What type of road bed do you use?

Discussion in 'HO Scale Model Trains' started by iis612, Oct 28, 2008.


What type of road bed do you use?

  1. Homasote

    13 vote(s)
  2. Foam

    33 vote(s)
  3. Cork

    72 vote(s)
  4. None/Other

    21 vote(s)
Multiple votes are allowed.
  1. riverotter

    riverotter Midwest Alliance Rail Sys

    About the Roadbed Matter...

    I've used cork, UniTrack, & handlaid my own. This time around I'm using ceiling tiles and code 83/70/55 flextrack. Fast, durable, quiet. Got my vote!
  2. Bill Nelson

    Bill Nelson Well-Known Member


    Cleaning up my railroad room I found some scraps for homabed, and I took a picture of them , so you could see what I am talking about. In the photo there are two short pieces of the pieces of homabed (slotted), up against some of my Hon3 track on the fifth level. that level is being built on pieces of homasote cut from a 1/2 inch thick 4x8 sheet. if you want to see how that works, check my thread over in the logging, mining, and industrial section.

    Bill Nelson

    Attached Files:

  3. Roofing asphalt
  4. Bill Nelson

    Bill Nelson Well-Known Member

    eoofing asphalt?

    someone has gotten original on us. How does that work? what does it look like, curious minds want to know.

    Before I built my last extension of the 5th level I thought I was out of homasote, Later I found some, but I bought some black board, some kind of exterior press board that has some asphalt in it for moisture proofing I guess. I found more homasote and did not use it, so so far it has just sat in the back of my suburban.

    I think it left a black mark on my suburban, but I'd have to clean it out in order to find out.

    Bill Nelson
  5. craftsmaster

    craftsmaster craftsmaster

    I uses extruded foam for sub-roadbeds on top of plywood as a base for the model railroad layout; Trains & Scenery
  6. ecenur

    ecenur New Member

    I also use roofing asphalt, I think it works well. I used to use foam for a long period of time, until my son started using roofing asphalt.
  7. Bill Nelson

    Bill Nelson Well-Known Member

    don't use this stuff

    When I built my new larger southern staging yard a couple years back I used some woodland's scenic's foam road bed under the flex track.

    My proto 2000 0-8-0 switcher ,it turns out, is very particular and did not like the track at one end of the yard , so I did a major redesign. there are still place it doesn't like. the foam roadbed is no help at all, it is like trying to work on marsh mellows . Not enough support, won't hold a spike. I fought all night over a six inch section of track trying to get rid of a kink that I could have fixed in three minutes if it was over homasote and in ten or so over cork. I won't ever use this stuff again.

    Bill Nelson
  8. JamesG

    JamesG New Member

    Roofing asphalt.

    That is very interesting. Would anyone be willing to go into some detail about how it is best used? I am about to start laying my track and this may be the way to go.
  9. I bought a roll of it a number of years back, It's about 9" wide and I cut it into strips, glued it down with "No nails" then glued the track on top and ballasted it. Curves are a bit more difficult; requiring a template and then cutting it from the full width of the roll
  10. JamesG

    JamesG New Member


    Thanks. The curves seem they would be a challenge. Do you use the Atlas templates or have you built/bought something else?
  11. steamhead

    steamhead Active Member

    Cork...and sometimes 1/4" ply.
  12. Doctor G

    Doctor G Active Member

    Road Bed

    I use real rock and dirt. Unfortunately it does wash out from time to time and has to be replaced. Part of the joys of Large Scale Model Rail Roading.


    Attached Files:

  13. steamhead

    steamhead Active Member

    That Shay is a work of art...
  14. Doctor G

    Doctor G Active Member

    Thanks Gus. I appreciate your nice compliment.
    Doc Tom
  15. rowsdower

    rowsdower New Member

    I personally haven't done a huge amount of track laying, but I have found the woodland scenics foam bed to be a great product. It's easy to lay, even on very tight radii, and it really does dampen noise a lot.
  16. bob neill

    bob neill New Member

    I have been using traditional cork over 1/4 in ply to give shape of ballast and to absorb some of the noise. But when gluing ballast for sceniery the noise is back. I have not tried using foam as base board, sounds like it would help and be lighter to carry.

    Bob Neill

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