rail joiners, curves and C40 rail

Discussion in 'FAQs' started by jkristia, Jan 16, 2003.

  1. jkristia

    jkristia Member

    I just received the code 40 ME rail and ties I ordered last week, and boy oh boy that is tiny and fragile. It looks like you can easily by mistake install it upside down and not notice it until you check it closely with a magnifying glass :)
    I will first use this on my small 1x4 hand lay test layout “TestVille” and if it turns out ok, I might start using it on my “real” layout instead of the Atlas C55 track I’m using now, or at least start building my own turnouts instead of the standard #5 and #7 turnout provided by Atlas.
    Now I have one question, I will probably have more once I get started, but for now my question is.

    Do you use rail joiners on curves?

    On straight I’m planning on using 2 PC ties where the rail joint is and not use any rail joiners, I think the pc tie will hold the alignment just fine, but what about on curves, how do you get a nice smooth say 18” curve without any kink where the rail meets? (I know, I know, I can't have any 18" curves on a 1x4, I'm just curious)

    Thanks for any advise. I can’t wait to get started :)

  2. Woodie

    Woodie Active Member


    I suggest no joins on curves at all!! (if at all possible). If I must,, then railjoiners are the way to go, and if I have to have a join on a curve, I stagger the joins about 2" apart on opposite rails. That way, it avoids any kink you may get in joins directly opposite each other on the track, which can kink after a while.

    BTW. I'm HO and use Peco code 75. I assume Code 40 is N scale??? :confused:
  3. Vic

    Vic Active Member

    Hi Jesper, I'm a big fan of the PC board ties and yes you can get them to hold rail alignment on a curve between two pieces of rail. I use a good bit of code 55 flex track it places. The joining principal would be the same just for rail. It takes good soldering techniques, a good hot iron, 2 three point gauges ( one on each side of the joint an NMRA gauge ( to assure proper gauge at the joint) and possibly a few of ME's small spikes to hold everything in place. Like Woodie said it might not be a bad idea to stagger the joint...it will make the alignment go easier. Just work slowly and a smooth curved joint can be made.

    Oh and by the way.....an ample supply of unprintable explatives seems to make the job go easier!!!:D :D :D But when you're done you can celebrate with a swig from Tyson's jug or a glass from Errols finest malt:D :D :D :D
  4. jkristia

    jkristia Member

    I have all the unprintable explatives I need, both in danish end english, so I should be all set, and I will be looking forward to a taste of that finest malt ;)

  5. hi-f

    hi-f New Member

    Rail joints on curves

    You can bring the rail ends together and solder a piece of thin spring wire that lays along the outside of the rail and reinforces the joint. Use silver-bearing solder for strenghth.

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