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The Southern & SCL Merger
Hello, everyone,
I am William Smith and I am new to the forum. My son Justin and I have begun laying track on our layout that we have been waiting several years to build. We have completed the first 180 foot mainline(it will have two) and have laid the yard ladder (about 22 feet long). We took our time and it looks fantastic. The problem is, I am plagued by derailments, mostly of the locomotives, occasionally of the cars, when they travel over the frog. You can see the trucks of the cars drop when they cross the frog because the gap is so big. Cars usually make a loud thump going over them. I was very meticulous when laying track, so all the flextrack around the turnouts is smooth and kink-free. My dilemma is that I have laid 30 or so of these turnouts (Atlas Custom Line #6) and have about 30 more to go around the layout that I have already purchased. I saved money for 4 years to purchase all the track and benchwork, so the turnouts represent a significant investment for me. I almost wish I had bought Peco or something else. Has anyone else had this problem, and can filling the frog and cutting new flangeways according to an NMRA guage help? I sure want them to work right and last. Thanks to all for any suggestions!:confused:


Hi William and Welcome to the forum.
The Atlas #6's are good turnouts, but I have seen reports of problems with the Frog's flangeway depth and the height of the frog itself. Check this with an NMRA gauge. Most that I have heard about need to be deepened with a small file. If the frog is too high in respect to the rails, then you can file it as well. Are you getting a drop in the wheels or is it a bump that makes it look that way.
I use several Atlas turnouts along with my Walthers and have dependable operations.


Lake Shore Lines
Hi William and welcome.

I also agree with Rex's comments, but I would also check the flanges on your engines and your cars. I haven't seen too many problems with the Atlas switches but I have seen some real problems with the wheel sets being out of gauge and the flanges being too deep.


New Member
Hello William.
I use Atlas turnouts both #4 & #6's. The only time I have had problems like you describe is/was with my IHC loco's that did not have RP25 wheel flanges (see NMRA). I had to grind down those wheel flanges and the problem went away. My IHC is a 08-0 shifter built around 2003 according to the date stamped in the end flap of the carton it came in.

All my other loco's ran through the Atlas turnouts just fine, as they are RP25 flanges.


Stay off the tracks!
What brand of cars/locomotives are dropping through the frogs? I had an Athearn SW1500 switcher that liked to ride up on it's flanges over the frog of Atlas Code 83 switches.... at least that's what it looked like it was doing.

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