Difficult Spikes


Jim Marlett
 

For those who hand lay their track, I finally ran out of my supply of small spikes and ordered some Micro Engineering small spikes. I ordered four 1,000 piece packages and dumped them together for use. When I started using them, I discovered two different types. One had smooth shafts and small heads. They were a joy to use. Some have serrated shafts and enormous heads, some of which actually hit the flanges of rolling stock. I am able to shorten and flatten the heads of the serrated spikes, but doing this for thousands of spikes is torture. I have no idea if the two types were in separate packs or mixed in the packs, but I sure hate those ones with the big heads. Are these serrated spikes the norm or is this just a bad batch?

Jim Marlett
http://flatheaddrag.com/
http://jimmarlett.zenfolio.com/


John G Massura
 

Sounds like you got a mislabeled larger spike pack by accident. I would sort the pile as you go - just put the larger ones aside.

Email ME. Possible take a pic of both kinds.

John

On Jan 9, 2021, at 10:58, Jim Marlett <jmarlett@cox.net> wrote:

For those who hand lay their track, I finally ran out of my supply of small spikes and ordered some Micro Engineering small spikes. I ordered four 1,000 piece packages and dumped them together for use. When I started using them, I discovered two different types. One had smooth shafts and small heads. They were a joy to use. Some have serrated shafts and enormous heads, some of which actually hit the flanges of rolling stock. I am able to shorten and flatten the heads of the serrated spikes, but doing this for thousands of spikes is torture. I have no idea if the two types were in separate packs or mixed in the packs, but I sure hate those ones with the big heads. Are these serrated spikes the norm or is this just a bad batch?

Jim Marlett
http://flatheaddrag.com/
http://jimmarlett.zenfolio.com/







Craig Linn
 

It’s sad that we don’t have the Walthers ones any more. Those were such a joy to use and did a fantastic job being spiked in.

Craig

On Jan 9, 2021, at 10:09 AM, John G Massura <jmassura@longjohnonline.org> wrote:

Sounds like you got a mislabeled larger spike pack by accident. I would sort the pile as you go - just put the larger ones aside.

Email ME. Possible take a pic of both kinds.

John

On Jan 9, 2021, at 10:58, Jim Marlett <jmarlett@cox.net> wrote:

For those who hand lay their track, I finally ran out of my supply of small spikes and ordered some Micro Engineering small spikes. I ordered four 1,000 piece packages and dumped them together for use. When I started using them, I discovered two different types. One had smooth shafts and small heads. They were a joy to use. Some have serrated shafts and enormous heads, some of which actually hit the flanges of rolling stock. I am able to shorten and flatten the heads of the serrated spikes, but doing this for thousands of spikes is torture. I have no idea if the two types were in separate packs or mixed in the packs, but I sure hate those ones with the big heads. Are these serrated spikes the norm or is this just a bad batch?

Jim Marlett
http://flatheaddrag.com/
http://jimmarlett.zenfolio.com/











Jim Marlett
 

Maybe, but I don’t think so. The lengths are the same. And the majority of the spikes seem to be the unpleasant ones. I’ve been hand laying track for over 40 years, so I don’t think it is just my technique, though I wouldn’t rule it out. The image on this web page appear to be of the spikes I don’t like and they are labeled as small spikes. https://www.modeltrainstuff.com/micro-engineering-ho-n-30-106-small-spikes-1-4-1000-pieces/?gclid=CjwKCAiAxeX_BRASEiwAc1QdkakvhETMLrrRqHYjr95rxl_BeRT8LOLHX8wiDEXtyzawGr5CWB0KQBoCRn0QAvD_BwE

Jim Marlett
http://flatheaddrag.com/
http://jimmarlett.zenfolio.com/

On Jan 9, 2021, at 11:09 AM, John G Massura <jmassura@longjohnonline.org> wrote:

Sounds like you got a mislabeled larger spike pack by accident. I would sort the pile as you go - just put the larger ones aside.

Email ME. Possible take a pic of both kinds.

John


Steve Hatch
 

Those are not the smallest me spikes.
Those are large.
You want the micro spikes not the small spikes
Micro not Small
It's the micro spikes that I use on code 55
They work and the smalls dont


asandrini
 

I believe that ME no longer has the Micro Spikes. I was told that the staples they used to produce the micro spikes were no longer available.

Al



Sent from my Galaxy


-------- Original message --------
From: Steve Hatch <hatch@...>
Date: 1/9/21 7:10 PM (GMT-08:00)
To: HOn3@groups.io
Subject: Re: [HOn3] Difficult Spikes

Those are not the smallest me spikes.
Those are large.
You want the micro spikes not the small spikes
Micro not Small
It's the micro spikes that I use on code 55
They work and the smalls dont


asandrini
 

This may of may not be true. I received the info second hand.

