track trouble

Discussion in 'FAQs' started by Mitch, Sep 29, 2003.

  1. Mitch

    Mitch New Member

    I bought a relatively small HO set for my grand kids. It came with "Easy Track".
    The track worked fine until it suddenly developed dead spots. The Voltage checks uniformly on all of the areas of the track including the dead spots. An engine will either stop dead on the dead spots or slow way down.
    Any one have any suggestions?
  2. Tyson Rayles

    Tyson Rayles Active Member

    Have you tried cleaning the track?
  3. Possible causes

    if the voltage is OK, the track might be dirty. You can get cleaning fluids at your local hobby shop, along with the 'Bright Boy' eraser and cabooses that act as 'cleaning cars'.

    A decent rubdown with windex will also help
  4. 60103

    60103 Pooh Bah

    If you can't wait for the hobby shop to open, a piece of masonite (the rough side) or even a scrap of wood (no pine tar!) will clean the rails. Make sure you clean the inside of the head of the rail as well.
    You should also check the wheels on the engine to see that they are clean.
    Is the track flat? A sudden change of slope can pick the wheels off the rails enough to lose contact.
  5. grlakeslogger

    grlakeslogger Member

    Track Problems

    When cleaning track, make sure you do NOT use steel wool. The motor magnets attract the "leftovers"; it destroys the motor.

    You mentioned grandkids. Is your track down permanently on a board? I worked in a hobby shop for a couple of years. A fellow in a similar situation bought a set which came with EZ Track. He would set it up and take it apart, sometimes not too carefully. It's been a couple of years, but it seems he broke off the part of the track joint that carried current from one section to the next. The only remedy was to replace the damaged track sections. Good luck with your problem. --Stu--
  6. Mitch

    Mitch New Member

    The track is not permanently attached to the board. I was very careful putting the track together and every thing worked fine until it just quit.
  7. Clerk

    Clerk Active Member

    Is the layout on the floor or table. If on the floor, somebody could have accidently stepped on a track and slightly bend it out of shape.
  8. stary

    stary Member

    It sounds like the rails are dirty. Try cleaning them with Rail Cleaning fluid from a number of dealers, or rubbing alcohol from the drugstore, Flitz or Mass metal polish, availible in stores like Wal-Mart, K-Mart, etc. or Goo-Gone, in hardware or paint stores.
    Also, get an NMRA gauge-also available at a hobby shop or from any hobby dealer-and check to see if all the rails are in gauge.

    Good luck!
  9. zeeglen

    zeeglen Member

    Clean the locomotive wheels also. They will pick up crud from the rails and in certain spots the combination of wheel AND track dirt makes the track appear worse in those spots. Use rubbing alcohol on a Qtip or at the toe of an old sock worn like a glove. Connect a 9 volt battery to the wheels to spin them while holding the wet Qtip or cloth against the wheel treads.

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