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Author Topic: Peco Flexible code 55 track minimum radius  (Read 5867 times)

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Offline Tom@Crewe

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Peco Flexible code 55 track minimum radius
« on: August 18, 2012, 05:31:41 PM »
I originally started planning my layout with set track using the 2 largest radius curves (333.4 mm and 298.5 mm radius) I am now looking a code 55 flexible track Now I did find Peco's recommended Minimum radius and lost it again but seem to remember it was larger than the set track.

What is the practical Minimum radius for this track?
Could I use the 333.4 and 298.5 Set pieces as a template?

Offline Sprintex

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Re: Peco Flexible code 55 track minimum radius
« Reply #1 on: August 18, 2012, 07:13:44 PM »
I've used code 55 flexi and a couple of my curves are 2nd radius (263.5mm) with no problems, best not to go any tighter than this anyway whether using flexi or setrack ;)


Paul

Offline macwales

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Re: Peco Flexible code 55 track minimum radius
« Reply #2 on: August 18, 2012, 08:28:45 PM »
Hi Tom

I have always had some 9 inch (radius 1) curves on my layouts  with flexible track. The latest layout has a large loop with 4  x 9 inch 90 degree corner curves. All these curves were carefully laid using a 9 inch Trackseta tool (this prevents kinking) and the sleepers drilled and pinned into position so that they cannot move before removing the tool. I have found that without carefull pinning about every 5 to 10 sleepers the 9 inch curve can move in use causing derailments. I think laying is far more difficult without the tool and the results are variable (mostly bad).  Also I find I have to leave just the right amount of gap at either end to allow for rail expansion and contraction and I have found that it's best to use a whole piece of flexible track for each curve. i.e no joins or points. So its only suitable where the  ambient temperature is fairly constant.  A 9 inch installation in a garden shed and another in an unheated garage were disasters due to kinking after expansion in summer. A loft might be similar. I find I have to remember to allow plenty side clearance for long rolling stock, carriages and locos and this can effect layout appearance.

Most of my ancient locos will go round my 9 inch without trouble. Minitrix - Mallard, tanks, Britannia, Ivatt and even 9Fs. Peco Jubilees and all Grafar locos I have.
Most of my modern stuff will as well. I do not run modern pacifics on this loop but my Dapol B1s will run on it.  AS will my class 58. My Farish Royal Scot and Black Five do not like it at all and DMUs are problematical.

Where layout space is at a premium I think it is worth trying it if you have some locos that you have tested on 9 inch but you have to remember it is 9 inch when operating trains as its easy to get an unsuitable loco on the track and therefore I think it is best to stick to 12 inch (2nd radius) and above if possible. However the great thing about flexible track is that you can have any radius and every bit above 9 inch will be better.

I hope this helps

Cheers

Mac


Offline EtchedPixels

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Re: Peco Flexible code 55 track minimum radius
« Reply #3 on: August 18, 2012, 09:12:12 PM »
It will curve pretty sharply in my experience (note that the sleepers are designed to have one side on the inside and one on the outside of a curve - see the arrows on the bottom. That's not well documented !

I actually tend to use the Peco set-track curves for sharp curves because I find it hard to get flexi-track to sharp curvature and perfectly to shape. You've only got to be a bit out for part of it to be 8.5" and stuff to start derailing.
« Last Edit: August 18, 2012, 09:25:24 PM by EtchedPixels »
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Offline Newportnobby

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Re: Peco Flexible code 55 track minimum radius
« Reply #4 on: August 18, 2012, 09:44:30 PM »
Hi Tom,

I too would recommend the use of 12" tracksetta(s) and ensure the curves are made of one length of track as it makes life so much easier.

My Farish Royal Scot and Black Five do not like it at all and DMUs are problematical.


Hi Mac - very surprised your DMU's give a problem on 9" radius. My 101/108's are just fine on my test track which is laid with set track ???

Offline moogle

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Re: Peco Flexible code 55 track minimum radius
« Reply #5 on: August 18, 2012, 09:51:49 PM »
I originally started planning my layout with set track using the 2 largest radius curves (333.4 mm and 298.5 mm radius) I am now looking a code 55 flexible track Now I did find Peco's recommended Minimum radius and lost it again but seem to remember it was larger than the set track.

What is the practical Minimum radius for this track?
Could I use the 333.4 and 298.5 Set pieces as a template?

Depends on what you want to run on it.
Certainly does a 9" radius no problem which a lot of loco's have no problem with.
So you can use it for any radius that you can get their set track in.

It will actually go down to 6" believe it or not.
A Farish J94 will go round that but will only push/pull wagons with non-sprung couplings (i.e Peco) with no derailments.
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Offline macwales

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Re: Peco Flexible code 55 track minimum radius
« Reply #6 on: August 18, 2012, 09:56:59 PM »
Hi



[/quote]

Hi Mac - very surprised your DMU's give a problem on 9" radius. My 101/108's are just fine on my test track which is laid with set track ???
[/quote]

It's the Dapol DMU carriage tunnel connectors that are problematic. I cannot use the large ones on my 9 inch radius. OK with the the smaller ones.

Cheers

Mac

Offline Newportnobby

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Re: Peco Flexible code 55 track minimum radius
« Reply #7 on: August 18, 2012, 10:06:53 PM »
Hi




Hi Mac - very surprised your DMU's give a problem on 9" radius. My 101/108's are just fine on my test track which is laid with set track ???
[/quote]

It's the Dapol DMU carriage tunnel connectors that are problematic. I cannot use the large ones on my 9 inch radius. OK with the the smaller ones.

Cheers

Mac
[/quote]

Thanks for clarifying that, Mac

Offline Tom@Crewe

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Re: Peco Flexible code 55 track minimum radius
« Reply #8 on: August 19, 2012, 07:18:53 AM »
That all great thank you all.

So on my plan at moment my Minimum is 298.5 mm radius 11.75 inch so if I use one full piece of flexible track (centre of the curve = centre of the track) and pin down well I should have no problems.


I must admit I found another forum before this one and asked the same question. I had one reply from someone saying he did not know but saying try it you can always alter it!!! I have had a much better and informative response here...wont be going back to other.

 

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