laying ballist

Discussion in 'N / Z Scale Model Trains' started by kpowell, Dec 6, 2006.

  1. kpowell

    kpowell New Member

    When you are completed with ballisting how do you get rid of the excess. I have some that adhears to the rail and some that makes high spits that cause derailments. I'm using a dental pick to go around the rails now but there has to be a better way to clean the ballist off. I used 50/50 mix of water and white glue to hold it down.
  2. Nazgul

    Nazgul Active Member

    Once the glue is dry, I don't think there is a better way. You have to use some kind of small implement to dislodge it. The big question is: why is this happening? Are you using too much ballast so that it can't all go in-between the ties? When you put your ballast in place, do you tap the track with the handle of a screwdriver or brush to clear the rails and ties of excess ballast? Doing this will "vibrate" the ballast into the right places. Or is it getting kicked up when you apply the wet-water? I use a small spray bottle that I found in the cosmetics section of Walmart. It sprays a fine mist and holding the bottle very high when starting out will allow the ballast to get weighted down without getting blown around. I then use an old glue bottle and just apply the 50/50 glue-water mix drop by drop (others use an eyedropper). Hopefully you haven't finished all your ballasting already. If this isn't what's happening or you know this already...then please disregard my comments. I personally hate ballasting:cry: and I totally sympathise with anyone in the process of doing it:thumb:
    Hang in there
  3. Will_annand

    Will_annand Active Member

    We are in the process of redoing the ballast on the club's modular N Scale layout (8'x16').
    After 4.5 years of bouncing in the back of a pickup truck to 5-6 shows a year, things tend to fall out.

    We treat it as a 2 man, 2 phase job....

    Phase One: One fellow pours the ballast using a plastic spoon, the other fellow comes along with a small brush and spreads the ballast out.

    Phase Two: One fellow goes along with the eye dropper and soaks the ballast with the dilluted glue with detergent solution. The other fellow comes along with his fingernail and makes sure the inside of the track is ballast free.

    One fellow can do it, but it takes alot longer, you can really only do 3-4 feet at a time if you are alone.
  4. Shooter

    Shooter New Member

    Echoing Will's post, I myself will ballast some 3-4 feet (max) at a time, and while the glue is still wet, I will go back and not only remove ballast from the sides of rails, but also groom it a little to get the shape and effect I want. So as not to gouge the painted rails too much, I use wood toothpicks.

  5. kpowell

    kpowell New Member

    Thanks ALL! The only thing I did not do was go back before it dried, thats probley a better practice than letting it dry then using a dential pick to remove the balles on the sides of the rail.
  6. TrainNut

    TrainNut Ditat Deus

    This has happened to me before and I simply went back after it had dried with an Xacto blade and ran it down the inside of the rails. Sometimes it takes a lot of scraping and you have to make sure not to damage the ties but it workes good when that fix is needed.

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