flextrack

Discussion in 'HO Scale Model Trains' started by ic&e_modeler, Jul 16, 2005.

  1. ic&e_modeler

    ic&e_modeler New Member

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    i just layed down my flex track and glued it to my corkbed. i was just wondering do i have to solder them together, i know its better if you do but is it neccesary for train running.
  2. Matthyro

    Matthyro Will always be re-membered

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    It shouldn't be neccessary to solder the track together as long as you provide enough power connections. I would recommend power connection for each piece of flex track then you won't have to worry about track connectors carrying current. With this said, I do solder my track connectors but that is a personal choice.
  3. stuart_canada

    stuart_canada Member

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    well you should solder the trak before you lay the track, just easier to solder that way. i never soldered my track, i just put in a few extra power leads. i never had any problems i could not fix that way. and it was easier to do my bolck controls that way. old style here , no dcc yet
  4. Pitchwife

    Pitchwife Dreamer

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    How do you solder your flex track on a curve before laying it and maintain the correct curve? :confused:
  5. stuart_canada

    stuart_canada Member

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    anyone I know who has soldered the joints on flex track does it so that they have 3 or more sections connected . then lays them down in the desire shape , then connects the next section of track... some find it easlier to lay the track in more then 3 foot sections. cruves are more true they say
  6. cidchase

    cidchase Active Member

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    Hey stuart,
    That didn't zaccly answer the question :D :D :D

    I'd like to know that one myself :thumb:
  7. Matthyro

    Matthyro Will always be re-membered

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    What I do is lay two pieces of flex track end to end in a straight line. They are joined with track connectors. I solder them and that gives me a long straight section. I then lay it around the curve with the soldered connection in the middle of the curve then when I reach the two ends I have to cut the track off even to add the next section sections which are usually straght.
  8. brakie

    brakie Active Member

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    Simply put no..I am yet to solder my flex track at every joint- except for making curves.IMHO there is no need to solder a feeder wire to every section of flex track on smaller layouts.. on larger layouts it is my policy to use a feeder wire every 6 or 8 foot(same as DCC wiring) as I see no need for feeder wire overkill. :D
  9. yellowlynn

    yellowlynn Member

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    flex

    I go wth Matthyro, soldering 2 together then flexing. Only make swure the 2 sliding rails are put together and make them the inside of the curve.

    Lynn
  10. Ralph

    Ralph Remember...it's for fun!

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    I do the same as Matthyro and Lynn mentioned.
    Ralph
  11. stuart_canada

    stuart_canada Member

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    well I figured that people would understand, solder the track together in long strips. 2 to 3 sections in lenght, then lay the track in the desired shape. then spike track in place, cut the section to mate up with next section of track and keep going.
  12. Ralph

    Ralph Remember...it's for fun!

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    Yep. That's it Stuart. Seems like the way to go to me.
    Ralph
  13. Pitchwife

    Pitchwife Dreamer

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    Thanks Robin, I understand how you do two pieces now. The sliding rail on the outside. I was confused about how to get the soldered joint to slide through the ties.

    Stuart, if you solder more than two pieces together doesn't one of the outside solder joints have to slide through the ties? :confused:
  14. yellowlynn

    yellowlynn Member

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    flex

    If the sliding rail is on the outside, you have to cut off ties on both ends. Have the sliding rail on the inside, then all you need to cut is the rail to even them up.

    Lynn
  15. Doc Holliday

    Doc Holliday Member

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    Silly me, I thought both rails slid. I'm done with mine, but can't seem to remember.
    Doc
  16. Pitchwife

    Pitchwife Dreamer

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    If the sliding rails are on the outside and the curve is complete, couldn't you slide a rail from the lead-in straight track through the empty ties on the curve and solder it where it joined the curved rail, thus offsetting the soldered joints as is widely recomended? Course that would throw a kink in the "solder before laying" concept. But then you have the "solderless srraight rail for expansion," principal. There's just too many choices. :rolleyes: :rolleyes: :D
  17. Gary Pfeil

    Gary Pfeil Active Member

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    Clark, That is pretty much what I do when using Atlas flex track. Other brands I've used don't have rails that slide worth a damn. Anyway, some of the above posts hint that it is desirable to have the rail ends match. It is more desirable for them not to match. Regarding whether the sliding rail is on the inside or outside, I've never noticed that it makes any difference. For the purpose of this discussion, lets say the sliding rail is on the outside. I lay the first section of flex track from the tangent the curve starts from, only fastening about half its length. Holding the track in its final position, I note where the outside rail ends. It will be shorter than the inside rail, of course. Where the rail ends, I slice off the "spike" details on two ties to allow for a rail joiner. Put the rail joiner in place, slide the next piece of flex tracks rail thru the spike details on the end ties of the first piece and into the joiner, solder. This while the last foot of the first piece is about straight. Solder the inside joint as well, then fasten down the second piece as you did the first, repeating as required. This method provides the same kink free rail joints as soldering before laying, and is easier to control the spot where the joiners will prevent sliding thru the spike details, while allowing staggered rail joints, way preferrable to joints lined up across from each other.

    Gary
  18. yellowlynn

    yellowlynn Member

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    Clark, Sliding a rail in to meet the short one would work good. The only thing is that unless it is offset somewhere else, you will still have a long rail to cut off eventually.

    Gary, that is an excellent way of doing it, and I agree. It just seems like a lot of extra trouble to me. Of course I am quite clumsy and inept. The reason I do it my way is the old saying "Give a lazy man the hard jobs and he'll find an easy way to get it done".

    Lynn :D :D
  19. Gary Pfeil

    Gary Pfeil Active Member

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    Hi Yellowlynn, I hope I didn't come across as being critical, I didn't mean to. It is more work but I've found that not soldering rails which join on curves while they are straight will result in kinks, to some degree. And it will at very least ruin the fun of watching the pilot wheels of a steam loco as they go thru those joints. Derailments can be avoided without soldering if trackwork is done carefully, but you can usually see the kink as wheelsets go thru. If the rail joints are opposite each other, that only magnifies this problem. Not that its a big problem!

    Gary
  20. yellowlynn

    yellowlynn Member

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    critical

    Hey Gary, you weren't being critical. You merely told how it should be done. Those kinks can really be a pain. When I lay track, I check each joint for kinks and gaps, then go to the next section and do the same. Lay it good the first time and you've got it made. There again, there's more ways of right than I can count.

    Lynn :thumb: