MRA Editors

Handlaying a Model Train Track with CV Tie Strips

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Duration:   20  mins

Many model railroaders opt to build their own tracks from scratch for a number of reasons. Maybe the landscape in their layout doesn’t warrant the use of commercial kit tracks or they want to have total control over the shape, structure and appearance of their model train track. Whatever the reason might be, it’s a great skill for all serious modelers to know how to handlay a model train track, as this method grants you greater room for personalization and customization according to the needs of your layout. So in this lesson, we teach you the expert tips and techniques you’ll need to build a model train track from scratch and handlay it using assorted commercial products.

How to build a model train track with CV ties

In order to construct and handlay a model train track, you’ll require several components that can be purchased at your local craft store or hobby shop. Modeler Tony Koester teaches you about each of these products, and then walks you through a step-by-step demonstration for handlaying a model train track, consistent of a straightaway stretch and a more complicated turnout.

Tony begins his walkthrough by showing you the proper way to utilize adhesive caulk–“adhesive” is an important distinction here–and your choice of roadbed to lay down the base for a straightaway model train track. You’ll also learn how to align the tracks so as not to make the line unnaturally straight.

Once you’ve learned the correct technique for making a straight model train track, Tony demonstrates the much more involved process of putting together a turnout from scratch. This kind of track segment requires a delicate touch and patience, as you’ll be aligning, gluing and smoothing the frog, guard and point rails that allow your trains to switch over from one model train track to the next. If you follow along with all of Tony’s steps and take your time, you should have no trouble handlaying a fully customized model train track you’ll be proud of!

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