Handlaying HO Gauge Track Using Code 55 Rail

Discussion in 'HO Scale Model Trains' started by hminky, Jan 7, 2009.

  1. hminky

    hminky Member

  2. BillW

    BillW New Member


    I'm really fond of the look handlaid code 55 in HO. Your work is absolutely incredible!

    I'm planning on doing a 4x8 logging railway in HO and handlaying in code 55 as well. I've done a few practice sections of track and have to perfect some of my turnout construction techniques. I'm considering laying the entire railway in twig ties instead of nice square basswood from the hobby store. In my initial trials, I've simply cut twigs from the garden, with about a centre diametre of 3/32", with a pair of side cutters to the approximate length of the tie. Since none of the ties have flat bottoms, I apply a thick layer of white glue down on the roadbed. I then lay the ties by eye and let them set in the glue. Once dry, I sand the top surface flat until about half the initial twig is removed. Overall, I'm impressed with the fact that the ties still have their bark on the side faces. The biggest issue I've found so far is that it is difficult to get spikes to penetrate throught the thick layer of glue. With some dirt ballast, the overall effect shouldn't be too bad. Now I just have to get started on the layout!

  3. Mountain Man

    Mountain Man Active Member

    That's really nice work!

    BillW - I like your idea for the ties. Very original. :thumb:
  4. Dave1905

    Dave1905 Member

    Wayne Wesoloski did something similar, but he used a stationary belt sander to flatten one side of the twigs first and then glued the flat side to the roadbed, following it with a hand belt sander to "adze" off the tops.
  5. Bill Nelson

    Bill Nelson Well-Known Member

    code 55

    I love the look of code 55. my biggest problem, finding spikes with heads small enough. Kemtron used to make some real nice ones. I like the Micro-mark small spikes, but need to test them to see if there is enough clearance for the flange, my biggest problem with code 55. on my railroad ( picks in the logging section) I used code 70 on the main and code 55 on sidings, except in Harlow, which is code 55 throughout.

    Pictures of my railroad are in the Logging and minning area.

    Bill Nelson

    Attached Files:

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