Model Train Forum banner

1 - 10 of 10 Posts

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
4,021 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
Before I start laying track, I'm reminded that through the 1960's, the town I grew up in still had 65/70 lb rail on some spurs and sidings, and only slightly more robust on industrial & warehouse tracks.
In HO scale this translates down to code 70, and even code 55 track.

Although I don't consider myself a 'rivet counter', and I don't strive for perfection in minutiae, I'd like to replicate this on my layout.
However, code 70 and 55 turnouts are nowhere to be found, and I'm not fond of the idea of making them.
Does anyone think it'd be glaringly noticeable if I use code 83 turnouts in the mix?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,105 Posts
Does anyone think it'd be glaringly noticeable if I use code 83 turnouts in the mix?
PLEASE REMEMBER... When you are building your layout, the only person you have to please is YOURSELF.

If somebody notices and makes a remark is it going to bother you?
I sure hope not. There is always a chance that someone will come along and try to show off his knowledge by squeaking about what code track you used.

Who gives a good loud fart? If your are happy that is all that really matters.

Go for it my friend.
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
4,021 Posts
Discussion Starter #3
Thanks, but that wasn't the spirit of my query.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
30 Posts
Well, I think it would be fine.

I would probably be a bad example though. I moved to code 100 turnouts years ago. I'm using code 83 track. I shim the track up with strips of paper cut from the ends of business cards until it is level with the turnout and then solder the two together.

I just got sick of my trains derailing while running over code 83 turnouts. Even though I used to file down the points of new switches (turnouts) to smooth them out - there always seemed to be a chance of derailing. (I realize it's probably a function of my poor track laying)

But to answer your question, "Nope. nobody's ever mentioned it."
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
4,167 Posts
No it shouldn't be all that obvious

Before I start laying track, I'm reminded that through the 1960's, the town I grew up in still had 65/70 lb rail on some spurs and sidings, and only slightly more robust on industrial & warehouse tracks.
In HO scale this translates down to code 70, and even code 55 track.

Although I don't consider myself a 'rivet counter', and I don't strive for perfection in minutiae, I'd like to replicate this on my layout.
However, code 70 and 55 turnouts are nowhere to be found, and I'm not fond of the idea of making them.
Does anyone think it'd be glaringly noticeable if I use code 83 turnouts in the mix?
Latestarter;

If you have the railtops even, which of course you have to operationally, and the track is painted and ballasted, I doubt anyone would even notice the different rail sizes. Have you checked on Micro Engineering turnouts? I don't know what rail codes they offer in HO-scale, but I use their code 55 N-scale turnouts and they are both very reliable, and the most realistic-looking turnouts I have ever seen.
Making your own turnouts isn't anything like as hard as most people think. It is more time consuming, and cheaper, than buying turnouts. Your choice.

regards;

Traction Fan :smilie_daumenpos:
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,180 Posts
I can see a compromise where all the track and turnouts are code 83. but the spurs from the last in line turnout could be 70 or 55. I just think that using code 83 for all the main lines and turnouts would make for a smoother trouble free running yet having those tail end spurs of lesser code would give you the realism your after. On a side note, I never though about making my own turnouts until I saw a couple of U-tube videos. Now I really enjoy making them! First 3-4 were marginally functionable, but practice improves the product and I'll never go back until I'm just unable to physical. If you want to try if, skip the expensive metal guides, their not needed!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,316 Posts
Micro Engineering, Peco, and Shinohara all make code 70 turnouts, including several in narrow gauge and dual gauge. There should be no trouble finding a selection to choose from. On the other hand, I don't think I've run across any HO-scale turnouts in code 55, so if you need them you may have to hand-lay. In my case, I was planning on using code 70 turnouts and any sidings using code 55 track would be simple runs of flex track.

From my own reading, code 70 was appropriate for the turn of the century with some code 55 sidings left over from the 1800's. I'm really surprised you found something that small as late as the 60's, but maybe they just never had any real heavy cars to worry about. However as others have mentioned you could run 83/70 just as easily and your track laying won't have to be quite as precise. I think the decision here would depend more on whether you are planning to run older equipment with cookie-cutter wheels, and even then you may be ok. My test track is code 70 and I've been running a 1970's Tyco 0-4-0 without any trouble (I even converted it to DCC). Note though that all of my turnouts are hand-laid and don't rely on the flanges riding across filler solder anywhere.

So if you plan to have extensive sidings of the smaller code track then you should probably run the mainline as code 83 and sidings as code 70 -- then you'll be able to find turnouts to fit your needs. If your sidings are fairly simple then you should be able to run 70/55 without any trouble. As for trouble-free operations, well my test loop contains the first turnouts I ever built and I can still run a loco and a few cars in reverse at half speed without any derailments. I also like how it stands out when compared to other layouts, anyone coming from some old Atlas code-100 track will easily spot the difference.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,440 Posts
If you use code 70 and 55 track and ONLY the turnouts are 83, that will look funky having larger rail for all the turnouts. Especially on yards, side tracks and spurs. Code 70 to 83 may not be that much of a difference visually, but code 55 to 83 is extreme...

If you upgrade the main track rails to 83 in order to use Code 83 turnouts, it'll be oversize for your prototype but at least look consistent.

If you really want to use the appropriately sized code 70 and 55 rail, you'll need to actually find some code 70 (at least) turnouts, and/or learn to handlay/scratchbuild turnouts. (Having larger code 70 rail in turnouts in the middle of code 55 spur trackage will again be a bit out of place.)
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,440 Posts
From my own reading, code 70 was appropriate for the turn of the century with some code 55 sidings left over from the 1800's. I'm really surprised you found something that small as late as the 60's, but maybe they just never had any real heavy cars to worry about.
Not at all, that's pretty common on older industrial and spur track that might not need major upgrading since it's all low-speed restricted track.

I'm modelling a regional railway in northern Ontario, and managed to get a scanned copy of a 1990s era track chart and the north end (fairly lightly trafficed with the majority of tonnage getting handed off to interchanges with CP and CN about 2/3 of the way up) still shows as 85 lb rail originally laid when the line was constructed in *1912*. That's on the main track. In the 1990s. South of the last interchange with CN it's all upgraded to 100 lb/yd rail, with some 115 lb/yd sections on the southernmost part being the heaviest rail other than the ~130 lb rail in the diamond crossings with the CN and CP mains which are busy transcontinental routes.

That equates to sections of Code 55 for my *main track* on the nothernmost part of the layout in HO Scale, and Code 70 up to the CN interchange. Code 83 will be used on the CN and CP main lines but for none of the Algoma Central rails other than the diamonds.

A nearby CN subdivision had similarly light rail from its original construction, plus lots of deferred maintenance since there was little on-line traffic and was just a few years short of abandonment and removal. Due to the conditions of the line, nothing heavier than a 70-ton freight car or SW1200RS locomotive was permitted. Any westbound freight traffic basically bridged over the Algoma Central even though this CN line technically did connect to the west...
 
1 - 10 of 10 Posts
Top