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Rail Height for Viper Track

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  • Rail Height for Viper Track

    What should be the rail height on viper track? Exactly how do you measure it, feeler gauge? If to high how do you reduce the height, what tool do you use?

    I have a viper track I assembled from kit and some areas the rail is high. Using the assembly tool they supplied the rail does not go down or it comes back up. High areas are mainly on the curves.

    Also has anyone used debonder on the track where the rails were epoxied down, on the end of sections to hold rail and wire. Will it come up? I am considering using continuous rail if it will come up.

  • #2
    I believe a continuous rail would be the way to go. It would eliminate the need for so many power drops.
    I've never used debonder so I can't offer advice about it
    I was told if the rail height is up to much and it's resting on the bottom, I was told to sand the rail to where it needs to be, if spongy then glue would be applicable.
    When I had questions I always emailed Mr. Cronin and he usually responded with in a couple of hours


    • #3
      ? What is a viper track, I'm curious! a picture or two maybe .


      • #4
        I've no experience with rail tracks -- I use braid. But I understand that common practice is to use a special 'hone' to machine rails to a set height -- commonly 0.015 inches. I believe the hone is something like a file, and the cutting face of the hone is held above the track by spacers. I thought you could buy hones specifically designed for this job, but a quick look online did not turn anything up.

        It should be possible to make your own hone from a file and some feeler gauge spacers. The biggest trick would be cutting the file down to size. Files are super-hard. You're going to need an abrasive cutoff wheel to do the cutting. And you don't want to overheat the file. It would lose its hardness and not cut well. A good but messy solution would be to use a liquid coolant. Or simply take your sweet time making many short, shallow cuts so the part has time to cool in between.

        All of the effort honing the rails will be pointless if the rails are not solidly set in the track. I've no advice to offer here. Again, rail is not my thing. Seek guidance elsewhere.
        Last edited by HO RacePro; November 7, 2021, 05:52 AM.
        Ed Bianchi
        York Pennsylvania USA


        • #5
          Originally posted by Rastas View Post
          ? What is a viper track, I'm curious! a picture or two maybe .
          Check out Viper is the companies name


          • #6
            I own a Banzai BuckTrax, one of the first tracks built by Dale Buck. The rail height was all over the place, ranging from a low of 0.014" to 0.022". Jim McCartney of MARC fame showed me how to make a tool so as to level the rails. I'll try to get a photo of this tool posted later today. My track has a nominal lap length of 48'. With four lanes, that is a lot of filing. Not to mention the need to make sure that all filings are immaculately removed from the track. Leveling my rails was a many hour endeavour, but well worth the effort.

            I went with a rail height of 0.015". I only have a couple of low spots at 0.014" and they are all on straight sections of the track.
            Last edited by gmcullan; November 7, 2021, 08:16 PM.


            • HO RacePro
              HO RacePro commented
              Editing a comment
              My gawd Gerry! Your rail height is off by a thousand microinches! How can you live with yourself?!?
              Ed Bianchi

            • gmcullan
              gmcullan commented
              Editing a comment
              LOL, Ed, it looks like I'm slipping in my old age!

          • #7
            I did not bond the rails on my Viper for a year after it was assembled. Rails never moved. It was easy to bottom the rails in the slot using the VSR tool. Rails height was very consistent. During the year there was minimal running but the rails never moved. I eventually bonded them in place using water thin super glue. My track was Type 1 PVC. Tracks made from Sintra may have a different experience.


            • #8
              Thanks to everyone for their input. I will try the debonder and see what happens. If it works will reset the rail or use continuous rail and relay track pieces.


              • #9
                Madman, how did you thin the glue?


                • #10
                  I didn't. Went to the local hobby store and bought it that way. I keep it in the freezer between uses to keep it fresh. Both techniques worked.

                  A quick search using "water thin super glue" gave quite a few results. Along with the bottle you want the small applicator tubes shown in the photo. They allow you to better control where the glue is going.

                  Click image for larger version

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                  Last edited by Maddman; November 9, 2021, 06:50 AM.