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Back in the 70's I had a large Super O layout from track that I had accumulated. I still have the track and maybe someday will create another Super O layout. IMO, folks have quite a bit invested in their current track systems that it would be difficult to switch even if it was possible or available.

Bill
 

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I always thought it was the best looking of the 3 rail systems. Never got into it due to the tight radius switches though have since found out some modify them for larger radiuses.
Had Lionel gone back to Super O instead of Fast track I would have been all over it.

Pete
 

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That's a big yes. Watch my videos and you will see a section of my main line has SuperO in it.

SuperO hasn't been made since the 60's had crappy switches and only came with 0-36 curves. With that said, in my opinion it was and still is the best looking track system out there. Next layout on the straight aways I plan on incorporating more SuperO
 

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The closest thing "in appearance" to Super-O in modern-day production is MTH ScaleTrax, which is what I used on my layout today. As a young boy, I was drawn to Super-O in the Lionel catalogs. But by the time I got my first toy train set (1966/67), Lionel's Super-O production was sparse to non-existent. And by 1968/69, it wasn't even catalog'd anymore. :(

David
 

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Discussion Starter #10
You have been here long enough you should show what you have done with it!

I have collected some of it but I will not pay outrageous prices for it.
Super O track is LESS expensive then Fastrack, Atlas, MTH and all the newer systems except for good old tubular (O and 027).

At one time it was quite expensive but has not been since the arrival of Ebay.

Mike Spanier
 

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I, too, fell in love with the look of Super O in the early '60s. It looked so much more realistic than tubular.

An interesting link on the history of Super 0 was posted earlier.
http://www.tcaetrain.org/articles/operating/supero/index.html

Lionel applied for a patent on March 26, 1951, but the patent was not granted until March 30, 1954. Super O was produced beginning in 1957. Doesn't that seem like an undue lapse of time (six years from the patent application to production)? If Lionel had moved more quickly and introduced Super O in, say, 1954 or 1955, might it have a greater chance of success? I wonder what was the cause of the delay.
 

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I agree, Super O does looks nice. Unfortunately, with its 036 radius curves, you won't be running any of the larger (scale) offerings.

Running smaller steam, diesel units and cars, Super O is fantastic.
 

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Discussion Starter #15
The folks who are into Super O have made wider radius': really any you want. Have a friend with a large Super O layout who expanding part of it to make 96" radius. Should anyone be interested I can provide a tutorial that lists the steps and tools involved. The finished product looks just like regular Super O.

Mike Spanier
 

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Sounds interesting, Mike.

Unfortunately, for me, I'm late to the Super O party, for I've already chosen track and switches for my layout. 30 years ago, without ebay and social media, acquiring Super O was more of a challenge to locate in large numbers. For that reason, I didn't give it strong consideration and went with readily-available GarGraves and Ross Custom switches.

In the book; Great Toy Train Layouts of America, by Tom McComas and James Tuohy, one of the featured layouts was by Ron Davis and Bill Taylor, in Cleveland, OH. Their layout was done entirely with Super O track and I always appreciated their efforts on a finely crafted layout.
 

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Discussion Starter #17
Several years ago Steve Garofalo recreated his version of the 1957 Lionel Super O Show Room layout. It was approximately 15' x 24'. If I could figure out how to post photos I could give you a glimpse. It was featured in Classic Toy Trains. He used 072 curves that were custom made. It was a beautiful layout. It was up for about 8 years.

Mike Spanier
 

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Discussion Starter #18
The Super O Patent Question Answered

I, too, fell in love with the look of Super O in the early '60s. It looked so much more realistic than tubular.

An interesting link on the history of Super 0 was posted earlier.
http://www.tcaetrain.org/articles/operating/supero/index.html

Lionel applied for a patent on March 26, 1951, but the patent was not granted until March 30, 1954. Super O was produced beginning in 1957. Doesn't that seem like an undue lapse of time (six years from the patent application to production)? If Lionel had moved more quickly and introduced Super O in, say, 1954 or 1955, might it have a greater chance of success? I wonder what was the cause of the delay.
Here is the answer to your question by a member of another group to which I belong:

"The patent for Super O as we know it was NOT made in 1951. That patent was for a design which never made it to production. The patent for Super O was applied for October 22, 1958, and granted or issued in January of 1963 - pat #3074647. Lionel often waited to file a patent until almost a full year after the product was introduced. There was good reason for this. First, by that time production design had been completed and the patent would show the most recent example. Second, a patent application must be filed within one year of the date on which your invention is first published, commercially used, sold, offered for sale, or disclosed to a group of people without restriction. So, to get the most time from the introduction of a product, Lionel waited almost a full year before applying for the patent. At that time, the duration of a utility patent was 17 years from the date the patent was issued. So, in January of 1980, the patent expired. A patent cannot be renewed. Today, a patent is valid for 20 years from the date of the application as long as fees are paid at certain intervals to keep the patent in force. The cost of a patent and the fees required at certain intervals is considerably more today than it was back then."

Mike Spanier
 

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Super O track is LESS expensive then Fastrack, Atlas, MTH and all the newer systems except for good old tubular (O and 027).

At one time it was quite expensive but has not been since the arrival of Ebay.

Mike Spanier
I'm paying about $7.80 for a 37" section of Gargraves flex track. Is Super O less than that?
 
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