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Track Dimension Details _

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indent Much of what is commercially available is maple, but with price competition there are exceptions. If making your own track, cherry or walnut are options. I've cut some from chestnut, which is a bit softer. A weather-friendly outdoor layout could even be made from ipe or teak.

Standard Track redline

indent Modules included in this standard were frost developed using Microsoft Visio and then reconstructed in 3D using Rhino 5.0. This preserved a clean record of the layouts to share - and digital prints could be printed to create physical tiles for each module. Tiles are useful to check a configuration before arranging and bolting the modules together.

indent Personally, I like the Clickity-Clack track that Learning Curve abandoned years ago. Glued to the surface of wood tables, the audible clack is even more pronounced. You can still find this used track on eBay and other auction sites or even make your own. Track dimensions are the same as track currently sold as Thomas, as well as Brio, Choo Choo Track & Toy, Orbrium and other manufacturers.

indent Use a mitre box to trim the occasional piece of straight track to close small gaps and fix overlaps. These typically occur around intersections and switches. Curved track is most easily modified using a scroll saw or band saw.

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Custom Track redline

indent To achieve some of the more complicated and interesting custom layouts described in this guide, custom track pieces cut with a manual or CNC router may be necessary. You may want to create your own special track sections. Examples include a riser that curves to the left or right, 22 curves, 30 curves, gradual ramps, spiral easements, angled crossing tracks or a custom turntable. Rockler sells bits that facilitate making custom track pieces using a handheld or table router. You could also use these bits to create 2" straight pieces from broken straight pieces on hand something often needed to get lengths to come out right. Additional crossing tracks can be made by notching standard 4" straight tracks with a router. Tool Libraries and local woodworkers are resources to explore. Custom track has been intermittently available from online resources. ElevatedTrak is one source for groups and individuals working with families and children in their communities. Following are a handful of ideas to get you started thinking.

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