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Thread: Kato Unitrack Double Crossovers - Oy!

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    Default Kato Unitrack Double Crossovers - Oy!

    I have two Kato Unitrack double cross-overs on my current layout and they have become a never ending source of frustration for me. Frankly, I feel like I'm having to clean the damned things hourly just to keep the trains running. Anybody else feel my pain? Any suggestions? My standard Kato turnouts don't seem to be nearly as problematic, and at this point I'm tempted to just completely punt on the double-crossovers and go with less complex/condensed mainline exchanges instead...

    Thanks!
    -Mark

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    Mark,

    Mine have always been near perfect.

    I don't know what you do to clean, but I NEVER use any abrasives on my track. Before I install, I polish the rails with metal polish. I'very never done a full gleam, but find that the combo of the Polish and a set of feeders on each leg keeps them running. After polishing, I clean with alcohol and that's it.

    I use some alcohol on a piece of an old tee shirt wrapped around my finger for track cleaning every year of so.

    Recently, after hearing Paul Schmidt rave about it, I've started add granite to my track routine.

    If you've already Brite-boyed them, the best thing you can do it polish the heck out of the railtops.

    The smoother they are, the less cleaning they'll need.

    I use Blue Magic, but have heard good thing about Flitz, too.

    Good luck.

    Don
    Last edited by Carolina Northern; 13th Jun 2017 at 06:56 PM. Reason: Tablet can't spell.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Carolina Northern View Post
    I've started add granite to my track routine
    I think your edit needs some more editing Don , or is there a particular Granite you use lol

    Steve

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    I like to beat them with a rock.

    Seriously, I meant graphite, you know carbon.

    Don

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    FYI, I use a Bright Boy and also Mineral Spirits (soaked into a rag). Everything works wonderfully after cleaning, but it sure doesn't seem to last very long....

    -Mark

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    The more you use a Brite-boy - the shorter the interval will become between cleaning. You should see the macro photos of what a Brite-boy does to the surface of the rail.
    Crud builds up in the scratches.

    The guys that gleam have a point.

    Don
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    Hmm, I guess maybe I should get some new crossovers and ditch the Bright Boy. Thanks for the tip.

    -Mark

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    I use a Magic Eraser, but I'm sure that it also scratches the rails, though at a much finer level. Switching to alcohol.

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    Get some 2000 or higher grit paper they use for restoring headlight with.You should be able to smooth out scratches from the brute boy.You can use 3000 git paper to clean with it will polish not scratch .

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    Get some 2000 or higher grit paper they use for restoring headlight with.You should be able to smooth out scratches from the brite
    boy.You can use 3000 git paper to clean with it will polish not scratch .

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    I don't think you need to replace them. They do need to be smoothed with increasing fine paper and then polish.
    Truthfully, all of your track probably needs it after a Brite-boy. The mineral spirits will take off the crud as well as most things, but as long as the scratches remain, it will come back.
    I'm surprised that the crossings are the only place you see it so far. The frog castings are usually the first place to show it and they are the same on the #6 turnouts, so they are just as touchy with this procedure. I paint my castings with Neolube after the polish is removed. The graphite in it may help the contact some - at least it doesn't hurt.
    I use the alcohol as much to get off the coating the polish leaves behind as for any other purpose. Be careful with the alc - it will remove the Neolube - it can be an unending cycle.

    Don
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    Never had a problem. Work perfectly all the time - three of them across three lines. Vacuum them from time to time, but certainly never used any cleaning product. But I do have plenty of feeders to each of them.

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