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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
In case some didn't know, www.hrtrains.com out of Florida sells code 332 Stainless steel rail and judging from the prices is actually cheaper than Aristo track on sale.

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Aristocraft 8ft flex track (Rail only): (ridgeroadstation.com pricing)

$5.63/ft - SS rail - regular price 12 rail tube (I understand 24 rail tubes may no longer be made?)
$4.51/ft - SS rail - (times 80 percent to reflect buy 4, 1 free sale)

HRtrains.com

$4.24/ft - SS rail - 10ft rail sections regular price.

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I understand that HRtrains offers to sell split-jaw clamps with their track so the profile should be very close to the Aristo.  

The only issue is the tie sections as the Aristo ties are cheaper, so the way to go I think would be to utilize the HRtrain rail with Aristo ties.  

I just placed an order for two 12in sections of rail from HRtrains to evaluate it's use in the Aristo ties.  I'll post back and share my findings with everyone when I find out the results.  At this point I own enough extra track that I won't be in the market for a long time if ever again, but I wanted to offer some help to the new folks or those planning on expanding their layouts in this new era of insane track prices.   Looks like we do have other options...

More soon.

Raymond
 
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Thanks Ray,
Its nice to have this option, i will be looking into myself as aristo priced them selfs out of the game./DesktopModules/NTForums/themes/mls/emoticons/crying.gif
thanks ,
Nick.
 

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I believe the HRtrains SS track is Euro manufactured vs Chinese made Aristo track. That fact alone and now a price advantage makes the HR product very attractive for me. Looking forward to your evaluation Raymond.  Alan
 

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Raymond & everyone,
this is the very track that I happened to acquire several years ago on closeout from a wholesaler at very good prices. I believe that what H&R has is slightly newer than what I have but it is the same brand at the very least. A1 line or TDV track which is manufactured somepalce in France I believe? It's been reviewed in GR before from time to time. The track I have has welded on joiners and to complicate matters they are welded the opposite "polarity" of LGB & Aristo's track. At the time I got it retail was about double of LGB's offering at the time and Aristo was slightly cheaper. TDV or A1's track has stayed static while Aristo went up and LGB went out. Last year when the Aristo track pricing went thru the roof I emailed H&R about their track and they stated at the time that they had limited stock on hand and expected the prices to go up with the next shipment. At that time I had other places to spend my money and did not pursue an order with them. I'd definetly look into it again though. Please bear in mind that I've moved 5 times since buying the track I have and I've barely used any of what I've got. The few times I've steamed my Ruby up I've used this track with no adverse affects to track or trains. I've also used it once the first time I steamed to run some LGB loco's after steaming to test them out and I've used sections and one of the turnouts on a holiday layout. I can attest that split jaw rail clamps work fine. At least on the rails I've used them on as I've got 5 foot straight sections that I use for the steaming layout that came unassmbled and with loose joiners instead of the welded of the sectional. I'll try to post a few photos of the steaming layout and you will see they offer two styles of ties strips. Wood ties that are similar to LGB's European Tie sections and Concrete tie strips which are actually plastic but molded to represent Concrete sleepers. I've been happy with my track so far but as I said it's not been tested long term other than for storage. It stores fine long term!

Chas


Thsi was the top of the "loop" and as the Ruby was gettign warmed up sometimes it needed a push that night. As it got warmed up it ran better. There was a pretty significant grade and it never slipped a driver coming up it.



Looking back downhill


Cropped photo from the above shot and you can see some of the detail of the sectional curves I've got with the "concrete sleepers".


Running down the grade. You can see the box for the sectional curves on the right in this shot.

All the shots were from an impromptu cookout we had and I decided that I was gonna run trains cause I wanted to run my new to me Ruby. I also needed to test the new LGB F7's too. We also had a starter set out that the kids played with for a while.


This was the shot of the new F7's so I could compare them to the Wellsville, Addison & Galeton units that these will get detailed and repainted to become. Still gotta build a SP snow plow pilot for these! 
You get a good view of the tie strips of the wood style in these shots. I think they are even more "rustic" looking than LGB's personally.



 

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We used the H&R track on the Thanksgiving Point railroad before it was torn out. The track was nice.. great conductivity. One thing to watch out for, in areas where there was a lot of moisture, we did get a little rusting. I bet they have raised their prices, just not updated their website.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Thanks for sharing the pics and the info.

