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Hello everyone...

Apologies in advance if this is a stupid question....

Like a number of others I have returned to modelling after a gap of a number of decades, and am building my first layout since the 70s.

Back then I used chipboard for the baseboards, this time I have gone for much thinner 6mm ply - think it's quite nice stuff and certainly makes the whole shooting match lighter...

I am struggling to find nice track pins though that are both short and not chunky - am using peco streamline 100 (after much deliberation - get back into it gently before I try P4 or EM!) - any suggestions

Thanks in Advance

TimP

(modelling the Western Region Transition Era on the Black Isle)
 

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I would have to agree 6mm ply glue the rack down with PVA then ballast straight on to the wet pva then when it has gone off and the track is fixed re ballast in the conventional manner.

Take a look at my blog it should help you.

Pete
 

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Hi Timp and welcome.

Your question is far from being stupid. There are several ways of fixing track and each of us have our preferred different method of which none are necessarily right or wrong. I too use ply although I use 12mm, but as far as fixing track it doesn't really matter whether is 6mm, 12mm or any other mm of course. Peco offer two types of track pin. One is more like a small nail than a pin but the other is a fine blacken pin which is not too noticeable once the track has been ballasted although on close inspection it will always be possible to see the head on top of the sleeper. The down side of these pins is that being quite fine, they are difficult to insert into the ply and easily bent so it may be necessary to drill a small hole through the sleeper and into the ply first. I have to agree with the comments made by others that track is better stuck down with PVA but I'm afraid I don't totally agree that pinning of the track increases noise transmission. Noise transmission is a product of the level of rigidity of the track in relation to the baseboard and sticking the track to the baseboard will have far more effect in increasing this rigidity than simply pinning. The method I prefer is to fix the track using neat PVA but by using drawing pins rather than track pins to temporarily hold it in place until the PVA has set. If the drawing pins are inserted between the sleepers with the heads holding the sleepers firmly in position rather than inserting pins through the sleepers it will allow for minor adjustments to the alignment of the track before the PVA sets. Once the PVA has set the drawing pins can be removed and the track ballasted in the conventional manner ie. ballast applied dry and fixed using a 40/60 mix of PVA/water plus the obligatory drop of washing up liquid.

Hope to see some pictures Tim once it's all up and running so to speak.

Steve
 

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TimP,
Welcome to the Forum. Like you, I have returned recently to railway modelling after a gap of 40 years. The small layout I've built uses sundeala board on a wooden frame. I also use Peco code 100 track and the small Peco pins to hold down it down. I rapidly found it was better to make a 1mm hole through the sleeper first. That way there is much less tendency for the pin to bend or for the sleeper to be distorted.

If you find the 6mm ply to be noisy, some people recommend using a cork base between the track and the ply to act as sound insulation, but this needs the PVA glue technique mentioned in two of the replies above - pins will in effect 'short out' the cork and there will be little noise reduction.
Best wishes for your efforts,
Regards,
John Webb
 

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Welcome to the forum Tim,

Personally I would only use trackpins as a location aid, I'm a great believer in the PVA glue and ballast method of track laying. John Webb has mentioned the cork underlay which is a good sound insulator, thin card can also be used in a similar vein, and indeed I have used this in the past, and will doubtless do so in the future.

Hope this helps in some degree.

Regards

John
 

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QUOTE (TimP @ 9 May 2007, 20:42) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>Hello everyone...

Apologies in advance if this is a stupid question....

Like a number of others I have returned to modelling after a gap of a number of decades, and am building my first layout since the 70s.

Back then I used chipboard for the baseboards, this time I have gone for much thinner 6mm ply - think it's quite nice stuff and certainly makes the whole shooting match lighter...