Al



Sent from my Galaxy


-------- Original message --------
From: Steve Hatch <hatch@...>
Date: 1/9/21 7:10 PM (GMT-08:00)
To: HOn3@groups.io
Subject: Re: [HOn3] Difficult Spikes

Those are not the smallest me spikes.
Those are large.
You want the micro spikes not the small spikes
Micro not Small
It's the micro spikes that I use on code 55
They work and the smalls dont


Alan Kilby
 

Check different hobby shops or other sources that may still have some in stock,I doubt they sell a lot so maybe they have some in old stock.Ive found rail that way


From: HOn3@groups.io <HOn3@groups.io> on behalf of asandrini <asandrini@...>
Sent: Saturday, January 9, 2021 7:37:26 PM
To: HOn3@groups.io <HOn3@groups.io>
Subject: Re: [HOn3] Difficult Spikes
 
This may of may not be true. I received the info second hand.

Al



Sent from my Galaxy


-------- Original message --------
From: Steve Hatch <hatch@...>
Date: 1/9/21 7:10 PM (GMT-08:00)
To: HOn3@groups.io
Subject: Re: [HOn3] Difficult Spikes

Those are not the smallest me spikes.
Those are large.
You want the micro spikes not the small spikes
Micro not Small
It's the micro spikes that I use on code 55
They work and the smalls dont


Alan Kilby
 

Forgot to sign,Alan


From: Alan Kilby <alankilby@...>
Sent: Saturday, January 9, 2021 8:12:11 PM
To: HOn3@groups.io <HOn3@groups.io>
Subject: Re: [HOn3] Difficult Spikes
 
Check different hobby shops or other sources that may still have some in stock,I doubt they sell a lot so maybe they have some in old stock.Ive found rail that way


From: HOn3@groups.io <HOn3@groups.io> on behalf of asandrini <asandrini@...>
Sent: Saturday, January 9, 2021 7:37:26 PM
To: HOn3@groups.io <HOn3@groups.io>
Subject: Re: [HOn3] Difficult Spikes
 
This may of may not be true. I received the info second hand.

Al



Sent from my Galaxy


-------- Original message --------
From: Steve Hatch <hatch@...>
Date: 1/9/21 7:10 PM (GMT-08:00)
To: HOn3@groups.io
Subject: Re: [HOn3] Difficult Spikes

Those are not the smallest me spikes.
Those are large.
You want the micro spikes not the small spikes
Micro not Small
It's the micro spikes that I use on code 55
They work and the smalls dont


Mick Moignard
 

Micro spikes are still listed on MEs web site. http://microengineering.com/products_ta.htm

Mick

________________________________
Mick Moignard
m: +44 7774 652504
Skype: mickmoignard

The week may start M,T but it always ends WTF.


Jim Marlett
 

I have a bunch of microspikes. They are a rip roaring pain in the ass to drive. Is there a secret to using them? I bend about four before getting one in successfully. I have used them on trestles, but I pre-drill the holes and dipped them in Elmer’s white glue before I drive them. I don’t want to do that for a whole darned railroad.

Jim Marlett
http://flatheaddrag.com/
http://jimmarlett.zenfolio.com/


On Jan 9, 2021, at 9:10 PM, Steve Hatch <hatch@...> wrote:

Those are not the smallest me spikes.
Those are large.
You want the micro spikes not the small spikes
Micro not Small
It's the micro spikes that I use on code 55
They work and the smalls dont


Steve Hatch
 

  The micro spikes will shove in really nice if you sharpen them.
I have a small dremel with a cut off disc sitting right beside me as I spike.
I touch the very end of the spike against the wheel for just a second
on an angle to put a chisel shape to the end.
  I do this with each and every one as I pick up the spike in the plier and touch
it diagonally to the disc to form the chisel and then insert it in the roadbed as normal.
Some reason the micro spikes are blunt on the end and do not insert well without
that slight taper at the end.  It's a minor move after you get used to it.
  They spike really well then and I can get the rail and spike nice and tight.
Try it and let me know if it works for you.
My railroad here is 20 by 46 feet and it's all laid in 55 and spiked that way.
 It didn't take all that long once I got used to the extra move.  (grind wheel)
Sure hope that helps
-Steve Hatch


Climax@...
 

