Tomix FineTrack

Tomix FineTrack is a modular track system similar to Kato’s Unitrack. It has a wider variety of switches and curve radii, as well as arguably better options for viaduct and street trackage. The downsides are that it’s only available in Japan (or via importers) and thus most documentation is unavailable in English (see the Links page for what is available online), and secondly that it appears to be slightly less robust than Kato’s product. It's also had to find outside of Japan, but is now available in the U.S., see the Suppliers page.

I have very limited experience with FineTrack. I’ve used a small amount of it for the Tram Line, using the 140mm and 177mm curves (known as “Mini Rail”) and their smallest platform (suitable for a between-the-tracks platform on their usual double-track spacing). This page will describe those elements I’m familiar with, and some others suitable for tram lines I may use in the future. Like Unitrack, FineTrack uses high-quality nickel-silver rail on a molded base styled to represent fresh, gray, ballast with wooden ties (there are other forms, but this is the one applicable to trams).

Like Kato’s Unitrack, FineTrack is described in millimeters for radius or length, and thus a PR140-30 switch has a curve radius of 140mm for the diverging route, and an arc of thirty degrees along it. Straight track is mainly in subdivisions of 280mm (70, 140 and 280). FineTrack is slightly smaller than Unitrack: 18.5mm across the base (vs. Unitrack’s 25mm) and ~6mm high (Unitrack is ~7mm) and uses a molded-in plastic connector and a separate rail joiner very similar to those used with flex track, rather than an all-in-one connector/joiner (Unitrack’s Unijoiner). Kato makes a “snap-track conversion track” element (part 20-045) which allows a FineTrack straight track to be connected to it.

Tomix FineTrack MiniRail

Mini-Rail is a subset of FineTrack with tighter-radius curves (C140 and C177, as well as C103 which is known as Super-Mini Rail). All three radii are available in 30 and 60 degree curves, either in a sets or in indivdual track packs. Straight track is available in a variety of lengths, as well as an extensible track element to fit odd-sized gaps. Articulated trams are reported to not negotiate the C103 curve.

MiniRail has one major flaw: there is no discreet way to connect electrical power to it. The “DC Feeder” is a large chunk of gray plastic that sits next to the track, with prongs that fit into gaps on the longer straight track elements to connect to the rail, and a short wire with a modular connector that fits Tomix’s power pack. However, because the metal rail joiners are removable and similar to those used with flex track, it should be possible to remove them and either solder wires to them, or replace them with insulated joiners (I haven’t tried that yet, but will need to).

The three Mini-Rail switches have an attribute that’s particularly good for tram lines: they will function as spring switches. This means that if the switch is set for one route, a train approaching from the other route will run through the switch without derailing. I’ve done this repeatedly with my Modemo tram without any problems, and plan to use it to avoid having to install controllers for my turnouts (I always want the tram to leave the station on the left track, and return on the right, so I can just leave the switch thrown to the left).

To use these as slip switches, you need to NOT gap the rails leading from the frog (the opposite of the usual advice) as these need to receive power from whatever track they’re connected to in order for a train to approach when the switch is thrown against it. The diagram below shows which rails are powered depending on the position of the switch.

Note: using these with block wiring could get tricky if there are different blocks on the two sides of the switch. You’d likely need to jumper the built-in gaps and insulate all four rails on the right side of the diagram below, to avoid risking a short.


Tomix Mini Platform Set

Tomix has a Mini Platform Set that is very suitable for building high-platform tram stations. The Mini Platform Set (item 4060) consists of four 70mm straight sections and two curved ends (also 70mm). Either or both ends can be replaced with a small set of stairs or a ramp (the ramp is too steep to really look good, close to 45-degrees), so a 280mm square-ended station or a 420mm curved-ended platform (446mm overall) can be constructed. But since it is made of small segments, a 210mm (three-segment) platform suitable for a small articulated tram (like mine) can also be constructed. The platform height is 12mm (versus Kato’s standard platform height of 14mm), which looks appropriate for my tram.

The station also includes solid and rail backs to make a side platform, roof segments and supports, and various signs and benches. There are also pre-cut holes in the platform surface that can be removed (with a sharp hobby knife) and stairs that can be set into them, to model an underpass below the tracks or similar. Oddly, although there are four straight segments in the set, there are only roof parts for two, so the rest of the station must be open to the sky (or not used). This is less than optimal when modeling a place as rainy as Tokyo.

