Painting track

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Site Admin
Posts: 36
Joined: Fri Feb 26, 2021 9:20 pm

Painting track

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Posting for Terry:

Can I paint my track to weather it?

Will it stop the trains running if the top part of the track is scrapped clean?

I want to weather my track.
Posts: 18
Joined: Fri Mar 12, 2021 7:38 am

Re: Painting track

Post by SealionSteve »

If you want it to look realistic you should paint at least the sides of the rails to remove the shiny appearance. From looking at real track it is anything from rusty to a dull light grey. You should keep the top of the rails clean (wipe it over with a rag before the paint dries and/or use one those abrasive rubbers and/or a rag soaked in IPA). That's isopropyl alcohol, not India Pale Ale 😁. Most of the current collection comes from the contact between the wheel rims and the top of the rails.

There's no need to paint any bits that will not be seen - saves on paint and time.

You have to keep the sides clear of paint at the bit on points (switches) where the moving part touches against the main rail though. You can use a soldered connection between the main rails and the moving part, but a) you need to be happy with soldering and b) you need to be aware of possible problems with polarity at the "frog" (the bit where the routes cross), which will depend on whether you are using "dead frog" or "live frog" points/switches.

You have said you want the track weathered, but for others wondering about this, if you are not bothered about how realistic it looks and you just want to run the trains, it's your railway so nobody but you should decide whether to paint it. We call this "Rule 1 applies" 🙂
Last edited by SealionSteve on Mon Mar 15, 2021 9:26 am, edited 1 time in total.
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