On the prices, they charged me the price listed on their website.  They may increase price in the future, but it hasn't happened yet thank goodness.

Raymond
 

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I started with a loop of H&R track. It does rust more than the Aristo stuff. Quality is better. Ties do not look USA, holds up well in the sun, but brown too light in color. Joiners are ok, but still should SJ. Turnouts expensive. Not as many different choices as Aristo.

Very nice people to deal with.

Regards, Greg
 

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That H&R stainless has been around for years, as I recall it was, is, made in France... A friend bought a bunch 
of it some years back and has had pretty good luck with it, I want to say its been about 10 years now.. It rusts 
a little, and needs cleaning from time to time, but otherwise it seems to be fine, he recently moved and took it 
with him and put it down at the new location...
Paul R...
 

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DId I mention my TDV track DID NOT come from H&R? I thought so? For the price I got mine and the current prices of track I'm hanging onto each scrap and each turnout! Especially in todays market! YIKES!

Chas
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Confirmed they JUST raised their prices and a 10ft rail is now $36.99 instead of $21.23. So it's no longer the deal it once was.

Thanks for the heads-up Nick on the price increase.


Raymond
 

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Many poeple dont know this yet or have us not considred for buying track but we offer 5' set consiting of two pieces of rail and the necessary ties for $42.50 (HRtrain price for 5 feet: 819-2016 Flex Track Package 150cm/60in. $ 52.99). I don;t want to tout too much our own horn, but the customers who baught our track think that our ties are the best detaile dones in the industry.

We also offer now 8' flex track in brass, as well as R2 and R3 switches - all in stock.

Come check us out.
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
Hi Axel,
Thanks for the info, but check who out? There's no link or any information in your post on where people are supposed to go.
Just curious too do you guys carry stainless?
Raymond
 
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Axel,
i ordered a railbender and some rollers last week, and they came in a day and Joanne was so nice i couldnt beleive it, i saw your track on the web site last week, and thought it was a great price, i will be contacting you in the near future to place an order for some to try out, if it is the same quality product as your rail bender you WILL have a hit... for those who dont know, go to trainli web site for info..;)
Nick...
 
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Posted By Rayman4449 on 05/09/2008 8:18 PM
Confirmed they JUST raised their prices and a 10ft rail is now $36.99 instead of $21.23. So it's no longer the deal it once was.
Thanks for the heads-up Nick on the price increase.
Raymond

Ray, just got 300ft of train li SS track today.. really nice track and better priced than aristo, so in my opoinion it seems what goes around comes around in the end, and look WHOS crying on there WEB site now bo ho
what there saying is our track is better than every one elses....cause we double our prices WRONG ONCE AGAIN.. AS SAID BEFORE WE WILL NOT FORGET WHAT THEY DID TO US 2 YEARS AGO AND NOW YOUR STARTING TO PAY THE PRICE FOR BEING GREETY/DesktopModules/NTForums/themes/mls/emoticons/crazy.gif" border=0> THE TRUTH IS THERE ARE MANY TRACK PLAYERS IN THE GAME RIGHT NOW WITH AS GOOD AS OR BETTER TRACK THAN THE BOYS one state below mein my humble opionion,OH YA AND CHEAPER....some of ther boys are jumping ship already and it looks like many more to follow..plus 2 new players comin on line before end of year, so will be plenty of great quality track, brass and SS alum and the new one witch WILL BE a high strength composite matirial, all codes at great prices..ive been told that if this new track is made it will revolutionize our scale for the battery Guys for a quarter of the price and far more durability thatn brass.... oh ya LGB track is back soon so yet another player,i love when people say one thing or bend the truth and get proved WRONG.../DesktopModules/NTForums/themes/mls/emoticons/w00t.gif" border=0> when you think your invincable then one day you wake and get bit-h slapped back to reallity/DesktopModules/NTForums/themes/mls/emoticons/unsure.gif" border=0>/DesktopModules/NTForums/themes/mls/emoticons/blink.gif" border=0>:confused:" border=0>
Nick...:cool:" border=0>
 
