Track for your Disney World Monorail model

These models are available at the resort shops of WDW. With this inexpensive track, you can run your Monorail all over your backyard, house, or wherever.

This project assumes you have a working knowledge of Model Railroading techniques. If you don't, I suggest reading one of the many excellent books on the subject.

 

Difficulty: Intermediate hobbiest

 

Parts List

Caution: Always wear eye protection when using tools.

 

Building Instructions

 

  1. First plan your track layout To plan your layout use the folowing guidelines: The minimum radius for turns is 2 Ft. The maximum grade is 1 inch per foot based on testing of the model.

  2. To build the track, I use Do-It-Yourself screen-door/window rails, available at better hardware stores. These have a rectangular cross-section a bit bigger than 5/16 of an inch wide, just wide enough for the engine's driver wheels to grab securely. To be sure you've got the right size, I recommend taking the engine with you and trying it out in the store. The rails come in white, brown and black, but can be painted grey to resemble the concrete of the prototype track. They are quite realistic looking once painted, and cheap at about $3.50 per 8 ft. section.

  3. To form the rails, lay the rails on a firm table or work bench (unless you have proper metal bending tools) convex side down. CAUTION this process WILL damage the TABLE!!

  4. Press down on the rail at the edge of the bench while pulling it with your other hand, thus sliding it under your first hand. While pulling, apply firm pressure to the rail in the desired direction of bend. Note: If you apply to much pressure the rail will fold (crimp) and be useless, so take your time and repeat the process over and over bending a little more each time, rather than trying to bend it all at once.

  5. For the supports, I use 5/16 inch threaded steel rods, available in various lengths up to 3 ft. Cut the rod with a hacksaw to the desired height of the track.

  6. After forming the track, drill a 5/16 inch hole into the bottom of the track and twist the rod into the hole. The other end can be shoved directly into the ground outdoors, or screwed into wood blocks indoors. Use at least one support every 2 ft or so to avoid track sagging.

  7. To connect the track sections, use square 5/16 inch steel rod. Cut the rod into 2 inch lengths, and insert it half-way into the ends of the 2 sections of track being joined.

  8. Once your sure EVERTHING fits, and is just the way you want it, coat the sides of the square rods with a bit of JBWELD metal glue to hold them securely.

Next week I start a model of the Contemporary. Have fun!

Backyard Imagineer: Todd Jacob


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