Re: Advices on pre-weathered rail


I’ve laid about 60 feet of code 55 ME weathered flex and 11 prefab stub turnouts in Sn3 with leads to every length of rail (the track is sold by PBL but made by ME). It took scraping the joints clean, a good flux and solder containing lead. I first used non-leaded solder and getting a good joint required enough heat to endanger the tie strip and the underside of the frogs on the turnouts where the leads are soldered. A friend suggested using lead solder and I had no more problems. The lower melting point and easier flow Into joints did the trick. Be sure to use gloves and have good ventilation when using it to protect health.

Once laid, the lower strength of lead solder is not a problem—there’s no significant shear stress on the wiring. Since I’ve laid this track about 4 years ago I have had only one cold joint and that was one of the early ones with non-lead solder.

Larry Klose

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