metal part used to join two rails together

In rail terminology, a fishplate, splice bar or joint bar is a metal bar that is bolted to the ends of two rails to join them together in a track. The name is derived from fish, a wooden bar with a curved profile used to strengthen a ship's mast.[1] The top and bottom edges are tapered inwards so the device wedges itself between the top and bottom of the rail when it is bolted into place.[2] In rail transport modelling, a fishplate is often a small copper or nickel silver plate that slips onto both rails to provide the functions of maintaining alignment and electrical continuity.

Fishplate on the Bluebell Railway


  1. "Fish 2". Oxford English Dictionary (Second ed.). Oxford, England: Oxford University Press. 1989.
  2. Morgan, C. D. (1946). "Permanent way". In Pendred, Loughan (ed.). The Engineer's Year-Book for 1946 (52 ed.). London: Morgan Brothers. p. 2015.