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    Guest started a topic Routed HO Scale Tracks Message Board

    Routed HO Scale Tracks Message Board

    Im routing my first track, in HO scale and finding you cant just pick up the techniques from the 1/32 guys.
    Can we please get an HO scale routed track board for our own to hash out this new frontier?
    We need a place to share info on building jigs to get those 1 1/2 inch lane spacing and offset routings for power rails, im working with 1/16 rebar for now; i may try copper tape in the future. etc etc etc: How about it,Mr.Moderator?

  • Bananasmoothie1975
    replied
    Onya

    Leave a comment:


  • StockTomyFTW
    replied
    It is so easy to fear the unknown.

    One can not just talk about voltage as the be-all-end-all when using a word as strong as "lethal". Once again I will mention that it is the relationship between volts and AMPS that give electricity its punch. This is current. Only when the two work together will it ever approach lethal.

    Did you know that a static electric shock built up from your carpet and released through your finger to your doorknob is approximately 20,000voltsDC per 1/4 inch of spark gap? Now I dont know what doctor you got that info from (presumably one that speaks for the whole medical profession) but it is an incomplete statement.

    Now lets move on to assumptions and how easily they can influence this discussion. It is easy for me to assume that anyone that may have said that 18vdcX4 is lethal was most likely talking about household "current". Notice I didnt say voltage. Typically a household breaker is set to go off at around 20amps. When you combine 20amps with 18vdcX4 this is getting in the red zone as far the medical professions are concerned. Lethal..? Well it is all very circumstantial, body size, location of the shock and so forth. Needles to the heart with that current will probably hurt you pretty bad. Throw a plugged in radio in the tub with someone in it and that well.. we have all seen the movies about that. I, just like many people who mess around with electricity at home, HAVE been shocked by household current and lived (Although I get the feeling some around here wish I had died)

    Another "possible" assumption is that all slot cars require 10amp power supplies to work properly. This is not true. Long ago when grandpa hooked up his first slot car track he noticed something. *When one car goes alone it seems fine BUT when the other car starts off my car slows down** This led to many problems and because they didnt do things the way I have with mine, they chose to use amps to solve this problem not separate transformers. Now the cars are unaffected by one another and they use the same voltage. So for the next 100years (give or take) every one just followed along thinking this must be the best way after all they have done it this way for 100years.
    Well it wasnt good enough for me and my steel track so I had to do some "unlearning" Back to basics and rethink the whole thing. Like some vets (the ones who recognized the innovation of this track) said "Its so simple why didnt I think of that?" Well it is simple and it is fun.

    So the reason we dont die every time we get shocked from static shocks is this thing called AMPS(or lack of). I suggest that anyone building an electric toy at home study up on this. If you dont know the difference you shouldnt be building electric toys. My track runs on milliamps these are thousandths of an amp. So now the lethal nature is gone, See? That being said I dont suggest you play with it, or any electric toy, in the tub.

    I have suggested many ways to ease the fears of the unknown for people on this forum. I will briefly state a few of major ones.
    1. Flip the axles of every other car on the track and run those lanes with the polarity reversed.
    2. Run worm drive Blocker trucks in a few of the lanes with the polarity in those lanes reversed.
    3. Simply epoxy up every other lane and wire it up traditionally and put 10 full amps on your table.

    That fact of the matter is the CONSTRUCTION of this track is sound and far superior to traditional tracks in many ways. Magnetraction pitched out at 45*, single surface setups, tight six lane no passing zone to name a few. Some people dont want to acknowledge this for whatever reason (I suspect ego) and continually attack the "whole" track as if it is some how only allowed to be wired one lethal way. This is not true.

    I didnt come here to win some ego contest on the internet and I assure you that I dont need an ego boost from you all liking my track. I came here all warm and fuzzy at first and was just fascinated in peoples build threads. Great stuff. So many questions that I was asking myself many times before, only I was alone. I think if I had been here before hand it would have made the "unlearning" part even harder.
    It really was a good time.
    I hope you guys can get this all figured out.

    Leave a comment:


  • Maddman
    replied
    Originally posted by Crimnick View Post
    #1) We've been through this already.

    #2) I'm a .

    #3) I race storms.

    #4) That track voltage is NOT lethal even in a worst case senario.