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P.S.The plane simple fact of it is as, ive said a hundred times, wheather your a newbie or an oldie if your cant afford the track why bother lookin at the train you cant run......... we need affordable track for all.... so we can buy all those wonderful trains to run on them... wake up manufactures the time is now to grow the hobby and as i always hear from you guys its a give and take scale so please start givin a little...............
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
Just realized after seeing your post that I forgot to post the photos of the HRTrains rail. (for that I appologize) I have to say I was really surprised at at the quality of the extruding and the overall look of the rail.
All purchased was two 12 inch rails as a sample to check it out before making any future purchases. Here are the differences between it and the Aristocraft Stainless that my entire layout is in.
Top view: It's hard to tell from this shot but if I remember correctly the top of the railhead is about twice as wide as the the Aristocraft.(in terms of contact area to the train wheels) I would imagine this should result in better traction for your engines. If I remember correctly too, the bottom of the rail is a bit wider as well and fits nice and snug in the Aristocraft tie sections.

Close up of the HRTrain rail:

Close up of the Aristocraft rail:

End shot of the Aristo rail: This is an unmodified piece of 12" rail

End shot of the HRTrain: This is also unmodified. Notice how clean, precise and polished the end of the rail is.



Side shot of the Aristo rail:

HRTrain rail: This was one area that really stood out, the quality of the finished product is just amazing. The HR rail is super super smooth and clean, no pits or rough spots whatsoever. It's also absolutely perfectly straight and square. I assume this is the result of an overall high level of quality in the entire extruding process.

I really like the overall apperance of the rail, I mean the stuff looks good and I never thought I would say that about track. I may eventually consider switching over to all HRTrain rail at some point but my Aristo stuff works fine so I'm currently undecided. At the current price points the HR rail is more expensive so you will have to decide if it's worth the extra cost to you or not. But just so you know, it definitely appears that you are getting what you pay for.
Here are the original full size files.(about 3mb each) It will allow you to zoom in but it really doesn't capture the detail well because of the image graininess from the low light conditions in the room.
http://www.rayman4449.dynip.com/HRtrains_SSrail_042308_0001.JPG
http://www.rayman4449.dynip.com/HRtrains_SSrail_042308_0002.JPG
http://www.rayman4449.dynip.com/HRtrains_SSrail_042308_0003.JPG
http://www.rayman4449.dynip.com/HRtrains_SSrail_042308_0004.JPG
http://www.rayman4449.dynip.com/HRtrains_SSrail_042308_0005.JPG
http://www.rayman4449.dynip.com/HRtrains_SSrail_042308_0006.JPG
http://www.rayman4449.dynip.com/HRtrains_SSrail_042308_0007a.JPG
http://www.rayman4449.dynip.com/HRtrains_SSrail_042308_0008.JPG
http://www.rayman4449.dynip.com/HRtrains_SSrail_042308_0009.JPG
Raymond
 

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I recently bought a section of H&R Trains track as a sample. I have a few things to add to Rayman's comments:

According to a chart on the Split Jaw web site, the H&R rail is 7.5mm wide, versus 7.0 for virtually everyone else's Code 332 rail. I'm rather surprised that Rayman was able to fit the H&R rail into Aristo ties.

As Rayman mentioned, the H&R railheads are substantially wider than on other people's rail. That means you can't use it in Aristo ties, because the gauge will be too small.

H&R's ties are quite nice.

My one-foot piece of "sectional" track actually has the rails floating in a section of flex ties. Unlike Aristo and USAT, who screw the rails to inflexible sections of ties that both 1) keep the curvature correct, and 2) keep the two rails in relative alignment, the H&R rails can slide around relative to each other. I don't know it the same is true for their curved "sectional" track or not.

As mentioned earlier in this thread, the rail joiners are on the "wrong" side compared to Aristo, LGB, and USAT. Further, the ties are cast in such a way that you can't readily switch the rail joiners to the correct side.

In any case, that may not be a bad thing, because the rail is too wide to connect to a USAT rail joiner (the track I happen to have here) without damaging the joiner. It appears that to interconnect H&R sections with USAT, Aristo or LBG you need to remove the USAT, Aristo or LGB joiner, and then install an H&R joiner on the "wrong" side of the USAT, Aristo or LGB track.

Overall, I agree with Rayman that the H&R track is beautiful. I too was impressed by the polished ends on the rails--I've never seen that in anyone else's product. Their product should be extremely durable--with the extra metal on both the top and the bottom of the rail, and the high strength of stainless steel, this track should be about as close to indestructible as it gets in #1 Gauge track.
 
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