius to get the diameter.

Divide mm by 25.4 to get inches.

Aristo-Craft uses circle diameters measured in feet to describe their sectional curves.

http://www.aristocraft.com/catalog/index.html  (Click ahead to page 11.)

Hope this helps.  

Sincerely,

Joe Satnik

Edit: added "Rails first, ties on another post:" , "(1:20.3)" 


  


Title: Re: Is it time for Bachmann to introduce new track items?
Post by: Sleeping Bear on November 18, 2010, 07:56:49 PM
 Thanks for the info there Joe, kinda thought that it would work. later all....S.B.


Title: Re: Is it time for Bachmann to introduce new track items?
Post by: Joe Satnik on November 19, 2010, 12:54:28 PM
Dear S.B.,

You'd have to use a little finesse unbending them to not put a kink in them.

The plastic "webbing" between the ties under the outer rail could be cut, trimmed and re-glued to the proper distance to accommodate the shorter outer rail. 

The inner rail webbing might have to be cut in spots to allow for the shallower bend. 

The (between) track section clips will probably not work as well with the webbing cut. 

You could cut and trim the webbing every other tie, alternating between inner and outer rail webs. 

w w w etc. outer rail
 w w w etc, inner rail

This would give an accordion like effect to the ties/webbing.  The bend of the rails would be the only thing holding the radius of the curve, then.

Hope this helps.

Sincerely,

Joe Satnik


Title: Re: Is it time for Bachmann to introduce new track items?
Post by: Mr. T. on November 28, 2010, 12:04:53 AM
Well...  to deal with my particular trackage problems, the experimentation begins.

On the E-Place, I got high bid of a dozen sections (37") of used Gargraves Flextrack. They'll become the sacrificial lambs for this endeavor. If things work out, I'll be looking for some more of this stuff.

The first problem seems to be home construction of mating pins; pulling the pin from one end of the transitioning  Bachmann section, and replacing it with an adaptor pin to Gargraves.

Looks to be a matter of attaching round rod (to fit the Gargraves) to a blade (to fit the Bachmann). I suspect the best way to fabricate it is "hard soldering", even tho I DO INDEED hate torch work, especially with the tiny flame required to join items this small!  >:(

As for the Bachmann track stash that I already have...  rethinking this whole thing, it seems to me that the most practical plan for using it is to set up a fairly elaborate yard, and, assuming the Gargraves track grafting is successfully accomplished; completely banish Bachmann track from the main line.


BTW, in case anybody's interested...  still in the planning and practicality determining stages as yet, but I'm thinking along the lines of roughly modeling the Chicago & Northwestern's last narrow gauge operation in southwestern Wisconsin, locally known as "The Dinky", or less commonly "The Ridge Runner". It was about a 17 mile long short line railroad that carried passengers, milk & cheese, livestock, and assorted freight down the Green River valley between Fennimore (where it met the standard guage C&NW) and Woodman, Wisconsin (on the Wisconsin River), with two intermediate small town stops (Werley and Anderson's Mill). The Dinky was a line so small and simple that the ENTIRE RAILROAD had only ten turnouts!  :o

That's the basis of the road...   but then, Modeler's License kicks in!  ;D

The Dinky was a single track road; I wanna make it a double track.

The Dinky, as far as I can tell, never had any block signals, mainly because only one train at a time ever operated on it at a given time! I'm toying with the idea of lower quadrant semaphores.

The Dinky went belly up and was abandoned in January, 1926; Henry Ford's Model T and better roads made her unnecessary after about 50 years.

I want to take The Dinky 15 - 20 years beyond that, still operating into the 1940s.


While trying to sort out trackage issues...  I'm working over a basket case White Pass 4-6-0 Big Hauler, trying to shorten it and make it into a 2-6-0, Class D11 Mogul! The razor saw will be descending on that boiler very soon now!

If I get hold of another basket case Big Hauler loco, even MORE drastic surgery may be undertaken; conversion to a 4-4-0!  :o


Mr. T.



