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Discussion Starter #1
New to model trains and need to know the details of curved track for HO. I see 18 inch and 22 inch radius available - is this the radius from the center point between the two rails ? I want to add HO between an O and N scale payout and have limited space. I could alternately get flex track I guess but if the standard curved sections will fit they are better.
 

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Welcome to the forum...sectional or curved, the important thing to remember is the radius your locos can take. Sectional track is a fixed radius, making it somewhat difficult to go outside the box in design. Also, the number of joints can add to electrical issues down the road. Flex has fewer joints but is easier to lose the need for gradual change, opening yourself up to derailments. Both can be mixed together in the final layout to pick up the good points of each. 18" is considered to be the minimal operating radius for HO, most equipment out there will handle it with 22" a growing mark for the more detailed models.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Based on that, the flex would be good to use since I could match the radius available. I would still like to know if the radius is from the center point or from one of the two rails -
 

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If you choose to use flex make every effort to make most of the joints on straight sections. There is more force on the joint in the curves. One nice part of flex is that it can be curved an inch to the right or left to clear an obstacle.
 

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since flex track is being talked about how do u curve it i got some but when i curve it the ends are not even i guess i should have searched but since it was being discussed i figured ide ask.
 

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the rule (from what i read and from what i did with flex so far) is that the last inch or so does not bend. it just doesn't, no matter the force.
unless of cource it is soldered to another piece of flex without melting ties and allowing the sliding rail to move freely. i stager the solder joint - they are minimum 6 ties apart.



Flextrack is on the left, R22 section on right. line is where the plastic ties meet. soldered joints marked with arows. basically i cut and removed the rail without removing the ties and then slid the flex in. the precast curve of the section guides the flex.

a posibility...

 
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