Well this is the best place to start

Discussion in 'N / Z Scale Model Trains' started by mcbane666, Dec 30, 2006.

  1. mcbane666

    mcbane666 Member

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    Well when I was little, trains were for going really fast and runing into lego men on the track:rolleyes:. Now I have lots of free time and growing tired of model cars. So i have decided to get back into trains and try this modeling idea ( my little self would kick my Butt for not running into things:D). so first off like every one else ( except someone that makes a layout from calgery to golden with 700 scale miles of track:thumb:) i have no space for a layout, and little money. i'm going to place it againts the wall and my bed. I drove through Jasper national park and was like I'm modeling this, so here we go, my layout is a 5X5 and 5X2.5 together.
    i want moutains then forest, then praire, then a towns edge with some staging, i'm placing it on the water front so it looks like i have a port. i want to have some track under the table so when the train leaves into the mountain cave it's a little while before it comes back. I will be running 70's-present CN Rail and Via rail so i will need to be able to run passenger cars, i have a couple of problems.

    #1 If i'm runing a 10-15 car frieght train with one engine, and and 6-8 car Passenger and steam loco, can i use the 4% incline in the hidden area?

    B Sence i have limited space will my train have a problem with a 12' radius turn in the 2.5' area of my layout (this would be close to town limits so the train most slow anyway :D)

    III What distance should i use from the centers of double track, and for staging, I know sence nothing turns in staging it can be closer, but i have no idea how close.

    any ideas would be nice. oh ya i'm going to post everything so stop by for some laughssign1

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  2. mcbane666

    mcbane666 Member

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    Question # Four i'm plaining on using moderen Via rail cars, but a Steam train (not weathering it to give the rebuilt look for added seat value:thumb:) So my question is if i have a 12" radius curve how big a steam train can i use, i'm guessing no 4-8-4:cry:

    What i'm thinking is a 4-8-4, 2-8-2, or if need be a 4-6-2
  3. 60103

    60103 Pooh Bah

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    Hi mcbane.
    Track spacing for N should be around 1" to 1 1/8". If you are going to pick up cars in the yard, you might want to measure a car plus a finger and space them that way.
    I'm not sure about 4% grades, but N used to take some pretty steep hills.
    You may have to check reviews of your desired locos in the magazines to see what a minimum radius is. I managed to get my N gauge around less than 12: radius, but that was 25 years ago, and things were different then.
  4. mcbane666

    mcbane666 Member

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    THanks for replying

    I really like the finger idea becuase one it's makes sence for when i have to move something, and two i feel thats lots of space for the security to look for rail bums:D.

    why is it that n scale might have been better before than now , if it has raised in popularity?
  5. ozzy

    ozzy Active Member

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    stay away from 4% grades , if you have to, you can use 3%
  6. mcbane666

    mcbane666 Member

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    is that for visual or performance?
  7. ozzy

    ozzy Active Member

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    everyone that i know that put in 4% wished they did not (including me) in any scale, engines just cant pull up 4% as good. on my new layout i got 2% for curves max! i have one spot of streght 4% thats only 24" long and with 12 cars it go at a slow creap up it,
  8. mcbane666

    mcbane666 Member

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    good enough for me:thumb:
  9. TrainNut

    TrainNut Ditat Deus

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    Okay, now some comments from someone on the other side of the fence....
    #1. If you check out the link in my signature of my home layout, you will see that I have a 9'x7' L shape and all but one of my grades are 4%. I have found that the less rolling resistance you have on each piece of stock, the more you can pull. If it gets to where my locomotive is having a tough time up the grades, I simply do what they do in the real world - I double 'em up. The reason I used 4% is because I was trying to get as much height difference as possible in as small a space as I could. It worked. You will have to run shorter trains with 4% grades. For me it was either 2% or 4% as I was using 1" foam. 3% made my runs too long and came out 1/2" off in between layers of foam anyways.

    #2. A good way to find out if the 12" radius is going to work for you or not is to lay down a 12" circle of track and test out your loco on it. The minimum standard radius in N scale is 9-3/4". I've done several coffee table layouts with one having a minimum radius of 6.5" so go figure.

