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Best way to clean a newly routed plastic track?

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  • Best way to clean a newly routed plastic track?

    Just got a new Bowman routed track up and running and it is very slippery. One or two laps and I have to clean tires to get the dust and gunk off.
    I suspect it could be static electricity from the plastic drawing in dust from my (relatively clean) garage. Add to this the local fires in NorCal and I'm pretty sure there is ash being drawn in too.
    What do people wipe down and clean their tracks with?

  • #2
    I would lightly spray wd-40 into a microfiber cloth to wipe it down the night before a race. Other than that just wipe it down with the same cloth from time to time.

    Might just be all the debris in the air in CA.

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    • #3
      If it is newly routed there may still be plastic sawdust left in the slots. Try cleaning them out with a shop-vac.

      Ed Bianchi

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      • #4
        Lenjet uses CLR Outdoor furniture cleaner sprayed onto a microfiber cloth on the Purple Mile (A Brad Bowman Track). Followed by a clean micro fiber cloth wipe.

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        • #5
          Originally posted by AptosC6 View Post
          Just got a new Bowman routed track up and running and it is very slippery. One or two laps and I have to clean tires to get the dust and gunk off.
          I suspect it could be static electricity from the plastic drawing in dust from my (relatively clean) garage. Add to this the local fires in NorCal and I'm pretty sure there is ash being drawn in too.
          What do people wipe down and clean their tracks with?
          Call Brad.
          Ask what he recommends.
          You spent good of money for the track, I'm sure he will point you in the right direction.

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          • #6
            When I first got my MaxTrax I expected that there would be little grip and it turned out that I was right about that. A MaxTrax is sectional, but they are made of the same Sintra expanded PVC material as most other aftermarket HO tracks. I ran around a Tyco car that had a big pair of sponge tires with traction compound on them. About a hundred laps per lane was all it took to condition the track and solid silicone and silicone on sponge tires had good grip after that.
            Normally with silicone tires there would be tire tracks, those can be removed using a rag with a little lighter fluid (naphtha) on it, however the track would have to be conditioned again after you did that.
            Last edited by RichD; 11-24-2018, 08:04 PM.

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            • #7
              Thanks everyone for your inputs. Brad suggested WD40 with the caveat that it may destroy silicone tires over time.

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              • #8
                Been using WD40 for many years and havent seen WD40 destroy silicones yet. It is recommended to NOT spray the WD40 directly onto the track. My approach is to apply the WD40 to a cloth and wipe the track down in 3-4 foot sections rotating to a clean section of cloth as required. After 10 minutes or so wipe the track down with denatured alcohol to remove the WD40. If the track is being put into storage skip the last wipedown.

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                • #9
                  WD-40 is 11% light mineral oil, the rest is a mixture of petroleum distillates. If I knew what those actually were I could look up their effect on PVC here: https://www.coleparmer.com/Chemical-Resistance
                  WD-40 may be useful in conditioning a new track if the problem is dust, it does a a great job of removing the last traces of dust if you spray some on a rag and wipe down the track with that. You might risk damaging the track of you keep applying large amounts of any organic solvent. It may not be a good idea to use a water based cleaner because water will promote rust if it does not evaporate quickly.
                  I mentioned that I clean my track with naphtha, that plays well with PVC, but it can attack regular set type plastic track, which is made of ABS, a type of styrene.

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