Hard Times for Hand Laying
I’ve hand laid a 3′ section around a 24″ radius corner. There are some minor dips in the track. Proto:87 cars run fine. A 6 axle loco with P:87 wheels won’t make the curve. It’s obvious now why you need smooth flat track or some sort of working suspension. The 6 axle loco really suffers here, because a minor dip on one axle will cause the other two axles to raise. Generally what is happening is that the center axle raises and the rear axle kicks out (no significant flange to keep it on the track). Possible factors for the problems:
- Tight Radius.
- Not flat track
- Incorrectly gauged wheels or track (I think I’ve got the gauges right though)
How do I Proceed?
Now I’m faced with a decision on how to proceed. I think I need to give something up to get something working. My options as I see them:
- Test again with 4 axle locomotive. I’m thinking the 4 axle loco will be more forgiving. I need to order some wheels to do this.
- Switch to flex track. It is easier to lay smooth track with and I’ve successfully tested 24″ radius curves with flex track and 6 axle P:87 locos.
- RP-25. My 6 axle loco with RP25 wheels works just fine.