7mm Track plan from screen to formation

Discussion in 'Permanent Way' started by Dog Star, 30 May 2020.

  1. Dog Star

    Dog Star Western Thunderer

    My Son, Peter, has become useful with Templot and so the colliery extension to Scruft's Junction has been "Templotted" and refined - several times - so we now have thirty sheets of A4 to cover the new baseboards (three boards each being 4' x 2'). Now we have to think through the task of converting a plan (as a stack of paper) to a formation ready for laying track... and I do not feel comfortable with previous experiences.

    For the last layout that we have built (Weeping Angels Yard for Adrian Marks) we stuck the Templot plan to the raw board surface with ready-mixed wallpaper paste - a recommendation from Richard Carr (@richard carr) - a similar layer was stuck to the underside of the baseboard to provide a "balance" in case the paper / glue combination introduced a tendency to warp the ply. The use of paste gave a good bond between the plan and the ply and there was no warping of the board. Adrian did not want us to use foam underlay and so there was no deadening of the sound from the passage of trains - sound deadening is a feature that I wish to include in the current build.

    Previous to "WAY" we built a layout where we were asked to use a foam underlay and because of the track complexity the Templot track plan was stuck onto the foam... using spray carpet adhesive. Whilst the grip between plan and insulation was good initially the bond began to fail after about nine months and that meant that there was minimal hold between the track and the formation.

    So how do WTers transfer the details of a Templot plan to foam insulation?

    thank you and regards, Graham
    Last edited: 2 June 2020
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  2. simond

    simond Western Thunderer


    I can answer your question, but I’m not sure it will help.

    For Porth Dinllaen, I built all the pointwork on a piece of melamine covered chipboard (typical diy shelf material). I taped a layer of greyboard to the chipboard, stuck the Templot plan to that with PVA, and built my track on it. I think cut the backing close to the timbers when all is set. This creates robust panels.

    I then stuck these to the layout with whatever packing was necessary and ballasted using Javis granite and diluted latex. It’s been down for over four years with no problems, but it does not meet your requirement for sound deadening. Even at shed speeds there is some noise, and I’m sure it would be obtrusive if it were trains rather than trundling locos.

    If and when the second stage of the layout is built, I will want to use foam between panels and baseboard. My current thinking is to continue with the “off board panel build” and simply secure the greyboard to a foam layer with something like EvoStik.

    The latex seems to remain flexible, and I think would work satisfactorily with the granite ballast - it certainly doesn’t set like concrete as PVA & ballast seems to, nor does it tint the granite green.

    hope this provides food for thought
  3. AdeMoore

    AdeMoore Western Thunderer

    Graham no sure if your over on the other channel, but Gordon’s method may work for you.
    Stick down the plans then on one rail pop in holes to the ply as a guide.
    Remove plans the cut cork your case foam 17mm wide (00) be wider for you in 7mm, you may have to up 32mm to 33mm.
    Lay that to the line of holes then cut 2 shoulders of bevelled and add that either side.
    Then it’s a matter of laying the track along the join.
    Not my idea but liked the thought of no paper to stick down.
    Eastwood Town - It had to go......
    January 10th post.
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  4. Boyblunder

    Boyblunder Active Member

    Graham, as my Love Lane colleagues will tell you I can't build models and never finish anything but I do observe and like experimenting. On the extensions to Love Lane we used cork underlay stuck mainly with Copydex or PVA and stuck the Templot sheets down with 3M photo mount spray. In quite a few places this system failed and has been re-stuck in various messy ways. The cork was too thin so doesn't make much difference to the sound insulation especially where ballast has been applied with PVA that sets the cork solid. Conclusion: don't use photo mount and if the baseboards are well structured and locos are sound equipped then the lack of under-ballast sound deadening doesn't matter much.

    I was given a 12 foot long 4 track test board to play with. It had Scale 7 A6 turnouts and a crossover built on Templot over foam stuck with contact adhesive and most of the glue or the foam was failing. My 6 year old grandson is the excuse to play trains so to accommodate his preference for push-along finescale I'm rebuilding it as a terminus with finescale Peco track on one side (sorry chaps) and Scale 7 on the other. As an experiment I've used 3mm cork stuck with latex to start with, its nice to work with, easy to sand for levelling at board joins and not carcinogenic like neoprene foam is if melted. The Peco track was stuck straight down with Copydex and for Scale 7 I experimented with printing Templot onto sheets of Smith's T shirt transfer paper and ironing it onto the cork. As you can see in the photo it works, but the iron application is tricky because if you don't get it warm enough then it doesn't stick and if you hold it on too long then it melts and distorts. Conclusion: interesting idea but probably not a great solution. I am now building track using Mike Greenwood's laser cut track bases which allow me to complete and test each item on the kitchen table then stick them directly to the cork with latex with no Templot underlay, similar to Simon's method but without the greyboard. If it is noisy when finished I'm going to try covering all the underside with clingfilm or some other thin plastic then filling it with expanding foam, cheap as chips from Screwfix. Simon had previously mentioned buying latex glue from Screwfix, they don't list it now so I bought Mapei Latex Plus White (Screwfix 48884). It is quite runny so not sure if Simon uses the same stuff but it seems to work OK, I've experimented with gluing ballast and it sets OK overnight after adding a drop of detergent.
    Templot 1.JPG Templot 2.JPG
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  5. simond

    simond Western Thunderer

    Certainly the stuff I’m using is watered down Mapei - I’ll find the bottle & check the code & report back in due course.


