Sorry if I upset you, Harold, but like I said:
"It's just me, tho, don't take it personal We all go at it
differently ... (vive l'difference)"
I don't really understand what you mean by unavailability to anyone
who wants to do narrow gauge 1:48. Are you referring to the cost
of the track? What else is unavailable?
The Peco track is just much more realistic than HO track, IMO,
altho somewhat costlier. From your photo, you obviously like
your modeling to have a good deal of realism. Very nice, BTW.
I'm just not partial to a model with 1:87 size wheels, drivers,
steam cylinders, etc., but purporting to be 1:48 scale.
This seems to be what a lot (not all) of the On30 conversions entail.
On30 seems to be a big fad lately, that's just the nature of the game,
I guess. I believe there's much more prototype for 36" and 24"
than for 30" gauge. It is real close, tho. Tie spacing also seems
to be a problem.
Anyway ,can I have my opinion widdout makin' someone ?
Maybe, like my Momma said, "If you can't say something nice, don't
say anything at all."
The new Bachmann equipment takes On30 out of the "cute" catagory. It is scale 1/4" narrow gauge equipment running on HO track, an easy compromise. Cost of track is the least of the problem in On3, it is the cost of everything. Having done narrow gauge in all the other incantations, the new On30 is great. Bachmann has made narrow gauge available to the average hobbyist. On30 has moved beyond "cute" HO conversions.
The PECO track is not 1/48 narrow gauge track, it is 1/43 English Industrial Tramway track and the ties are 11" wide on 28" centers with 4-1/2 foot long ties with code 100 rail. The Atlas Code 100 HO is 7" wide ties on 15" centers and 4-1/2 long ties. Most Pre-WW1 narrow gauge track was 6x6 ties x 6 foot long on 18". The Atlas HO track does a better job of being On30 track.
Not mad at the "cute" remark, but it is like "nice choo-choo's on your platform".
So should I buy Peco On 30 or Bachmann On 30 track--is there much of a difference ? I am used to O gauge track and this will be in the back of my 20' x 6' O gauge layout as a logging railroad with On Shays etc.Does the Peco look more realistic ?? Hmmmm--what I also really need is a 90 degree crossing O gauge to On gauge--Probably not possible !! All I know is that $800 O gauge Shays have me thinking about On 30 gauge Shays and track --Possum dollars hard to come by--Thanks for the replies!
The 18" radius curves for the Bachmann Shay and Climax are not a problem. I have 15" radius curves and have no problem with either loco. 15" is the limit for the Shay and Climax. Any tighter and they will derail. The trucks won't turn any tighter without binding or having the drive lines come apart. The 15" radius curves are on the flat.
I have a 18" radius curve climbing into a 6.5% grade that gives the Shay a problem if I try to pull more than five cars up the grade. The front wheels on the front truck will derail. The Climax pulls it with no problem. If I MU two Shays, they will pull 15 cars with no problem up the grade, through the curve.
The point is, grade will make a lot of difference in what the radius of your curves will have to be.
I’m a newbie to On30...I’ve been modeling for several years, in both HO, & N scales, but because of some vision problems, I’m starting over now in a larger scale.
Cid raised a couple of complaints that I’ve heard from others about On30...& I’d like to voice my own response to them here, if I might…
* “Too Cute” - OK, “cute” is a relative term, & it’s been applie to a lot of aspects of model railroading…when I got into N scale, purchased a loco, brought it home, & showed it to my wife, her response was, “Oooo, that’s so cute!” This was an Atlas GP38...a locomotive I’ve never thought of as “cute”…But given my wife’s perspective of seeing it in 1/160, it was “cute”, like a little mouse or something…
Also, one of the guys at my LHS was making fun of me when I told him I was getting into On30...”Whataya gonna do…build one of those little porcelain Christmas villages?”
OK, I’ll concede that those are, IMHO, “cute”…but hey, you can go that route in ANY scale, from Z to G…In fact, I remember not too terribly long ago, that there was a general concensus among “finescale” modelers, that N scale was just too “toy-like”…Well, I think that opinion has fallen by the wayside, as there are now MANY N scalers doing some very “finescale” work in 1/160...
