Fast Tracks

Need Turnout dimensions NOT on printable templates.
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Author:  SLI_Fallen [ Fri Dec 12, 2014 7:58 am ]
Post subject:  Need Turnout dimensions NOT on printable templates.

I use 3RD-PlanIt for my layout design.

There have been a few people who took it upon themselves to create track libraries of the Fast Tracks products in the past. (Something I personally believe Fast Tracks should take it upon themselves to provide track libraries for, say, the main three Model Railroad/CAD design programs: 3Rd Planit, Xtra Cad and Winrail) It would increase sales and more importantly, allow those software package users to incorporate new products into their track plan designs. But I digress. ;-)

This is precisely my problem now.

I have a few user created libraries of Fast Track products including curved turnouts. I see there have been some recent additions to the HO scale curved turnout product listing, and one in particular, the new 40"-30" radius #8 is of great interest to me.

3rd PlanIt does provide the means to add "homemade" track objects, including turnouts. But some of the specifications they are asking for, I don't see in the turnout specs provided in the printable PDF track templates.

Here is a user created fast tracks curved turnout (#8 60"-40") properties in 3rd PlanIt:


And here is the specs taken from your web site from the track template for the new Fast Tracks HO #8 40"-30":


So what I am missing is the Routing length, Entry to intersection, and Entry to frog point specifications. (since the frog angle is greyed out, I am assuming that degree angle is extrapolated from those other fields just as I am assuming the "Centerline to routing exit" is)

Perhaps I am missing something as I don't really see this info being provided in the 3rd PlanIt track templates that I already have. (like you see in the 60-40 turnout properties. Unless they got that info from you (just as I am asking now) How did they come about those missing specs?

I really would like to get this turnout into 3rd PlanIt. If I can get those numbers, (or how I can extrapolate them from the given specs) I would greatly appreciate it!

Thanks in advance!


P.S. I am also asking this on the 3rd PlanIt support forums as well.

The 3rd PlanIT documentation explains how you can measure the turnout yourself to get the needed dimensions as seen below: (I am assuming the measurements are to be taken along the turnouts centerlines)


If possible, I still would be interested in getting the above specs from Fast Tracks. These fixtures are designed in CAD so extrapolating those measurements should be easy. :-) In my opinion, as "guestimating" with a ruler on either a real turnout or one from a printed template may be "close enough", I think especially with curved turnouts, if you create a track object in the software with those "guesses", and build a whole track plan around it, once it gets transferred 1:1 full size for construction the actual alignment could be vastly different. Like say for instance, a yard ladder.

Author:  joncalon [ Sun Jan 04, 2015 11:54 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Need Turnout dimensions NOT on printable templates.

Looks like you're on the right track, but I would suggest that in the absence of information from Tim would be to print out the printable templates, assemble them as best as possible, and then make your measurements from that, modify the turnout in 3rdPlanIt and then print out a full size copy and place it on top of the printable template and see how you've done. Experiment from there until the two match.

A friend of mine had to do pretty much exactly that for a turnout out of CadRail, though he was more wanting to match a physical Atlas turnout that wasn't already in the CadRail library.


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