Grades in G scale

Discussion in 'G / O / S Scale Model Trains' started by Bill_in_PDX, Jan 12, 2003.

  1. Bill_in_PDX

    Bill_in_PDX New Member

    Hello Everyone..

    I'm quite new to this. I'm just now starting the planning for a G scale railroad in my backyard. This is my first try at this hobby, although it had caught my interest for years.'s my first question. I'm planning to run the line around my pond, which is 12'x7'. In order to do this, I will have to climb a grade of approx. 2' 4". Up on side...a 90 degree turn...then back down. My question is is what are the grade steep is too steep. I do have room on each side to make it gradual...with tressels.

    Thanks ahead of time for all your help. I'm sure I will have lots more questions as I plan this.
  2. cidchase

    cidchase Active Member

    Hi Bill,
    If you stay 2' off the pond all around that only gives you about 22' of track to climb 2'4" for a 10% grade. :eek: :eek:
    I would try to limit the grade to 4-5%, so that means it's trestle time!!!! You can also excavate a 'cut' into the high side. Can you show pics?
    My suggestion would be to limit the rise to 1' for that distance. I saw a pretty cool layout in Memphis in which the track was all laid on top of a single course of decorative retaining wall concrete blocks, around the ponds and flower beds. It also included a long trestle over a low area. I love that big stuff, but not enough time and money!!!
    Best of luck!!! :D :D
  3. Gardenrrguy

    Gardenrrguy Member

    I must agree 10% is too steep. Try for 5% or less. Most of the decent engines out there will pull a respectible train up a 5% grade or steeper. The problem you will encounter is running things on the down-slope.
    I have had a 7% grade in my garden for some time. Problem was if something got loose it went runaway for quite a while.
    So if you have the advantage of getting the grade gradual from the start, do it.
  4. N Gauger

    N Gauger 1:20.3 Train Addict

    Yep - That's it - What they said - 5% is the max especially for longer trains. I have an Indoor layout & I had to redesign it for the grade.

    I also had to hacksaw grooves in the rails in the grades to act like "sand" to give the loco even more traction, both up & downhill...

    Welcome aboard!!!!!

    Do a search for N Gauger (the buton's above - right) and look for some pice I've already posted.

    ~~ Good Luck!!~~~ Post some pics of your work! ~~~
  5. Gardenrrguy

    Gardenrrguy Member

    Groved rails! Exellent idea.
    The only real reason I'm making my one steep grade more gradual is so my live steam loco dosen't get going out too fast down the hill.
    Puff... Puff...Puff..Puff.puuuuuuuuffffff.SMACK.
    Yes that is getting kind of old, real quick.

    I better start that radio control throttle project.;)
  6. N Gauger

    N Gauger 1:20.3 Train Addict

    :) :) Thanks!! Necessity was the Mother of invention on that project. I was trying to figure out a way the trains could get more traction and I thought of sand. Then I thought of grooving the rails to simulate sand. :) Worked great - so I did both grades all the way around.
  7. Bill_in_PDX

    Bill_in_PDX New Member

    Thanks Everyone!!!

    Thanks everyone for your input. Based on a 5% grade, I would need 40' of space to go up 2'. Since I don't have that kind of space, I guess I will have to go underneath it.

    I posted a pic of my pond and waterfall so you all can see what I have in mind. I am planning on removing the waterfall and upper pond this spring in order to rebuild a couple of things. Ponding is kinda like railroading I believe...always wanting more and bigger is better. When I do take it down, I can put a tunnel in at that time. The tunnel will have to be a 90 degree curve and access will be a major issue is the design. Any ideas/suggestions would be greatly appreciated on this matter.

    Thanks again everyone...and I will post pics as my project progresses.


    Attached Files:

  8. CSX6638

    CSX6638 Member

    Building a trestle all the way around the pond area may solve your problem and you can include a small grade for a natural effect, maintaining track in a outdoor tunnel will be a problem unless you provide access to the track. Look in Garden RR mag. for some ideas. Hope this helps.
  9. Mike R

    Mike R Member

    Bill, you will get some good advice here. You might want to also join
    It was suggested to me for large-scale questions and feedback, and it's very good, too.
    regards / Mike

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