HO ROUTED TRACK ?

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HO ROUTED TRACK ?

Postby bookie » Mon Jan 01, 2018 10:54 am

Has anyone routed a HO track for home use.
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Re: HO ROUTED TRACK ?

Postby waaytoomuchintothis » Mon Jan 01, 2018 11:55 am

The problem to overcome is that you need a 1/16th router bit (not easy to find- you need a collet to hold a Dremel router bit in a real router). As with any cutting tool, when it gets hot, its ruined, and when the tool is that small, it gets hot fast, especially in dense material like MDF. The best I have seen were done in sections on a CNC machine. CNC tech also solves the problem of an even smaller groove for the contact (flat wire) to be stuck in. I suppose you could use copper tape, but I haven't seen that done.
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Re: HO ROUTED TRACK ?

Postby tracyridge » Mon Jan 01, 2018 2:27 pm

Hey Bookie
Yes I have routed a HO scale track...as waaytomuch stated getting the router bit took about a week, had to order it .
And routing it was a very slow process , trying not to fry the bit. Plus if you use copper tape, you have to change the pickup shoes on the cars. I used copper braiding for 1/32 scale guide pins. The contact between the copper tape and the pickup shoes becomes very intermittent when the cars are moving . The lack of magnetic downforce magnifies this problem. I have seen on the web guys routing a track and using magnetic braid instead of copper tape.

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Re: HO ROUTED TRACK ?

Postby Ky.Slot Racer » Mon Jan 01, 2018 6:29 pm

No, but I did have plans to, I ordered 2 bits and 4 rolls of steel wire. My direction was routing all 3 grooves for each lane 1/16". The 2 rail grooves were to be routed to a determined depth as the wire is jus large enough to be a good press fit into the groove.
by this direction: link
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Re: HO ROUTED TRACK ?

Postby RichD » Tue Jan 02, 2018 7:42 am

It would be nice to know what sort of cars you expect to run on the track. The easiest thing to do is to just route the slots and use copper tape. On tape cars with regular pickup shoes might not always make good contact and you will have no magnetic downforce. The next option is to use braid, you have to route recesses in the track for that. Like tape you might have contact problems and there will be no magnetic downforce unless you use Magnabraid. The most difficult option is to have rails, that means routing deeper slots than you would need for braid. It is important to have a fairly uniform rail height.
Here is a video on making a routed track with braid:
Watch on youtube.com
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