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Peco Streamline (not exactly new, but new to me) - Members Ideas For Layouts. - Model Railway Layouts. - Your Model Railway Club
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 Posted: Mon Apr 13th, 2015 07:34 pm
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Passed Driver
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Hi All      I hope I do not get into trouble with this, most might think I am a bit daft :roll:starting the "Well Trodden Path". But at long last I purchased some track and points, and of course fishplates (there is the problem, instructions say "Cut the chair off the sleeper?? strange that??) did I read that correctly? so now I can fit the fishplate okay but that leaves a gap, under the track. please advise Kevin



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 Posted: Mon Apr 13th, 2015 08:11 pm
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petercharlesfagg
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Laying track can be confusing, we have all been down that road.

The reason for cutting the chair is so that the fishplate or joiner can slip under the rail without restriction.

Try it for your self, don't cut the chair and try pushing the joiner in, it very often ends up giving you a damaged finger!

You do not need to remove the sleeper unless you are using flexible Streamline around bends, but if you do, you can purchase extra sleepers that merely slip under the track work and act as guides to the joiner sections.

Likewise if you use underlay or loose ballast the extra sleepers work just as well.

Regards, Peter.



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 Posted: Mon Apr 13th, 2015 10:24 pm
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Petermac
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As Peter says Kevin, you won't get the fishplate on if you don't remove the odd chair.

My method is very simple and avoids having to undercut the chairs to make room for the fishplate which can, sometimes, be quite difficult - to say nothing of risky for the old fingers .................

If you look at the back of the track, you'll see that, alternately, there are spaces between the sleepers on one side and webs on the other side.  This is to allow the track to curve without loosing the gauge.  I select the first gap - maybe a couple or 3 sleepers in from the end - and cut the opposite web.  Then I simply slide those released sleepers off the end of the rails leaving a length of rail onto which I slide my fishplates.  I strip the chairs off those sleepers and then, once the track is fixed down, I slip the sleepers under the joined track (from one side) and fix them to the baseboard with a spot of glue (super or otherwise).

This means that, even on a curve where the rails meet in an offset (the inner rail being longer than the outer one), I can still have sleepers evenly spaced.  Provided you don't try to bend your track too sharply, the lack of actual support at the ends isn't important.

I've also found that some fishplates can be extremely difficult to push onto the rails - with Code 100 at any rate.  Doug Dickson (Chubber) made a superb tool for pushing them on.  I copied his gadget and have never looked back.  I'll see if I can find his thread ........:thumbs



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 Posted: Mon Apr 13th, 2015 10:43 pm
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Thank You very much Peter and Petermac I will have a go at setting up my track. Kevin



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 Posted: Tue Apr 14th, 2015 12:07 am
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Petermac
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Here's the link to the thread about the fishplate fitting gadget Kevin:


http://yourmodelrailway.net/view_topic.php?id=10140&forum_id=149&highlight=fitting+fishplates



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 Posted: Thu Apr 16th, 2015 12:42 pm
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Peter's advice is good.  

We all learn as we go in this hobby and there is seldom one definitive "right way" to go about things.  But you will expend a lot of frustrated energy trying to get joiners on without stripping a couple of chairs first.  Streamline track is designed and built with this in mind.

A few thoughts

Mostly you can get away with cutting just one chair off each end of the bases to be joined but there are times such as when joining points or completing a loop when you may need to cut two off one end and slide the joiner all the way on there before putting the track in place and sliding i half-way back to make the join.

Plain track has a softer base than points and crossings but you treat them the same way and shave off the end chairs - be aware this can be harder on the rigid base used for points.

My technique has always been to undercut with a scalpel blade and using a slight sawing action if necessary.  Do take care!!!  

Getting those pesky joiners onto the rail is another matter; some just go and others refuse to play nice.  It may be a trifle risky but mine are fitted using an old scalpel blade (one where you've snapped the tip off) eased into one end and then the joiner is offered up to the rail.  Use what ever optical assistance you might need - magnifyer or specs is necessary.

It is sometimes necessary to file down the rail end before the joiner will go on particularly if it is one you have cut yourself.  

Once the joint is made I skim the edge of a piece of paper over the rail head to check it is all good.  It should go over smoothly in both directions.  If it snags go back and check you haven't slipped the entire joiner beneath the rail and lodged above the sleepers - that will cause derailments and a loss of current.



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