Help, Ordering Train Supplies

Discussion in 'HO Scale Model Trains' started by Hookedtrout, Sep 22, 2004.

  1. Hookedtrout

    Hookedtrout Member

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    Getting ready to order my track and power supply and I'm totaly new to all this. As I have mentioned before I am going DCC. I used the RTS software to get an idea of how much track I need for the layout. What Atlas track should I go with, which is best. I layed it out in True-Track and 100. What are the advantages/disadvantages? Is 100 better than 83?

    On to the power supply, I don't have a clue what I need here. I see the DCC systems come in a kit is that the just of my power supply or do I need other things to make this operate. What wire do I need? do I need a control panel for the switches? Please assume that I don't have clue here because I really don't.

    Thanks in advance here we go. :thumb:

    Hook
  2. jon-monon

    jon-monon Active Member

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    Code 100 is more compatable with older loco's and rollin' stock and newer European brands. "Train set" or "toy" quality is, I beleive, only available in code 100. Turnouts are the big issue. Quality stuff is also available. Many places will sell the lower quality stuff, which you really don't wan't on a layout.

    Code 83 looks better and poorer quality turnouts are not available.

    In my opinion, assuming you're not going to buy a lot of older used stuff, and you're buying from the North American companies, go with 83.

    Dunno DCC :(
  3. Hookedtrout

    Hookedtrout Member

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    What about the True-Track? I'm thinking it would be nice to already have the base attached to the track? What track is on the True-Track, 83?

    Thanks for the reply.

    Hook
  4. jtbterri

    jtbterri Member

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    Atlas True Track at this time I believe uses Code 83 as the base. This was one of its selling points, remove the base and you had regular Code 83 product.

    I've used Atlas True Track throughout my new layout and have been very satisified. Easy to configure, change, and mount to my 9'x6' flat table.

    One problem has been to find local LHS that carry the product so most of my purchases have been on the WEB.

    George
  5. jon-monon

    jon-monon Active Member

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    One of the problems with the built in roadbed is that it eliminates the possibility of using flextrack, which for most people is easier, faster, more reliable than sectional track. To me, I couldn't fathom not being able to run the track wherever I please. I've seen some people make that stuff look good, but I can't immagine it's much easier than laying cork on a pencil line. Oh ya, the cost: I get flex track used for a buck a stick, code 83 or 100. You can mail order it for $2.50 a stick, less than a buck a foot new.
  6. Hookedtrout

    Hookedtrout Member

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    If True-Trac is code 83 why would using it eliminate the possibility of using flex-track. Wouldn't true trac 83 and flex track 83 match up if you modified a roadbed to bring the level up to the true-trac? From my searches it appears they make adapters from one brand to another so I would think you could hook same brands together.

    Great info and I'm paying close attention keep it coming. If you can't combine the two I don't want to go that way. Everyone agree that code 83 is better than code 100?

    Hook
  7. jtbterri

    jtbterri Member

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    "If True-Trac is code 83 why would using it eliminate the possibility of using flex-track. Wouldn't true trac 83 and flex track 83 match up if you modified a roadbed to bring the level up to the true-trac?"

    Absolutely! Have to snip off the prong on the True Trac, level things up, and connect with regular rail joiners or solder if you prefer. Just put in a bridge with its own roadbed in this fashion. No Problem!!

    Connecting between the different types of prefab roadbed, Bachmann, Kato and Atlas, is a little different story. All use different connecting mechanisms which are not necessarily that compatible. Check them out at your LHS first.

    George
  8. Hookedtrout

    Hookedtrout Member

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    Thanks for the reply I'm headed to the LHS now, even though it isn't very local, to check things out. Problem I have is I live in a rural area and the LHS is about an hour from here, there is only one and it is very limited in railroad supplies so the internet is going to be my main source of supplies and you guys are the ones I'm trusting in what I get because I can't see it for myself.

    The other frustrating part is every time I go down to the hobby store they are closed to go to some remote airplane show or something. Irritates me to death. Go ahead and go to the plane show but put someone in the store so your hours of operation are honored. Driving an hour to find a note in the window! I shouldn't have to call everytime I go down makes me want to not do business with them.

    Hook
  9. jon-monon

    jon-monon Active Member

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  10. jtbterri

    jtbterri Member

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  11. Hookedtrout

    Hookedtrout Member

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    Well...the hobby store was open but very lacking in supplies. He carries Atlas code 100 and Ez-Track by Bachmann. He isn't much of a train guy, it looks more like he's into the remote planes. I'm thinking I will go with Atlas 100 track and lay down my own track bed so I don't have problems with older trains derailing. I have some old rolling stock and I plan on using ebay as a source for some rolling stock so I think the 100 will be a benefit.

    He told me if I'm going DCC then I don't want to mess with any engine that isn't set up for DCC already, which isn't what I've heard or read here. Sounds like they aren't all that difficult to switch over to DCC. I plan on buying a DCC ready engine anyway. If I order up my DCC do I need a separate system to run the switches and lights and stuff or does the DCC run the switches. If I do need an alternate what do I need to get and how do you guys set up your switch board. I'm guessing you need a switch board or something to see which switch is where and which way it is set.

    Thanks, Hook
  12. Hookedtrout

    Hookedtrout Member

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  13. Russ Bellinis

    Russ Bellinis Active Member

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    For all of your dcc questions as well as finding out which decoders to use for which locomotives, www.loystoys.com has some very good info.
  14. Hookedtrout

    Hookedtrout Member

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    Awesome site, thanks Russ.

    Hook