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I have used Aristocraft brass track for years. All brands of brass track took a huge price increase a couple of years ago because of the amounts of brass being used all over the globe. Some folks like smaller code rail (looks more realistic) but with the amount of running that my track sees I like the Aristocraft because it is tough as nails. It has plastic ties. Yes they can melt. Running just butane locos is no problem. However, alcohol engines can flood over onto track, coal run engine grates can dump hot embers onto track and this can melt ties. No big deal, they are easy to replace. Sometimes, when they melt a little..........they hold the track tighter. Wood ties look awesome but are not practical. You will go just about blind trying to drive those tiny spikes, and drive yourself
while trying to keep track in gauge while doing it. Also, after a few rainy seasons, the ties start working themselves out. Believe me, we run all the time. Plastic ties are the way to go.

While the Ruby is a great little engine, if you can spend a little more and get a Accucraft two cylinder Shay or Roundhouse Sammie do so. They are just about bullet proof as starter engines.
 
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