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Discussion Starter #1
If Code 55 track is accurate to N-scale (1:160) why would any modeler use anything else (e.g. Code 65, Code 80, Code 100)?
 

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To accommodate older equipment which may have deeply flanged (“pizza cutter”) wheels.
The larger codes have been around for a long time and have been accepted by modelers as a standard. Part of the reason was the equipment, as mentioned, but I believe it was originally how much of the older track was made. It’s a holdover from the old trainset equipment.

This is seen in HO, and I believe it also holds true in N. The long time N scalers can fill us in.
You’re right, the larger codes are not in scale or realistic. (Is there a code 100 in N?) They may help in keeping the run of the mill rolling stock and locos railed.
 

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Discussion Starter #3 (Edited)
To accommodate older equipment which may have deeply flanged (“pizza cutter”) wheels.
The larger codes have been around for a long time and have been accepted by modelers as a standard. Part of the reason was the equipment, as mentioned, but I believe it was originally how much of the older track was made. It’s a holdover from the old trainset equipment.

This is seen in HO, and I believe it also holds true in N. The long time N scalers can fill us in.
You’re right, the larger codes are not in scale or realistic. (Is there a code 100 in N?) They may help in keeping the run of the mill rolling stock and locos railed.
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Thanks, you reminded me of the reason.
But I would say, to accommodate older cars that have out of scale "pizza cutter" type wheels. Atlas uses code 83 and 100 for HO scale. Code 83 in HO is only a 6.89" high proto rail which is reasonable. But code 80 in N scale is a 12.8" proto rail height which I think is TOO LARGE to be realistic. Realism and scale accuracy are very important in my book. That's the whole point of a scale model correct?
 

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In N and HO. Not so much in O.
 

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In HO, there are many examples of models that are not true to scale compared with the prototype. I’m sure N has them too.

The one loco that comes to mind is the GG1. The early Penn Line model looked fine but is not scale length. I’m not sure 72 ft. passenger cars were prototypical either, but their compressed size looks better on small layouts with tight curves.
The Tyco GG1 was a cartoon of the original, but Tyco collectors love them.

In many cases the manufacturers are representing the idea of the prototype, rather than a scale model of it. As MichaelE points out, this is commonly seen in O scale.
At the end of the day, these are toys we’re talking about.
 

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Too high rail

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Thanks, you reminded me of the reason.
But I would say, to accommodate older cars that have out of scale "pizza cutter" type wheels. Atlas uses code 83 and 100 for HO scale. Code 83 in HO is only a 6.89" high proto rail which is reasonable. But code 80 in N scale is a 12.8" proto rail height which I think is TOO LARGE to be realistic. Realism and scale accuracy are very important in my book. That's the whole point of a scale model correct?
tbarber1027;

You are correct that code 80 rail in N-scale would be over a foot high if scaled up to real life, full size. You are also right that no prototype railroad, at least that I know of, ever used rail that big. In the early days of N-scale, manufacturers were thinking that these new "tiny" trains would not stay on the track unless oversized wheel flanges were riding along the inside of oversized rail. Time and N-scale modelers, proved this idea wrong. Gradually giant rail and "pizza cutter" wheel flanges gave way to more realistic sizes. The local San Diego, N-scale club uses hand laid code 40 rail.
However Model Railroading is a hobby, not a legal code or religion. Individual modelers can, and should be able to, "do their own thing", including using whatever track they want. Many people are quite happy with Atlas code 80 sectional track, or a roadbed track like Kato's Unitrack or Bachmann's EZ-Track. They aren't anything like as realistic-looking as the Micro Engineering code 55 flex track that I use for all the visible track on my own N-scale layout, but if you were to look at my hidden staging yard, you would find Atlas code 80 flex track. It works fine, I had a lot on hand, and it's hidden, so appearance doesn't matter.
All model railroads don't have to be as scale accurate as possible. The whole point of a model railroad is to have fun. In your case that may include keeping things as accurately to scale as you can, but everybody doesn't share your viewpoint and the only "rule" in this hobby is, "Your railroad, your rules."

Traction Fan :smilie_daumenpos:
 

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And to further complicate matters, there are at least 3 different "N scales". US, Europe, and some Japanese (Kato) is 1:160. But "British N scale" (like Oxford Diecast vehicles) is 1:148; and other Japanese (Tomytec/Tomix) is 1:150. :confused:
 

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And to further complicate matters, there are at least 3 different "N scales". US, Europe, and some Japanese (Kato) is 1:160. But "British N scale" (like Oxford Diecast vehicles) is 1:148; and other Japanese (Tomytec/Tomix) is 1:150. <img src="http://www.modeltrainforum.com/images/smilies/confused.gif" border="0" alt="" title="Confused" class="inlineimg" />
Like Johnny Carson used to say: “I did not know that!”
 

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Thanks, you reminded me of the reason.
But I would say, to accommodate older cars that have out of scale "pizza cutter" type wheels. Atlas uses code 83 and 100 for HO scale. Code 83 in HO is only a 6.89" high proto rail which is reasonable. But code 80 in N scale is a 12.8" proto rail height which I think is TOO LARGE to be realistic. Realism and scale accuracy are very important in my book. That's the whole point of a scale model correct?
It's important to YOU, but not to everyone. Especially in a niche hobby like this, it's important to accommodate as many tastes and desires as possible. The current state of the hobby allows you to follow your tastes, but others to follow theirs as well.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
In HO, there are many examples of models that are not true to scale compared with the prototype. I’m sure N has them too.