    #5) I dont care who he is.


    Licensed electricians ONLY do what engineers tell them to do. The medical professions indicate that 18VDC times four IS a lethal voltage. Deal with it.

    Leave a comment:


  • 59bugeye
    replied
    MikeK, Good on ya for giving it a go! One tip I found helpful when I did my first track (apologies to anyone having a solution for this - haven't read all of the postings in this thread), if you're going to use the rebar tie wire for power rails, as outlined elsewhere here, it doesn't readily "tin" making it somewhat difficult to solder connections together. Where your track sections meet, run the free ends (give yourself approx. 3" at start and finish) down below the track surface and use butt connectors or wire nuts to secure the rails and power feeds together.

    Best of luck -- looking forward to those pics!

    Leave a comment:


  • MikeK
    replied
    Good info here...

    I've been toying with the idea of building my own routed HO scale track for some time... so glad I found this site and thread. I read through the entire thing, and the information and experiences shared by the builders is great! Thanks to everyone for their contributions. I look forward to sharing my my experiences and pics as I get through the design process and actually start to build. Thanks guys!

    Leave a comment:


  • renniealba
    replied
    Originally posted by Rolls View Post
    Rennie, ya gotta check it out. Crimnick is quite right about all the deleted posts, but there's good news...

    Charlie graciously relented to much pestering by the many who marveled at the coolness of his unique creation and re-posted one of the videos.

    It's a favorite of mine. Turn up the volume and enjoy it:

    http://www.slotcarillustrated.com/po...9&postcount=47

    It's a track with a steel surface instead of plastic or wood. Benefits are even magnetic attraction instead of just rails, a tiny bit of the surface, being magnetized; and the ability to make very tight lane spacing in corners; and last, ability to quick-reverse power and get a spun out car back in the race without a marshal.

    thanks for the link. it looks like a really nice layout. i will check to see if there are any other videos from him.

    Leave a comment:


  • Crimnick
    replied
    Originally posted by ctdurf View Post
    Hey Guys ! While I don't really have a dog in this fight so to speak I do have a comment for "Crimnick" . You know how you commented on the "inane uninformed non-electrician " comments on the possible lethality of the steel track ? Your inference was that the guy who made the comment didn't know what he was talking about . Did you consider posing a question about how he arrived at that conclusion before assuming he was clueless ? I say this because we might have all learned something that way and in the end that might have done someone some good .
    I am pretty sure the post you were referring to was written by a guy who might know just a teensy bit about electricity . Ever notice the little symbol he uses next to his name ? There's a tip there . He designs , supervises and installs/tests control systems for nuclear power plants . You could say electrical engineering and electricity are his "thing"
    Crimnick , I'm guessing that you aren't an HO guy . Not many HO racers don't know who he is or haven't at least heard of him . He has been a National level HO racer from at least as far back as the 70's He also designed and built one of the best wiperless electronic controllers out there , the M-Magic . And just in case that isn't enough he also used to make and produce the "MADD" line of Lexan bodies before he sold the line off .
    It's easy in these forums to just blow somebody off . It's harder to follow up and chase the questions and answers . But , in the end , if we did more of the latter and less of the former we would learn all that much more .

    Thanks,
    Durf
    #1) We've been through this already.

    #2) I'm a licensed electrician.

    #3) I race storms.

    #4) That track voltage is NOT lethal even in a worst case senario.

    #5) I dont care who he is.

    Leave a comment:


  • ctdurf
    replied
    Hey Guys ! While I don't really have a dog in this fight so to speak I do have a comment for "Crimnick" . You know how you commented on the "inane uninformed non-electrician " comments on the possible lethality of the steel track ? Your inference was that the guy who made the comment didn't know what he was talking about . Did you consider posing a question about how he arrived at that conclusion before assuming he was clueless ? I say this because we might have all learned something that way and in the end that might have done someone some good .
    I am pretty sure the post you were referring to was written by a guy who might know just a teensy bit about electricity . Ever notice the little symbol he uses next to his name ? There's a tip there . He designs , supervises and installs/tests control systems for nuclear power plants . You could say electrical engineering and electricity are his "thing"
    Crimnick , I'm guessing that you aren't an HO guy . Not many HO racers don't know who he is or haven't at least heard of him . He has been a National level HO racer from at least as far back as the 70's He also designed and built one of the best wiperless electronic controllers out there , the M-Magic . And just in case that isn't enough he also used to make and produce the "MADD" line of Lexan bodies before he sold the line off .
    It's easy in these forums to just blow somebody off . It's harder to follow up and chase the questions and answers . But , in the end , if we did more of the latter and less of the former we would learn all that much more .

