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question about designing layouts in HO

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question about designing layouts in HO
Posted by Anonymous on Wednesday, September 3, 2003 5:19 PM
I have some experience with O scale and I am currently beginning to work with HO. The advice I have been given thus far strongly suggests making the curves as large as possible, preferably 22's or 24's. Doing so results in very large curves that are actually as large as or larger than what I used in O gauge. Is it really necessary to use such large curves in HO?? I realize that the train will run more smoothly with a larger curve, but will it really run that poorly if I use an 18 curve ?? Thanks for your help.

Mark
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question about designing layouts in HO
Posted by Anonymous on Wednesday, September 3, 2003 5:19 PM
I have some experience with O scale and I am currently beginning to work with HO. The advice I have been given thus far strongly suggests making the curves as large as possible, preferably 22's or 24's. Doing so results in very large curves that are actually as large as or larger than what I used in O gauge. Is it really necessary to use such large curves in HO?? I realize that the train will run more smoothly with a larger curve, but will it really run that poorly if I use an 18 curve ?? Thanks for your help.

Mark
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Posted by Javern on Wednesday, September 3, 2003 5:50 PM
depends on what you are running for cars and engines. 72' cars run on 18 curves but look dopey. If you plan to stay with 40' cars then 18' curves work, I use 22's on mine and I still run a enlcosed autorack or two, and all my 6 axle diesels run fine.
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Posted by Javern on Wednesday, September 3, 2003 5:50 PM
depends on what you are running for cars and engines. 72' cars run on 18 curves but look dopey. If you plan to stay with 40' cars then 18' curves work, I use 22's on mine and I still run a enlcosed autorack or two, and all my 6 axle diesels run fine.
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Posted by Anonymous on Thursday, September 4, 2003 7:47 AM
O gauge used 27" radius ie O-27 gauge. Scale 2 rail O guys use big sweeping turns like HO only bigger. In HO a 22" radius is considered tight. 22" is a convienent size to use on a 4X8 and have enough room left to catch derailments. If you use 30 inch or greater radius with easements and #6 or bigger turnouts you trains will run more reliably and look better going through a corner. I use 36" radius on my mains and have no problems, but in older areas where I used 22' Snap track I have derailments and uncoupling problems. On 18" radius with #4 turnouts areas I have had so much trouble I don't run trains there and would tear them out except they are in my orginal layout and have senemental value. I didn't know better at the time and nobody warned me, so I am warning you, keep the corners big.
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Posted by Anonymous on Thursday, September 4, 2003 7:47 AM
O gauge used 27" radius ie O-27 gauge. Scale 2 rail O guys use big sweeping turns like HO only bigger. In HO a 22" radius is considered tight. 22" is a convienent size to use on a 4X8 and have enough room left to catch derailments. If you use 30 inch or greater radius with easements and #6 or bigger turnouts you trains will run more reliably and look better going through a corner. I use 36" radius on my mains and have no problems, but in older areas where I used 22' Snap track I have derailments and uncoupling problems. On 18" radius with #4 turnouts areas I have had so much trouble I don't run trains there and would tear them out except they are in my orginal layout and have senemental value. I didn't know better at the time and nobody warned me, so I am warning you, keep the corners big.
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Posted by Sperandeo on Thursday, September 4, 2003 9:44 AM
Hello Mark,

If you go to the National Model Railroad Association Web site at nmra.org, and look under "Standards and Recommended Practices," you'll find that RP-11 lists recommended minimum curve radii for different scale sizes of equipment in each of the modeling scales. As other posters have commented, the larger curves are one of the big differences between scale modeling and three-rail O gauge trains.

By the way, thank you for signing your name.

Best wishes,

Andy

Andy Sperandeo MODEL RAILROADER Magazine

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Posted by Sperandeo on Thursday, September 4, 2003 9:44 AM
Hello Mark,

If you go to the National Model Railroad Association Web site at nmra.org, and look under "Standards and Recommended Practices," you'll find that RP-11 lists recommended minimum curve radii for different scale sizes of equipment in each of the modeling scales. As other posters have commented, the larger curves are one of the big differences between scale modeling and three-rail O gauge trains.

By the way, thank you for signing your name.

