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Just like the real thing?

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One of the attractions of building and operating a garden railway was that it felt more like the real thing.

My garden railway The Jackson County found itself in a similar situation to Irish Rail in the early 90s needing major work on the track.




The first sign of trouble was when the gauge started spreading in one area. The ties bleached out noticeably after about 6 years, the rail fixings then became brittle and spalled off.




The engineers tried replacing every 5th tie to hold the gauge, a run-down short line money always tight, speed low, the mines and logging camps almost played out.




County Surveyor and State Government start hearing complaints of standing de-railments an inspector is sent.




Emergency re-laying




Tie strip completely failed on some lengths.




Recovery train propelling back over re-laid section.




Replacement track panels for the re-lay.


The little diesel is an LGB DRGW Switcher converted to on board battery RC, with receiver in cab control gear and batteries inside engine housing.


The original track was Accucraft (AMS) American 3' narrow gauge track the replacement Sunset Valley narrow gauge. The bleaching and UV damage only became noticeable after about 6 years.


Luckily enough I was able to find a suitable replacement tie/sleeper strip for the existing rails, hopefully the replacement ties will have a similar service life to the rails.


The area where the track failed is exposed to afternoon sunlight although UV radiation is supposed to be stronger down here the Waikato is probably as sunny as the West of Ireland

Edited by Mayner
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