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Gluing and Pinning Track in Place

Online train club member Perry posted this question for fellow railroaders:

“I am almost to the point of layingtrain track railways my first area of track and wondered if I need to glue it as well as pin it down? Someone told me I only needed to fix it directly to the board. I’m using 12mm thick marine ply. If I need glue – what should I use?

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24 Responses to Gluing and Pinning Track in Place

  • Tom Osterdocksays:

    I use titebond III which is waterproof. You could pin the track and remove them later since they will not look good but I just weight the track down until it is cured. Since it is waterproof do not need to worry about it when ballasting and applying scenery.

    • Keith Hartsays:

      Keith Hart.
      I use glue stick to secure pre shaped trackbed to base board to remove I use the blade of a knife ,this does not rip the trackbed,likewise I use glue stick to hold track on bends leaving straight track glue free.I use PECO flexitrack 100,I find you can make more gentle curves than with fixed track

  • Raul Olivaressays:

    I myself have been using a glue called E6000. It is a very strong clue that will no harm most plastics is good on wood and can be removed by slipping an Xacto blade. This glue when dry is a rubber cement, so it will stretch if pulled. Do not use this on insulation foam as it will melt it.
    Hope this helps.

  • Tim Gallaghersays:

    I use aileen’s Tacky glue. It’s inexpensive and easy to apply. I would recommend using cork road bed and laying the track on the cork. Again, the tacky glue is an excellent adhesive for the cork application as well. Let the glue set for at least 24 hours to ensure a secure set up,of the glue.

    YES, use some type of pin to hold the track in place until the glue dries? I used bulletin board stick pins to secure the cork and then the track in place.

  • Larry Bartlettsays:

    I tack the track in place first and then add my ballast and a fixative. After it is set the track is held in place very well.

  • Robertsays:

    On my HO layout I used double sided carpet tape and model RR spikes to hold down the 3 foot long flex track. I have been able to remove track after 3 years without destroying the track. This was on 3/4 inch foam board

  • Craig Gillespiesays:

    I like to use pins have used glue in the past but fine pins way better if you ever need to do changes to your track work.
    Do not ram the pins home to hard as the ballast is what really holds the track in place.

  • Wes Orloffsays:

    Perry, there are advantages to both pins and glue. Pins work well in cork roadbed over homasote or other firm baseboard but not so well on foam board. Pins allow track adjustments and it’s easy to relocate track after pinning Glue works well on many base boards including foam. I use Dap water based caulk spreading a thin bead down the centerline, spread it to about the width of the ties and place weight on the track to bond it to the base. It sets up overnight. Disadvantage is it’s more difficult to remove or relocate the track after it sets. There are plenty of good track laying videos on YouTube

  • Ron Willettssays:

    Perry, the track will move though expansion a