Last week we had the 4 inch long atlas code 55 set track turned up from Walthers, with enough packs to last for 48 module pairs.
For those of you that have got module ends we will be sending out one length for each pair.
So now on to the experiments over the weekend.
First off what should we use to hold the piece of set track into the module ends?? A number of different glues were trailed most of which failed to securely hold the track in place, in the end a 24hr epoxy was found to be the best. The type used here was CRC builders glue which sets strong and hard.
Now that the pair of ends was held together with the set track it was time to turn them back into individuals again, the locking toggles were undone and the end were able to be split just enough to get an Atlas super saw in the gap (great little tool these saws, everybody should have one, or several) and then cut the set track in half
Three ends got made up and more by luck than good management there were six very different ends, two pairs had the set track glued in at an angle and the final pair was straight. This should give some idea of the problems we are going to find when these things come together.
Raggy looking end
OK so now we had six ends with little bits of track poking out, next thing was to figure out how to get the base layer between them. Extruded board was going to be used for this as it is quick and nasty, but the problem is how to get the module ends and the foam board to stick together, and be square in all directions. Previously we had used thin ply down each side with the foam board forced in between, but this had an issue when it was built on a not quite flat surface that the whole module rocked. Also the supply of the ply was a bit short. Angle iron had also been suggested but a simple wooden block has been used to create a shelf for the foam board to glue into. This also allowed interesting module shape to be made rather than just 300 x what ever rectangles. The 2x1 blocks were screwed onto the inside of the ends with the screws countersunk to make sure the ends would sit flush together. The foam was glue onto the shelf with wall board adhesive, clamped and left to dry.
The shelf block
A not just another boring rectangle
There still needs to be some working out of the track base as this varied depending on the position of the shelf block and the amount of glue used to hold the foam board. The next set of experiments to be carried out is a running test to see how bad a join the trains can run through without coming off.
All lined up ready for some running trails