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 Post subject: Filling in flang ways
PostPosted: Mon Aug 01, 2016 3:25 pm 
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Joined: Fri Oct 24, 2008 9:05 pm
Posts: 668
Location: MA
How does your orginazation go about filling in flang ways so people don't trip and fall espeshelly inside the shop. I am assumeing that poring in tar won't cut it as that would be too simple and nothing is ever simple. I am mostely intrested in indoor use.


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 Post subject: Re: Filling in flang ways
PostPosted: Mon Aug 01, 2016 3:41 pm 

Joined: Mon May 24, 2010 10:22 am
Posts: 431
There are commercial rubber products.

The one I saw was a cast in place product, fill the flange way with the product, let cure, the product is displaced by the wheel flange, but springs back to fill the flange way.

-Hudson


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 Post subject: Re: Filling in flang ways
PostPosted: Mon Aug 01, 2016 5:09 pm 

Joined: Fri Dec 03, 2004 9:42 pm
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This is a rather difficult challenge. I have never found a poured in place product that works as effectively as you would like. They don't adhere well, they crumble, they tear, they don't sit flush.

Most of the concrete crossing manufacturers do offer a flangeway filler for use with their products. There are two problems with that approach. They're designed for use as an integral part of the concrete crossings, and they're expensive.

The Polycorp system is designed for use with Asphalt, greatly reducing total cost. I don't know if they offer a flangeway filler version or not though. You can find them here:
http://www.poly-corp.com/transportation/railseal.asp


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 Post subject: Re: Filling in flang ways
PostPosted: Mon Aug 01, 2016 9:07 pm 

Joined: Sat Aug 21, 2004 10:50 pm
Posts: 367
I have seen flangeway filling rubber railseal though it's been many years. The NPS used it for a pedestrian only crossing in the Cuyahoga Valley National Park on the ex-B&O Valley Line. The sections fit flush with the top of rail but are hollow and easily collapse under the weight of locomotives and cars and most track equipment. Hi-rail pickup trucks have to take it easy. Can't recall who made the section, but I would guess Poly Corp and PPI have something on the market for these applications.

Rob Gardner


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 Post subject: Re: Filling in flang ways
PostPosted: Mon Aug 01, 2016 9:31 pm 

Joined: Sun Aug 22, 2004 8:51 pm
Posts: 1488
Location: Southern California
At Orange Empire the 3-foot gauge collection building has a concrete floor with flange ways on all of the four tracks. Over the years several concepts have been used; one was long wood inserts, the next was round PVC pipe that reduced the opening, the most recent looks like PVC square tubing and the top is essentially at railhead. Last time I was in the building, I almost pulled up the end of one of the square tubing to check it out.

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 Post subject: Re: Filling in flang ways
PostPosted: Mon Aug 01, 2016 10:28 pm 

Joined: Thu Aug 26, 2004 2:50 pm
Posts: 2124
Location: Northern Illinois
Rob Gardner wrote:
I have seen flangeway filling rubber railseal though it's been many years. The NPS used it for a pedestrian only crossing in the Cuyahoga Valley National Park on the ex-B&O Valley Line. The sections fit flush with the top of rail but are hollow and easily collapse under the weight of locomotives and cars and most track equipment. Hi-rail pickup trucks have to take it easy. Can't recall who made the section, but I would guess Poly Corp and PPI have something on the market for these applications.

Rob Gardner


That generally sounds like what the NPS used in front of the roundhouse at Steamtown. One problem I noticed when I was there maybe fifteen years ago was that the contractor cut the bottom and side out of the hollow section to fit the joint bars. Bad idea... it caused the top surface to collapse for the length of the bar. It would be worth looking into if there is a special section to be used at joint bar locations, but maybe not, as railroads work hard to keep rail joints out of crossings. Perhaps the cut section can be filled with foam.

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Dennis Storzek


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 Post subject: Re: Filling in flang ways
PostPosted: Tue Aug 02, 2016 9:02 am 

Joined: Sat Aug 21, 2004 10:50 pm
Posts: 367
Dennis, we always recommend eliminating bolted joints in any crossing environment. I am not aware of any extruded rubber railseal material that can be made to work around joint bars. You can cut and hack the material in the field to make it fit but it will never look good or perform as expected.