    #3. The Kato track spacing guide recommends ideal track centerline spacing to be 1-5/16"s apart. That may vary by manufacturer however. As cidchase told me in another thread, "1-1/16" gives a prototypical 14' spacing." As far as staging centerline spacing - that should depend on which manufacturer and size of switches you will be using. You will see what I am talking about when you start laying out your switches.

    I had a thread that contained a lot of this information you are curious about. If you like, check it out here...
    http://www.the-gauge.com/showthread.php?t=22973
  10. Triplex

    Triplex Active Member

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    1" track centers represent 13' in reality, which was the old standard for straight track. Nowadays, real track centers are usually 16' or so. Also, on a model and especially in the smaller scales, track centers often have to be larger than scale for access reasons and due to tighter curves than the real thing.

    Passenger cars may run on 12' -it's like 22" in HO - but in a very cumbersome fashion. Unfortunately, it doesn't seem that you have room for much more, but every half-inch helps. Model curvature requirements aren't affected much by speed, unlike the real thing.
  11. mcbane666

    mcbane666 Member

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    Thanks every one this has been some help, can anyone give me some pointers on steam loco's i have never had one, and i need to know how large of one would handle my track.

    If i find some time today before i do some good ol candian newyears drinking maby i'll try and find some cheap lumber:thumb:
  12. mcbane666

    mcbane666 Member

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    Well I bought some supplys today, I decided sence i'm making this layout in two peices, that i would start with the smaller but more complacated (as in my radius limit that will determon the rest of the build) in track design. Well being Newyears I woke up at a friends place around 1030 or so and decided i would head home on the way to my amazment the only store I saw open was home depot. what a better time to buy some lumber:thumb:. so after i clean the place it's going i'll start posting my frame work build. i know somepeople feel this is left out of most posts and maby i can get some pointer on where i went wrong before the glue sets.

    Happy newyears
  13. CraigN

    CraigN New Member

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    For the plan you have drawn I would not build it against a wall. That 5 foot reach will be impossible to fix problems let alone build scenery without crawling onto your layout.

    Fot the size of the space you plan on using, you should be able to layout a trackplan that has smaller than 4% grades.

    Craig
  14. mcbane666

    mcbane666 Member

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    thanks for your input my room is 11.5 wide and I am placing the layout on wheels so i can bring it out from the wall if I have to and the place's in my layout hard to get to will be the large mountain.

    Do you feel that i can run the track under the table using the 2% incline? and i have been toying with the idea that one track lead into the mountain will already be two inch's higher.
  15. mcbane666

    mcbane666 Member

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    has anyone Tryed this?
    I know i have seen it across straight track but never round track.
    I found lots of track peices that do 45 deg and so on

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  16. Triplex

    Triplex Active Member

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    All commercial crossings are straight on both routes. You could use a 90 degree crossing in that place, but it would require reducing the curve radius.
  17. mcbane666

    mcbane666 Member

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    thanks for the info

    ok does anyone have some ideas i could consider? it's 2.5' wide and i need to turn the train around with a staging area behind it, long moderen cars and a steam loco must b able to make the turn.
  18. mcbane666

    mcbane666 Member

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    How high do you guys like the taples at, i know you want it high as posible so your looking across it , but able to still work on it. i just don't want to find out my table legs are to short.
  19. 60103

    60103 Pooh Bah

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    Table height is a personal matter. It depends on who's going to be running/watching it. I think my next layout will be at my eye level when I'm sitting. Or maybe my wife's eye level.
    Or I'll make it higher than my cat can jump. but for that I'll have to raise the ceiling.
  20. mcbane666

    mcbane666 Member

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    Well I have really been busy with work, who would have thought our cousins to the south love there oil so much. But I still have a nice pile on lumber in my room waiting for me. I started my vacation yesterday for two weeks so if all goes well I will have the 5x2.5 section built and start laying trackbed. I would like some people to give me some ideas for this section of track, if possible attach a picture. on the left I need two rails to come in, they do not have to be side by side, the train must turn around in this area, and I need to have a train station, and a little staging area for cargo be transfered to a rail going off to the Right, this one will not be operational. This area is prairie.