Securing Track

First off....Hello All!

> > I am a beginner and setting up an N gauge setup. I did some Model > railraoding when I was young but.... > > I fogot how I need to secure the track and I have done MANY searches > without an answer to my specific questions. > > I have a base setup and it is covered with woodland scenics grass. I > have the layout of the track setup on it the way I would like but have > not secured anything. > What steps do I take to secure the track? Do I take up the temp layout > and the lay the roadbed? I have the woodland scenics trackbed. > > How will I make the curves with the straight trackbed? What is the > best way to seccure the track to the roadbed? > > And also, what are the steps I should take, for example, remove the > whole layout then install the trackbed,then secure the > track....something along those lines. > > Thanks in advance for any help!!!! > > ecavedude
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Your original post may have gotten lost due to the SNR here.

Personally, I use track spikes through the ties, and 1/2" nails to hold the cork roadbed down. Many others will tell you it's noisy, but I don't mind the noise it produces. If you're trying out different track plans, don't ballast and this method makes moving track easy.

Other methods of securing track on layouts involves using glues or caulks to hold the track in place. I'm not a fan of this method, just because the other one works so well for me.


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I'm assuming that you are using sectional track, so...

Make a pencil mark on both sides of your track. Remove a section of track and set aside, Lay down a small bead of acrylic caulk between your pencil marks. Spread it thin with a putty knife or such. Lay the roadbed over the caulk using your pencil lines as guides. Give the caulk 24hrs to cure. Spread a thin bead of caulk on the roadbed. Replace your track and make sure everything is aligned properly. Do NOT glue turnouts to the roadbed, let them float, the adjoining track will hold them in place. Give the caulk 24hrs to cure. Repeat as necessary.

I used to nail roadbed and track, but there is too much potential for damaging your track and the amount of labor involved. The caulk will cure to a rubery consistency that will allow for some thermal expansion and help to quiet operation a bit.

Please don't let all the crap going on here discourage you. Welcome aboard!


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Thanks everyone! That's the kind of info I was looking for!

Any advice or links would be appreciated also!

Thank you again!


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Check out

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Bill Loy

There's a good book on the subject from Model Railroader Books called "Basic Trackwork for Model Railroaders" by Jeff Wilson. This was recommended to me here when I had the same question and did not regret purchasing it (local shop didn't have it so got it at a discount at

There is more to learn beyond the book but it covers the basics you need to get started with LOTS of super close-up photos of how to do this stuff. Covers the nailing and the gluing method, roadbed types, flextrack and sectional, turnouts, painting, ballasting and detailing for extra realism. A bonus is a track buyer's guide in the back covering who makes what for N, HO, S, and O scales.

~Brad fd64

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