Sharpening spikes with a dremel?  I I'll need a remote pilot license to fly all those spikes around the room!
DAve

-----Original Message-----
From: Steve Hatch
Sent: Jan 11, 2021 1:13 AM
To: HOn3@groups.io
Subject: Re: [HOn3] Difficult Spikes

  The micro spikes will shove in really nice if you sharpen them.
I have a small dremel with a cut off disc sitting right beside me as I spike.
I touch the very end of the spike against the wheel for just a second
on an angle to put a chisel shape to the end.
  I do this with each and every one as I pick up the spike in the plier and touch
it diagonally to the disc to form the chisel and then insert it in the roadbed as normal.
Some reason the micro spikes are blunt on the end and do not insert well without
that slight taper at the end.  It's a minor move after you get used to it.
  They spike really well then and I can get the rail and spike nice and tight.
Try it and let me know if it works for you.
My railroad here is 20 by 46 feet and it's all laid in 55 and spiked that way.
 It didn't take all that long once I got used to the extra move.  (grind wheel)
Sure hope that helps
-Steve Hatch


Jim Spencer
 

It sound to me like Micro Engineering could solve this by cutting the staples apart on an angle instead of 90 degrees.

Having said that, I’ve learned how to drive them using needle nose pliers with serrated points while gripping the spike and head about 2/3rds from the tip. They are far less likely to bend.


jczul36
 

I use to use micro engineering, but stopped using their spikes when I laid code 55.  I began using proto 87 long spikes and loved them.  They are sharp and the heads are really small.  I even used them the on Code 40 spur.  The spike heads are small enough that my flanges do not touch the spike heads.  Couldn’t achieve this with Micro engineering spikes.
jc  

On Jan 11, 2021, at 10:10 AM, Jim Spencer <trainmanjs@...> wrote:

It sound to me like Micro Engineering could solve this by cutting the staples apart on an angle instead of 90 degrees.

Having said that, I’ve learned how to drive them using needle nose pliers with serrated points while gripping the spike and head about 2/3rds from the tip. They are far less likely to bend.


Jim Marlett
 

They must sell those “small” spikes to O scale folks using code 100 and larger rail. Sure took a lot of effort to make them work for code 70 rail.

Jim Marlett
http://flatheaddrag.com/
http://jimmarlett.zenfolio.com/

On Jan 11, 2021, at 12:57 PM, jczul36 via groups.io <zul36=aol.com@groups.io> wrote:

I use to use micro engineering, but stopped using their spikes when I laid code 55. I began using proto 87 long spikes and loved them. They are sharp and the heads are really small. I even used them the on Code 40 spur. The spike heads are small enough that my flanges do not touch the spike heads. Couldn’t achieve this with Micro engineering spikes.
jc
<ea1.png>


Climax@...
 

When I use to lay my own C70 rail and make my own switches etc I spiked every 7th tie. I first drilled .012 holes on either side of the rail, then pushed in the c70 spikes. I lost a lot that went to never never land and were never found, but for the most part it all worked out just fine. Now days, and at 74, my eye sight is not as good as it once was, probably to many hits the eye with flying spikes, sp I use Shinohara Flex track and switches. I still do make special things like gauge separation and special use switches though. I just figure that today I got better things to do than mumble under my breath after another spike disappears.

Dave

-----Original Message-----
From: Jim Marlett <jmarlett@cox.net>
Sent: Jan 11, 2021 7:06 PM
To: HOn3 Group <HOn3@groups.io>
Subject: Re: [HOn3] Difficult Spikes

They must sell those “small” spikes to O scale folks using code 100 and larger rail. Sure took a lot of effort to make them work for code 70 rail.

Jim Marlett
http://flatheaddrag.com/
http://jimmarlett.zenfolio.com/


On Jan 11, 2021, at 12:57 PM, jczul36 via groups.io <zul36=aol.com@groups.io> wrote:

I use to use micro engineering, but stopped using their spikes when I laid code 55. I began using proto 87 long spikes and loved them. They are sharp and the heads are really small. I even used them the on Code 40 spur. The spike heads are small enough that my flanges do not touch the spike heads. Couldn’t achieve this with Micro engineering spikes.
jc
<ea1.png>





Jim Marlett
 

I’m 75 years old and my wife thinks I’m crazy for hand laying this layout. She may be right, but I enjoy it, at least when it works. I think Micro Engineering flex track probably looks better and is easier to lay. Maybe I’ll give in before this is all over. I think if I were to start over, I would use code 55 flex with hand laid switches, but I already have too much code 70. I thought about mixing them, but code 55 makes my code 70 look even bigger. I’ll just stick with the big stuff and hope not too many people notice,

Jim Marlett
http://flatheaddrag.com/
http://jimmarlett.zenfolio.com/

On Jan 11, 2021, at 6:18 PM, Climax@mindspring.com <Climax@Mindspring.com> wrote:

When I use to lay my own C70 rail and make my own switches etc I spiked every 7th tie. I first drilled .012 holes on either side of the rail, then pushed in the c70 spikes. I lost a lot that went to never never land and were never found, but for the most part it all worked out just fine. Now days, and at 74, my eye sight is not as good as it once was, probably to many hits the eye with flying spikes, sp I use Shinohara Flex track and switches. I still do make special things like gauge separation and special use switches though. I just figure that today I got better things to do than mumble under my breath after another spike disappears.

Dave