Author Topic: Custom Curved Turnout  (Read 9121 times)

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ednadolski

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Re: Custom Curved Turnout
« Reply #15 on: January 06, 2010, 12:27:35 AM »
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I seem to be a bit late to the party here, but I want to say, looks like some pretty nice work!   ;)

I've made a few curved turnouts, tho nothing nearly as sharp as this.  One thing to keep in mind in addition to the length of the rolling stock is the amount of coupler swing.  If some cars give trouble, a longer shank coupler may help.  Might not be a bad idea to test a few cars on a strip of flextrack set to the 8" radius.

Did you pre-bend the rail before soldering?  I've used one of the FastTracks rail bending roller tools, and found it to be pretty helpful.

Another thought, on a curve this tight, it's important to get the guard & wing rails positioned well, so that the wheels won't pick at the frog, or bind in the flangeways.   Are you going to hinge the points, and solder the points to the throwbar?

I agree with Gary, it's shaping up to be a pretty cool layout.

Ed
« Last Edit: January 06, 2010, 12:29:32 AM by ednadolski »

Chris333

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Re: Custom Curved Turnout
« Reply #16 on: January 06, 2010, 12:43:06 AM »
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I did pre-bend the rail as close as I could before soldering. I haven't built a turnout with hinged points yet, I just leave em solid and solder to the throw bar. This is the one I built for Erik:

But it was built over a Fast Tracks template so no guess work.

My drawing and print out isn't as detailed, but the rails are and that will help me built it right (hopefully)
« Last Edit: January 06, 2010, 07:16:29 PM by Chris333 »

ednadolski

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Re: Custom Curved Turnout
« Reply #17 on: January 06, 2010, 01:11:34 AM »
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That looks terrific, Chris!   :)   What are the curve radii?

Here's one that I did for my Tehachapi layout, radii are 18"/36" (IIRC).  Rail is code 55, the unattached flextrack in the foreground is ME code 40.  Sorry, this is not a very good photo.

Of course, now we have to try to convince Dave that it's not all that hard, and to give it a try   ;)



asciibaron

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Re: Custom Curved Turnout
« Reply #18 on: January 06, 2010, 07:11:41 AM »
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i printed out the Fast Tracks template and am considering building up a test turnout.  not sure where to get the ties...  i also would need a good hand vise to file the points and frog.  any suggestions.
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Philip H

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Re: Custom Curved Turnout
« Reply #19 on: January 06, 2010, 07:49:57 AM »
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ME makes pre-stained ties - I have a bag around for scenery work (simulating abandoned sidings, etc).  I think Central Valley may also have some, and Fast tracks does as well.  Locally, I'm pretty sure MBK can get them if they don't have them in stock . . .
Philip H.
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Baton Rouge Southern RR - Mount Rainier Division.

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"I'm trying to have less cranial rectal inversion with this." - Ed K.

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asciibaron

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Re: Custom Curved Turnout
« Reply #20 on: January 06, 2010, 08:18:57 AM »
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ME makes pre-stained ties - I have a bag around for scenery work (simulating abandoned sidings, etc).  I think Central Valley may also have some, and Fast tracks does as well.  Locally, I'm pretty sure MBK can get them if they don't have them in stock . . .

how about the circuit board ties - i guess i could make them, too bad the Future Electronics store closed :(
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Philip H

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Re: Custom Curved Turnout
« Reply #21 on: January 06, 2010, 08:42:02 AM »
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Fast Tracks has those too . . .
Philip H.
Chief Everything Officer
Baton Rouge Southern RR - Mount Rainier Division.

"Yes there are somethings that are "off;" but hey, so what." ~ Wyatt

"I'm trying to have less cranial rectal inversion with this." - Ed K.

"There's more to MRR life than the Wheezy & Nowheresville." C855B

Ian MacMillan

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Re: Custom Curved Turnout
« Reply #22 on: January 06, 2010, 09:37:22 AM »
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Very nice looking turnouts. I've done quite a few handlaid in HO but not N yet. Like you Chris, I also leave my point rails solid.  It was just easier in my opinion. I stain my ties with brown and black shoe dye washes.

I've thought of doing some in N, but at this point I do not have a need for turnout sizes that Atlas is not offering.
I WANNA SEE THE BOAT MOVIE!

davefoxx

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Re: Custom Curved Turnout
« Reply #23 on: January 06, 2010, 10:07:31 AM »
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Well it ain't much now, but it will get better.