Best wishes,

Andy

Andy Sperandeo MODEL RAILROADER Magazine

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Posted by Anonymous on Friday, September 5, 2003 6:56 PM
If your going with a small switch eng as your power then 18" curves will work but if you want E units and passengr equipment then you need larger curve s for a beautifull running passenger train of 10 cars 34 or larger curves our the ticket. you did not say how much room you have to build your lay out and this is the bottom answer on what you can do also are you going to watch trains run or are you wanting switching ?
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Posted by Anonymous on Friday, September 5, 2003 6:56 PM
If your going with a small switch eng as your power then 18" curves will work but if you want E units and passengr equipment then you need larger curve s for a beautifull running passenger train of 10 cars 34 or larger curves our the ticket. you did not say how much room you have to build your lay out and this is the bottom answer on what you can do also are you going to watch trains run or are you wanting switching ?
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Posted by CP5415 on Sunday, September 7, 2003 4:35 PM
I find you have to use what fit's your space. A friend recommended 22" for my HO layout for "looks" but I still have an 18" curve in a tunnel where all my locomotives & rolling stock run fine, even at high speeds. No derailments in 3 years.
This includes 86' passenger cars, SD40-2's, C44-9W's & my friends 4-6-6-4 Challenger.

Just my 2 cents!

Gordon

Brought to you by the letters C.P.R. as well as D&H!

 K1a - all the way

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Posted by CP5415 on Sunday, September 7, 2003 4:35 PM
I find you have to use what fit's your space. A friend recommended 22" for my HO layout for "looks" but I still have an 18" curve in a tunnel where all my locomotives & rolling stock run fine, even at high speeds. No derailments in 3 years.
This includes 86' passenger cars, SD40-2's, C44-9W's & my friends 4-6-6-4 Challenger.

Just my 2 cents!

Gordon

Brought to you by the letters C.P.R. as well as D&H!

 K1a - all the way

  • Member since
    April 2003
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Posted by Anonymous on Sunday, September 7, 2003 4:44 PM
depends on what era you plan on modeling as to the type of radiuses you use. If you are using some modern power & have the room to build the radiuses I'd go to 24's or 30's.



Charlie G
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Posted by Anonymous on Sunday, September 7, 2003 4:44 PM
depends on what era you plan on modeling as to the type of radiuses you use. If you are using some modern power & have the room to build the radiuses I'd go to 24's or 30's.



Charlie G
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Posted by ndbprr on Wednesday, September 10, 2003 1:43 PM
depends what you want. If you are striving for realism go as large as you can. Even a 30" radius curve would have about a 5mph speed limit on it in real life it is so tight. MY planned PRR will have nothing less than 48" radius. I had 30" for years and increased it to 34" and 36". I did my own poll on AOL several years ago and asked people who had built using 48" radius curves for their opinions. There wasn't one person of about 20 responses who ever regretted going that large. Everything about it is better. Larger radius allows closer coupling, larger equipment, less overhang, smoother and more realsistic operating, better looking, longer trains, less derailments and several other advantages if it can be done.
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Posted by ndbprr on Wednesday, September 10, 2003 1:43 PM
depends what you want. If you are striving for realism go as large as you can. Even a 30" radius curve would have about a 5mph speed limit on it in real life it is so tight. MY planned PRR will have nothing less than 48" radius. I had 30" for years and increased it to 34" and 36". I did my own poll on AOL several years ago and asked people who had built using 48" radius curves for their opinions. There wasn't one person of about 20 responses who ever regretted going that large. Everything about it is better. Larger radius allows closer coupling, larger equipment, less overhang, smoother and more realsistic operating, better looking, longer trains, less derailments and several other advantages if it can be done.
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Posted by Anonymous on Friday, September 12, 2003 1:45 PM
I'm using 30" minimum on my new layout. I'm modeling the end of the last millenium so equipment is on the large side. Last layout used 18" in a few places and most cars had no problem but didn't look right.
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Posted by Anonymous on Friday, September 12, 2003 1:45 PM
I'm using 30" minimum on my new layout. I'm modeling the end of the last millenium so equipment is on the large side. Last layout used 18" in a few places and most cars had no problem but didn't look right.
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Posted by Anonymous on Saturday, September 13, 2003 8:41 PM
I am designing a rather large layout that will have a helix to get from one level to another and I can't recall anyone saying anything about maximum grade on them. Does anyone have any practical experience in this quandry, or is their some formula based on the radius that is to be laid? Obviously it has to be enough to clear the top of the cars on the level below it, but just how steep can you go, and do you need to reverse camber the curves? Bob Thompson
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Posted by Anonymous on Saturday, September 13, 2003 8:41 PM
I am designing a rather large layout that will have a helix to get from one level to another and I can't recall anyone saying anything about maximum grade on them. Does anyone have any practical experience in this quandry, or is their some formula based on the radius that is to be laid? Obviously it has to be enough to clear the top of the cars on the level below it, but just how steep can you go, and do you need to reverse camber the curves? Bob Thompson

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