The very narrow width of the station (~18mm at the base, ~16mm at the platform) allows it to fit in the 18.5mm gap between two parallel tracks at Finetrack’s usual spacing of 37mm. But it also makes a very nice looking side platform. I’ve built (but not yet detailed or painted) several platforms 210mm long for my trams (which are 160mm end-to-end).

Tomix Mini Platform 1908

Tram Platform 1905

Urban Tram 1914

A Note on Mixing Tomix and Kato Track and Platforms

Tomix and Kato track and platforms aren’t directly compatible with one another. You can connect FineTrack to Unitrack with Kato’s adapter (20-045, sold in the U.S. for conversion to sectional track). However, you must use Kato platforms with Kato track and Tomix platforms with Tomix track, or adjust both spacing and height.

Finetrack is narrower than Unitrack (18mm vs 25mm at the base of the molded ballast) and slightly lower (about 1mm), so a Kato platform used with Finetrack would both be too close (causing collisions with even fairly narrow cars) and slightly higher. Height is the lesser problem, as this is hard to see from above anyway, and Kato’s normal position places the doors slightly above platform height. Note, however, that using Tomix platforms with Unitrack would place the car doors significantly above the platform.

Finetrack also has a standard spacing of 37mm (about 1 7/16”) between parallel tracks. That’s larger than Kato’s standard Unitrack spacing (33mm), but smaller than the NMRA recommended spacing of 2” (50.8mm).

Kato sells a clearance gauge that matches their platforms and track. This is the blue tool used for removing Unijoiners, which comes in several of their sets. One is also included in the 24-818 Terminal Unijoiner packet. This is a handy tool if you need to mix track and platforms from different suppliers, or scratchbuild your own platforms. Note, however, that clearance will depend on the model of cars (my 500-series Shinkansen, which is 1:160 scale, has 1mm clearance on a standard Kato platform/unitrack arrangement, but an E231, which is 1:150 and smaller, has 3mm).

Tomix Mini-Rail Sets and Track Elements

The following list only includes Mini-Rail and Super Mini-rail curves and turnouts, and the basic straight and crossover track elements. FineTrack contains considerably more options.


4060: Mini Platform Set
- contains parts to make a 446mm long, 18.5mm wide side or island platform.


90093: Set with power pack, “DC feeder” connector and track to make a small oval:
1x S140
1x S140-RE (re-railer)
6x C140-60

91069: “Rail Set Y-Points Lay-by Set (Pattern Y)”, set to split single track into double and back.
2x S280
6x S72.5
4x S99
4x C541-15
2x PY280-15 (Wye turnout with 15-degree, 280mm arc)

91080: “Super-mini Rail Set Oval Layout Set (Track Layout SA)”
6x C103-60
2x S140
1x “DC Feeder” (electrical connector with wires for power pack)
plastic “mini rerailer” (ramp used to put train onto track)

91081: “Mini-Rail Basic Set (Track Layout MA)”
Note: this can be used to make a slightly skewed single-track oval, or half a double-track oval.
2x S140
2x C140-30
2x C140-60
2x C177-30
2x C177-60
1x “DC Feeder” (electrical connector with wires for power pack)
plastic “mini rerailer” (ramp used to put train onto track)

91082: “Track Layout MB” set to make a 37mm offset siding.
1x S280
1x S140
2x S70
2x C140-30
1x PR140-30 (manual turnout, left, 140mm radius, 30 degrees)
1x PL140-30 (manual turnout, left, 140mm radius, 30 degrees)
2x dummy turnout motor and stand.
Note: this appears to have only one S280 (I don’t have this set), but two would be required to make a siding long enough for the full Mini Platform Set, and the description implies that this is intended for use with that.

91083: “Mini-Rail Crisscross Set (Track Layout MX)”, 90-degree crossing set
1x X37-90 crossing
1x C140-60
1x C140-30
1x C177-30
1x C177-60
2x S70
4x S33
4x S18.5

Straight Track and Curved Track

1021: two S140 straight tracks
1022: two S280 straight tracks
1023: two S72.5 straight tracks
1024: two S70 straight tracks
1025: two S99 straight tracks
1026: two S158.5 straight tracks
1092: set of ten S280 straight tracks
1099: 2 each S33 and S18.5
1111: two each C103-30 and C103-60 curves. (“Super-mini Curved Track C103”)
1112: two each C140-30 and C140-60 curves. (“Mini Curved Track C140”)
1113: two each C177-30 and C177-60 curves. (“Mini Curved Track C177”)

Turnout Switches (or “points” in British English, hence the “P” in the part number):
Note: The first three of these will function as spring switches (see above).

