Height question

Discussion in 'HO Scale Model Trains' started by JDC916, Mar 7, 2007.

1. JDC916New Member

I know the maximum incline you would want to use in HO is 4%. I'm doing an inner and outer loop 4 x 8 layout and to plan for future expansion, I will put switches at all 4 corners of the table to get to and from possible future tables. I would like the inner loop to pass under the outer loop at both far ends of the current 4 x 8. My question is, what is the minimum height the outer loop has to be in order to get that done and can I get to that height at the start of an 18r curve by the far corner of the table ?

Any thoughts ?
2. MasonJarIt's not rocket surgery

You need a minimum clearance of 3" in HO, according to the NMRA recommended parctices. In the real world, you will need to add the thickness of your track, roadbed, and subroadbed, bridge, etc. So say another 1/2" if you are using a bridge. Therefore:

3.5/x = 4/100

x= 350/4
x= 87.5

You will need a run of 87.5" to go up 3.5" using a 4% grade.

So the short answer is "no" unfortunately.

However, can you post a sketch of what you are trying to do so we can see if there is another solution. I think I understand your description, but a picture is always worth at least 1000 words...

Andrew
3. Dorkmaster FlekMember

One possibility would be to have one of the loops raised to the level you need all the way around, since you only have 4' x 8' to work with.
4. JDC916New Member

How do I post the RTS file I came up with ?
5. RioGrandeMember

I ended up using 3.5 inches so my double stacks would clear on one layout. I recommend 2.5% max grade too if you want to run trains of any length.
6. COMBATMember

I am just going to add more engines to pull the grade.

7. myltlpnyMember

I hear you. All my cars are weighted, so it really does take 3 locos to pull them.
8. MasonJarIt's not rocket surgery

To post an RTS drawing, you need to convert it to something like a jpg or gif. The RTS software may have this capability (I am not overly familiar with it) under "export" or "save as", or something like that.

Andrew
9. Santa Fe JackMember

Or simply get what you want to show on your computer screen, and snap a screen shot. (PrintScreen on a PC gets the whole screen Alt+PrintScreen gets just the current window). Open some bitmap editor like Paint, and paste the image in. You can crop it to eliminate all the surrounding junk. Save that as a jpg or bmp (jpg is smaller).

Does that help?
10. rsn48Member

A trick, if you can build your track work on thicker foam on the layout, is to have one track going up, while the other one goes down (hence the reason the build the track on foam so you can get the down grade) thus reducing the grade of the train going up.

I wouldn't worry about creating a 4 by 8 that you can add to latter. Most of us after a couple of years with a 4 by 8 are ready for something new. Better to enjoy what you are building now with the recognition that at some point in your future, you're going to change your layout - modular maybe?