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Thread: Filling gaps between rails. Solder?

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    Default Filling gaps between rails. Solder?

    Hi,
    So I have 2 nasty little gaps between rails that will be difficult to tear up and replace the track, and I'd rather fill them if possible. (Actually these gaps aren't little, and they definitely need filling).
    I read on older posts where some of you glue styrene into the gap with CA and then file it down. I also read where someone kept building up straight CA until it could be filed into shape.
    I'm happy to do this, but I wonder what your thoughts are regarding filling the gap with solder and then filing/shaping it appropriately.?????
    I look forward to your answers and advice.
    Cheers,
    Rob
    LONE WOLF RAILROAD
    ​"As we advance in life we learn the limits of our abilities"......HENRY FORD


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    Have you got a photo?

    Solder isn't very obliging when it comes to gap filling to a nice shape. Has the gap got a rail joiner across the bottom?
    regards
    Rob

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    Hi Rob,
    Thanks for answering.
    Yes both gaps have rail joiners beneath them and no, I haven't got photos.
    I guess from your reply that you'd suggest me sticking with using styrene, CA and my Dremmel.
    Thanks again,
    Rob
    LONE WOLF RAILROAD
    ​"As we advance in life we learn the limits of our abilities"......HENRY FORD


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    Quote Originally Posted by Sundiesel View Post
    I guess from your reply that you'd suggest me sticking with using styrene, CA and my Dremmel.
    Um.. some kind of hardening putty maybe?
    regards
    Rob

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    Quote Originally Posted by Sundiesel View Post
    Hi,
    So I have 2 nasty little gaps between rails that will be difficult to tear up and replace the track, and I'd rather fill them if possible. (Actually these gaps aren't little, and they definitely need filling).
    I read on older posts where some of you glue styrene into the gap with CA and then file it down. I also read where someone kept building up straight CA until it could be filed into shape.
    I'm happy to do this, but I wonder what your thoughts are regarding filling the gap with solder and then filing/shaping it appropriately.?????
    I look forward to your answers and advice.
    Cheers,
    How big are the gaps?

    Why not just re-lay the pertinent sections of track to eliminate the gaps?

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    Like Paul said, how big are the gaps? If not too big I would leave them as expansion gaps. Can you provide a measurement if not pictures?

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    I've soldered a gap or two. To be worthwhile the gap has to be pretty big. If the track is not well fixed to the roadbed then glue it down well around the gap with ACC. You need to clean the rail ends with a thin file. This risks pulling the rails off the spikes so file downwards only, and use flux on them. Its not hard to slowly shave the blob of solder down to a rail profile with an Exacto.

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    Hi Gents,
    Thanks for answering.
    I ended up using a 2 part epoxy resin I bought from my local auto parts supplier. Then I filed & shaped it. The stuff is as tough as nails and will do the job well......I think. I suppose time will tell.
    Thanks again,
    Cheers,
    Rob
    LONE WOLF RAILROAD
    ​"As we advance in life we learn the limits of our abilities"......HENRY FORD


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    Quote Originally Posted by Sundiesel View Post
    Hi Gents,
    Thanks for answering.
    I ended up using a 2 part epoxy resin I bought from my local auto parts supplier. Then I filed & shaped it. The stuff is as tough as nails and will do the job well......I think. I suppose time will tell.
    Thanks again,
    Cheers,
    Is the resin stampede proof? No photos...
    Bronman - "That's just dumb, D-U-M, dumb."

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    I've heard of filling gaps using baking soda and CA. Pack the gap with baking soda and then apply the CA.

    Haven't tried it myself yet. Anyone tried this?
    - Gary R.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Gary Rowan View Post
    I've heard of filling gaps using baking soda and CA. Pack the gap with baking soda and then apply the CA.

    Haven't tried it myself yet. Anyone tried this?
    I used to fix the front ends of my R/C cars that way. It should work for that just a lot of filling.

    ___________Just do it in Vinyl!__________


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    Yes I've done that for RC airplanes. I use talcum powder as we don't have baking soda in the house.

    What also works similarly, and I think better, is epoxy, especially with longer set time epoxy like 30 minutes. Mix enough powder in to get the consistency of spackle. Now you have time to shape it and it holds its shape while curing.

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    Again, thanks for answering folks.
    For those of you who asked for me to provide photos of the problem, my apologies for not doing so. The reason is that although I'm not a Luddite, I don't possess equipment capable of taking close up images.
    Cheers
    Rob
    LONE WOLF RAILROAD
    ​"As we advance in life we learn the limits of our abilities"......HENRY FORD


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    To eliminate the gap and make the track seamless, I would cut the longer rail to match the size of the shorter rail and replace the adjoining track with a section of flextrack or sectional track in the appropriate length. That's how the real railroads would do it. Large gaps will ruin the fun eventually.

    Metro Red Ln (Metro Red Line)
    Under the streets of Los Angeles

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    Quote Originally Posted by MetroRedLn View Post
    To eliminate the gap and make the track seamless, I would cut the longer rail to match the size of the shorter rail and replace the adjoining track with a section of flextrack or sectional track in the appropriate length. That's how the real railroads would do it. Large gaps will ruin the fun eventually.
    Shoot, the real railroad would heat the rail, use a rail stretcher to pull to gap in closer, then weld the joint using an exothermic process.

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