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How to Disassemble 12V Tracks without Breaking Sleepers


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#1 ced64k

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Posted 10 January 2012 - 02:17 PM

Hi,

Do you have a tip to disassemble the tracks without breaking track sleepers little pins ? Perhaps it's simply because the plastic is too old?

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#2 bricks n bolts

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Posted 10 January 2012 - 06:01 PM

View Postced64k, on 10 January 2012 - 02:17 PM, said:


Do you have a tip to disassemble the tracks without breaking track sleepers little pins ? Perhaps it's simply because the plastic is too old?


Not really, the only thing I do is make sure I grip the end of the rail when pulling it off, if you try to pull the rail from the centre you have more chance of breakages.
Age may be an issue, I think they go a bit brittle after time, I have more problems with rails breaking than sleepers.
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#3 harnbak

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Posted 11 January 2012 - 03:56 PM

View Postbricks n bolts, on 10 January 2012 - 06:01 PM, said:

Not really, the only thing I do is make sure I grip the end of the rail when pulling it off, if you try to pull the rail from the centre you have more chance of breakages.
Age may be an issue, I think they go a bit brittle after time, I have more problems with rails breaking than sleepers.

I too have struggled with this problem and ended up buying 500 extra sleepers. I have tried everything from oiling to WD-40 bath (be careful with the tracks - these should not be oiled as friction will reduce), but haven't found a good solution. Of course not disassembling everything, but storing the tracks integrally helps.

My lego is stored in the attic where it occasionally gets very cold (close to 0C). Anybody knows whether these low temperatures can 'destroy' lego?

#4 JopieK

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Posted 11 January 2012 - 05:02 PM

I have some problems with the Maersk train: 3 parts broken (2x Maersk blue tiles, 1x cheese slope bley).

I also assume it is the cold, in our attic temp will not go that low but will decrease until it becomes 13 degrees C or so.

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#5 Sokratesz

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Posted 11 January 2012 - 05:51 PM

I think its mostly high temperatures and exposure to sunlight that cause the ABS to become brittle.

Your best bet is to simply not disassemble them, and if you, do it very slowly.

#6 JopieK

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Posted 11 January 2012 - 08:01 PM

Well that wasn't the problem in my case I think, our attic has windows (Velux of course ;), got a Velux set as well), but they are always covered with sunscreens and it doesn't become very hot there.

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#7 LEGO Train 12 Volts

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Posted 11 January 2012 - 09:25 PM

I put away the assembled tracks (four curves or seven straight elements) for the rest I use a fine screwdriver to pry.
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#8 JopieK

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Posted 12 January 2012 - 06:55 PM

I guess that is the best option, I also did that, but my cousin and I splitter our LEGO some month ago (and I donated my 12V stuff apart from the trains) and got 9V tracks in return.

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#9 Beej

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Posted 13 January 2012 - 01:26 AM

I find if I lift the rails straight up off the sleepers then I can completely avoid breaking the clips. If the rail doesn't want to come up I move the other end of the rail up and down and this usually frees it. Occasionally even this doesn't free the rail, so I'll pull all other parts of the assembled rail apart and leave the hardest one until the end. By then it normally comes straight off.

The only time I break clips is if I'm tired or rushing.

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#10 Shupp

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Posted 16 January 2012 - 08:08 AM

I'm glad I'm not the only one who does this. I'm the only person in my club who runs 12v, and they all freak out when I break one. I'm just like "eh, it happens." My solution has definitely been to just keep buying more. It's a shame, but so many of the ones I have are really brittle. I suppose we could just go over to regular 2x8 plates. I don't really think the clips on the ties are that important to regular operation anyway.

Edited by Shupp, 16 January 2012 - 08:09 AM.


#11 JasperL

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Posted 22 February 2012 - 12:11 PM

I use regular plates 2x8, they work fine. The track doesn't fall apart like with blue era track. And when I break up the tracks it's a piece of cake. One more special trick: a 2x16 plate works great on parallel tracks!

#12 F0NIX

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Posted 25 February 2012 - 10:07 AM

I have some old sleepers from the old 4.5v era and they are VERY brittle. Some of the sleepers have broken in the middle when trying to take them of. I use them with caution and keep the modules (tracks with sleepers) together as much as possible. Many of the clips brake of even if I'm very careful when dissembling the track modules from each other. They have been stored in normal room temperature in a cabinet where it was dark most of the time. At least no sunshine on them. But I have not damaged any of the gray rails yet, but they feels very hard and don't flex much.
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