switch points, guard rails, and frogs must come under the closest scrutiny for signs of excessive wear. All bolts
and spikes are checked for tightness, ties examined for signs of pumping, and gage and surface checked
frequently. After inspections, the faults discovered must be studied to find out their causes and prevention. Your
personal experience is valuable in this work. In the remaining paragraphs of the section, examples show the
approach to and prevention of typical problems with frog points, switch points, and switch ties.
Following an inspection of the tracks near the Griffin cutoff, the frog point of a turnout in the eastbound
main line was reportedly badly chipped. Wheel flanges have been striking the point. This dangerous condition
could result in a derailment; immediate correction is required. The point can be repaired by building up the
chipped area with weld. If, however, this is the only action taken, the cause will still exist and the point will be
damaged again. Only one thing could cause the chipping: the gage between the guard rail and frog point is too
narrow and the guard rail opposite the point doesn't hold the wheels against the rail. However, investigation may
show that the running and the guard rails are improperly located and that the frog is poorly lined even though
they all seem to be well spiked.
Further investigation may show that several good-looking ties under the frog, guard rail, and running rail
are "spike killed." This means that the ties have been destroyed internally by repeated spikings and can no longer
give the spike support needed for proper gage. In addition to building up the frog point, the bad ties must be
replaced and the rails gaged to keep the point from being damaged again. Whenever possible, damaged frogs
should be repaired without being removed from track. When this cannot be done, they are sent to a central repair
shop for rebuilding.
During an inspection of switch points, a lip was found on the stock rail that interferes with the point's
bearing properly against the stock rail. During another inspection later, it was discovered that the switch points
have dropped below the top of the stock rail. When a lip, or fin, on the switch-rail side of the stock rail is found
that interferes with the point's proper bearing against that rail, it must be removed by grinding or filing. The
grinder being used in