A Quick Guide to Maintaining Your Model Railroad

A Quick Guide to Maintaining Your Model Railroad

Building a model railroad is a long process but one where the journey is part of the fun. However, there’s nothing more disappointing than building an amazing layout only to run into connection problems. Follow this quick guide to maintaining your model railroad to keep your trains running smoothly.

Keep Your Tracks Clean

Most of the time, when you have a connection problem on your track, your track or your train’s wheels are dirty. To clean the track, you need a device called a “track eraser” that will help remove build-up. If you have lots of tunnels in your layout, you may want to invest in a cleaning car that has a track eraser attached to the base.

Cleaning Train Wheels

Running your trains will naturally knock off dirt, dust, and other tiny particles that are hard to see, but occasionally the wheels may get oil and grime build-up on them. Many model train companies sell special cleaners designed for model train wheels that you can use to remove any build-up. Just make sure to get a cleaner that matches the type of wheels you have.

Dust the Battery Pack

If you’re having problems with your track, but the wheels and track are clean, then it might be your electrical source that’s the problem. Make sure to regularly dust the battery and its housing to prevent dust from affecting the sensitive electrical connections. It’s also a good idea to keep wires secured with electrical tape or zip ties so they stay organized and free of kinks.

Check the Wheel Gauge

Another quick tip for maintaining your model railroad is to periodically check the wheel gauge on your trains. Even metal wheels from quality models can change gauge over time, so if your trains are derailing, this is one of the things to check. A caliper is a device that you can use to determine whether your train’s wheels need adjusting.

If you’re in the market for model train cleaning supplies, check out our supply at Midwest Model Railroad. And if you’re new to the hobby, take a look at our HO scale BNSF locomotives, and feel free to reach out with any questions you may have. We love helping newbies and hobby veterans!

22nd Sep 2022 Steven Atwell

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