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Things were moving along okay with connecting curved HO stick tracks using the PECO Streamline rail joiners. Then I started having problems getting the joiners connecting 36" flex tracks. I nipped the rail joints/spike heads off the first two ties but it didn't make any difference. The joiners hardly had any separation on them. I tried using a small pair of pliers to hold one end and push it onto the rails with a lot of pressure. No good.

What's going wrong? Does "fine" mean that the opening on the joiners is "fine" as opposed to "medium"?

549778


549779
 

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Welcome to the more challenging world of Peco joiners!

Yes, you do have to have square cuts on the ends of your joining rails, but there's more...with Peco joiners. You must take a needle file and 'dress' the ends. You start with beveling, or champhering, the bottom surface of the rail foot, very shallow, just a couple of rubs, and you do the same with the top two surfaces of the rail foot. Then, you dress each corner of the rail foot, just a rub to get off any burrs or sharpness left over from the cutting. You keep filing bits down until the joiner goes on a lot more easily.

That's all there is to it.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Welcome to the more challenging world of Peco joiners!

Yes, you do have to have square cuts on the ends of your joining rails, but there's more...with Peco joiners. You must take a needle file and 'dress' the ends. You start with beveling, or champhering, the bottom surface of the rail foot, very shallow, just a couple of rubs, and you do the same with the top two surfaces of the rail foot. Then, you dress each corner of the rail foot, just a rub to get off any burrs or sharpness left over from the cutting. You keep filing bits down until the joiner goes on a lot more easily.

That's all there is to it.
"That's all there is to it". LOL If I had known that this was an issue with PECO I'd have tried something else. I've seen Atlas joiners. Would they be any better? Thanks for the reply. Bob
 

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In my experience all rail joiners may require a little "dressing" with a small file....when they manufacture them, they produce a long piece of joiner, and they have to cut them into the smaller pieces....this cut tends to deform the ends a tad, which causes the "burr", which may require the "dressing".....

Like it or not, this hobby does require some "fiddling" which various aspects.....but to me, that'\s part opf the enjoyment of the hobby..... :giggle:
 

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Not sure if anyone is saying this, but my experience is Peco's rail web is narrower than atlas'..
Peco joiners are made to fit snug on their own track.. If you are mixing Atlas flex and Peco you have to widen the Peco joiners to slide onto Atlas rail and have to pinch Atlas joiners to be snug on Peco rail.. ( if this is what you're having trouble with )...
 

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Well then. This answers a relative question I was about to post on peco vs atlas rail joiners. Atlas it shall since Id rather squeeze a joiner than spread it. Cleaning up a rail just fut is one thing. Having to custom file just for a rail joiner? No thanks.
Thank you gentlemen.
 

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The Micro Engineering joiners for code 83 are just as tight. I ended up not even using them as I couldn't get even one on the end of an Atlas rail. I think Atlas uses a wider foot on their code 83, but I never measured to be certain.

Now that I have a few extra sticks of ME flex track I might see if they fit their rails better...if I can find them. I may have thrown them away.
 

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Well then. This answers a relative question I was about to post on peco vs atlas rail joiners. Atlas it shall since Id rather squeeze a joiner than spread it. Cleaning up a rail just fut is one thing. Having to custom file just for a rail joiner? No thanks.
Thank you gentlemen.
I file all my rail heads anyway. Whether using a full length of factory-cut flextrack or using a custom-cut length, I always use a needle file on the ends. I bevel the upper bearing surface's end and also the inner flange surface at the cut. This makes snags and bumps due to burrs go away, and any hitching of the axles go away if the rails are slightly misaligned due to a sloppy joiner or bad solder.
 
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