Milan Branch of the Iowa Interstate RR

Category: Trackwork (page 2 of 2)

Protection for G-scale switch stands

I will be using G-scale switch stands to throw each turnout’s points.

One issue I had to resolve was how to protect each stand from being damaged by a wayward arm or elbow. The solution I settled on was to use bronze colored sprung door stops. If an operator gets too close from either side, the door stops should do a good job or getting their attention to avoid snapping off a stand.

Conquering a monster turnout

I’m hand laying my track and I have three curved turnouts to build. All three are the equivalent of #12s and needless to say that size is intimidating.

I’m pleased to report that the first one is done, and although I built it at turtle speed it works flawlessly. Building this turnout has given me the confidence to know that I can handle the others. Whew! Building the #6’s will feel like a cakewalk.

One of the benefits of hand laying is one can tweak and adjust the geometry to get everything very precise. It’s a good feeling to see a train move through silky smooth.

Roadbed and trackwork

I milled homasote strips for roadbed, both straight sections and kerfed for curves. I glued both the roadbed and ties down with Mod Podge, textured each individual tie with a razor saw and dental pick, and stained and ballasted. Finally, I used Pan Pastels to vary the gray color of each tie and then followed with additional Pan Pastels of black, dark earth, mud, and rust to further texture the ties.

I’ve started to lay rail and hope to have all the track down and operating by the end of winter 2018.

The undulating quality of homasote makes it the perfect subroadbed and roadbed because it looks prototypical at eye level.

Texturing each tie individually is possible on a small branch line layout. It creates the run down character of a somewhat neglected branch.

Move cursor over image above to see tie detail. Proto87 spikes used.

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