Rob Gardner


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 Post subject: Re: Filling in flang ways
PostPosted: Tue Aug 02, 2016 11:47 am 

Joined: Fri Dec 03, 2004 9:42 pm
Posts: 2435
What Rob said. The proper component to apply around joints is Thermite. :)

There are lots of reasons you really don't want joints in the crossing areas. You can't tamp them easily, if at all, and any failures present a big problem. At best, you're looking at unbolting panels and pulling out, making repairs, and then putting them back in. That never works as smoothly as they'd lead you to believe. If the crossing is paved, then you're looking at more expense and effort.

There is one alternative that works well in that type situation, and that's brick, cobblestone or wood blocks. They can removed and replaced with moderate effort, and the use of a sand leveling course means that restoring them to the proper height is easily done. Of course cobblestones aren't a good walking surface, but bricks/pavers can be.


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 Post subject: Re: Filling in flang ways
PostPosted: Tue Aug 02, 2016 12:28 pm 

Joined: Thu Aug 26, 2004 2:50 pm
Posts: 2124
Location: Northern Illinois
I think you're missing the point. We all know why the railroads keep rail joints out of crossings any way they can; even in the days of jointed rail 78' "double lengths" were available for use in crossings.

What people here are looking for is something to fill flangeways in the floor of the display hall... and given the typical RR museum budget, they are not likely to order up welded rail, or thermite materials for a couple dozen joints. Heck, the NPS didn't even do that. It would be interesting to see if they've ever crafted a solution to their problem at Steamtown.

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Dennis Storzek


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 Post subject: Re: Filling in flang ways
PostPosted: Tue Aug 02, 2016 1:40 pm 

Joined: Fri Dec 03, 2004 9:42 pm
Posts: 2435
Dennis Storzek wrote:
I think you're missing the point. We all know why the railroads keep rail joints out of crossings any way they can; even in the days of jointed rail 78' "double lengths" were available for use in crossings.


No, you're missing the point. All of the flangeway filler manufacturers say that their product isn't designed for use with joints. Having joints in those areas will compromise the product and lead to poor performance. Welded rail isn't cheap, but compared to the total cost of roundhouse or shop construction, it's pretty incidental.


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 Post subject: Re: Filling in flang ways
PostPosted: Tue Aug 02, 2016 2:43 pm 

Joined: Thu Aug 26, 2004 2:50 pm
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Location: Northern Illinois
This isn't my project, but now you've got me curious. What are the chances of a railway contractor having thermite molds for some of the obsolete rail sections most of us use?

If nothing else, this discussion is pointing out the fact that planning for the filled flangeways needs to begin before the track is laid, or the track material acquired, for that matter. A brief google search shows that most the rubber flangeway filler products don't mitigate the tripping hazard; they are rubber fillers with a flangeway molded in, intended to isolate the pavement from the rail, but still leave an open flangeway. Here is a link to the one transit product that provides a mostly flush surface:
http://www.itsrailroadrubber.com/ITSfra ... rStrip.htm
Note that it is appearantly intended to be used with pre-cast panels, as it requires the space under the rail head remain open for the flange that retains the filler; not the usual rectangular flangeway put in poured-in-place floors. I suspect with a little ingenuity the material could be hung from the rail before the pour, but what a mess if it floats out of place.

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 Post subject: Re: Filling in flang ways
PostPosted: Tue Aug 02, 2016 3:09 pm 

Joined: Thu Mar 20, 2014 11:58 am
Posts: 57
I have wondered whether in buildings being designed for multi-purpose--rail-vehicle storage and people-walking-around events--we could just pour a slab floor and set temporary "snap track" on it. For the people events, the rail vehicles could be rolled out and the snap track sections lifted off with a forklift and stacked outside. The rails of the snap-tack would only have to be deep enough to provide flange clearance (say 1-1/2" square section bar welded to plate "ties"). We hardly need conventional track to support rail vehicles being occasionally rolled in and out at slow speeds.

On the other hand, the process of removing/stacking/reinstalling manageable sections of snap track would be time consuming, and perhaps not worth it for events of only a few hours duration.

And, obviously, this is a different problem that providing durable, even walking surface over conventional track, such as at crossings.


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 Post subject: Re: Filling in flang ways
PostPosted: Tue Aug 02, 2016 5:36 pm 

Joined: Fri Dec 03, 2004 9:42 pm
Posts: 2435
Dennis Storzek wrote:
What are the chances of a railway contractor having thermite molds for some of the obsolete rail sections most of us use?


The molds are a one time use item, and are destroyed in the welding process. So you order whatever rail size you need. My supplier states this on their website "We offer a comprehensive range of T-Rail and Crane rail weld kit profiles..."

