Most model railroads are used sparingly. They see intense use for a couple of days once a month during peak times and sit idle for a few months during the off season. A common experience is the loss of continuous performance. Interpreted as a break down in electrical conductivity, it is a huge headache to enjoyment of your model railroad.
There are a number of reasons this occurs, these have been discussed at length elsewhere. There are a number of remedies that have also been proposed and shown to help minimize the effects of this dirt phenomena.
One of the purposes of this section is to establish a testing process that will quantify the benefits and the negative impact of these remedies.