weighting

Discussion in 'FAQs' started by belg, Apr 24, 2003.

1. belgMember

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I was reading an old issue of RMC and came accross an article about weighting cars.Is there a chart or something to reference to see which cars are supposed to weigh what? I model in N scale.TIA Still having fun.

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I took this from www.nmra.org

---------------INITIAL WEIGHT -------
SCALE-------(ounces)--------+ ---------(Ounces) per inch of car body length
-----------------------------------------------------------------------------
O ------------- 5 ------------- + ------------1
0n3 ---------1-1/2 ---------- + -----------3/4
S-------------- 2 -------------- + ----------1/2
Sn3----------- 1 --------------+------------1/2
HO-------------1---------------+------------1/2
HOn3---------3/4 ------------+------------3/8
TT-------------3/4-------------+------------3/8
N--------------1/2 ------------+-------------.15

Hope this helps!!
3. ezdaysOut AZ way

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Tip??

Dunno if this is a new tip or not, but I found a easy way of getting the weights that I needed for N gauge. I have an air brad tacker and so I also have a supply of #18 and #16 brads that are in sticks. I bough a very inexpensive digital mail scale at Wal-Mart for around \$20 that gives me weght in tenths of an ounce. I weighed the cars, and then cut off a group of brads and added them to the scale. I could vary the size to fit the car and the wight I needed to add, but usually an inch to an 1 1/2" brad would work. I could cut off brads until I got to the ideal weight then double back tape them to the inside of the car. Since they are flat and stuck together, I usually only had to add one or two groups to get the weight I needed.

One thing I did find was that the cheaper the car, the more weight I had to add. I used the same forumla that Ngauger listed here.

Since this explaination may be a bit unclear, I've attached a picture of what I'm talking about. If this turns out to be an old trick, forgive me, I'm kinda new here

Don

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4. CattGuest

Don,this may or may not be an old trick.Never the less it will be new to the newbie modeler so still rates being posted.
5. tomgschillingNew Member

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Don, I give up. What is an Air Brad Tacker and where do you find it and the sticks of brads that go with it? The technique looks neat. ...Tom Schilling
6. 60103Pooh Bah

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Don, it's new even to this old timer!
What's an air brad tacker? And why are you tackling Air Brad?
7. ezdaysOut AZ way

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Air tacker

Well, what I'm calling an air brad tacker is probably more correctly called an air brad (or nail) gun since they shoot brads, or headless nails and require an air compressor to work. I have a couple of sizes and use them in my woodworking for..... tacking two pices of wood together.

You can find the packs of brads at the Home Depot tool dept. or any tool store that has air tools. They come in sticks of 50 inside boxes of 1000. They are just held together with glue so they break apart easily. As you can see, they're flat and have no heads to get in the way.

Sorry for the misnomer, but the place that I bought mine used that nomenclature in their ads and on the boxes and it kinda stuck with me.

Don
8. CSX6638Member

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Don like myself has a woodworking shop, a brad air tacker is a nail gun that is powered by air from a compressor, brads are small diameter finishing nails. A great tool to have if you do any kind of cabinetry work. hope this helps, by the way Don a great idea, sure beats cutting up pennys.
9. CSX6638Member

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Hi Don
I was posting a help answer, while watching the hockey game and I did not see that you had answered it until I posted, sorry.
Andrew
10. ezdaysOut AZ way

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Hey, no problem. Sometimes I need all the help I can get.

I scanned one item in a Harbor Freight calalog showing what we mean. Harbor Freight has mail order as well as stores thoughout the SW. As you can see, the nail packs are really inexpensive. One box will last longer than you'd care to calculate.

Don

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11. jon-mononActive Member

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So far I've been using lead shot secured with epoxy. Nails might be better though in some situations, and cause less dain bramage if you swoller one. Cheap rollin' stock sure feels expensive once you get it weighted!
12. 60103Pooh Bah

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Don:
Is that a single brad that's the width of an N scale boxcar?
13. belgMember

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????

Ok since I'm a woodworker I get the concept of using the brad nails as weight but don't get the weight concept. I think that I'm supposed to weigh the car and in N it should weigh 1/2 oz per inch and add .15 oz per inch? I went to the
NMRR site but could not find the weighting section.

David the brad nails are each about a 1/16" wide and they come glued together in strips of about fifty.
14. ezdaysOut AZ way

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Belg,

No, for N scale, that's .5 oz plus .15 oz per inch. So if you could find a 1" car it should weigh in at .65 oz. A 4" car would be1.1 oz

David,

On a N scale, I could get four or five glued-together nails across a car. If you look at the picture, I have a strips of 1 1/2" and 1" brads as they come glued together. On say an Atlas car I only needed a few nails, like a strip of four, on a Bachman or LL I sometimes had to add two or three strips (up to like 12-14 nails total), 1 1/2" long to get to the ideal weight. I sandwiched these strips with double-backed foam tape which basically added no weight. A few cars I had to go down to a 1" long size because longer ones wouldn't fit inside the car.

Don
15. 60103Pooh Bah

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Belg:
The NMRA should have weights listed in the Standards or the Recommended Practices.
They did a lot of engineering work a long time ago to come up with these weights. The idea is that consistent weights lead to better running; mixing light and heavy cars gives problems.
The weights con't need to be followed to the .01 ounce shown; remember that real railroads mix cars with loads and empties.
NMRA standards came about so we could interchange cars and locos and have them work together. You're free to reduce your cars to a plastic shell -- just don't try to run them with my cars which are cast from solid lead with loads of depleted uranium.
16. jon-mononActive Member

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6 - when you come to visit, please leave your rollin' stock at home. I have Chihuahua's I would like to bread one day and would hate to see one run over by or radiated by your rollin' stock. No offense
17. cidchaseActive Member

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I'm wondering how many folks weight to the NMRA standard??
It seems very heavy to me. Of the kits and RTR I have (HO), none come very close to the standard, even with the supplied weights. I guess the mfg's are leaving it up to the customer as to how heavy you want to go. I can see the 5% grade folks having traction problems with a string of NMRA weighted cars!! So what's you're opinion??
18. 60103Pooh Bah

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I don't have a scale that is fine enough for car weights.
I suspect that NMRA standards were drawn up when there were a lot of metal castings in the cars and they were just generally heavier than they are now. Although I suspect that a brass caboose or milk car would easily reach the standard. (Would you put a brass caboose at the end of a string of plastic boxcars?) It is easier to add weight than remove it.
19. Russ BellinisActive Member

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I bring the weight of all of my rolling stock up to NMRA standards or a little bit more, except for cabooses (cabeese?). Since the caboose is always at the end of the train, and never asked to pull a heavier car, I don't worry about it being light. As far as the traction problem, I just do what the prototype would do, add more power units. I know that modular layouts are supposed to be level, but they actually are just parrallel to the floor they are set up on. We have often set up where the floor dictated a 3% grade fro the entire layout.

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