Flex

Discussion in 'FAQs' started by Grotto, Aug 4, 2006.

  1. Grotto

    Grotto Member

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    I have never used flex track but now it could be useful but I have a question.

    If you curve the flex track, will not the outer rail protrude from the end of the ties, and if so, is this extra length of rail cut, and if so how is it cut.

    The above run on sentence would make my English teacher spin in her grave. announce1
  2. ezdays

    ezdays Out AZ way

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    When you bend the flex track, the inner rail goes longer based on geometry. And yes, you do cut it. I just use a good pair of wire cutters for N scale track that cut one side flat. You can buy rail nippers but they're basically the same thing and run you twice as much.
  3. TrainNut

    TrainNut Ditat Deus

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    I use the small cut blade in the dremel tool collection to cut the longer rail and then file them flat with a metal file and remove any burrs.
  4. jim currie

    jim currie Active Member

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    rail can also be cut with a zona saw.that was the way i use to do it but now i use a set of xuron rail nippers and would not be without them :)
  5. LoudMusic

    LoudMusic Member

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    The major difference about 'rail nippers' is the blades have a flat side instead of two angles so that the cut ends up flush instead of pointed. I'm sure there's a tool term for this but I don't know what it is. My rail nippers from 15 years ago were great, and the cuts required little finishing work. But last year I used them on something I shouldn't have and destroyed them.

    Never the less, it's the flush cut that matters. I'm sure Dremel tool or saw work very well, but for me they're not as handy as a pair of nippers. Especially if you have a lot of track and it's spread out. The nippers can even go in a shirt pocket for quick access.

    Click here for a site detailing nippers. Of the flush cutters he mentions I had the bottom tool. And oddly I have the top one at work for cutting electrical wire.
  6. MasonJar

    MasonJar It's not rocket surgery

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    Be sure that you keep the sliding rail (e.g. Altas flex) on the inside of the curve. That way there is only one cut to make.

    Andrew
  7. ezdays

    ezdays Out AZ way

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    Yeah, I think that's what I said, the cutters I use for the rails has one side flat ("flush" is the tool term). They are made by C. H. P. (Italy) and have very soft rubber handles. I'd venture to say that they are every bit as good as rail nippers, again, at about half the price. I've got others that I use for cutting wire (the blue-handled ones in those pictures), they too have one side flush since we used them to trim leads on circuit boards that we assembled. Some of the others that this guy shows on that site aren't even good for cutting wires nevermind rails.

    I also use a pair of these to cut plastic parts from their sprues. I've got a pair of sprue-cutting tweezers, but these are easier to handle.
  8. 60103

    60103 Pooh Bah

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    It is also possible to use a razor saw if you hold the rail very steady.
    Whatever method, you should tidy up the cut end with a fine file. I used to used electrician's pliers and a nailfile, but I couldn't afford other tools when I was 13.
  9. TruckLover

    TruckLover Mack CH613 & 53' Trailer

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    ATLAS has a flex track saw that is like $5.00 or $6.00. But i think wire snippers are the best. After cutting, just take a file and brush the sharp edges off and make sure rail joiners fit correctly.