KCD,

Welcome to the forum! I'm going to begin by telling you I know nothing about N scale; others will follow who actually know something, though. In the meantime, N gauge refers to the distance between the rails of your track: "gauge" is not an interchangeable term with "scale". N gauge is 9 mm between rails. N scale refers to the ratio in size between the real thing (1:1, or 1 inch= 1 inch) and your model: 1:148 to 1:160 are sizes that run on N gauge tracks. Once you know which one you have, you can do the calculations. If you have 1:148, then 1 inch on your engine equates to 148 inches on the real thing. In like manner, 1 inch of your track equates to 148 inches of real track. 700 feet = 700 x 12 inches: 8400 inches. 8400 divided by 148 = 56.76 inches of track at 1:148 scale. So, if you're running an engine that's made to 1:148 scale, your 700 feet of (real life) straight track = 56.76 inches of scale track. To get the right formula, though, we need to know what size (scale) train you are running on that 9mm (N gauge) track. Gauge is space between rails; scale is size of train based on how much you reduce (scale it down) from the original.

Question 2: restated: if 9mm represents 3 feet, what scale am I modeling? Okay, let's start with a request for others to proof my math. *L* If one foot = 304.8mm, then 3 feet = 914.4 mm. Divide that by your 9mm width and my math says you are modeling 1:101.6 scale. In other words, 1 inch on your layout represents 101.6 inches in real life.

I'd suggest waiting for a second person to look at my math and agree or burst out laughing, but that's what I get. Best of luck on your layout!