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SAre my rail joiners/fishplates bent?

i notice my locos stop and start at certian areas before curves im running third radius curves and i also have issus on points my track is well connected any advice   

RDS

3260 posts


Community Moderator

Hi railwarrior91 and welcome to the forum

First of all, check that the wheels of you Loco's are clean, that the track is clean and that the pick-ups are contacting correctly against the wheels of your Loco's.  I use IPA on a cotton bud for cleaning wheels and track but others use the rough side of hardboard for cleaning track.  Do not use anything abrasive though.

If it does appear that you have problems with your Rail Joiners, which unless they are well used, it would probably be unusual for them to be bent.  Ensure that all fishplates are connected correctly by running your finger over all the joins, in both directions.  There should be no steps.

Assuming your wheels and track are clean and pick-ups are good, I would suggest that the best way to analyse your problem is to start with a Loco on the section of track that is connected to the power.  Run the Loco slowly and if it stops on a particular join, check that join, cleaning it if necessary before moving to the next one.

Let us know how you get on with those steps to start with.

00 Gauge. DCC. Elite (v1.43) with Select (v1.0) as Walkabout. RailMaster Pro running on a Windows 10 Laptop. 17 Loco's. 2nd copy of RailMaster (Not Pro) running on Windows 10 Desktop and Networked to the Laptop. Handheld RM running on Android Phone. 3rd copy of RailMaster, still unopened!

LC&DR

7469 posts

 I agree with RDS Run your fingers over the rail head at the joint in both directions , if you feel a dip, a bump or an edge the rail joiner is probably not properly connected. Firsrt try and make the joint so that all the bottom flanges of the rail are contained inside the rail joiner (fishplate) . Slighly bent fishplates (rail joiners) can be straightened by gently bending them while the tracks are connected, or by inserting a loose bit of rail, BUT do this very gently. Badly bent, broken or distorted rail joiners must be replaced. Replacement rail joiners can be obtained from good model railway suppliers but before you go down that avenue clean the rails as RDS has recommended.

 

If your rail joiners are loose you can VERY GENTLY squeeze them with pointed nose pliers. Do this whilst both rails are fully secured in the rail joiner, and do NOT try it with the track disconnected.

 

Points can be more difficult to cure, especially if the track has been roughly handled in the past. The small metal lugs that are contacted by the point blades and make electrical contact can get bent or broken, and the points will not function properly.  If this is the case you will probably have to replace the whole point unit  completely, although you may be able to adjust a bent lug it is not easy.

 

Dirt is your enemy.

Green trains are best!

Graskie

6836 posts

I dish the dirt on this forum!

 

No seriously, I'm busy relaying track and have had a few bad uneven joins which just have to be corrected.

The out of Controller

poliss

7354 posts

 Fishplates.

New and Tight = Alright.

Old and Loose = No Use.

Get off the line Bobby.

Wobblinwheel

1176 posts

As far as "fishplates", I always solder mine. No more contact problems....

M. Crafton

poliss

7354 posts

 Fishplates aren't very good at conducting electricity. The best solution is to solder extra power feeds around the track.

I wouldn't recommend soldering fishplates. The track needs room for expansion and contraction. Some have soldered their fishplates and have found their track buckled because it couldn't move.

Get off the line Bobby.

Administrator

927 posts

Hi guys,

 

While I'm in favour of the odd light-hearted comment, a number of posts in this thread were simply not appropriate. I would ask that you keep in mind that this Forum is publicly viewable and, as we know, children often make use of it.

Wobblinwheel

1176 posts

@Administrator

Hi guys,

 

While I'm in favour of the odd light-hearted comment, a number of posts in this thread were simply not appropriate. I would ask that you keep in mind that this Forum is publicly viewable and, as we know, children often make use of it.

As a child, MANY years ago, my first exposure to some of the most FOWL language I ever heard came from the "mouths of babes" in school! My parents were appalled at the "language" I was learning in school.....you can protect children to some degree, but you must NOT send 'em to school, or better yet, just keep 'em inside......forever....

M. Crafton

Wobblinwheel

1176 posts

Or is that "foul"...?

M. Crafton

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