I think it looks great!  Words cannot express my gratitude for your generosity.  When I started this thread I was looking for the feasibility of a sharp radius turnout, because I was afraid that it just could not be done, regardless of my lack of ability in building such a turnout.  If deemed possible, I was hoping to maybe get some names of custom turnout builders and never expected someone to just jump in and construct a custom turnout in a mere day or so.  Wow!  I cannot accept this turnout, though, without providing you with some sort of compensation.  We can deal with that issue by PM, if you prefer.  Again, it's looking great!  Thank you!!!  :) :) :)

Dave Foxx
« Last Edit: January 06, 2010, 10:17:54 AM by davefoxx »

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ednadolski

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Re: Custom Curved Turnout
« Reply #24 on: January 06, 2010, 10:18:07 AM »
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The wood ties from Mt. Albert or Kappler are more uniform than the ME ties, IMHO.   It's easy to stain ties with artists acrylic paints (black, raw umber, burnt umber) mixed with alcohol.  In N scale you can also use 1/16" wide stripwood, tho it's a tad oversize (10 scale inches wide instead of 9).

Filing C55 or C40 rail with a 6" flat file isn't hard.  You can use a bench vise to hold the rail, also some folks use a razor saw to cut a groove in a flat piece of 1x4, then hold the base of the rail in the groove for filing.  Like anything else, a bit of practice goes a long way.

For soldering, I use the rosin-core solder with Supersafe flux.  Before soldering, it's important to clean the copper cladding on the PC ties with a fine (600 grit or so) sandpaper or abrasive block, to remove the oxidation.  I'm paranoid, so I now use lead-free solder.

You can get CNC milled points and precision frogs from the Proto:87 stores.  I believe Andy now has these for N scale as well as HO.  Also, Details West makes some nice cast frogs in HO in codes 70 and 83.

Andy's website also has some really helpful turnout templates in .pdf  format (tho the site itself is a bit of effort to navigate).

Ed
« Last Edit: January 06, 2010, 10:20:29 AM by ednadolski »

davefoxx

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Re: Custom Curved Turnout
« Reply #25 on: January 06, 2010, 11:01:46 AM »
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Gary and Ed,

Thanks for the compliments about my small layout.  Space limitations dictated that a 2' x 3' layout was about all I could muster for the near future, so I gave my door layout away.

This does have its advantages for me, though.  First, and foremost, I would rather have a small layout than no layout.  At least I get to run something, and now my trains don't just collect dust.  Second, a small layout is easier to build, complete, and maintain.  Third, it is a great testbed for trying new things, e.g., this layout is my first attempt to superelevate curves.  Now, I don't know why I never tried this before!  Four layers of masking tape under the outer rail is all it took, and it is reliable and good-looking.  Finally, I'm not losing sleep over intimate details being absolutely true to the prototype.  Obviously, this isn't the dream layout, so I'm just having fun with this one.  That's what this hobby is all about.

Thanks again,
Dave

General Counsel to the Laurel Valley Ry.
Member: ACL/SAL Historical Society
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Andrew Hutchinson

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Re: Custom Curved Turnout
« Reply #26 on: January 06, 2010, 01:39:44 PM »
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Re the vice...

I don't use one for making trackwork - at least 99% of the time I don't.

I use the jig  described in Rene' Gourley's  turnout article in the P87 journal (www.proto87.org). Anyone building a turnout should at least consult this article before commencing. Some great ideas and with switch hardware accurate for most anything that I have to model except GN.  

Here is my rig. It fits in a brown paper bag and I can take it with me on the bus. It is marked out incorrectly for 1 in 9 and 1 in 15 when in reality I made new marks without the fancy bic numbers at the correct intervals of 1 in 18 and 1 in 30. Were I to do a No. 20 I'd need to add another inch to the jig. So much for planning.
 


Andrew Hutchinson
« Last Edit: January 06, 2010, 01:44:04 PM by Andrew Hutchinson »

Andrew Hutchinson

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Re: Custom Curved Turnout
« Reply #27 on: January 06, 2010, 01:41:23 PM »
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Well that didn't work. Here is the link to my flickr page

http://www.flickr.com/photos/32922165@N06/4251821064/

A Hutchinson

Chris333

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Re: Custom Curved Turnout
« Reply #28 on: January 06, 2010, 06:09:11 PM »
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I think Erik's turnout was 18/15" or something close, it was a stock FT size.

I use FT PC ties and FT wood ties. Their wood ties are the same thickness as the PC ties so it works out good.

I also have a FT #5 TO kit so I use that point/frog form tool to start the rail shaping. Higher number or longer turnouts need filed down more though. I use a cut off wheel and a file.

I like small layouts and was recently think how much I could fit on a 2x4 layout if I used curved turnouts so this is just practice  ;)
« Last Edit: January 06, 2010, 07:16:42 PM by Chris333 »

asciibaron

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Re: Custom Curved Turnout
« Reply #29 on: January 06, 2010, 06:16:16 PM »
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i am seriously considering building up a small HO switching layout with all handlaid track to P:87 standards once the N scale track is in place.  i need to scratch the HO itch i'm having, and a simple 2x8 layout over some books on a shelf would be a nice way to work that itch.  Sargent couplers, fine scale wheelsets and Exactrail cars - it's doable.
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