How do you guys lay track???

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#1
I have been using white caulk on half of my layout, which I now regret...
I see that a lot of people like to use elmers glue.
I know you could nail it, but on foam it does not stay.

Tell me what you guys use.
 

Selector

Well-Known Member
#3
I now use DAP Alex Plus with silicone, the 'clear' kind. It comes up very easily, but does a good job keeping the tracks in place. I don't know how well it would work on styrofoam, though, because of the silicone content.
 

CbarM

HO all the way!
#4
I use Elmers white glue for laying track on foam roadbed. What these guys who say "nail it" are failing to say is that if you have a 1 or 2 inch foam sub-roadbed then track spikes are useless. Good luck trying to keep flextrack on a curve with that idea. I have 1 inch pink foam as a sub-roadbed and I use the Woodland Scenics foam roadbed and I have used Elmers white glue for attatching it all...wors great, dries clear if you dont goop it on to heavy. I think you will be happy with just glueing it....good luck!! You can see what I have done on the '2x15 yard ideas' thread in this section...
 
#5
Since I'm using Bachmann ez track, I used the PL300 for foam. It makes it so the roadbed stays down good, and if you have to remove it, a little work will allow you to take it off without ripping the foam.
 
#7
I dont think it matters if caulk is clear, white or even blue or orange;) it gets covered up with ballast anyway.

Why would you regret using caulk?

Ive used hot glue for road bed it works great. Gets work done fast.
Ive even tried it gluing track to road bed/foam and my opinion it works great also
For me its either caulk or hot glue
 
#8
I dont think it matters if caulk is clear, white or even blue or orange;) it gets covered up with ballast anyway.

Why would you regret using caulk?
Heres the thing...
The white caulk tends to pop through the tie plates so you have to carefully cut it off. Which is fine by me. Also, big globs can get stuck in the ties and it makes it hard to ballast.
 

Railrunner130

Well-Known Member
#9
Is one product better than another when it comes to ripping it up and reusing track?

I'm planning a 4X8 with an eye towards expansion, so I want the flexibility of using something that'll hold well, but won't destroy the track if/when I pull it up.
 
#10
aleenes tacky glue and caulk can be applied lightly. you only need enough to hold the track down, it doesnt have to squirt out and through the railroad ties.
 
#12
actually i prefer hot glue.

i have kids they are needy. so using hot glue and being careful allows me to glue roadbed and track down fast. ive tried caulk and aleens tacky glue, each works.

for me i can use tabs of hot glue here under track and within minutes im moving to the next section of track, it allows me to glue track and run trains faster
 
#13
Heres the thing...
The white caulk tends to pop through the tie plates so you have to carefully cut it off. Which is fine by me. Also, big globs can get stuck in the ties and it makes it hard to ballast.
Just take a spackling knife and spread the bead of caulk out before you place the track. That way it won't ooze up between the ties ( I think that's what you're saying is the problem)
 

UPBigBoy

J&A Paint Shops
#15
Heres the thing...
The white caulk tends to pop through the tie plates so you have to carefully cut it off. Which is fine by me. Also, big globs can get stuck in the ties and it makes it hard to ballast.
If it's coming up between the ties then you are putting way too much on, use a wide putty knife to spread it and anything over 1/32" is too thick.
 

Rico

BN Modeller
#16
Thank goodness I used white glue for track and ballast, everything came up with a spritz of water!
I used latex liquid nails on parts I knew would be permanent and come up as a whole piece.
 

Iron Horseman

Well-Known Member
#17
Tell me what you guys use.
I am in the matte-medium camp. I used to use Elmer's white, but found out it gets brittle after a decade or two. Had a whole layout just "snap" off the roadbed because the glue just shattered..... Likewise I tried the caulk and though highly of it until it came time to take up a section. It was a gooey mess. It ripped up the the sub-roadbed which I then had to redo. The taken up track was a gooey mess and I could not reuse.
 
#18
A couple weeks ago, I laid my very first track ever.
This is temporary track, while I hash out my track plan.

Used Alex Plus caulk as an adhesive.
At first, I just squeezed the caulk out in small blobs - those blobs always oozed up between the ties. After a while, I started spreading it paper thin on the subroadbed with a putty knife. None of those applications oozed up at all.
Two weeks later, the layers are holding quite well, but still flexible enough that I can nick them with a finger nail - I imagine they'll come up with no particular drama. My subroadbed is 1/2" plywood. Foam might be a different story.

The downside to this is that the track must be weighted down while the caulk dries, which takes about an hour. Someone prior mentioned using hot glue - I like that idea and will try it out, as I have a bit more temporary track to lay down.
 

CbarM

HO all the way!
#19
I can see hot glue working OK if you are using cork roadbed, but I dont think it will work to well at all if you use the foam roadbed...
 
#20
For my application, since the track is temporary, I'm not using any roadbed at all yet, the track is going down directly onto plywood. I'd think that any adhesive one might use would tend to tear up any roadbed material, be it cork or foam.

But then, I'm new to all this, so I'm probably wrong. :D
 



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