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N Scale Atlas, Life-Like, Graham Farish, Micro-Trains, Minitrix and other N scale discussion.


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Old 12-10-2019, 03:51 PM   #11
firescales22
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oh jeez one more is there a good brand that makes good quality N scale buildings? thx
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Old 12-10-2019, 04:38 PM   #12
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Originally Posted by firescales22 View Post
do you have to ballast unitrack i just read in another forum that you should ballast unitrack i was just making sure
There is no need to ballast Unitrack. It can be done but it’s not easy since it already has roadbed with a textured “ballast “ attached to it. If you don’t like the color you can always paint it.
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Old 12-10-2019, 04:46 PM   #13
firescales22
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ok thanks!
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Old 12-10-2019, 04:50 PM   #14
firescales22
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and how would you ballast it if i was to do that?
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Old 12-10-2019, 05:37 PM   #15
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and how would you ballast it if i was to do that?
I would consult the tutorials on You Tube. There was a thread on here just a few weeks ago about this. You can probably find it in a site search.
I use Unitrack because you don’t need to ballast it (among other reasons).
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Old 12-10-2019, 07:36 PM   #16
luvadj
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Hi there and welcome to the forum. We're all here to learn from one and other, right

As for trains, there's nothing wrong with buying a train set to start off with ( a decent size one, not the smaller ones ) and building up from there....Kato is top of the line and they set starter sets as well as Bachmann. For your money, you get a start with a bit of everything and the investment is low...then you add on what you like to have as time and money permits

The only advice I can give on cars is to run metal wheelsets...the plastic wheelsets spread that insulating gunk all over the layout rails and will give you fits thinking your loco has died..

Just my .02....carry on....
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Old 12-10-2019, 08:08 PM   #17
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do you have to ballast unitrack i just read in another forum that you should ballast unitrack i was just making sure
It's your layout. You don't HAVE to do anything you don't want to. As we say around here: "Your Layout, Your Rules."

Unitrack comes with an integrated plastic roadbed that looks very good, but it's still obviously plastic roadbed. If you want to make it more realistic looking, you can add ballast. It will work just fine without it, though.
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Old 12-10-2019, 08:14 PM   #18
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oh jeez one more is there a good brand that makes good quality N scale buildings? thx
Except for track (especially turnouts), there really isn't such a thing as better or worse brands. Some have more detail and / or are more faithful to the prototype (and these usually cost a little more), but I wouldn't say that there's a lot ofmjunk floating around out there (just stay away from used stuff on eBay, which can be a crap shoot). Over time, you will develop a feel for which brands you prefer, but that's largely a matter of personal preference.

Have a look at Walther's Cornerstone kits. They're nice, well detailed,easy to assemble plastic kits. If you prefer wood (generally more expensive than plastic), Blair Line or American Model Builders are both good.
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Old 12-11-2019, 12:10 AM   #19
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OK i have 1 kato engine it runs OK but i dont have much money so i dont buy a lot of kato engines but i do have like 7 (used) bachmann engines and they run pretty well also i have 3 life like locos and my track is kato unitrack
EDIT: i am not sure how to change couplers so if u could help with that it would be much appreciated thx
firescales22;

There are several way to change couplers. Since you did not say what couplers you want to change from and to, I'm assuming you want to go from Rapido couplers to Micro-Trains couplers. The easiest way is to buy Micro-Trains trucks with their couplers already mounted. The trucks are high quality and they come with instructions and adapter inserts to fit several brands of cars.

You can also buy just the couplers, without the trucks. They can be mounted directly to the body of the car. However, This should be an all or none coupler mounting location choice. The worst thing you can have is a mixture of some body-mounted couplers and some truck-mounted couplers. That mix will very often cause derailments. Do your present cars have their Rapido couplers mounted on the trucks? I suspect they do. If so, I suggest sticking with all truck-mounted couplers. This is also a better option if you have curves 12" radius or less. Truck mounted couplers are better on tight curves.

There are bulk packs of 50 couplers which are cheaper, per coupler, than buying couplers in pairs. Couplers are sold pre-assembled, and in kits, where you have to assemble the couplers. The kits are cheaper, but assembling tiny couplers is not easy. Micro-Trains sells some special tools including an assembly fixture and a spring holding tool. They also sell a coupler height and track gage combined tool. Again read the directions that come with whatever couplers you buy.

Micro-Trains does not make locomotives. They do make excellent freight and passenger cars though. You can mount Micro-Trains couplers on just about any brand of locomotive or car. They even make special conversion kits for specific locomotives.

As you have probably discovered by now, nothing much is cheap in this hobby, or most, hobbies, for that matter. My advice is to have only a few good quality items, instead of lots of cheap ones. You now own 11 locomotives , which should be plenty. As long as you like what you have, there is no reason to spend your limited money on more locomotives. One of the PDF files I sent you, "Model Railroading on a budget" points out some ways to save a bit of money, and also some things where it's better to save up enough to buy something really well made, instead of going cheap.

Good luck, and have fun!

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Old 12-11-2019, 12:19 AM   #20
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West N-scale buildings

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oh jeez one more is there a good brand that makes good quality N scale buildings? thx
firescales22;

There are many brands of N-scale buildings. Most are good, none are cheap. Design Preservation Models makes kits for stores, warehouses, a hotel, and other brick buildings, that are well made, easy to assemble and reasonably inexpensive, compared to many other structure models. You might start with one of their kits. Built up structures are generally much more expensive than kits. The cheapest way to get structures is to build your own from scratch.

good luck, have fun;

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