Title: Re: Is it time for Bachmann to introduce new track items?
Post by: Sleeping Bear on November 28, 2010, 12:44:33 AM
  MR.T , sounds like you got a pretty good start at it, you know you'll have to post pictures from time to time once construction begins. As for the round peg in the flat hole......an anvil, hammer and maybe a little heat followed by the touch of a file or small grinding wheel would get you close. From there I'd solder the blade side in with a butane pocket torch or a quick touch with a propane torch, but that's me. I don't care much for the little soldering either. Going to rewire an RS-3 soon....not looking forward to it but at the same time I can't wait.......later all....   S.B.      PS .......I use an old piece of full scale track for an anvil.....Dad got it when they replaced the tracks in our back yard about 20 years ago      again....Later all   S.B.


Title: Re: Is it time for Bachmann to introduce new track items?
Post by: on30gn15 on February 10, 2011, 06:38:06 AM
There are enough other companies marketing track and few enough consumer dollars to spread around, that I'd think the case would be that Bachmann would be better off spending their money on producing locos and rolling stock instead of redundant production of track.


Title: Re: Is it time for Bachmann to introduce new track items?
Post by: jsmvmd on February 12, 2011, 11:02:27 AM
Dear Guys,

Thank you for the quick reply !  However, sorry, this is not it.  Joe had a nice description about removing Bachmann plastic rail connectors and mating with Aristo or USA Rail.

I will get to this sometime, when the work clears, but was wondering if Joe could look it up for me ?  My search engine thinking is kaput.   Had the same trouble in grad school.  Not too sure how I would have gotten through it without compassionate reference librarians, in the old days when the literature searches were cumbersome.  Anyone remember those days in the 1970's. 

To paraphrase the line from an old Sesame Street song, "Now I just stay out of the way... J" in reference to the letter "J."   The number "10" was a "good'un," too !   :)

Best Wishes,

Jack


Title: Re: Is it time for Bachmann to introduce new track items?
Post by: Joe Satnik on February 12, 2011, 11:34:33 AM
Dear Jack,

The blades are black metal of some kind. 

I searched using "blade satnik" to find the following: [edits in brackets]

" To remove the blades, turn the Bachmann track over, and look for the bent up tabs cut from the rails near the center tie.  Gently bend the tabs up to match the profile of the rail, then slide the rail away from the blade.  When the rail clears the blade, lift the blade out. 

Save the blade for future use.  (I store mine under the tie, with a piece of black electrical tape wrapped around the tie.)

Slide the rail back and gently bend the rail tabs to hold it in place. 

You will need some other method to hold the tracks together, as the Bachmann plastic clips will not work with the [non-Bachmann, solid rail track piece].  I use 2 rubber bands per joint, though there is probably a more elegant way to do it. " [e.g. black tie-wraps]

Hope this helps. 

Sincerely,

Joe Satnik

 


Title: Re: Is it time for Bachmann to introduce new track items?
Post by: jsmvmd on February 12, 2011, 12:53:23 PM
Dear Joe,

As always, thank you !

Best Wishes,

Jack


Title: Re: Is it time for Bachmann to introduce new track items?
Post by: armorsmith on February 12, 2011, 11:38:43 PM
Joe, et al,

Yes, Aristo-Craft does refer to their track in feet diameter. However, their track is metric like everyone else's. Here is a link that was posted on the Aristo-Craft forum in response to my question regarding the 'exact' measurements of Aristo track.

http://members.westnet.com.au/susprog/AristoTrack.htm

I am developing a fixture to manufacture my elevated roadbed and was looking for the precise centerline radii for design.  I know this does not really help with back bending B'mann track, but I would hope it to be good information for all.

Bob C.


Title: Re: Is it time for Bachmann to introduce new track items?
Post by: doug c on February 18, 2011, 07:29:12 PM
"... calling Bachmann's track "lousy "   In context  re: cost,  and if considered beyond indoors app. ---- Yepper ! 

BUT if you can buy the tunrouts cheap  {$15cdn, L p/n94351 or R p/n94352 }  strip off the turnouts mech's do some weathering  build some support blocking  . . . .  would make excellent gondola loads just like at least one Class 1 does up here for shipping to their regional track upgrade projects, this past summer  !   albeit they are using  gondolas longer than the base 40'  we only have R-T-R access to.    R1 sized turnouts though would fit and look good perspective-wise !     IMHO

doug c

p.s. 90deg crossing p/n 94358  $? forgot to note sorry,   and they also used to have the  A frame bridge p/n96229 $10cdn