I am struggling to find nice track pins though that are both short and not chunky - am using peco streamline 100 (after much deliberation - get back into it gently before I try P4 or EM!) - any suggestions

Thanks in Advance

TimP

(modelling the Western Region Transition Era on the Black Isle)

Hello Tim,

I have found that driving pins into plywood is a very exasperating proposition,many bent ones etc,etc.
In the end I applied what here is called "donaconda" [sun....something in UK?] fibre board which has a nice brown colour on top of the plywood base.
It is about half inch thick and still comes in 4ftx8ft sheets.It is easy to cut with a heavy duty hobby knife.Takes track pins very easily.
You could use PVC glue but I have found it is messy and dries very hard if you change your mind in the future.
It also takes water/acrylic paints well.I make up a mixture of PVC glue water and brown/green paint to slop about as a base on which one can sprinkle scenery materials.
I have also since found that ballasting can be done with a dry mixture of ballast material dry wall paper paste powder sprinkled on the track to be ballasted leveled out and tidied with a soft brush and with a water mister bottle [water and a couple of drops of washing up liquid] spray the track ballast to dampen.
It will dry to a pretty hard ballast.Excess stray ballast and mistakes can be easily removed.
The best thing is that if you change your track laying mind you can wet the ballast remove the track and wash it [I do it in the garden with a hose] and relay when dry and repeat the process. I have found that the PVC method is difficult to remove and track can be damaged in the removel process.
Most of the PVC glues here are watherproof wood carpenter type glues.Maybe some of the craft shops carry a non-waterproof product.One would have to do some test runs.
Hope that you will enjoy the Forum as I am starting to do.It is lonely here in the Colonies!
A lot of very knowledgeable people are here and no one would regard your questions as stupid as we all started out the same way and it is an ever ongoing learning process.

Regards,
Bryan.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Wow - thanks all for your friendly and prompt responses, plenty to think about there, and what a nice forum.

I do use cork underlay - as I did in the 1970s.

A few pictures are here of some of what I have done so far...

Model Railway Blog

Tim

I need to get started on the model railway properly as the other non-work occupation is now finished....

Westfield Blog
 

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QUOTE (TimP @ 10 May 2007, 06:42) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>Hello everyone...

Apologies in advance if this is a stupid question....

Like a number of others I have returned to modelling after a gap of a number of decades, and am building my first layout since the 70s.

Back then I used chipboard for the baseboards, this time I have gone for much thinner 6mm ply - think it's quite nice stuff and certainly makes the whole shooting match lighter...

I am struggling to find nice track pins though that are both short and not chunky - am using peco streamline 100 (after much deliberation - get back into it gently before I try P4 or EM!) - any suggestions

Thanks in Advance

TimP

(modelling the Western Region Transition Era on the Black Isle)

Tim,

Like you, I use ply, although mine is 12mm thick. I use cork floor tiles (much cheaper than the stuff you get in model shops and it is the same thing) glued to the ply as a track bed. Track is glued to the cork using Evo Stick or similar impact adhesive.
See: http://mrol.gppsoftware.com/Graphics/IMG_3109.jpg

I agree with MakeMineADouble - track pins look crap and really give a layout a trainset appearance, especially when you try close-up photography.
If noise is an issue, track pins will always successfully transfer it straight into the baseboard, straight through any other material used under the track. With the glueing technique, there is no method of noise transmission between track and board surface - cork in between stops this. The use of ballast on top of cork with the glueing method will have little/no effect on noise - it is the baseboard itself which acts as a resonating board.

Photos of my layout:
http://www.brma.asn.au/ShowPage.aspx?P=417...46358752C202027

and a whole series of articles which contain other pictures at:

http://mrol.gppsoftware.com/Articles.aspx

Graham Plowman
 

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I do not use any track pins, as sleepers can easily be damaged when inserting track pins or on removal of track length.
I use "white tack" similar to "blue tack". Small amount of tack is pushed into space between each sleeper - sleeper with pre-drilled hole is selected.
My layout has been down for over two years, and using the tack method has shown no movement in that time.
 
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