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  • #16
    Ya know, I once used kitty litter for ballast also and it works just fine, 'cept for when one of my four legged meatloafs would get into the room and on the layout. Don't need that kind of smelly flooding going on.

    Don

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    • #17
      MikeB, Sometimes ya gotta do what you gotta do. There are certainly nicer versions of models out there, and alot of RR snobs will tout time almost every time. But I would never fault someone for using an inexpensive model due to lack of funds.

      Athearn has come to the rescue for many folks for many years making the hobby more affordable. Even as a teenager, I could afford to have small stable of locos due to their affordablility.

      And yes, I had brass track back then. I guess if you can get the brass track to work for you, then by all means, make use of it. I didn't realize that nickle silver was substantially more expensive anymore, but I havent price compaired it. I just assumed that due to supply and demand, ie selling so much more, made it more economical than it used to be.

      As far as NS track goes... it is so ubiquitous that you ought to be able to find it cheap at train shows and swap meets used. Check Ebay also for cheap track bundles. I bet you will be able to avoid buying more brass track in the future if you look around for NS cheap.

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      • #18
        Word of warning if you make your own ballast -- make sure it doesn't have any iron in it - if it does it could someday find its way into the motor of one of your locomotives, the result of which would not be pleasant. Just go over it well with a strong magnet unless you are positive that there's no iron. Probably wouldn't hurt to also do this if you use real dirt for other purposes, like roads, etc.

        Is your glass half empty or half full .. or just too big?
        Which box am I susposed to think outside of?

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        • #19
          quote:



          Word of warning if you make your own ballast -- make sure it doesn't have any iron in it - if it does it could someday find its way into the motor of one of your locomotives, the result of which would not be pleasant. Just go over it well with a strong magnet unless you are positive that there's no iron. Probably wouldn't hurt to also do this if you use real dirt for other purposes, like roads, etc.


          Is your glass half empty or half full .. or just too big?


          id=quote>id=quote>
          You're right, Bill, and I should have mentioned that in my response. I've discovered, though, that the cheapest cat litter I can buy (it's labeled under the "Country Fair" brand) is 100% gray clay. I ran a Kadee magnet through a pile of my homemade dust once and it came out clean. I haven't worried about it since. But other brands may well have iron - as well as other impurities - in them. Thanks for reminding us.

          A Curmudgeonly Thought for the Day: If most people said what's on their mind, they'd be speechless.

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