The online magazine on the history and operation of vintage scale model trains in American OO gauge

Monday, June 21, 2010

More on Scale-Craft Track

I don’t pretend to know the history of all types of track in all scales but when Scale-Craft introduced their OO sectional track 1937 scale two rail track was certainly not a common item in any scale. I was recently able to buy some of this vintage track and this damaged piece gives a few insights into how the track was made.

I had a longer post on this topic back in 2008 but the first thing to review is the base of this track is sheet metal. Thus, the track and rails needs to be completely insulated from the base. The way they did this was through the use of a “sandwich” of layers. The top layer is the rail. The rails are attached to the next layer which is in the form of tie plates visually. There are tabs that go up and hold the rail and also tabs that go down through holes in the base. The next layer down is the ties stock which is cardboard and next yet the base of the track. Not visible is the very bottom layer under the track, which is also the cardboard material. The tie plate layer has tabs that fit down and clamp over the bottom layer in such a way that it holds everything together with the tabs not touching the base.

As to how the track works to run trains I have not used it yet but it looks like it would work fine. The gauge of the track checks out with my modern NMRA OO/On3 track gauge very well. This is in contrast to Lionel three rail track that is actually over gauge by a bit.

I think this piece can be fixed and it is a good alternate to Lionel track if you can find it.

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