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Raised track.

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Luke Parris20/11/2017 19:13:27
8 forum posts


Not sure where to post this, but does anyone have any drawings or general information about making 5 inch gauge raised track?

Many thanks,


Luke Parris20/11/2017 19:51:01
8 forum posts

sorry forgot to add that the track should be portable!


Bazyle20/11/2017 22:07:06
4581 forum posts
185 photos

There are pictures of 3 versions here. Plus at the Warwick show the portable track was made of 1" square tube in two layers one above the other making a strong beam. I assume they found one tube was not enough but perhaps one run of 2x1 would be and a little lighter.

Raised adds problems of balance, tipping, supports, small passenger loading, points for parking a spare loco. Ground level is harder for old folk

Doubletop21/11/2017 05:57:02
405 forum posts
4 photos

Here is how we did it.


Just scroll down past the 'before' pictures


Bob Youldon21/11/2017 09:27:18
183 forum posts
20 photos

Hi Doubletop,

Probably not the most portable track I've seen!



Andrew Bartle 117/03/2019 22:55:55
2 forum posts

5" gauge raised track do you have to have to have tip rails ?

Howard Lewis18/03/2019 09:57:50
2029 forum posts
2 photos

The Peterborough Society of Model Engineers portable track is raised, but does not use tip rails, since the footboards of the passenger and driving cars only just clear the floor.

The track sections are made of rectangular section steel, welded together to form sections about 8 feet long, with a support at one end. (Only one section has feet at both ends ) They are heavy, but can be lifted by one person. Each section is packed to a consistent, transverse and longitudinal, level, before the bolts securing each section to the preceding one are tightened. Total track length is 120 feet.


Andrew Bartle 118/03/2019 22:37:19
2 forum posts

If the 5" raised track is permanent and used for passengers do you have to have a tip rail .

Paul Kemp18/03/2019 23:46:45
282 forum posts
9 photos

Under the old HSE produced code of practice developed out of a document called TN3 from the federations it was recommended that anti tip rails were used. This COP is no longer supported or endorsed by HSE and in it's absence the federations are in process of releasing a new guidance document. However the draft that I saw from memory made no specific judgement such as "you shall" in favour of listing all the relevant legislation and leaving you to make up your own mind. Not seen a final version yet but to me it was nowhere as useful or pragmatic as the old HSE COP.

As far as I am aware there is no specific law applicable to anti tip rails but there is the legal precedent of "duty of care". For example if there is an injury accident on your track that doesn't have tip rails can you demonstrate you have properly fulfilled your duty of care? It may be as stated by a pervious poster that your passenger car foot boards are so close to the ground the car cannot tip over in which case in all probability you could say you don't need them. You also need to be careful your track is not considered by the local authority to be a fair ground ride, if it is it must have regular independent inspections to verify its safety and properly documented maintenance and operational checks of your own!

Final consideration is if it all goes wrong have you done enough to satisfy your insurer that they will back you and pay out on any claim. As it stands it's really down to you to demonstrate by risk assesment that you have managed any risk of derailment or tipping properly and your passengers are protected and if subsequently it is proved you haven't - watch out cos claims are us will be knocking on your door. Also worth remembering if it is decided HSE has jurisdiction (ie work was involved and it doesn't have to be paid) you could be prosecuted.

So whether you have to have them or not, it's probably a good idea to cover your bottom.


Nigel Graham 221/03/2019 13:37:00
296 forum posts

I would advise you build the track to 7-1/4"g for the passenger-trucks, with a third rail for the 5"g loco. To my knowledge no-on has had problems with the resulting, off-centre draw. You will need to ensure a raised portable-track is built up and stabilised more carefully than may be sufficient for a ground-level equivalent on the same ground.

Regarding replacing the old HSE Guidance, it was drawn up partly to avoid our miniature-railways being treated as "fairground rides", because meetings between the hobby's representative and the HSE soon established that would have mde us safe by simply rendering it basically impossible to operate at all.

I attended one such meeting, with Her Majesty's Principal Inspector of Fairgrounds (from HSE) as the speaker, and hosted by the Southampton model-engineering society. He understood our needs, and emphasised and explained the "duty of care". He told us to safety seriously, and be able to show we do, but not so we stifle our own activities. I remember him saying, "You are not building nuclear power-stations!"

I am not a lawyer and we all know the allegation that an insurance company's aim is to avoid settling claims in a logical and common-sense way; but the law's main message is, do all you sensibly can to minimise the risks, and show you are doing that.

It's also worth remembering that some people will try it on, and most such claims are indeed thrown out by insurers and solicitors as invalid - the incident was the claimant's fault or occasionally, proven to be a downright lie. I recall learning of one claim for spark damage being proven fraudulent by the club's own log-book showing the event was a battery and i.c. loco day, with no steam locos.

If you can show you "taken all reasonable care" - and I would include anti-tipping rails on raised tracks, and side-sheets to keep legs and feet outside of trucks - you will have a far better chance of withstanding claims.

If a local-authority or other body tries the "fairground" route, it should be possible to show you are following genuine legal, insurance and good-practice routes designed by people who understand the matter, and the HSE and our insurers separate our railways (and rides behind miniature traction-engines) from commercial fairgrounds.

3404621/03/2019 15:32:38
458 forum posts
3 photos
Posted by Luke Parris on 20/11/2017 19:51:01:

sorry forgot to add that the track should be portable!


Station Road Steam are advertising 140 feet of 5 inch portable track for £150

May be worth a look.


old Al21/03/2019 15:44:20
138 forum posts

The warwick people devised a track system and trailer so that it all could be stacked away and driven away and stored in one neat unit.

They were very happy to talk to our club with the way in which they did it. light years ahead of the system we did have.

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