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Posted By jimtyp on 07/03/2008 9:46 AM
I have a problem with a turnout causing some cars to derail. After investigating I can see the reason. As the cars approach the turnout they are coming out of a 9' diameter curve. The turnout is a left hand #6 and cars are coming at it head on.
When the points are thrown for the divergent path, what I see is that since the cars are coming out of a curve the wheel flanges are pushed all the way to the rail where the point is touching the stock rail. The wheels hit the very end of the point and bounce up, causing some to derail. This occurs even though the points are recessed slightly in the rail. These are sunset valley switches. I see now I should not have a curve immediately before a switch, but to modify the layout now is more time that I have.
So I was considering a couple of options and wondering if anyone could say one of these is better or another solution that might work:
1 - grind down the end of the point to be even thinner than it is.
2 - grind down the rail so the point fits inside it further.
3 - add a piece of thin brass just before the point to help guide the wheels around the point.
I see a problem with each of these:
- The first, I may grind the end of the point down too far and cause a problem?
- The second, with the rail ground down, the point will sit inside it better, but now when I throw the point for the straight path it may not go over far enough without modifying the points to be further spread apart?
- The third, not sure if this will work or just push the problem back to just before the point?

1. Just use a fine file and take your time. You want to run your fingernail along the rail and not have it "catch" at the point.

2. Not a problem. The intent here is that with the "spring action" of the turnout throw/motor, the point can tuck a little further into the rail so the wheel makes a smoother transition. When the turnout thows the other way, this will have no effect. In other words, it doesn't "shift" everything over toward that side and away from the other.

3. Another way to implement #3 is illustrated below. I did this and it helped get my heavy weights through a turnout. But even this was not 100% and I ultimately put in a 6" piece of straight track on one side of the turnout that totally fixed the problem.

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