Discussion in 'FAQs' started by Bob Collins, Apr 24, 2001.

  1. Bob Collins

    Bob Collins Active Member


    I am back from my adventure to South Africa (3'6" railroad if you are interested) and I'm back at work on my layout.
    I'm using Woodland Scenics risers, etc. I have scribed out all of the mainline areas and have actually pinned the risers to my blue board.
    My question is this: does anyone know of a liquid adhesive that I might spray on to set the risers in place? My original plan was to place everything and then go back and glue it all in place once I was satisfied with location, proper curve radius, etc. Now I'm looking for an easier way to do it!!
  2. Woodie

    Woodie Active Member

    Looking for something to set the risers in place permanently? or just while you setup, to stop them falling over etc. Maybe little bits of bluetak might do it? Dunno... just a thought.

  3. Bob Collins

    Bob Collins Active Member

    No, I'm looking to place it all permanently. I've been using 1 7/8 quilting pins to hold everything in place temporarily and they work great.

    I can lift each piece out and do the gluing one at a time, which is fine. I just thought there might be a spray type of glue that I haven't run across in my many trips to the hardware store!! Thanks
  4. George

    George Member


    He's the one to ask for this one.
  5. shamus

    shamus Registered Member

    Hi Bob,
    Need to know what type of material you are gluing together.

    Liquid nails is a very good glue for polystyrene. On the market you can buy Spray Glue (Kids stuff) only really good for cardboard, or the type used for photographs. Apart from that, use EVE stick which is a contact adhesive.
  6. Bob Collins

    Bob Collins Active Member

    Hi Shamus;

    What I am doing is getting ready to glue my sub roadbed to the benchwork. I have covered my benchwork with blueboard (1" insulation board). I am wanting to glue the styrofoam risers to the blueboard. I can use Gorilla glue or something like that, no problem, but I was looking for a shortcut that would allow me to glue what I have already pinned into place without unpinning, removing and applying glue to each piece.

    It sounds to me like I had better plan on doing it "the old fashioned way."

    While I'm talking about glue and adhesives, I might asked here and now about "gluing" track to the cork. I've had several people tell me that they recommend against nailing the track to the cork roadbed, something about pulling the rails together and altering the actual gauge of the track. What sort of adhesive do you use to attach the track to the roadbed?
  7. George

    George Member


    If it's just blueboard, you probably could brush Elmers Carpenter's glue along the joints and it would hold fine. Other adhesives may eat into the foam.

    As for glueing the track down to the cork, some will probably disagree with me, but I have always nailed it down. I think the only way one could effect the gaugeing of the track would be by pushing down too far and kinking the plastic tie. The nails should hold fine, and ballasting should do the rest for adhesion. I'm just leery of gluing down and finding I've made a major stupid mistake.

    If John Taranto is reading this, I wish he would jump in. In one of my last notes from him, he told me that he was using floor tile adhesive to glue down the track, because in the event of a mistake, it came up easily.

    What do you think, Shamus?

  8. Woodie

    Woodie Active Member


    I nailed my track down but dremel drilled holes in the sleepers before putting the nails in. stops the sleeper kinking and pulling the ties off the tracks when nailing. Glueing was out for me, as I used flextrack and it is too difficult to hold it in place on sharper curves,especially if the flex track piece needs joining on the curve, if glue only is used, while waiting for it to set. Straight track yep, curves no.

  9. Drew1125

    Drew1125 Active Member

    Bob, If you're using "blue" board for your `subroadbed, you won't be able to use track nails anyway. They need wood to hold them securely.
    I've been using foam board for subroadbed too. Sometimes with cork, sometimes not. Either way, I glue my track down with white glue, spread on with a wet paint brush. I use map pins to hold the track in place until the glue dries. White glue works fine as a temporary hold until the track is ballasted. If you decide to move the track before ballasting, simply run a putty knife under the track, & it pops right up.
  10. John Taranto

    John Taranto New Member

    When a master model railroader friend of mine learned that I was about to begin construction on my first layout, he sugested that I use vinyl floor adhesive (which is similar to rubber cement) instead of track nails to attach my cork roadbed to the subroadbed, and also to attach the track to the roadbed. This, he said, will produce a quieter running railroad. The problem, is that the nails will draw noises from the locomotive and rolling stock down through the roadbed and subroadbed and amplify it.
    I find that by gluing your track down it will look much more realistic. You won't have those nail heads in the center of the ties every so often.
    I've used vinyl floor adhesive with good results. It works great for fastening the cork to the subroadbed, sticks readily. It worked fair with the flextrack. I used 1 1/4" T-pins to hold everything in place while the glue dries. I thought everything was secure but after a few days I discovered that the adhesive had "let go" and a couple of curves had shifted out of bounds. I remembered reading on another thred about a fellow that used Liquid Nails adhesive for his trackwork. I rushed out a got some and was able to repair the shift by slipping a putty knife under the flextrack and lifting it up to apply some Liquid Nails. I decided to use Liquid Nails on the remainder of my curves but I continued to use the vinyl floor adhesive on my tangents. You see, with the Liquid Nails, you've got to work fast. That stuff dries solid in about 60 seconds. The vinyl floor adhesive, on the other hand, takes several minutes to cure so you have time to get out a straight edge, (I use a metal yard stick) place it along side the rail or ties, and adjust that track so that it is perfectly STRAIGHT.
    BTW, my layout features a large yard and locomotive servicing facility. I used cork sheets for this and brushed on the vinyl floor adhesive for this which worked just fine.
    Hope this helps, John
  11. shamus

    shamus Registered Member

    Never put track pins in the center of your sleepers (ties) always pin on the outsides, this will stop the tracks from coming out of gauge. Just my thoughts.
  12. Bob Collins

    Bob Collins Active Member

    My sincere thanks to each of you for your insight. Being able to come here knowing that there are those who will share is part of the reason I decided to go ahead and build a layout. I have been very ambitious in trying to put together my very first layout, but so far I am very pleased that things seem to be progressing as I had planned.

    I probably am going to have to violate one of my first rules. I said I would do this project step by step and not move on to the next "phase" until I had completed what I was working on, but I keep catching my self looking at a couple of places on the layout where I would like to put in some track (I have bought zero track up to now) to "test" at least a part of the layout. At the speed I am progressing, and with summer upon us and outdoor work calling, it may be 2004 before I ever run an amp of power through a track!! I did buy myself an MRC Railmaster 2400 controller and ordered a small switch engine so I can do some "testing."

    I will begin gluing things down this coming week and as soon as I make a final determination about a couple of grades on the layout I should be ready to start putting down the cork too. I think once I get started it ought to go well. My only concern at all is my switching yard and I guess I'll just be prepared to make some modifications, if necessary.

    Again, my sincere thanks to all of you.

  13. Woodie

    Woodie Active Member

  14. George

    George Member

    I would like to welcome John Taranto to The Gauge, and I thank you John, for responding to my e-mail and sharing your experience with vinyl floor adhesive with these fine people.

    I first met John about three years ago in another site and have corresponded on and off with him in that time. I think you will all find his approach, interests and perspectives to our hobby a welcome addition to this colourful site. In turn John, I'm sure you and your pike will benefit from the exchange here as well. Indeed, some of the people here are worth their weight in gold.

    I look forward to reading your entries in the time to come. [​IMG]

    All The Best!

  15. Bob Collins

    Bob Collins Active Member


    Great site on the Ten Commandments of yard construction. I have printed it off and read it several times. I think I may need to do some modifying to what I had planned, but nothing serious.

    Thanks very much.


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