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So wanting to keep track clean i decided to build a track cleaning car its an old lifelike boxcar with kadees and metal wheels fitted
Car has been weighed down to meet nmra spec
A shoe with two pins was made to sit atop the rails it then slots into holes drilled into car floor
Shoe has fine sandpaper to scrub top of rail it is weighed so it floats atop the rails and not take weight off car wheels. So far it works well but just wondering what others have built.
Also runs cars with noch track cleaning pads that fit to the axle of freight cars.
 

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the cleaning pads are a good idea , they could be made larger if they were in the middle [instead of the sandpaper] ..
 

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Built but rarely used.
My shelf layout track stays clean even though half of it is brass.
I had planned on using velcro with changeable pads, but I did not allow for the extra thickness. The steel plate and bolt provide sufficient downward force.
The hollow gray tube glued into floor provides good alignment and sliding action.
 

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sandpaper is -apparantly- not good for the rails, even if it's a fine 1600 or better, grit ...
it's supposed to leave fine scratches than an accelerate the build up of 'gunk' and such ..
i use isopropyl alcohol for cleaning, and then no-ox idA afterwards .. no scratches ..
 

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Masonite's been used since the '50's... back in John Allen's day.
Has anyone tried the Hawthorne car?
 

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Has anyone tried the Hawthorne car?


  1. in the literature on it , it says that ' tanker train car features an abrasive cleaning pad on its underside to remove dirt, dust and grit from your tracks' , so it's sandpaper or other abrasive medium ..
 

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For using masonite, would you put the smooth or the rough side against the tracks? And since this stuff can absorb moisture, has anyone tried letting a slow alcohol drip wet the board?
 

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Not sure why people keep gravitating to the hard material for cleaning track. Did the kiddies leave this stuff outside in the sandbox for a couple years?
Geezo guys, for track that sits on a layout, they most you should need is a soft pad with a moistening of Isopropyl alcohol to clean the track. Woodland Scenics makes Dust Monkeys that do the job quite well and they can be run in trains and go unnoticed. That or just a soft cloth with the same alcohol rubbed over the track is all that's needed.
Another point: Never use Acetone on your layout FOR ANYTHING unless of course you are dismantling it for complete disposal in the landfill with no interest in harvesting track.
 

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Although most of us have modest-sized layouts, there are a few that are quite large and expansive, e.g., club-size.
Hand-wiping track on these is quite tedious, especially where tunnels and ravines are concerned.
Some clubs run a continuous track-cleaning MW train, to keep up with all the dirty traffic.
 

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Although most of us have modest-sized layouts, there are a few that are quite large and expansive, e.g., club-size.
Hand-wiping track on these is quite tedious, especially where tunnels and ravines are concerned.
Some clubs run a continuous track-cleaning MW train, to keep up with all the traffic.
Yeah, mine is club sized. I usually do a complete hand wipe down a couple days before doing an op session despite running Dust Monkeys in the trains all the time.
 

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I saw a video awhile back, of a BNSF diesel, hauling a train, at the end of which was a track cleaner with a trailing rotating drum.
Anybody know what it is?
Not the Centerline one, BTW.
 

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W.S.track cleaning systems?

How does woodland scenic track cleaning work?
does it do a sufficient job
 

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How does woodland scenic track cleaning work?
does it do a sufficient job
tr1:
IMO, the Woodland Scenics 'TidyTrack' system is very good -- including the hand-operated, the Dust Monkey, and wheel cleaner kits (which gets some good reviews).
 

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Although I don't own one, the CMX Clean Machine (quite expensive) is about the most effective 'commercial' car I've witnessed in use.
 

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Here's a cool track cleaner...
It's an old Athearn F7, sans motor & drive (free wheeling).

Transport Rolling stock Train Vehicle Railway
 
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