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Re: Slip Switch

Posted: Wed Dec 13, 2017 4:14 pm
by BClemens
Found a post here (imagine that!) and a link toward some folks who cast their concrete ties in Rubermaid kitchen drawer liners that happened to be 2x3x15. They used Fastenal inserts on nails from the underside of the 'forms'. Interesting artical...: http://www.newrr.com/ConcreteTies/ (hope it's OK to post that) - anyhow I'm undecided about concrete, can't afford plastic and I'm sorely afraid of the longevity of our currently approved 'treated' wood.

Thanks for the information and insights too.

BC

Re: Slip Switch

Posted: Wed Dec 13, 2017 6:49 pm
by makinsmoke
Just remember,
One of the reasons rock ballast is used is to allow drainage of water down and out of the tie base. It's the same I'm model railroads outside.

If you have a dirt, caliche or whatever base compacted, a layer of ballast, then your track and ties, with ballast in between but not over the top of the ties, and diagonally to the side,
the natural movement of moisture is down and away from the ties.

They can last a long time given those parameters.

If you have ballast and/or dirt up to the ends of the ties, and covering the ties they don't have much chance to drain and dry out. They stay moist for a much longer time leading to early decay.

Re: Slip Switch

Posted: Wed Dec 13, 2017 9:10 pm
by southwestern737
That is the process I used for making my ties, I pretty much used there method but used fiberglass mesh for reinforcement instead of steel. I have made about 10000 ties.
Brent

Re: Slip Switch

Posted: Thu Dec 14, 2017 6:39 pm
by rkcarguy
Makinsmoke has a very good point, it's all about the drainage. Using a "clear" ballast *below* and between the ties in the key. Also you can read up on "uncle Larry's wood stain recipe" and variants of it, that may work better on regular lumber instead of buying treated. I have a friend in the concrete business, who states "there is two kinds of concrete, that that will crack, and that which has cracked". I wouldn't trust it for a such a small cross section as a scale RR tie, personally.

Re: Slip Switch

Posted: Thu Dec 14, 2017 7:03 pm
by BClemens
This leads to another question with any track laying. There are videos and pictorials of folks laying track (panels) on top of grassy sod with a plastic layer underneath - is that for real? Looks like that would drop or sag in undetermined amounts in different areas....so the track would be humpy/dippy after a short period time.

BC

Re: Slip Switch

Posted: Fri Dec 15, 2017 2:32 pm
by rkcarguy
I've seen this on Youtube, and it looked like a disaster. The track would certainly settle in softer spots, and I think the plastic will hold water against the ties and accelerate rot.
My plan for my 12" gage ROW is:

Clear and grade the dirt
Lay down weed cloth, there is a woven tarp type stuff that flows *some* water, but blocks weeds.
Cover it with a few inches of clear gravel.
Lay down track panels.
Fill in between ties with more clear gravel.

As far as sizing the gravel, I'm probably looking at 5/8 clear all around. I really like the way 3/8 clear compacts and provides a smoother more supportive surface, but I have concerns about it's drainage ability as western Washington is really wet.

Re: Slip Switch

Posted: Fri Dec 15, 2017 2:37 pm
by rkcarguy
I made a new post BClemens, so we don't thread jack the slip switch thread anymore.