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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Starting a new thread to get any insights to owners of Eaglewings products.

Live in OH climate with winter, rain, humidity, etc.

Investigating putting up a small 50' suspended overhead layout hanging from an outside pavilion. Thinking about making the roadbed out of either:
(1) composite lumber "floating" shelf system (which may look too bulking with 2x4 construction with potentially awkward looking curves)
(2) Composite lumber ladder system with threaded bolts / brackets (more stealth looking but wondering how stable, especially with wind. Also,all the necessary brackets spaced 2' feet apart might look less than optimal.
(3) Lastly go all out with an Eaglewings system. More expensive but possible resale value (maybe) and portable should I move. Also, they state that brackets can be placed 6'-8' apart which would look less busy perhaps.

The first two options are exactly cheap either, but wondering if the Eaglewings cost is worth it for my application, and if Eaglewings iron holds up well in my climate. I would hate to spend the money and see it start rusting out in a couple years.

Looking to go with 12.5 diameter oval and possibly another 10' diameter oval inside. Dual simple ovals at most.

Just wonder if anyone has any experience with any of these ideas in this outdoor suspended application - any suggestions? Recommendations?

BTW: Greg E - I was able to see a USA passenger car in real life - you were right, pics and videos don't do it justice. That's where I'm headed and maybe a USA F3 to keep things simple for smaller radius tracks and consistent in scheme. Thx!
 

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Eagle Wings products are powder coated steel... Youll never have problems with their structure!

The others will age quickly .... What is the resale value then?

SD
 

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The Eaglewings stuff is quality, and the owner a great person to deal with.

The caveat is the metal, you need to have it powdercoated, and think all the track sections do, the structures have powdercoating optional.

In the Arizona desert, you can leave uncoated iron outside for a century, it will get a light coating of rust and stop.

But in the rest of the nation, you need protection when the climate is not so arid. Powdercoating is good, but if it gets chipped you have rust.

So, the handling of the sections and the climate can affect the system. Where I live exposed metal goes away very quickly. Powder coating can chip.

In general, high quality but a bit pricey.

Greg
 

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Well whaddaya know?
I have both an Eaglewings track and a TRS track. The Eaglewings setup (30' x 40' tri oval-like the Daytona race track) has been outdoors in western NY (weather like OH) for 6 years or so. I also have three of their bridges. The powdercoating has not held up well though since it is solid steel it would take a LONG time to rust away. The supports are their "spike" system in the ground but they make a system that sits on flat surfaces too. The legs are simple telescoping square tubes with a set screw and the frame is very strong but VERY heavy; steel after all. I'm not sure how it would work suspended but on a concrete pad under the pavilion you mention it would be superb. I agree that Dan is a fine gentleman and yes it is expensive!
My TRS track is truly portable. It has an aluminum frame, much lighter than Eaglewings and no worries about rust. It is much smaller, a 13' x 17' oval which breaks down to fit in the back of my Subaru to take to shows. I find it difficult to level compared to the previous two portable tracks I built. I set it up at different venues, not always flat. If it will mostly stay put I think it will be fine. Again I've never seen one suspended.
Both are topped with an aluminum/plastic sandwich material (Dibond and some less expensive variants) and that is absolutely the way to go, again impervious to the weather.
Were I doing it again and the cost was similar I would go with the aluminum TRS system specifically for the aluminum vs steel situation. You would have more leg options on a fixed surface.
I would be pleased to "talk" with you personally if you'll send me a PM. My wife and i went to school in Ohio so we know the state quite well.
Best regards,
Tom
 

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I always tried to get them to do stainless steel, but no go, even visited the actual shop where the stuff is built.

I do not want to come across negative, but the powdercoat is less durable than many think, in environments that are not as arid as Arid-zona.

Greg
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Thx Tom & Greg

I was hoping the Eaglewings might do the trick. I like the professional look and stealthy layout. The caveat is this layout would be by a chlorine pool so I'm not sure if that would add to more rust factors - can't imagine it would help matters. However, it would hang about 1.5 foot under the pavilion roof and be somewhat protected and out of the "direct" elements. No dice on a ground-elevated layout as I want this suspended so as not to be in the walkway.

Tom - is your Eagleworks system rusting quite alot? This would be an issue over concrete by producing rust stains. I imagine it could be touched up with rustoleum paint periodically? I don't mind the weight since I would set it up once and leave it there, and it would likely be very stable. Price is a factor but it does retain some future value and versatility - potentially.

Not sure if the TRS system would work suspended - I haven't seen too many pics of the TRS system but from what I see it seems less "stealth" in regards to curves. Not sure if that makes sense? I think it seems more boxy and angular instead of curving with the track radius.

So if this was your situation - would you opt for a composite lumber shelf a la 2x4 construction? Looking for stealthy look and apparently I'm just not too creative! I'm not sure I could get a composite lumber ladder approach level through out the entire oval without using a slew of ceiling brackets, which seems less appealing to me.

Any last thoughts or advice? You guys are really helpful - thank you!
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
actually I take that back about the less stealthy TRS - I just saw some pics. Just wonder how to stabilze it if suspended. Is the TRS system price point much different than Eaglewings?
 

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The definition of "stealth" has me a bit confused... do you mean the smallest amount of structure showing that is not the track itself? Thus "stealth" means the structure is less visible?

Greg
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Definition of stealth = something I'm not

Yeah - I'm mostly referring to the side width profile of the road bed. Seems like Eaglewings is about an 1" thick, visually appearing less bulky from the side. Plus you can see up through the system allowing more overall visibility. Another plus is they make suspended systems with brackets and bracing. All positives. But the cons are not to be overlooked as you pointed out.

If I used a composite lumber shelf system with 2x4 bracing then that's at least 4" thick on the sides. Underneath would be not be visible and look like a 2x4 structure.

I was thinking of another option of using composite trim boards 3/4 thick and 2.5" wide and make a ladder style with spacers. Just wondering how difficult it would be to suspend it, make it sturdy and keep it plum & level through out the oval run.

Also, looking at the TRS system - was curious if that is noisy with trains running over the hollow aluminum tubing and hollow sandwich surfaces tops and bottoms. I can't find definitive pricing information anywhere. Not sure how the track would attach to it. Seems like live Steamers use it mostly in a portable situation where the track just rests on it. Not sure if this is really a viable solution for my application.
 

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A suspension track via TRS would be in the same order as would any other design with brackets and lock in connections from one section to another.
Could not give you a quote at this point in time; as the general description is too vague:
"a small 50' suspended overhead layout hanging from an outside pavilion."

As to decking, you can have a TRS platform frame build then have whatever decking you wish to be in place (even similar to Eaglewings). For our portable track platforms we use dibond as it is light, cost efficient (easy to work with thus labor cost savings)and strong.

All the platforms build thus far have been custom and therefore it is not possible to have a price sheet (price range from $1850-10,000).

If you are interested for a specific layout concept to us:

tr3servicesatgmail.com
 

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I have to say that I had not looked at the triple R product before, the fit and finish looks exceptional. Where I live, near the coast, no question of what I would have to pick.

On the powdercoating, you did ask if chips would be easy to touch up. My answer is yes and no.

If there is a chip because of mechanical damage, yes. But if the chip is because moisture has gotten under the coating, and created a "blister" and that has "burst", then repairs, in my experience, require removal of the coating in the area and around it to be sure you have gotten all the moisture and/or rust.

Again, all back to humidity in my opinion.

Greg
 
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