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Home made crossing - The Lineside. - Getting You Started. - Your Model Railway Club
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 Posted: Wed Sep 6th, 2017 02:57 pm
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Kev
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Hi I'm going to make a wood railway crossing on my layout so it resembles planks of wood, will balsa wood be OK for this and if this is OK what thickness will I need to make a crossing. :)



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 Posted: Wed Sep 6th, 2017 08:12 pm
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amdaley
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Hi Kev.

You could also use wooden coffee stirrers from your local Costa Coffee or whatever coffer house you have near you.
Rub along the grain with a wire brush before staining them a dark brown or grey colour.
I am presuming you're working in OO gauge ?


Tony.



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 Posted: Wed Sep 6th, 2017 08:36 pm
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BCDR
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Hi Kev,

Any wood is fine. Try and match the width to the sleepers. Height is the distance from the sleeper to the rail head. Slight gap on the inside to accommodate the rim and flange of the wheels, flush with the rail on the outside. Use a file to make space for the outside of the chairs on the underside. Use a dart head to put some holes where the rail chair bolts would have gone (2, 3 or 4 depending on what you are modeling) if it's an old sleeper one. If you are going modern don't forget the iron cattle grid at the sides (not in a station). I use a fine tooth hacksaw blade to put a grain into the wood. Easier to do on a long strip before you cut to size. A few dings and dents helps as well.

Nigel



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 Posted: Wed Sep 6th, 2017 10:13 pm
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Brossard
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I prefer basswood when building wooden structures.  Balsa is just too soft.  Bass should be available from good model shops in all sorts of sizes.  As mentioned, wood coffee stirrers should work just fine, might be cheaper too.

On the other hand, I've had success scribing plastic sheet for planks and simulating grain by dragging coarse sandpaper along the length.  Tamiya Panel Lining paint (basically an enamel wash) does a good job at bringing out the detail.

I think it would be prudent to do an undercut where the boards meet the outer rails.  If you get the board inadvertently ever so slightly proud, it can lift loco wheels and you could stall - how do I know this?

John



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 Posted: Thu Sep 7th, 2017 06:05 am
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Kev
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Tony, Nigel and John thanks for all your replies on this subject really helpful time to start some modelling today. ;-)



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 Posted: Fri Sep 8th, 2017 12:04 am
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BCDR
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Brossard wrote:

I think it would be prudent to do an undercut where the boards meet the outer rails.  If you get the board inadvertently ever so slightly proud, it can lift loco wheels and you could stall - how do I know this?

John
 
Hi Kev,

John raises an important point that I breezed through ("slight gap on the inside"). That gap is a function of the back to back (and how much lateral movement is there on your stock wheel sets) and the tread width. If you have old stock with wide treads you will have to allow for that. If the gaps are too small there is a risk of wheels binding as they go through, or as John says, derailing. It's worthwhile checking what the minimum back to back is, and swapping older wheels for newer, more prototypical ones. The B-to-B is supposed to be 14.5mm, older Hornby locomotives (as in 10 years old) can be as small as 13.1mm. Bachmann locomotives are much better. It's easy to adjust wagons and carriages, locomotives need gear pullers to keep the wheels concentric.

One way to minimize the issue of binding is to put a bit of chamfer on the edge of the sleepers next to the rails inside the track as well as an undercut to accomodate the rail chair. Just enough to accommodate the  wheel contour. UK wheels sort of follow the NMRA RP25 parameters, the angle of the tread is supposed to be 3°.

All that said, crossings can make excellent re-railers for derailed stock. If you can have a look at old Hornby or Bachmann crossings that will show you how much of a gap you should have.

Nigel



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 Posted: Fri Sep 8th, 2017 12:34 am
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Brossard
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Actually Nigel, I was thinking of the outer rail although your point about inner rail clearance is a good one.  00 loco wheels are wider than the rail so it is very important to ensure that the wheels are in contact with the rail.

John



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 Posted: Sat Sep 9th, 2017 01:00 am
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Ted
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Hi Kev
 Just a thought 
 Why not use the sleepers from a discarded piece of track ?
 There is no problem matching to your existing track , and
 is more authentic .
 Regards Ted

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 Posted: Tue Sep 12th, 2017 05:39 pm
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Kev
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Ted wrote: Hi Kev
 Just a thought 
 Why not use the sleepers from a discarded piece of track ?
 There is no problem matching to your existing track , and
 is more authentic .
 Regards Ted
Thanks Ted that's a great idea why did I not think of that. :roll:



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 Posted: Tue Sep 12th, 2017 07:09 pm
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BCDR
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Hi Kev,

Depending on what track you are using, plastic sleepers may not be a good idea. Peco Code 100 is a tall chunk of plastic, and it's far removed from prototype dimensions. And you'll have to remove the plate/chair as well. None to hand, but it may come above rail head height. I'd measure before starting.

Nigel



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 Posted: Sun Sep 17th, 2017 09:50 am
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col.stephens
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Why not make the sleepers from card?  Virtually nil cost.  In 4mm scale you probably wouldn't see the grain anyway, so no problem there.  When painted they will look the part.  As Nigel has already said, don't forget to prick some hole to represent where the chairs were fitted. To answer your original question, wooden sleepers would have been five inches deep so 2mm thick card should be ok.


 


Terry

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 Posted: Mon Sep 18th, 2017 01:16 pm
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Kev
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Hello Terry thanks for your reply I have decided to use wood coffee stirers and they have worked out just nice. ;-)



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 Posted: Thu Sep 21st, 2017 03:10 pm
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BCDR
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Hi Kevin,

KIS, good decision. Take your coffee black and they come prestained.

Nigel



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 Posted: Fri Sep 22nd, 2017 03:26 pm
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Kev
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BCDR wrote: Hi Kevin,

KIS, good decision. Take your coffee black and they come prestained.

Nigel
Hi Nigel I was so pleased I found these coffee stirers and work brilliantly on my layout. :mrgreen:



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