* “Non Proto” - I’m going to assume that what Cid means is that On30 isn’t prototypically “correct”, because it is neither the 36”, nor the 24” variety of narrow gauge. Granted, most of the NG RR’s in the US (all the famous ones) were one of these two gauges. But there have been many other gauges of RR used all over the world, besides the 2 & 3 footers…Just here in my home state of KY, we had rail lines gauged at 18”, 42”, 44”, 42.5”, & 44.5”…and, of course, several in the 36” variety…no 30” that I’m aware of, but my point is, that there was a lot of NG railroading going on outside of Colorado & Maine…
As far as wheel/driver size, etc…that was always kind of an “anything goes” type of thing on early RR’s, both standard & NG, because everything was home-built, &/or altered to suit various needs & situations…Sort of “scratchin’ & bashin” in 1/1 scale!
The only modeling I’ve done so far in On30, has been to bash some HO rolling stock into On30...I’m having a blast with this…You’re right…it’s not “prototypical”, but by cobbling together equipment from the limited skills & materials I have available, I think it’s very much in keeping with how a rural short line would’ve operated in the early 20th century!
Sorry to be so long-winded, & Cid, please don’t think I was attacking, or “flaming” you… Indeed, I’d like to thank you for raising these points for discussion! It’s something I’ve been pondering lately…
Btw…I do prefer the look of the O scale ties, but I’ve seen where people have removed some of the ties from the HO track, & it looks pretty good…
Peco makes good track and excellent switches. the maid advantage is looks with the On30 track.
while On30 stuff will run on Ho track the ties are too short, too skinny, and too close together. true you can cut some of them out, but they are still to short and too skinny.
I have been hand laying track for over 35 years, but before I started doing that Peco was my favorite brand of track things I like about Peco
1 the spring loaded points stay in position and transfer power so switches are power routing, and don't require ground throws. this can greatly simplify witing, although it takes some getting used to, but once you learn where to put your power feeds and where to put gaps, you are good to go.
2 Peco flex track is very flexible, and takes a natural curve easily, without kinks and variations. If you change your mind, it straightens up very nicely. it is a joy to work with.
HO track will never be a good representation of O scale narrow gauge track. I have seen lots of folks hide this by burying the ties in ballast or ground cover, but it s best to have track you are not ashamed of to start with.
I highly recommend the Peco. but my On30 stuff I'm spreading to On3, and will probably hand lay track.
I haven't played with micro engineering On30 stuff. but from thier Hon3 offerings the grain and spike detain on the ties is great, and their hon3 switches have sprung points, and seem to be srt up to be DCC friendly.
The flex track is not as flexible, and is much trickier to bend to a smooth even radius. If Peco made hon3 track I'd never buy anything else.
A lot has changed in about 6 years Thanks to good old mr. Bachmann
Since one and a half years i am totally hooked on 0n30.
Before that i didn't know it excisted and the train hobby was in a state of hibernation.
Yes , i use peco track, it looks perfect and i have collected nearly all of Bachmann's models.
I have no experience with hand laying track and i am not planning to.
I am sattisfied with Peco.
New to this forum. I got into model railroading a year and half ago after taking a hiatus since elementary school 40 years ago. Some hiatus - huh! I model in On30 and I'm hooked big time thanks to bachmann and all the vendors that support On30 now. I used Peco On30 track on a two module (5' x 5') Christmas tree layout I'm now completing the scenery on. Once you weather the ties / rails and ballast the track it looks great. And as far as track configuration. The layout is a laid over figure 8 with over 5% grades with one radius about 19". To test the track after install, after a couple slow passes, I ran the 4-4-0 flat out and it didn't ever derail. Peco On30 is an excellant product. Although I haven't worked with it yet, I think the Micro Eng On30 code 83 track is great looking too.
I use PECO 0n30 code 100 in my 8 for 3 metre layout- it is of good quality and really makes the job well-but, depending on what you are depicting, if you compare with photographs of the real McCoy you realise code 100 is too big for what it is usually used in these narrow tracks.
My layout is based on Brazilian rail. http://comboiosrigorosamentevigiados.blogspot.com/
Let me just say that I follow this forum for some time now and that me too got hooked on 0n30 five years ago.