Track Construction

Following the retirement of long term tutor Norman Solomon the track course will be taken over by Tony Geary. Tony has made track for Stoke Summit, Charwelton, Bala Junction, Basford North. He modelled in 4mm scale for 25 years before moving on to O gauge. He professionally built 7mm locomotives for a living for six years.

In line with other courses this will be a hands on modelling weekend course, students should provide their own project materials, including gauges and tools. Although Tony does have a stock of 7mm and 4mm materials if people require them.

Img 5493The course will cover the basic of track making, including

  • Planning and designing – using OS maps and original plans
  • Making use of kits and Templot
  • Materials available from the likes of C&L and Exactoscale
  • Copper clad pcb turnouts
  • Track accuracy vs practicality & reliability of operation
  • The use of gauges in the different scales – ie 31.5mm in 7mm scale
  • Wheel standards
  • Track laying – using tradition methods
  • Use of track setting templates
  • Power feed to each rail
  • Connections to underside of rail
  • Ballasting

Img 9430Turnout construction will be covered in detail, covering such topics as

  • Laying out sleepers
  • Ply sleepers vs plastic
  • Starting with a datum
  • Gauges
  • Insetting point blades
  • Checking rail alignment
  • Key placement
  • Electrically connecting rails together
  • Using brass strip to join crossing assemblies
  • Use of cosmetic chairs
  • Making crossing ‘V’s
  • Check rail gaps
  • Machining point blades using a milling machine
  • Vehicle test
  • Tie bars
  • Point operation – Tortoise etc.

Img 8517It is suggested that modellers bring with them some stock items including

  • Gauges
  • Check rail shim
  • Blocks of wood of various sizes
  • Double sided tape for plans
  • Test rolling stock
  • Strip brass
  • N/S strip or wire
  • Copper clad strip


Modellers should bring a selection of tools with them, including

  • Xuron cutters
  • Soldering iron
  • Files – big ones in 7mm scale!
  • Solder and flux
  • Large and small pliers
  • Marker pen
  • Disk cutter
  • Emery stick
  • Ruler
  • Tweezers
  • Xacto knife
  • Evo stick
  • Butanone