Atlas code 83 flex track

Discussion in 'FAQs' started by c3node, Feb 28, 2003.

  1. c3node

    c3node New Member

    Hi to all, This the first post and I need some good advice.

    I am using Atlas code 83 flex track for the first time. I am generally solid with code 100 flex track laying but while getting setup to lay the code 83 I noticed that it doesn't have the tie center holes for spiking down the track to the roadbed (cork and homasote) :confused: . I guess I could glue the track :mad: or use track spikes like hand laid :( , not my favorite way.

    What is the common good practice to secure code 83 flex ?.

    Thank You
  2. shamus

    shamus Registered Member

    Hi Jerry, and welcome to the gauge.
    I personally would never trackpin (Spike) in the centre of the trackwork as sometimes it reduces the track width and derailments will occur.
    I would trackpin (Spike) it on the outsides only. What are you using for your roadbed?
  3. marty w.

    marty w. Member

    On the bottom side of the flex track there is a series of pilot holes that you can drill with a #62 or #63 drill.
  4. Gary Pfeil

    Gary Pfeil Active Member

    As Marty said, the holes are there on the bottom waiting to be drilled for use. However, for different reasons than Shamus (his are valid too, but care will avoid that problem) I no longer like to use track nails in the center. OK, they don't look great and that's a good reason, but in my case it's because the nails go thru the cork or homasote (well, homabed, not 1/2" homasote) and my problem in my basement is humidity, which when the wood shrinks during heating season, pulls the track nails closer together, causing kinks. Granted, if I ballast right away and pull the nails the problem is much reduced. But with nails in place and no ballast, forget about it!! Just food for thought.

  5. 60103

    60103 Pooh Bah

    I'm another one who goes for nailing outside the track. I put them between the ties and directly opposite if at all possible. I'll admit to having a few nails in the middle of the ties. After you ballast they become invisible and when the ballast is glued they can be removed, if you can find them.
  6. Vic

    Vic Active Member

    Hi Guys, Hate to disagree with the majority here but there's nothing wrong with using the center hole in flextrack to fasten it down to roadbed. But, there's a couple of little tricks to doing it that will avoid the problem of throwing the rails out of gauge. What cause the rails to be out of gauge is that the nail or spike is just too tight against the tie.

    Trick#1 Don't use those Atlas track nails. The things are just too long...there's no need for whatever is fastening the track down to go through the roadbed and into the sub-roadbed.

    Trick #2 My reccomendation is to use Micro Engineering "Small" spikes...this are acutually the little spikes that are used for hand-laying track....Simply grip the head of the spike in the jaws of a pair of flat-nosed pliers...push the spike though the hole and into the roadbed until the tip of the jaws of the pliers touches the tie...then release the jaws, close them and just gently snug the head of the spike against the tie.

    Trick #3 Use a three-point track gauge when fastening the flex track down and slide it along the rails as you fasten the ties to the roadbed. If you feel any bind in the the gauge as you slide it along just pull up on the nearest spike slightly and the rail will return to the proper gauge.

    Bonus....The little spikes are practically invisable one installed and once the track is ballasted you won't even notice them at all.
  7. t. alexander

    t. alexander Member

    I'm using those spikes on the flex track too. But to tell the truth It's because I didn't have the nails.:D

    Btw I'm just drilling through the ties where ever I need to.

  8. msh

    msh Member

    I've just started using code 83 flex (which I find MUCH easier to use than code 100) and was able to easily punch those holes through with a long foam pin. No drilling. I'll be securing the track with rubber cement and holding it in place with those same pins, same to be removed with the cement dries.

    Also - I don't know where I read it, but I swear someone said both rails on code 83 flex moved. BZZZZ. Sorry. Not today, Zurg.
  9. Jim T

    Jim T Member

    Both rails on the Atlas code 83 flex track I have move. One just moves harder than the other.

  10. Gary Pfeil

    Gary Pfeil Active Member

    I have Atlas code 83 which has boths rails move, and also have some where only one rail moves. The first time I noticed that both rails moved I thought something was wrong. A look at the bottom will reveal a different pattern of the started holes also. If you don't push a pin or something thru the holes from the bottom before laying it is hard to know which tie has them. I too use spikes I have on hand for hand laying to nail the flex track, but still find the appearance objectionable, so have started to remove them after ballasting as they are no longer needed then.


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