Laying Down Ballast

Written by Glenn. Posted in Shelf Layout

With two of the loops now completed ballasting of the track can begin. Some time ago EMRC purchased a ballast spreader and I was keen to see how well it would do the job.

Using a coarse grey ballast I found I had to press down firmly otherwise the spreader would jump up and drop too much ballast. It works fine on normal track but the points will still need to be done completely by hand.

 

 

{timg title:="The ballast spreader in action" thumb:="http://www.elthammrc.org.au/images/stories/shelflayout/Shelf-ballast-89-md.jpg" img:="http://www.elthammrc.org.au/images/stories/shelflayout/Shelf-ballast-89.jpg" }

The spreader in action. It leaves a nice flat layer of ballast on the track. Having never done it by hand I guess it is a lot faster.

{timg title:="Where the ballast goes in" thumb:="http://www.elthammrc.org.au/images/stories/shelflayout/Shelf-ballast-90-md.jpg" img:="http://www.elthammrc.org.au/images/stories/shelflayout/Shelf-ballast-90.jpg" }

Ballast goes in at the top. The opening isn't very large so a funnel would be a good accessory to have.

{timg title:="Uneven spreading of ballast" thumb:="http://www.elthammrc.org.au/images/stories/shelflayout/Shelf-ballast-88-md.jpg" img:="http://www.elthammrc.org.au/images/stories/shelflayout/Shelf-ballast-88.jpg" }

Sometimes the ballast does not flow out very well and gaps occur in the ballast pattern.

{timg title:="Close up of the ballast gap" thumb:="http://www.elthammrc.org.au/images/stories/shelflayout/Shelf-ballast-91-md.jpg" img:="http://www.elthammrc.org.au/images/stories/shelflayout/Shelf-ballast-91.jpg" }

I found that you could go over areas already done and this would fix up the gaps. The spreader needs to be pressed down a bit firmer than normal as bits of ballast can push the spreader up.

Exhibitions