Standard or narrow gauge

Discussion in 'Logging, Mining and Industrial Railroads' started by GMRCNut868, Apr 21, 2004.

  1. GMRCNut868

    GMRCNut868 New Member

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    As some of you may know, i am planning on building a small logging line based switching layout. What i am trying to decide is whether to use narrow gauge track or standard gauge. I figured i'd ask the seasoned loggers to see what you think. Thanks in advance!
  2. shamus

    shamus Registered Member

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    Well if you are into HO, then you have a choice as both 0n30 and HO loco's will run on the same track width. If you go with HO loco's like the MDC shay etc., then you will be modelling standard gauge logging. Move to 0n30 then you are into Narrow gauge modelling. :D Fun ain't it:thumb:
    Shamus
    [​IMG]
  3. jon-monon

    jon-monon Active Member

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    Narrow Gauge HO tends to be either expensive (HON3, 3 ft gauge) or scratch/bash intesive (HOn30, 30" gauge, uses N scale mechys and scratch built bodies and N scale track), or extremely scratch build intesive (HOn2, 2 ft gauge). Standard gauge may not be as "correct" to the proto type, and some might even argue as to how narrow the gauge should be. However, as Shamus demonstrated for many years, a lovey, convincing HO standard gauge logging layout in a moderate size.

    If space is a concern, consider HOn30, because you can have as more or more track in a given area than N scale. The track is the same, but tight curves are at home in a logging layout.

    Me? I couldn't decide, so I went dual gauge, HO and HOn30 :D :D :D
  4. m_reusser

    m_reusser Member

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  5. GMRCNut868

    GMRCNut868 New Member

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    Thanks for the input everyone! I think i will go with either HOn3 or standard HO because of the limited space i am working with and the fact that the track plan i have is based on HO. I also have a limited amount of time and money that i can spend on the project. At any rate, this project is still in the early development stage, so i may decide to change things around as i go along. Thanks again!
  6. farmer ron

    farmer ron Member

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    I agree with what others have stated, with my layout, a small logging layout 12 X6, I am using HO track, as I presently have HO equipment. I am looking into the future with my track remaining in HO but presently using On30 clearances so can switch later on, as the dexterity in the hands and eyesight deminishes. Just something to concider..as Marc says enjoy it..Ron..
  7. Vic

    Vic Active Member

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    A Thought On What The Prototype Would Do

    If a logging line would have direct interchange with a standard gauge line then most likely their trackage would be standard guage.

    But, if the the logging line's trackage serviced their own facility only then most likely they would have chosed narrow guage as it would have been cheaper to build.

    But ain't it stange:eek: that its the exact opposite in model railraoding:eek: :D
  8. GMRCNut868

    GMRCNut868 New Member

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    Thanks guys!
  9. Jeff Law

    Jeff Law New Member

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    I model in HOn30, but have a section of dual-gauge so that viewers may see the size difference between narrow-gauge and standard-gauge stuff.
  10. wjstix

    wjstix Member

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    It depends too on where you are modelling - i.e. what state your layout would be in. For example, here in MN narrow guage railroads were outlawed in 1911 (in fact the last narrow guage line (Milwaukee Road) had gone standard guage in 1903) and as far as I know all logging lines built were standard guage anyway.

    If you do go narrow guage, you should check out On30, will probably fit in same area as a standard guage HO layout but allow for easier detailing etc. Price is good too.
  11. jetrock

    jetrock Member

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    When one is modeling also makes a difference: the later the setting of the model railroad in time, the more likely the line would be standard gauge. Many logging lines started out narrow-gauge but then refitted to standard gauge later on, to interchange or to carry heavier loads.
  12. grlakeslogger

    grlakeslogger Member

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    Many of Wisconsin's logging lines were standard gauge as well. Quite a number were incorporated as common carriers. I use HO standard gauge and have for years. I remain pleased with my choice. If you plan on a lot of switching, the weight will be an advantage when it comes to reliability. As you make your decision, you might check to see what's commercially available in the era/scale you plan on using. Go with what best suits YOUR needs. Were I starting over, without budget limitations, and without several decades of HO purchases under my belt, I have to say I'd take a serious look into Sn3 however.

    Do you have any books or articles on logging in the time and the place you plan to model? In my opinion, the best layouts are based to some degree on something that actually was or easily could have been

    Welcome to logging!
    --Stu-- :wave:
  13. Dan Vincent

    Dan Vincent Member

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    Find a book titled "Pino Grande." It's about the Michigan-California Logging company that operated standard gauge on one side of a gorge and narrow gauge on the other side. They hauled the wood across the gorge on a cable.

    Very interesting book. I have the original and there was a second edition.