You can also get fairly creative with filing and gap filling and adapt for a slight varation in rail size, just as you do to accommodate wear on used rails. Are there oddball sections they won't have? Certainly. But again, the cost of a few sticks of used 90# or even better 112# rail for your shop or enginehouse isn't going to significantly increase the cost of the structure, and it will help reduce several potential problems. When you're casting rail into the floor, you don't want to skimp on materials.

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If nothing else, this discussion is pointing out the fact that planning for the filled flangeways needs to begin before the track is laid, or the track material acquired, for that matter.


Exactly!

Quote:
A brief google search shows that most the rubber flangeway filler products don't mitigate the tripping hazard; they are rubber fillers with a flangeway molded in intended to isolate the pavement from the rail, but still leave an open flangeway.


That's when you need to be specific about terminology. There are two products. 1) Rubber Flangeway Material. 2) Flangeway FILLER. They're often made by the same folks, but are obviously different. Pro tip, add "ADA" to your search. They're designed to comply with the ADA requirements. They're also common in places with hard rubber tired forklifts. However, they don't stand up well to mainline traffic, so they're not used on most crossings.

Quote:
Here is a link to the one transit product that provides a mostly flush surface:
http://www.itsrailroadrubber.com/ITSfra ... rStrip.htm
Note that it is appearantly intended to be used with pre-cast panels...


Sadly, that is true of all the products I can think of. Polycorp makes the only flangeway material I know that's not part of a concrete crossing system. (And if you're worried about the cost of used 112 rail and some welds, let me assure you that you're REALLY not going to like the price of a pre-cast concrete crossing installation...)

The Polycorp system that I have installed does not have Flangeway Filler. I don't know if they make one with a filler strip or not. I think they might. The advantage to that product is that it was designed to work with asphalt, significantly lowering costs. I presume it would also work with cast in place concrete, though obviously you'd need to verify that with the designer.

Other than that, I don't know of any real good options.

EDIT - ITS makes a comparable product. http://www.railseal.com/grade_crossings.html

I don't deal with them since I'm in Seattle and they're on the east coast. To be honest, I'm not even sure they're still in production. But it may be worth exploring and they may have an filler option available.


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 Post subject: Re: Filling in flang ways
PostPosted: Tue Aug 02, 2016 5:56 pm 

Joined: Thu Aug 26, 2004 2:50 pm
Posts: 2124
Location: Northern Illinois
One more go-around, for those who might want to be adventurous. Realizing that flangeways formed in a poured-in-place floor are going to be rectangular in cross section, I decided to do a search on expansion joint systems. Here are two that MIGHT hold some promise:

http://emseal.com/Products/Architectural/DSMSystem/DSMSystem.htm

Available to 4" wide, depth not specified, likely made to order. I'm thinking material designed to friction fit in a 2-1/4" or 3" wide slot 3-1/2" deep might have sufficient flex to allow limited flange traffic to pass, but testing is in order.

http://www.pavepatch.com/slabgasket-xl-expansion-joint-replacement-1-58-2x4-p-167.html

Likely the lowest cost alternative, since it's made for the consumer market, unfortunately the standard sizes aren't large enough for anything but tram wheels. However, it might be worth inquiring what custom extrusion dies to make a larger size would cost.

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 Post subject: Re: Filling in flang ways
PostPosted: Tue Aug 02, 2016 6:25 pm 

Joined: Fri Dec 03, 2004 9:42 pm
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Dennis Storzek wrote:
One more go-around, for those who might want to be adventurous. Realizing that flangeways formed in a poured-in-place floor are going to be rectangular in cross section, I decided to do a search on expansion joint systems. Here are two that MIGHT hold some promise:


The main problem for any of these systems is how well they stand up to repeated railcar traffic. If you have display tracks that only get switched once a year, just drop in custom cut wood fillers and be done with it then pull them out if you switch.

Oh, and with any of these products, ask yourself how you'll secure it in place. The rail side won't engage those little fins that are designed to hold it, and the force of the train traveling over it will make it want to pop right out.

Flanges can be sharp enough to chew the stuff up in short order. That was the downfall of the cast in place system of rubber granules and a sort of tarry rubber glue. It didn't last. I was the proud owner of a pallet load of the stuff about 20 years ago, and by the time it was done, if somebody had asked, I would probably have given it away just so I didn't have to figure out where to dump it...

It's been tried, many times, on both concrete and rubber crossings. But the results have typically been mediocre at best, unless you have very low traffic volume (which may well be the case in an enginehouse).


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