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Discussion Starter · #21 ·
Thanks for the confirmation 34C. My set track points have a smaller radii with bigger angles than the Streamline range. Because my current layout is designed for a small baseboard, I won't be able to accommodate the different geometry if I attempted to change, so I think I'll be restricted to continuing to use set track.
On a more positive note, I think I'm better understanding why the locos are stuttering across the points, and I'm hoping to devise a solution to the issue. Work in progress 馃槈
 

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I know it sounds like a bit fiddley, but it should be possible to make a Vee to replace the Insulfrog one, glued in and wire it like an Electrofrog one. Alternately, it may be easier to replace the complete short rails attached to the Frog, chamfer the ends and connect with a wire, like the Electrofrog ones, again.

I do think that might be far easier said than done, although ideas on methods / jigs might be obtained from the folks that supply rail making kits.

Julian
 

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Discussion Starter · #23 ·
Hi Julian, thanks for your suggestion. Having played about with some kitchen foil to confirm the frog is the issue (rather than the closure rails or switch rails), I am thinking along the same lines as yourself.
I believe what is happening is that at very slow speed the loco wheel is 'dropping' off the V of the frog causing one or more of the other wheels on the opposite stock rail to rise slightly and lose electrical contact, when the loco tips slightly towards the frog. Using a test wire between stock rail and those wheels re-establishes contact and the loco starts moving again
 

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Hi Julian, thanks for your suggestion. Having played about with some kitchen foil to confirm the frog is the issue (rather than the closure rails or switch rails), I am thinking along the same lines as yourself.
I believe what is happening is that at very slow speed the loco wheel is 'dropping' off the V of the frog causing one or more of the other wheels on the opposite stock rail to rise slightly and lose electrical contact, when the loco tips slightly towards the frog. Using a test wire between stock rail and those wheels re-establishes contact and the loco starts moving again
This reminds me or something I forgot to mention earlier.

Uneven passage across a crossing V isn't necessarily the V itself protruding upwards. It could also be the wheels dropping into the V which is what you appear to have identified.

There are a few ways of dealing with this:

1) Dropping into a crossing is often caused by the back-to-back measurement of wheelsets being less that what they should be. They should be 14.5mm for 00 scale. Try correcting the gauge (not always easy on locos), but at least you should check it.

2) Similarly, the gaps between rails and the depth of the crossing also have an impact. As others have already indicated, SetTrack is a 1960's/70's phenomenon, designed when steam-roller wheels were all the rage and deep flanges were fitted to match. SetTrack and Peco 'universal' was designed to be compatible with this and still is, consequently, the tolerances on check rails and crossings are way more than what they need to be for modern stock.
I suspect you may be running relatively recent stock on 1960's standards track and this is why you are having problems.

3) Insert a shim of plastic in the bottom of the crossing. The purpose is to allow flanges to run along it instead of dropping further into the V. Peco actually do this on their 7mm scale turnouts. It's not my preferred option as gauging wheels normally fixes the issue, but if it works for you, it may be a way to go.

I recall about 20 years ago, taking my rolling to stock to run on someone else's layout. My layout is Peco code 75 and wheels are gauged to match. Perfect running all the time and still is. The other person's layout was SetTrack. Needless to say, my stock spent more time off the rails than on them. It was a waste of time trying to run decent models on crap track.

Set Track really should be confined to the bin. It isn't suitable for modern models and this is why we have things such as the code 75 and bullhead track ranges which are way better.
 

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Discussion Starter · #25 ·
Thanks again Graham for your reply.
I'm learning all the time, not least to now call my track 'Crap Track', which has a certain ring to it. 馃榾
I've measured the wheel sets. On the Bachmann class 4575 they are 14.2mm to 14.3mm, whereas the EFE Rail J94 is 14.3mm to 14.4mm. I'll apply some gentle persuasion to see if the wheels will move, but I don't want to overdo it. I will also try shimming with plastic too, as that's a potentially easier one to try out.
Cheers
Ced
 

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Have you not tried a "stay alive". If you don't want to re-lay track (& I don't blame you) that's what you need to look at next. There is just an inherent problem with short wheelbase locos and insulfrog points. Also, if you are using DCC you need to install some snubbers (RC filters) to absorb the momentary shorts that someone mentioned earlier.
 

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On the Bachmann class 4575 they are 14.2mm to 14.3mm, whereas the EFE Rail J94 is 14.3mm to 14.4mm. I'll apply some gentle persuasion to see if the wheels will move, but I don't want to overdo it...
An owner may be able to confirm, but I suspect attempts at any such adjustment on the EFE (ex-DJM) J94 is inadvisable due to the split axle construction. Once loosened, this construction tends to deteriorate in operation.

On the Bachmann model which has a conventional steel axle, a gentle 'tap' on the axle end from a pin hammer and a drift is typically effective in slightly increasing b-t-b. Patience required, gently does it, rather than a wallop that pushes the axle out. This is the only way to perform this operation without any risk of disturbing the wheels quartering or perpendicularity to the axle.
 

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Have you not tried a "stay alive". If you don't want to re-lay track (& I don't blame you) that's what you need to look at next. There is just an inherent problem with short wheelbase locos and insulfrog points. Also, if you are using DCC you need to install some snubbers (RC filters) to absorb the momentary shorts that someone mentioned earlier.
Please don't use snubbers.
The problem here is one of loss of continuity, not shorting.
If one has shorting happening, then one should be fixing the shorting, not masking it.
This is why things such as 'hex-juicers' (devices purposely designed to depart the less-informed from their money) shouldn't be used on DCC layouts because they interrupt digital signals. What tends to happen next is that people are encouraged to fit snubbers to fix the signal interruption problem when they should be fixing the shorting problem.
Please fix problems, don't fix symptoms and please don't encourage solutions that mask problems.
 
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