    Apologies, forgot. It is Mapei LatexPlus, same as Robin’s photo. It has a number 48884 but I’m not sure if this is a Mapei or Screwfix number, or something else.
    Last edited: 2 June 2020
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  6. Overseer

    Overseer Western Thunderer

    Instead of iron on transfer paper it is possible to use a normal laser print on paper and transfer the image with acetone or another solvent onto wood, cork etc. You would need to print the plan in mirror image and it may not be a good idea to try on foam, but does foam have a long enough service life anyway?
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  7. SimonT

    SimonT Western Thunderer

    Based on building six S7 layouts (sorry now 7 with one WIP) , my technique is to use a foam underlay. For Aberbeeg I used camping sleeping foam roll (nominal 9mm thick). For The Back End/Holme Lacy I am using laminate floor underlay foam/an accoustic insulation foam that matchess the thickness of the floor stuff. I glue down with heavy duty carpet adhesive spray which I used to buy from Geddes Carpets in Malmesbury; I no longer have a can to give you a name to help you find it. I need to find a Welsh source when this is all over. I also use it to secure the paper carrying the Templot plan. PVA is useless if the foam is closed cell as it never cures. It also cockles the paper. Photomount doesn't have the guts for the job. To give you an idea how long my method lasts, I have two large panels of track from Aberbeeg in the workshop. Building took seven years, we showed it for four years and it has been dismantled for about five years. So, over sixteen years it has all remained together with only the odd small area of detachment. These are difficult to find as the board/foam/paper/track/ballast becomes a single entity that can support it self.
    If you use foam underlay ensure that each baseboard joint has a ply piece to replace the foam at the baseboard edge. This ensures that the rail level stays constant over the joint and gives the chairs something more solid to grip at the edge. It only needs to be an inch wide. You can see it in some of the photos of Holme Lacy (post 31)
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  8. Lancastrian

    Lancastrian Western Thunderer

    From my experience, getting plans for Templot on paper to stay glued down after ballasting is an issue, in the long term. It seems to matter not what type of adhesive is used initially, once any ballast is glued down using a waterered-down adhesive (PVA, latex based etc) the water content will eventually break down the bond betwixt paper and whatever it is glued to.

    I have now however come across a plasticised paper which is used for industrial printing and have had some Templot plans printed to it. As yet, one example is not stuck down to anything, but has walnut sleepers glued to it with UHU. Another example has a point with C&L plastic sleepers glued to it with UHU, which is currently in transit to it's new home in Canada. This material should be impervious to water and therefore would not allow any to permeate to the underside and destroy any bond to either baseboard or underlay.

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  9. rex carslake

    rex carslake New Member


    Has anybody had any experiance with felt as an underlay?

  10. Dog Star

    Dog Star Western Thunderer

    Good question....

    Not thought of using felt - poor answer...
    Last edited: 2 June 2020
  11. simond

    simond Western Thunderer

    Mmm, not sure I like the felt idea, surely it would soak up glue and set like “organic fibreglass“.


    I can’t claim years of experience, but I don’t understand why watered down ballast glue should unstick the glue already down, as presumably, it dries & sets - any remaining water evaporates. Once the ballast adhesive has set, why would it cause anything else to fail?

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  12. eastsidepilot

    eastsidepilot Western Thunderer

    If you are worried about water based ballasting un-doing paper templates why not use a contact adhesive for the templates.
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  13. Brian McKenzie

    Brian McKenzie Western Thunderer

    As PVA is water soluble, maybe the later application of a very 'watery' PVA is dissolving the previous joint. I prefer to use the more water resistant aliphatic type of PVA for everyday woodworking - and friends advocate matte medium for ballasting.

    An Internet explanation: "If PVA glue needs to be applied in thin and even coats, it can be easily diluted with some water to improve its wetting properties. Being water-soluble also has its downside, however, in that dried PVA glue easily re-dissolve when submerged in water".
  14. Osgood

    Osgood Western Thunderer

    I wonder what the Bluebell Railway used?

  15. SimonT

    SimonT Western Thunderer

    Try using builders water proof PVA. It works and is as cheap as chips from your local builders merchants. A small offcut of track top from Aberbeeg spent last winter outside in the rain on its way to the firewood pile. The track has not fallen off and the ballast is still there.
    Incidently try ballasting a different way. Lay the sleepers, mark the crossing nose (and alignment), the switch toes and some alignment poits on plain track and then lay the ballast with a spatula. Ensure that the tops of the sleepers are clear and glue down. Then lay the rails on top. All 94 miles of track were done this way and nothing came undone.
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  16. Phil O

    Phil O Western Thunderer

    Terram, by the look of it. It's water permeable, but stops the ballast from being contaminated by the sub-strata.

    Terram - Wikipedia
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  17. simond

    simond Western Thunderer

    you’d need a decent printer to put your Templot on that...
  18. Ressaldar

    Ressaldar Western Thunderer

    Hi Phil,

    plus it also helps to ‘spread’ the load to some extent of the formation that it is supporting, not usually a modelling requirement:eek:

    Stay safe and well


  19. Osgood

    Osgood Western Thunderer

    My apologies Phil - I was just imagining in my very strange mind what they used to glue down the 1/1 scale Templot plan and ballast!
    I missed a smiley jester.gif off the end of my post to make my intentions clear.

    I've spent a fair bit of lockdown laying Terram under hard landscaping, roadways, drainage - good stuff.
  20. Lancastrian

    Lancastrian Western Thunderer


    Worst experience of this is where a contact carpet adhesive was used to glue down templates. Where I have since used UHU or Evo-stik on other parts of the layout, that seems to have prevented any further problems.

    simond likes this.