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Various ways to secure sections?

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  • Various ways to secure sections?

    Hey guys. I'm looking at building a track with two sections. Can you guys show me some photos of the various ways in which you attach the two sections at the joint. I'm using a 4 by 8 sheet with a 31 inch by 36 inch section on the side that will have a banked corner to it, so I'll have a same size sheet underneath the section that will be banked as support.
    Loan Shark aka Matt
    I am Alive because Organ Donation Worked... TWICE

  • #2
    I just used a "scab" board underneath. Few screws and works fine?

    -Harry

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    • #3
      I agree with Harry.
      Butch

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      • #4
        I agree as well. However if you plan on taking it apart often you may want to insert some blind nuts so you have a metal screw into a metal nut instead of just wood screws in wood. You can use HYSOL to glue the blind nuts in place, or 2 part epoxy of your choice.

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        • #5
          What about small countersunk bolts with wingnuts on the bottom? This would be for ease of disassembly. Glue and screw the piece of wood to the bottom of one section, align the sections and hold in place with clamps, then secure the second section with countersunk screws or bolts. I had spare pine planking so I used 7" wide by 3/4" thick board underneath track section joints - very secure.

          This was after an initial failure when a thin piece of Luan plywood came apart while twisting one of the sections to make elevation changes. The stress I put on the plywood exceeded the bond between layers and shortly after joining the sections I heard a loud crack and the sections came apart. I definitely recommend a strong thick piece of wood to join sections.

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          • #6
            The best way I have found for creating threads in wood are "T-Nuts". They are available from outlets like Lowe's, Home Depot, McMaster-Carr and Grainger. You drill a through-hole, just large enough to clear the barrel, then hammer the flange of the T-Nut flush. The flange typically has sharp prongs that act like nails, piercing the wood when you hammer the flange home. You insert the bolt from the side opposite the flange. You can draw that bolt up wicked tight and all it does is pull the T-Nut flange tighter against the wood. The threads will stand up to many insertion cycles no problem.

            Click image for larger version  Name:	Screen Shot 2020-05-31 at 5.32.11 PM.png Views:	0 Size:	41.6 KB ID:	39374
            Downside -- T-Nuts are not blind fasteners.

            The next best, which can be used blind, is the "E-Z Lok". They are available from the same sources as T-Nuts. An E-Z Lok screws into a pre-drilled hole, cutting its own threads in the wood. The internal threads are sized for a machine screw or bolt. E-Z Lok's will not take nearly the load that a T-Nut will, but they are a good option when you need to keep the fastener invisible.
            Ed Bianchi
            Click image for larger version  Name:	Screen Shot 2020-05-31 at 5.39.15 PM.png Views:	0 Size:	160.6 KB ID:	39375
            Last edited by HO RacePro; May 31, 2020, 05:50 PM.

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            • dinglebery
              dinglebery commented
              Editing a comment
              Yep - T-Nuts were what I was referring to. They're great and pretty strong!

          • #7
            totally agree, Ed. i use them both.

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            • #8
              Speaking as a woodworker (boats, furniture, slot car tracks, guitars, etc.), I'll say that a permanent connection is the Harry method- that is, a plate below with screws and glues. For something you may need to take apart, there are many options. I warn you, take serious looks at all of them. Each one has a specific situation that it serves. Tell us what you plan to do.

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              • #9
                What I was planning on using double hung window locks

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                • #10
                  My advice... nope. To do that you would need to build multiple dowels into the joint. Then the window locks or suitcase latches will have stability.

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                  • #11
                    I once did an expansion that required expanding the table as well & I'm on a concrete floor & table is framed with 2x4's so I just butted the new table section up against the old, shimmed the legs to get the height to match & lag bolts through the butted 2x4's once the height matches. My track is elevated through the connection so I made sure the joint in my elevated track structure wasn't right over the table joint although by the time I was done, the table was pretty solid through the joint. I tend to over build things.

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                    • #12
                      Originally posted by Fathead59 View Post
                      What I was planning on using double hung window locks
                      Been there, done that..... won't do it again. They have enough play to allow mis-alignment.

                      The alignment is crucial. After the slots are all aligned then attachment options are myriad. I use scab boards but glued on only 1 side of the joint in case I ever want to change it.....but I am cheap (MDF and screws are already there). Tnuts are effective and not much more expensive. Tongue and groove is classic for a reason, but needs to be hardwood as MDF can swell. And it still has to be glued/screwed to the surface, so why bother unless it's a full cabinet build?

                      Harry is right.....
                      Come Race at The Trace!
                      Timberline Trace International Raceway - SW of Mpls, MN

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                      • #13
                        Ok , not sure if everyone knew what type for track I was going to make . It was going to be Scaletrix track with the remote controls . Professor Motor had a set-up with extra tracks , and I bought a few extra sets , some for the cars , but mostly for the track . Table size I was planning on making would have been 6x12 , after track was laid out I was going to glue down foam poster board for border . This way you can come into a turn a little hot and ride the grass . As I lay it out I might see where I could put overpasses . So the track is still in the building phase

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                        • #14
                          Originally posted by Fathead59 View Post
                          Ok , not sure if everyone knew what type for track I was going to make . It was going to be Scaletrix track with the remote controls . Professor Motor had a set-up with extra tracks , and I bought a few extra sets , some for the cars , but mostly for the track . Table size I was planning on making would have been 6x12 , after track was laid out I was going to glue down foam poster board for border . This way you can come into a turn a little hot and ride the grass . As I lay it out I might see where I could put overpasses . So the track is still in the building phase
                          Well....allow me to moderate my response then
                          If you are just linking tables together and laying plastic track on top of that, the sash locks should be fine.
                          Come Race at The Trace!
                          Timberline Trace International Raceway - SW of Mpls, MN

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                          • #15
                            Thank you , that's what I have thought . I just wanted to get a few opinions to see if what I thought would have worked, and maybe use one of the those .

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