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Offline Dick  
#1 Posted : 29 February 2004 21:36:00(UTC)

Joined: 08/09/2003(UTC)
Posts: 134
Location: ,
I tried making an "M" contact track section as described by Don Harvie in the Operation Related section. I started with a full length straight section and it worked fine. The plastic insulation showing bothered me a bit and I decided to look for another way to provide the insulation.

I remembered a material that was used to insulate transformer coil windings and such. It is called "Glyptal" and used to be made by GE. It can be found on the net but only in fairly large amounts. I had heard of an insulating material called "Liquid Tape" and thought it would be worth a try. I found it at my hardware store and bought the black version.

After lifting the tabs hlding the insiderail to the sleepers or ties (I tried it on a curved 5106 section), I removed the rail and made sure that the tabs were straight up. The holes that the rail sits over can have sharp edges so I carefully ground them out using a file and Dremel grinder with a narrow stone.

I painted the bottom and sides of the rail with the liquid tape and set the rail aside. Then I applied the LT to the are that the rail sits on and then individually to the insides and top of each tab. I let things dry well and then gave rail and tabs a second coat.

After about an hour I reassembled the rail and roadbed very carefully closing the tabs, taking care not to squeeze them too tight. I did not want to puncture the insulation with any sharp tab edge. I did check the insulation as I closed each tab using a continuity tester. The effort to build the contact section was successful. The black insulation is barely noticable.

There is also a transparant, rust colored, very thin high voltage tape
on the market that might work very well in this application but I think it is very expensive. I will continue to experiment.
Offline franciscohg  
#2 Posted : 01 March 2004 02:13:33(UTC)

Joined: 10/07/2002(UTC)
Posts: 3,241
Location: Patagonia
Well, it seems a very promising method, i tried once myself to do something similar, but i hadn't such thing as liquid tape, so i used black enamel: it didn't work well.
I will certainly look at my hardware store for this LT.
UserPostedImage German trains era I-II and selected III, era depends on the mood, mostly Maerklin but i can be heretic if needed XD, heresy is no longer an issue.. LOL
Offline Gregor  
#3 Posted : 01 March 2004 09:46:19(UTC)

Joined: 17/04/2003(UTC)
Posts: 960
Location: Netherlands
Hi all,

I create M contact tracks without the need to insulate each individual clamp. I just cut the rails around the clamps, see below:

1. Use a Dremel type grinding wheel to cut two parallel cuts left and right of one of the 2 rails, over a length of 10 cm.

2. Solder a detection wire onto the base material in between the cuts (grind away the paint first of course !)

3. Cover the section in between the cuts with hot glue, and let the wire stick out of the glue.

4. Cut the rails, and make 2 connecting cuts between the two parallel cuts. Now you have created an isolated rectangular island. When a train runs over it, the wheels will create ground contact in the isolated section.

The advantage of this way is that you do not have to isolate all the individual rail clamps, with contact risk in each clamp.

Have fun,
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