Mark Cartwright <marcdecapri@...>
In the Central Valley of California...We have Peat Dust, Valley Fever and now Ashe from the many Northern California Fires.
And abrupt temperature changes which create a very strange phenomenon up into the Sierra's known as Exploding Rocks.
This is were the core temperature of a rock is still near like freezing point and then near suddenly - the Sun Rises on a clear day.
Anyone who has cooked a semi-frozen Turkey has witnessed this phenomenon on a smaller scale. At least a 10 degree change in weather from Night to Day is needed.
This means....Your track will bend...even under less extreme conditions, if not in a stable environment.
My basement proved to be such a NON-Stable Environment. Even the Pepsi's in the normal small refrigerator without an ice box in it Froze and exploded.
So I upped and moved and found a Family/Train Room above ground for my Hobby. But I am still experimenting.
I considered running an outside trackage of Kato Unitrack to create the Port of Stockton's Channel...with the aspect of picking up the track every day...but knowing me? Just one over-night lazy excuse and I would probably need to replace all the track.
With all of the above said....
The best method of keeping my track clean...with all the helpers I can get such as CRC 2-26 and a whole house vacuum system...plus a portable one as well...
Is not to allow the track to get overly dirty in the first place and attempt at best never to allow it to freeze.
Very difficult to do...but my (new to me) main Train Room will hopefully be re-created into a sort of Clean Room with a specialized HVAC System for pollutants.
DCC especially with sound requires bright shiny rails along the top quarter inside. The best I have come up with is to create my own wand to run between the rails with various cleaners. Mostly I use a heavy duty paper towel attached to the wand, but at times I find myself using Q-tips.
What is more....
All my track (for now) is removable, as it is Kato Unitrack.
I have experimented with Atlas, Peco, Shinohara and Hand Laid....and for now in some locations, I am recreating Kato #6 Turnouts into #9's and #12's.
Since this procedure takes me upwards of 12 hours to complete with the skill of a Jewelry...I have so far only recreated 2. Yet I have several hundred turnouts in my inventory...one day expecting to use them as is?
Good Luck with that ! > N Scale does not really have a Great Turnout. I am working on that too.
Sorry for not conveying a quick fix or even better news.