Flex Track

Discussion in 'HO Scale Model Trains' started by racer25j, Jan 17, 2007.

  1. racer25j

    racer25j Member

    Hi all,

    I was wondering what was the best way to cut flex track? do they make a specific type of cutter that can be used?

    Thanks in advance.

  2. Ralph

    Ralph Remember...it's for fun!

    Hi Jeff,
    Some people use a hobby razor saw, others a cut off disk with their Dremel tool, and others like myself swear by the Xuron cutting tool...which looks like a small pair of pliers or wire cutter but is specially designed to make flush cuts on track.
  3. Collyn

    Collyn Member

    A dremel with a cutoff whell seems to work the best. It gives the cleanest most precise cut. I have seen a cutter for the track but i dont see how it could give a clean cut.
  4. LongIslandTom

    LongIslandTom Member

    I was skeptical too about the Xuron cutter, until I saw one in action. That thing does make a clean cut on one side. The other side will be somewhat pinched, but all you need to do is make another cut to square that up.

    I bought one and it's now my favorite way of cutting rail. :thumb:
  5. racer25j

    racer25j Member

    Thanx everyone.
  6. Play-Doh

    Play-Doh Member

    I did mine with the hobby saw....never again. Illl be buying a cutting tool next time I lay track
  7. CAS

    CAS Member

    I had purchased a Xuron cutting tool, I get a very clean cut on 1 side. So the peice of track i need, i will cut with the flat end (or back side) of cutter for the clean cut. No filing on this peice of track. It's a good tool to cut your track.

  8. abutt

    abutt Member

    I've found the Dremel with their cutting disc the easiest way for a precision joint. Laying the rail to be cut right over where its supposed to fit and then using the Dremel gives me a perfect fit every time. I've never used the Xuron, but it would seem to me that one would have to lift the rail before cutting.
  9. berraf

    berraf Member

    I use a Dremel with a cutting disc and it works super :)
    It´s only when cutting a rail that are ballasted and fixed to its place there´s a problem to cut the right angle with a Dremel but that´s a small problem to take care off.
    Dremel is my choice :)
  10. jkristia

    jkristia Member

    If for some reason you have to cut a gap in installed track, then I use Dremmel with a cutoff disk. I used to use Dremmel when installing also, but just recently got me the Xuron cutter, and I am really surprised of how clean a cut it makes (on one side only), almost no need for any filing afterwards. However, I do still round the corners of the rail head before it is installed.

  11. Russ Bellinis

    Russ Bellinis Active Member

    I use the Xuron cutting tool. Most of my track cutting is making joiner tracks for modular set ups. We have a standard set back for the rails, but due to different climate conditions in various club member's storage areas, the length required for the joiner tracks seems to vary from set up to set up. The rail nippers are just so easy to use. I also use the rail nippers to cut the little bit of excess metal off of rail joiners so that I don't have to cut off as many ties to slip them in.
  12. racer25j

    racer25j Member

    I was just curious. Most magazines tell you to use a saw and after a test run; I ended up with a huge mess. Thanks again everyone.
  13. abutt

    abutt Member

    I don't think one can have enough tools for this hobby. When I start rebuilding the CNE ( I've recently had to move) I'll get a Xuron cutter and make my own decision.
  14. dsfraser

    dsfraser Member

    Just remember, please, when using a Dremel cutoff wheel, wear eye protection. The wee bits of metal can be very nasty in the eye, but if the wheel shatters (which they do) a shard in the wrong place will do major damage.

    Scott Fraser
  15. hiscopilot

    hiscopilot Member

    ah, this answers my question too! :)
  16. RioGrande

    RioGrande Member

    Cheapest - Razor saw (if your really on a tight budget) not that easy to use

    A little more costly - Xuron - works pretty darn good but not a perfect cut.

    most costly - Dremel with cutoff disc (my favorite) give best cleanest cut. Wear eye protection cause the cutting wheel breaks sometimes and flys into pieces.
  17. $modelman$

    $modelman$ New Member

    I'm new at this hobby and have a question dealing with FLEX track. Is there a difference between ATL168 and ATL178. I found a site that is selling ATL 168 for $1.99 and ATL178 for$13.96 for a 5 pack. Can anybody tell me is the cheaper is OK to use.
  18. RioGrande

    RioGrande Member

    I don't know which Atlas part numbers correspond to which track. Atlas sells code 83 track which is closer to the real thing size wise, band more expensive than the older but very reliable code 100, which is slightly over size. It could be the 168 is the code 100 and the 178 is a 5 pack of the code 83. Not sure. All Atlas flex track is good quality and will work well. The code 83 is a little finer and more realistic looking. If you paint and weather your track.. the differences are less apparent.
  19. LongIslandTom

    LongIslandTom Member

  20. RioGrande

    RioGrande Member

    Thanks for looking it up. I've been on the Atlas forums since 1994 but was too lazy to lookup the part numbers. When I did the math, it seemed the five pack came out more expensive which didn't make sense - thats why I guessed it to be the code 83 track.

Share This Page