Track Preperation

Second hand track requires cleaning. Some of the pieces of track I have bought in the past require a lot of cleaning. I do not purposly buy heavily rusted track, but sometimes it appears at the bottom of a box of reasonable track, eg. "How much for the whole box?" usually results in a reasonable price for the good bits and the rubbish in affect is thrown in for free.

Purchase decision

Buying second hand track does have its pitfalls. For a bigger picture click on the image. Here is a (big) clue.

Some track I have bought has patches of rust. This is because they were at the bottom of a box that got damp.

Patch of rust
Totally rusty track section

More commonly the track has rust all over. This is because it is old and has been stored in a damp environment at some point, such as a loft or garage. These are both places I presume unwanted "toys" are stored before being disposed of eg. sold. This is the worst example a could find in my collection. It may or may not be worth trying to clean up. I will work on the best sections first and see if this bit is actually needed.

I have now produced one long 'essay' on How to Clean and Prepare Second Hand Track Click on the title, I will find a suitable picture to click later!

Chemical Cleaning

Click on the picture for details of how a safe, household chemical can be used to quickly clean your tarnished Scalextric track.

Household chemical used to remove rust

In-Service Cleaning

Meths, syringe in tray, scourer and cloth

Even if you clean the track before you lay it, dirt accumulates during use. The best (in terms of fun) way of cleaning the track then, is to put some methylated spirit onto the braids of a car and driving it around. A small amount can be put onto the braids using a blunt syringe. The pipette from the Race Tuning Accessory Pack could also be used. When I have finished playing, I wipe the rails with a cloth to remove all the newly dissolved dirt. Stubborn dirt (probably corrosion) can be removed with a pan scourer.

I am now trying to clean the track with WD40 using a similar method to that used with Meths. WD40 however has the advantage that if you leave a (thin) layer on the track it will prevent future corrsion. I do this by spraying a bit of WD40 onto one or two track sections then playing for a while. When I have finished I go round the track with a cloth rubbing the rails to lift off all the disolved dirt. I then again spray on one or two 'puddles' and run a car around. The liquid is lifted by the braids and deposited all round the circuit in a light layer. Don't use to much as it is a lubricant that will help the guide blade, but not the tyres when cornering!

Two cans of WD40

In-Service Cleaning the Fun way

Track cleaning trailer in action

If you leave your circuit set up in a loft (or garage?) all the time and don't get to use it as often as you would like due to work/family/St. John Ambulance commitments, you may find that the track gets dirty or even tarnished. I do. If you leave the rails with a light coating of WD40 it shouldn't tarnish, but it will attract dust. I want a way of removing this dust. Click on the picture for more details.

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