Tandem turnouts - sequence of construction?

Discussion in 'Permanent Way' started by NewportRod, 4 July 2020.

  1. NewportRod

    NewportRod Active Member

    Do any WTers have any thoughts on the ideal sequence of construction for tandem turnouts? I built one on P4 about fifty years ago but haven't a clue now how I approached it. This time I'm looking at S7.
    Does one start at the central crossing and work outwards; choose one of the outer crossings and work from there? Some other way? Does it really matter?
  2. Ian@StEnochs

    Ian@StEnochs Western Thunderer

    I built one for my 'Auchlin' layout also in S7. It was quite a while ago before all the bending and filling jigs became available from the S7 group which has made recent paintwork construction much easier. Mine was built on ply sleepers and rivets with Slaters cosmetic chairs added after testing.

    The first bits I made were the three crossings, which were built upon a board upside down, soldered up solid with shim brass reinforcing under the crossings. I sawed insulation gaps and reinforced them with strips of plastic 'fishplates' and epoxy before soldering to the rivets in the conventional way. Once the crossings were made the rest went together very easily.
    All my other pointwork has G&SWR style interlaced sleepers but I couldn't work out how to do a tandem so it was built on conventional long timbers!
    My recent paintwork has used Exactoscale chairs but I find them not as easy to use as the soldered method.
  3. 3 LINK

    3 LINK Western Thunderer

    Good morning Rod,

    Personally I have always started from one side of the turnout and just worked across the turnout, even with diamonds and slips it has always worked well for me, even on a single slip built on a curve.


    Hope this helps,

    Last edited: 4 July 2020
  4. eastsidepilot

    eastsidepilot Western Thunderer

    I've usually started with the crossings then closure and stock rails, working out wards, point blades last as they can be manipulated and fettled afterwards .

    3 LINK likes this.
  5. JimG

    JimG Western Thunderer

    On my US style switching layout a year or two ago, I built the tandem in a similar way to Ian

    US Style Track in S - Jameston & Leven River RR

    Two of the crossings were quite close, so they were built up as one assembly on a metal base with all their wing rails. The third crossing was fairly remote so was built up on its own. I placed the crossings according to the Templot drawings and then laid stock rails to gauge to them, then closure and switch rails followed.

    If the three crossings are quite separate, I would build them all individually and lay them according to the Templot plan, then lay stock rails to gauge, with closure and switch rails to follow.

    3 LINK likes this.
  6. Stevesopwith

    Stevesopwith Western Thunderer

    I drew a plan of the rails, and sleepers, ( in pencil... too old for Templot... Sorry. ) Note.. it's on a curve just to make it even trickier.

    I made suitable crossings, with over long rails ends, and juggled them into alignment, holding the rails with pins.

    Once I was satisfied, they were fixed, using C&L chairs, cut about where necessary.

    I used the crossing rails to gauge the closure and stock rails, fitted check rails... note the odd one on the left hand set; and finally sorted out the switch tongues.

    On a Three-Throw that area gets pretty busy, and I had to take two goes at them to correct gauge narrowing.

    The stretcher bar arrangements are pretty challenging as well !

    Thaxted 7mm Three Throw A.jpg Thaxted 7mm Three Throw C.jpg
  7. Lyndhurstman

    Lyndhurstman Western Thunderer

    Hello @NewportRod
    This is from my old copy of the Scalefour Society Digest sheets:


  8. Phil O

    Phil O Western Thunderer

    I start from the centre crossing and add the other crossings before adding the stock rails, I still haven't added the check rails to the tandem on Pottery Quay on my layout thread.
  9. NewportRod

    NewportRod Active Member

    Thank you all for your contributions - it looks like there is no 'right way' to do it which is encouraging. I should have remembered about the S4 digest - I'm a member so I can dig it out.
    3 LINK and Lyndhurstman like this.