The three turnouts on this first module are just about complete. I have all the upper rails in place, the check rails are in and the frog is built. The only thing left are the approach rails – the “bridal” rails. In the prototype several bars spaced evenly along the approach to the turnout are used to help keep the rails in gauge. Additionally a bar from the switchstand to these rails is also bolted into place. What is needed here is something like the throwbar from a “normal” switch to keep the rails in gauge and align them with the desired routing.
For regular turnouts the recommendation is just to solder the point blades to a PC tie. I was skeptical about how well this would work and worried that the fixed blades wouldn’t move freely enough. After several months of doubt, I finally gave in and tried this approach. The turnouts I tried this on were the N scale ones I have photographed on here earlier and I’ll admit it actually works quite well. The amount of travel for my On30 turnouts isn’t that much greater than what I was working with in N but again I find myself wondering if I need to re-visit this design and try and devise a pivot to attach the approach rails to their throwbar. On the recommendation of some modellers over on the Railroad Line Forums I visit the Fast Tracks website and checked there. Tim Warris recommends soldering some rail joiners to a PC tie and using that for the
throwbar. It looks nice in the pictures he shares (heck everything he does looks fantastic!) and I think I’ll try a variation on that.
I don’t have any wide PC sheet left so my variation will use a strip of 0.125×0.25″ styrene. To secure the rails I will drill and install four of the sequins. This will be similar to how my rail is spiked, but with a little more careful prep. The sequins will be CA’d into place and the rail should just slide in there. Hopefully. To be honest, I’m hoping my biggest challenge is how to colour the styrene strip – will just painting it with some Humbrol track colour work?
I’m going to try this tonight and look forward to sharing an update afterward. Hopefully it works. Wish me luck.