The first assembled 8ft section.
I've read a bit about their unassembled 8ft sections and decided it was the way to go for my next expansion.
Some info on the track: the 8ft rails come packaged in metal pipes lined with cardboard/paperboard tube for padding. (Shipping weight for two 12 rail tubes is 44lbs. Dimensions for the pair are ~ 8' 3" x 1 13/16" x 2 5/8") They have metal caps on the ends that are screwed in place with brass screws. The tubes come with the standard Aristocraft slide-on joiners and the track is pre-drilled for the joiner screws but does not come with the joiner screws. The bottoms of the rails are not drilled to allow for screwing the plastic track ties as the preassembled track normally does. The separate ties you can order do have holes for screws.
If you plan to use Split-jaw clamps you will need for each 8ft section of rails, 8 complete tie sections(30033 - USA STRAIGHT TRACK TIES 1') + 5 ties of another section. Note, each complete tie section (at really more like 11") has 14 ties.
Excluding the additional costs of shipping and the use of Split-jaw clamps, the 8ft sections (in Stainless Steel) are approximately 10% more expensive than the preassembled 5ft even after taking into account the reduced number of rail-clamps required because of the fewer number of joints.
In the second close-up photo above of the rail end with the Split-jaw clamp is an example of the extra five ties needed to finish a full 8ft rail section.
For more information on Stainless Steel (and other) track types see this link: Track Types
Return to Garden Railroad 2006 page.