    Thanks,
    Durf

    Leave a comment:


  • Rolls
    replied
    Rennie, ya gotta check it out. Crimnick is quite right about all the deleted posts, but there's good news...

    Charlie graciously relented to much pestering by the many who marveled at the coolness of his unique creation and re-posted one of the videos.

    It's a favorite of mine. Turn up the volume and enjoy it:

    http://www.slotcarillustrated.com/po...9&postcount=47

    It's a track with a steel surface instead of plastic or wood. Benefits are even magnetic attraction instead of just rails, a tiny bit of the surface, being magnetized; and the ability to make very tight lane spacing in corners; and last, ability to quick-reverse power and get a spun out car back in the race without a marshal.

    Leave a comment:


  • renniealba
    replied
    Originally posted by Crimnick View Post
    Alas....he pulled his track pics after the inane uniformed non electrician comments about the track voltage being lethal...which is laughible...

    This is the track I mentioned in the other thread...and the 6 lane hairpin....

    It's a thing of beauty isnt it...

    The well worn tire groves speak for themselves...

    BTW...it's a "steely"....the track surface itself is the "rail" used to feed the pickups...

    that track is so bad ***! how the rest of the track?

    Leave a comment:


  • Crimnick
    replied
    Alas....he pulled his track pics after the comments about the track voltage being lethal...which is laughible...

    This is the track I mentioned in the other thread...and the 6 lane hairpin....

    It's a thing of beauty isnt it...

    The well worn tire groves speak for themselves...

    BTW...it's a "steely"....the track surface itself is the "rail" used to feed the pickups...
    Last edited by Crimnick; 06-18-2011, 11:43 AM. Reason: Edited for CTDurf

    Leave a comment:


  • renniealba
    replied
    Originally posted by Jisp View Post
    Charlie, thanks for sharing details of your amazing track.........and I mean amazing! I have a feeling you will be "dissected" for every conceivable detail concerning the track and its construction.

    This static photo you provided is pure magic! Thanks again for sharing, Michael.


    loved the tight hairpin turn. did you route this? are there more photos? thanks.

    Leave a comment:


  • Bananasmoothie1975
    replied
    Hiya CMHN

    Thanks for the wire links.
    I wouldn't recommend any aluminium wire for power rails, as ali is not a good contact conductor due to it's natural oxide protective layer.

    A galvanized steel wire would work, most find it has too much magnetic pull for modern cars, would be worse if it's even bigger than 1/16" dia.

    There are some successful brass rail tracks out there, never looked at the cost but might be better than copper or magnabraid.
    Any non mag track might need the cars modded with added weights for better contact pressure, I had to do that when I made a copper wired (not braid) track.

    I've found the best option to be flat steel stitching wire, as have a few other track builders.
    It also closely resembles what's found in most brands of plastic track.
    Fairly cheap too

    Regarding scale, our "HO" cars are not 1/87, they are more like 1/72 wheelbase, and about 1/64 width for AFX and beyond.

    Tjets would be closest in scale to train HO.

    Leave a comment:


  • CMHN
    replied
    Hi everybody,

    I am very new to slot cars, I started looking at it a few days ago because I want to make some streets for my model Rail Road Layout. I came across this forum and this thread about making your own tracks. This is exactly what I am looking for.

    There are a bunch of different wires that is being used. Ive read that some people dont want magnetic rails, some do. Some say solid wire is quiet and better than braided and some say braided is fine.

    I found 2 wires that may interest everybody, let me know what you think. I know they will carry current well because that is what they were intended to do.

    Aluminum Electric Fence Wire


    Galvanized Electric Fence Wire

    Both of these wires are 14 gauge, which is .002 thicker than 1/16 which would give a friction fit. They are also solid wires. Both of the wires above come in 1/4 mile spools and are both under $40 a spool.

    Do you think these would work for the power rails?

    Leave a comment:

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