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PostPosted: Fri Mar 04, 2016 3:57 pm 
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Joined: Tue Mar 01, 2016 3:39 pm
Posts: 23
I picked up a Kadee Code 100 spiker at a reasonable price, even before I found Fast Tracks. Now that I have some QuickSticks coming, I'm curious if anyone has tried the spiker, and if so, how did it go? Pros? Cons? (One thing I need to do is down-convert to Code 83, but that shouldn't change the overall topic of conversation...)

What I'm wondering is the QuickSticks appear to be layered, like plywood. Maybe it'll spike that, maybe not. Maybe today the pros don't even use the Kadee spiker (was all the rage years ago).

It could even be the spiker won't work well with ME Code 83 rail...always possible, since the rail base flange is more narrow than other brands of rail, I'm to understand. (It was made for TT gauge, I thought I read.)

I'm sure I'll try it both ways, but I wondered if anyone had any thoughts.


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PostPosted: Mon Mar 07, 2016 11:10 am 
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Joined: Sat Aug 13, 2005 10:48 am
Posts: 365
Location: East Texas - USA
You may be a able to still get the parts to convert the spiker for use with code 70 rail (same size rail base as the ME c83). But - the unit is very hard to adjust for the pressure and to keep adjusted. Some have found it useful, most have had it mis-fire and bend the rails - making a roller coaster like trackwork. I have found it to be useless, and the use of hand spiking to be far more reliable.
-ed-

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-ed mccamey-
COSLAR RR - http://www.coslar.us/
NMRA Standards and Conformance Department
PROTO & FINE Scale Coordinator
I estimate I have about 5 pounds of coupler springs somewhere in the vicinity of my workbench.


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PostPosted: Mon Mar 07, 2016 3:47 pm 
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Joined: Tue Mar 01, 2016 3:39 pm
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Thank you, Ed, for the reply.

I'd done some digging on the web over the weekend and many say about the same thing. Some further complain about the look of the resulting "spike". Others say they can spike dozens of feet of rail in no time at all, but I'm starting to question if it's worth it.

I did order the parts from Kadee just in case. Part of the problem may be a shim sitting above the hammer, or lack thereof. If there isn't enough shim, the hammer descends too far and bends the rails. So you must take care to shim it properly.

Well, since I paid for it, I'll give it a try on some scrap track and QuickSticks frets, just to see what I can do with it. If it doesn't work, I suppose I'll chalk it up to learning/OJT. :)

Also being an engineer, I've been thinking about solutions that could use the 1/4" spikes that would automate the process yet not be so damaging to rail. Perhaps the old ways are best, but it's in the engineer's DNA to come up with alternatives. I suppose I ought to spike a few rails the old way before I try to reinvent the process. :)


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PostPosted: Wed Mar 09, 2016 10:08 am 
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Joined: Sat Aug 13, 2005 10:48 am
Posts: 365
Location: East Texas - USA
I've been handlaying since 1961. I now use 0.015" spring steel piano wire and make my own spikes. (I also use some of the P87 etched spikes). Hand spiking is a pleasure for me. Your mileage may vary, but the Kadee spiker will give you a lot of grief over the long run.

-ed-

_________________
-ed mccamey-
COSLAR RR - http://www.coslar.us/
NMRA Standards and Conformance Department
PROTO & FINE Scale Coordinator
I estimate I have about 5 pounds of coupler springs somewhere in the vicinity of my workbench.


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PostPosted: Sat Mar 12, 2016 1:06 pm 
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Joined: Sat Aug 12, 2006 7:04 pm
Posts: 45
I have never used the Kadee spiker but I have been told from many that they were not really easy to use. I have however done a lot of hand spiking with the Fast Tracks system and I have noted in particular with the QuickSticks that they do hold the spikes really well. Since the QuickSticks are actually made out of a Plywood material the alternating grains of the wood grab the spikes very tightly. I have never had any success gluing down the turnouts I have built but spiking every tie has held them very securely and I have also built some sets of turnouts that I built at the workbench which required cutting and trimming of the QuickSticks to put them in place which worked very successfully just using the spikes.


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