1231: N-PR140-30, Right 140mm radius turnout (electric); includes separate C140-30.
1232: N-PL140-30, Left 140mm radius turnout (electric); includes separate C140-30.
1240: N-PY280-15 one Wye turnout (electric) with 280mm, 15-degree arc (does not include curves)

1243: N-PR280-30, Right 280mm radius turnout (electric)
1244: N-PL280-30, Right 280mm radius turnout (electric)
1245: N-PXR140-15, 15-degree double-slip turnout (electric)
1246: N-PXL140-15, 15-degree double-slip turnout (electric)
1247: N-PX280, double-crossover turnout (electric)


1321: “Crossing Rail X72/5-30” (30-degree crossing, 72.5mm long)
1322: “Crossing Rail XR140-15” (15-degree right crossing, 140mm and 145mm long)
1323: “Crossing Rail XL140-15” (15-degree left crossing, 140mm and 145mm long)
1324: “Crossing Rail X37-90” (90-degree crossing, with 4 ea. S18.5 and S33 straight tracks for 140mm len.)

Other elements

0110: set of twenty rail joiners and tool
0111: set of twenty insulating rail joiners
1421: “Fine Track Buffer Track”, straight track with end-of-track buffer.
1522: “Extensible Track V70”, straight track that extends from 70mm to 90mm.
1523: S140-RE, Track with re-railer (includes S140 straight and plastic to make a double-track road crossing)
1671: “Track with Gap” G70-W, 70mm straight track (this has an insulated gap in it)
5534: DC Feeder with 70cm cord
6414: “Track with Wheel Cleaning Device”, S140 with electrically-driven cleaning pads to rub wheels.

Tomix Double-Track Viaduct

This is an incomplete list, as it doesn’t include support piers and related devices. Tomix also makes “wide track” fine track that can be joined together and equipped with sidewalls and supports to make viaduct track, but that’s a separate set of elements not listed here (they should all be compatible since they’re all fine track). Both caution not to use the “joiner repair” kit on these, as it will damage the track joiners (although there may be more than one such kit, and the caution may only be against using the other; I couldn’t find a listing for the kit(s) to verify).

There are two different styles of double-track viaduct: normal and slab-track. The latter replicates the type of construction used on more modern Shinkansen lines, and part numbers bear a “-SL” suffix. The other style replicates ordinary ballasted viaduct used on commuter lines and older Shinkansen construction. The two styles use different power feeders, and only the slab track has removable sidewalls (to allow creation of a quad-track viaduct).

Normal viaduct comes in three sets of radii: 280/317, 354/391 and 428/465 (all dimensions in mm). These appear to only be available in 45-degree sections (no 1/8 curve 22.5-degree set). The slab viaduct comes in only two sizes: 428/465 and 502/539, the former only in 45-degree form, the latter only in 22.5-degree form (at least that’s all I could find in the usual store; I haven’t done an exhaustive search).

Track feeders are different as well: normal appears to use the standard 5534 (not verified), while the slab track originally used the 5537, now replaced with the 5538. This is a low-profile power feeder, designed to clip under the track but still leave clearance for a lower track. The 5534 is the usual “from the side” feeder, which is rather obvious when in use.

Standard Viaduct

1061 Viaduct Straight Double Track DS140(F) (Set of 2)
1062 Viaduct Straight Double Track DS280(F) (Set of 2)

1069 Viaduct Straight Double Track DS1120(F) (Set of 2)
- yes, this is a 1.1 meter length; I wouldn’t try shipping that international.

1161 Viaduct Curved Double Tracks DC317-280-45(F) (Set of 2)
1162 Viaduct Curved Double Tracks DC391-354-45(F) (Set of 2)
1163 Viaduct Curved Double Tracks DC465/428-45(F) (Set of 2)

Slab Track Viaduct

1066 Viaduct Slab Straight Double Track DS140-SL(F) (Set of 2)
1067 Viaduct Slab Straight Double Track DS280-SL(F) (Set of 2)

1070 Viaduct Slab Straight Double Track DS1120-SL(F) (Set of 2)
- yes, this is a 1.1 meter length; I wouldn’t try shipping that international.

1168 Viaduct Slab Curved Double Tracks DC465/428-45-SL(F) (Set of 2)
1169 Viaduct Slab Curved Double Tracks DC539-502-22.5-SL(F) (Set of 2)


0110 Rail Joiner for Fine Track (set of 20)
0111 Insulating Joiner (F) (Set of 20)

5534 DC Feeder N
- for standard fine track

5537 DC Feeder N for Slab Tracks - production canceled
5538 DC Feeder N for Wide Rail and Slab Rail
- for slab viaduct