Gauge widening with C&L plastic track

Discuss the prototype and how to model it.
Triode
Posts: 8
Joined: Thu May 16, 2019 10:20 am

Gauge widening with C&L plastic track

Postby Triode » Thu Jun 06, 2019 3:36 pm

Hi All,

I'm new to P4 and have a quick question regarding track construction which I haven't seen answered anywhere: How can gauge widening be achieved with separate plastic chairs and sleepers?

I'm aware that the functional plastic chairs supplied by the likes of C&L incorporate a 1 in 20 inclination, as per the propotype. This apparrently precludes the use of standard Society guages, such as the triangular gauge, to construct this type of trackwork, as the guage tends to hold the rail firmly upright rather than allowing for the inclination. The end result is then slightly under-gauge.

I have a pair of the roller gauges supplied by C&L, which do not hold the rail tightly. These seem to be fine for constructing plain stright track with a correct TG measurement, but do not incrporate a gauge widening feature for curves.

Is the only option to use pre-made guage-widened track bases or moulded flexitrack? (This seems a bit restrictive in terms of the chair/sleeper combinations on offer). Or is the new rectangular guage widening tool compatible with the inclined chairs?

Many thanks,

Liam

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Paul Townsend
Posts: 775
Joined: Mon Sep 14, 2009 6:09 pm

Re: Gauge widening with C&L plastic track

Postby Paul Townsend » Thu Jun 06, 2019 4:07 pm

The triangular gauges used with inclined rail need the length of the tongues reducing....how much depends on the source. You only need reduce the inners but its Ok to do both. File, saw, grind as available tools.

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Noel
Posts: 1128
Joined: Wed Jun 23, 2010 1:04 pm

Re: Gauge widening with C&L plastic track

Postby Noel » Thu Jun 06, 2019 5:10 pm

I use a combination of roller gauges and the rectangular ones the stores supplies (code 191).
Regards
Noel

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grovenor-2685
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Joined: Sun Jun 29, 2008 8:02 pm

Re: Gauge widening with C&L plastic track

Postby grovenor-2685 » Thu Jun 06, 2019 5:22 pm

Paul Townsend wrote:The triangular gauges used with inclined rail need the length of the tongues reducing....how much depends on the source. You only need reduce the inners but its Ok to do both. File, saw, grind as available tools.

I think you mean reduce the outers :)
My triangular gauges have not needed this as they never reached the rail foot, but if they do need reducing its probably easier to reduce all the legs.
An alternative if you want the change to be reversible would be to clip some copper or brass wire in the slots, a bit of 0.9 mm diameter should do it.
Rgds

Julian Roberts
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Joined: Sat Jan 09, 2010 11:33 pm

Re: Gauge widening with C&L plastic track

Postby Julian Roberts » Thu Jun 06, 2019 8:20 pm

Triode wrote:
I have a pair of the roller gauges supplied by C&L, which do not hold the rail tightly. These seem to be fine for constructing plain stright track with a correct TG measurement, but do not incrporate a gauge widening feature for curves.

Many thanks,

Liam


Hi Liam C&L did do their roller gauges in 4 versions...18.83, 18.93, 19.03, 19.13 for varying severity of curve. (Slightly larger increments than the old prototypical steps which were in 1/4" increments but that's of zero significance.) Perfectly easy if you know your curve radius. Or, much easier, just use a 19.03 for any curve* as per the Exactoscale Fast Track which I can vouch works perfectly. This is meant only as an alternative to the previous suggestions if you were unhappy modifying a gauge tool....I haven't actually made plastic track (but have used the wider rollers making the curved road of solder and ply points) so not talking from direct experience. Hey, have fun :thumb

*Gauge widening on the prototype was on curves sharper than 10 chains radius. In practice it's likely that most model railway curves will fall into that category - 10 chains is somewhere around 8 feet.


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