Track ballast and hammers

Discussion in 'FAQs' started by Woodie, Nov 3, 2004.

  1. Woodie

    Woodie Active Member

    I think I've discovered a nice little ballasting trick. Dunno..... but I've never seen it mentioned before.

    I'd ballasted some track, and had not glued it down as yet. I usually leave it for a while, and give a few runs over it with my "if it goes over/around/through it, then anything will go over/around/through it" loco and cars.

    However, I was nailing down a few bits of stuff, and gave the nails a good wack.

    Well, that lotta ballast just jumped about 2 feet in the air and landed all over the place, didn't it. Had to do it all again, so mini-vacced it all up, an did it again. You know... spend ages brush that little bit there, this little bit over here, getting it "perfect".

    Then I thought..... What if I just tap the baseboard underneath just a little teensie tap with a small hammer.

    Well, all that ballast settled just beautifully in and around the ties, and off the sides of the rails, and levelled out even the most minute "lumps", and also was just enough to settle it all (even those stubborn single grains of ballast that annoy ya, and as soon as you try and brush them away, you just brush 100 out of somewhere else to replace it :curse: ).

    Just with a couple of little light taps underneath with a hammer. :thumb: :D All fixed... the whole lot!!

    And, really, its just the way the prototype track ballasting do it to, with those huge "vibrators" that settle the track ballast. :)

    Anyone else done this?
  2. TrainClown

    TrainClown Member

    That's a great tip Woody! Into my bag of tricks it goes. ;)

  3. McFortner

    McFortner Member

    Woodie, for that tip I'm putting you up for Patron Saint of Model Railroaders! :wave: :p :)

    What a wonderful idea. Can't wait to try it out. I've been putting off finishing the ballasting because of all those $(*#^@ grains refuse to stay put....

  4. Iron Goat

    Iron Goat Member

    Thanks for sharing that, Woody. GOOD ONE !

  5. Matthyro

    Matthyro Will always be re-membered

    Just what I need to do Woodie. A great tip
  6. belg

    belg Member

    So woodie you mean this????

    Not this?? Right
  7. RailRon

    RailRon Active Member

    Woodie, that's exactly how Nobel prizes are won: You are the first who REALIZES an everyday experience and use it for something really useful. So I vote for you as the first prizewinner of the Nobel prize in model railroading! :) :) :)

    Thanks a lot for passing on this idea. It came just at the right time - I hope to start ballasting track in the very near future! :thumb:


    PS: When I look at some Nobel prizes, I'm not sure if the inventions behind them are really THAT useful like your hammer-tapping-ballast-setting procedure. :D

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