gluing vs. nailing track

gluing vs. nailing track


I'm a nailer. I like to ballast and weather quite heavily so the nails are virtually invisible. The English man on utube pins to the outside sleepers then they're gone.His videos are very helpful and his knowledge is great for beginners and veterans. If you glue your ballast, you'd best be sure. I have left it unglued in the past its messy but not permanent. You can't vacuum the track thou...not kn my railroad 😌


Search for Chadwick model Railways on Youtube. He has discussed glue types as well as pinning track on the outside


Either way, the track is going to be relatively permanent. Cork roadbed is secured with glue; there's nothing you can really do about that. Whether you use glue or nails to hold the rails down, there will be some element of ripping stuff apart to change track arrangements. White glue or caulk will still allow you to pry up the rails from the cork in case you want to reuse them. Some people like nails because they believe that it dampens noise, but as soon as you glue ballast, that is basically negated. Glue is also nice because you can move the tracks around while the glue is setting to help straighten things out if you notice any curves or kinks, nails are pretty inflexible.


I nail my track down initially, then once I’m 100% satisfied I put down my ballast. The ballast I use is real rock, which is glued in place with diluted PVA. Once it’s set, I remove the nails and fill the nail holes. Best of both worlds.


This is what I do and so does the local shop on their layout. Plywood base the a sheet of homasote, screw the homasote to the plywood, staple the cork to the homasote then nail the track with nails long enough to go through the cork and into the homasote. They also don't glue their ballast in between the rail only the edges of the cork. That way if they want to make a change all they do is vacuum up the loose. Use plenty of screws as the homasote will curl when you paint or use diluted glue for turf.