Some time ago, Paul Godwin asked if anyone knew how to repair Peco points where the switch rails had come away from the tiebar. I didn't, and it seems neither did anyone reading this blog. Undeterred, he had a go and this is the result:
The switch rails had come adrift from the plastic tie bars. To repair them, I have used some Dewey Lace pins (These are brass, you can't solder to normal dressmaking pins, the silver coloured ones) inserted through the tie bar from the bottom and soldered them to the switch rail. Everything is cleaned and tinned first - away from the plastic - then soldered together with a small hot iron. You need to get in and out fast!
Carrs 145 solder and flux were used in the repair.
I noted that the more modern point had a hole in the tie bar through which to insert the pin. This gave the positioning of the switch on the tie bar straight away. The older one had to be drilled and I had to set the position.
This picture shows the initial problem
The pin is inserted and first cut to length, then removed and trimmed back a little further.
The tie bar being held parallel to the sleepers before soldering
A pin vice is used to hold the drill for the pin hole. This needs to be very, very slightly larger than the pin. Since these are different sizes, you'll need to measure and pick your own bit. Once this is done, a needle file cleans up the solder and ensures the flangeway is not obstructed.
The finished products. A newer large radius on the left, older short point on the right. The later was used for the first practise. It's a good idea to experiment on something you can afford to damage !
I have no idea how robust these will turn out to be. The use of the pin enables the joint to pivot as the blades move which should ensure there is no strain on the solder joint.
This isn't a repair for the faint-hearted but if you have a broken point, it might well be worth a try. Paul's note about getting in an out fast with the hot iron is well made. It's easy to melt the plastic, but if you succeed, I can't see why the point shouldn't last for many more throws. Thanks to Paul for his notes and photos.