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One Approach to AF track and AF Switches
One Approach to AF track and AF Switches
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Re: Track  / Ballast:

I have used the following approach for my AF track and AF Switches.  I have taken AF track and spray painted them completely using the cheapest flat black paint available.  After the paint has dried, I quickly wire brush the top of the rail with my bench grinder wire wheel.  the top becomes shiny clean and the rest of the track is black.  I would place newspaper outside with the track lined up like soldiers.  I could quickly paint hundreds of
section of track in a short period of time.  It is something that looks
hard but actually easy to do.  that process will always have my name on it.

I then mount the track and add Beaver Boy's wooden ties between the AF ties.  I place two wooden ties between each metal tie.  I then use Ballast King's gray rubber ballast glued in place with a solution of white glue/water/dish soap

Couple of tips:  When mounting the track, I use a small hammer to tap each rail to the last mounted track.  this gives a smooth rail look.  Also, by spray painting the track black, you can buy the most ugly track under the tables.  Instead of flat black paint, one could use brown primer paint for a rusty track look.  I liked the black look based on the early AF black track look.  As long as the track is physically straight. you can get  old track that is painted or with some rust areas.  When it is painted and top rails cleaned, it looks great.

I like the system because I am a Hi-rail operator, I have gotten track for about 10 cents a straight, the system marries into AF switches, the rubber ballast is soft to the touch, looks great and over all I believe it is less expensive.

However, it is a time consuming process.  For me it is mindless 
activity.  It is therapy to work on a small section at a time.

I have received many compliments on the look of my layout.  It really does not look like an AF track system after you dress it up.