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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi, all...perhaps this will be useful to some.

I'm not fond of diluted white glue for bonding ballast, because it dries rigid and leaves a shine.  So I have generally used diluted artist's matte medium instead, since it remains flexible and does not shine.  Matte medium is quite expensive, though...

Lately I've been experimenting with diluted "tacky" glue with very good results: very firm bonding, no shine, and good flexibility.  But the really good news is the price!

16 oz Liquitex matte medium ~$15-$17 at Michael's or any arts store =  /DesktopModules/NTForums/themes/mls/emoticons/angry.gif
16 oz Aleene's Original Tacky Glue - $4.94 at Joann's and about the same at Michael's =  :)

(for comparison 16 oz Elmer's white glue is $4.99 at my local hardware store)

I generally diluted 1 part matte medium with 3 parts "wet water" (more or less).  The same dilution works with tacky glue, and I suspect from the firmness of the bond that it could be diluted a great deal more.

Dawg :cool: 
 

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RE: Cheap "matte medium" for bonding ballast

Several of the San Diego club members have tried diluted Titebond III wood glue...and are liking the results. Unlike diluted Titebond II, it doesn't seem to crack over time.
 

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I have had great successes using Weldwood original Contact Cement.  It is UV/temperature protected, remains flexible while bonding the ballast.  It can be used straight out of the can.

URL for more detail.  www.dap.com/product_details.aspx
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Jim:  How do you apply the contact cement?  The kind I'm familiar with is pretty thick and gooey and I don't see how it could work to bond a nicely-shaped bed of ballast.
I should mention that my application is "indoors."

Mike:  TBIII is my all-around favorite wood glue.  Never tried it on ballast, though. 
Thanks,

Dawg:cool:
 

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Dawg,
The Contact cement is poured into a ketchup squeeze bottle  for easy application to pre-ballasted areas.  I also have used this material with a paint brush and "drizzled" it onto the ballast [in a river bed].  I usually apply the cement to the outside edges of the ties and let the ballast between the rails float.    This material is much thinner than rubber contact cement.    When poured into the ballast, it soaks into the gaps between the aggragrate bonding it together.  When dry, it becomes almost [maybe slightly yellowish] invisible.

The Contact Cement can be purchased in quarts or gallons at Lowes or HD.  Cost for a gallon is about $18.

JimC.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
RE: Cheap "matte medium" for bonding ballast

Jim,
Thank you. I wasn't aware of that option.
Dawg
 
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