The one loco that comes to mind is the GG1. The early Penn Line model looked fine but is not scale length. I’m not sure 72 ft. passenger cars were prototypical either, but their compressed size looks better on small layouts with tight curves.
The Tyco GG1 was a cartoon of the original, but Tyco collectors love them.

In many cases the manufacturers are representing the idea of the prototype, rather than a scale model of it. As MichaelE points out, this is commonly seen in O scale.
At the end of the day, these are toys we’re talking about.
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At the end of the day, and all day long, I consider these to be scale models of railroads (with the whole diorama) not toys.
 

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Discussion Starter #12
"Model Railroading is a hobby, not a legal code or religion."

tbarber1027;

You are correct that code 80 rail in N-scale would be over a foot high if scaled up to real life, full size. You are also right that no prototype railroad, at least that I know of, ever used rail that big. In the early days of N-scale, manufacturers were thinking that these new "tiny" trains would not stay on the track unless oversized wheel flanges were riding along the inside of oversized rail. Time and N-scale modelers, proved this idea wrong. Gradually giant rail and "pizza cutter" wheel flanges gave way to more realistic sizes. The local San Diego, N-scale club uses hand laid code 40 rail.
However Model Railroading is a hobby, not a legal code or religion. Individual modelers can, and should be able to, "do their own thing", including using whatever track they want. Many people are quite happy with Atlas code 80 sectional track, or a roadbed track like Kato's Unitrack or Bachmann's EZ-Track. They aren't anything like as realistic-looking as the Micro Engineering code 55 flex track that I use for all the visible track on my own N-scale layout, but if you were to look at my hidden staging yard, you would find Atlas code 80 flex track. It works fine, I had a lot on hand, and it's hidden, so appearance doesn't matter.
All model railroads don't have to be as scale accurate as possible. The whole point of a model railroad is to have fun. In your case that may include keeping things as accurately to scale as you can, but everybody doesn't share your viewpoint and the only "rule" in this hobby is, "Your railroad, your rules."
Traction Fan :smilie_daumenpos:
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"Model Railroading is a hobby, not a legal code or religion."
Thanks for the reminder! :)
I do seem to enjoy splitting hairs sometimes though... :)
 

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Discussion Starter #13
tbarber1027;

You are correct that code 80 rail in N-scale would be over a foot high if scaled up to real life, full size. You are also right that no prototype railroad, at least that I know of, ever used rail that big. In the early days of N-scale, manufacturers were thinking that these new "tiny" trains would not stay on the track unless oversized wheel flanges were riding along the inside of oversized rail. Time and N-scale modelers, proved this idea wrong. Gradually giant rail and "pizza cutter" wheel flanges gave way to more realistic sizes. The local San Diego, N-scale club uses hand laid code 40 rail.
However Model Railroading is a hobby, not a legal code or religion. Individual modelers can, and should be able to, "do their own thing", including using whatever track they want. Many people are quite happy with Atlas code 80 sectional track, or a roadbed track like Kato's Unitrack or Bachmann's EZ-Track. They aren't anything like as realistic-looking as the Micro Engineering code 55 flex track that I use for all the visible track on my own N-scale layout, but if you were to look at my hidden staging yard, you would find Atlas code 80 flex track. It works fine, I had a lot on hand, and it's hidden, so appearance doesn't matter.
All model railroads don't have to be as scale accurate as possible. The whole point of a model railroad is to have fun. In your case that may include keeping things as accurately to scale as you can, but everybody doesn't share your viewpoint and the only "rule" in this hobby is, "Your railroad, your rules."

Traction Fan :smilie_daumenpos:
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Thanks for the detailed explanation of "pizza cutter" wheels and out-of-scale track. Now I will be a better buyer of track, engines & rolling stock. What is "fun" for me is to create a working model railroad in N-scale that is as accurate as possible. This adds to the fascination and impressiveness, from my perspective. The more I learn about this (new) hobby, the more I am impressed. :)
 

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At the end of the day, and all day long, I consider these to be scale models of railroads (with the whole diorama) not toys.

unfortunately your 'consideration' is not reflected in the models, except in a rather general way , however more 'detail' is available in 'rivet counter' varieties ..
 

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Discussion Starter #15
And to further complicate matters, there are at least 3 different "N scales". US, Europe, and some Japanese (Kato) is 1:160. But "British N scale" (like Oxford Diecast vehicles) is 1:148; and other Japanese (Tomytec/Tomix) is 1:150. :confused:
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Let's see if I can stir up the pot a little here. :)
"'British N scale'"
The Brits seem to frequently do odd-ball things, like driving on the wrong side of the road.... LOL... :laugh:
 

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Why just pick on the Brits? The Japanese also drive on the left side of the road.....

BTW, it's not the "wrong" side to them.....
 

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Discussion Starter #17
Why just pick on the Brits? The Japanese also drive on the left side of the road.....

BTW, it's not the "wrong" side to them.....
Yes, but it is the "wrong" to the Rest Of the World (ROW).
I think the only other country is Australia.
 

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Well, 216,000,000 people drive on the left side of the road then....you go tell them they are "wrong".....;)

That's like saying "I model N scale.....everybody else is wrong"......
 

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Discussion Starter #19
Well, 216,000,000 people drive on the left side of the road then....you go tell them they are "wrong".....;)

That's like saying "I model N scale.....everybody else is wrong"......
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They are not "wrong" they are just different than the ROW. :)
 
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