HOn30 Trucks question

Discussion in 'Narrow Gauge Model Railroading' started by Jac's Lines, Feb 24, 2005.

  1. Jac's Lines

    Jac's Lines Member

    Hi everyone.

    I'm at the point where I'd like to start building some HOn30 rolling stock for my late 19th century mining layout. I've got a question about trucks though and am hoping that I can get some opinions.

    I know that the Grandt Line HOn30 archbar trucks with NWSL wheels are the hobby standard, but they also strike me as fairly expensive in comparison to standard gauge equipment -- $9 per pair (which, it turns out, is more than what I paid for the n-scale running mechanisms on either of my scratchbuilt locos). On the other hand, Walthers has Microtrains n scale archbar trucks (w/o couplers) for $3.40/pair and I would bet I could get an even better price if I shop around more. For those of you with experience, how much difference is there between an n scale truck and the Grandt Line offering? Since my layout is totally freelanced, I'm comfortable with a reasonable degree of inaccuracy, especially if it means that I don't go bankrupt trying to put together rolling stock. On the other hand, I don't want my cars to look totally stupid either.

    Yeah, I know, the obvious question is "why'd you pick HOn30 if you didn't want to pony up any cash". ;) Anyway, anything you guys can suggest -- or even better a comparison of an HOn30 truck with a n scale truck -- would really be helpful. Thanks!
  2. shaygetz

    shaygetz Active Member

    Use the N scale :thumb: :thumb: There's a prototype for just about everything, sooner or later you'll find those, too. I used an N scale streamliner truck for the 'boose and nobody's the wiser. I reeeeally gotta build another diorama.... :rolleyes:

    Attached Files:

  3. gcodori

    gcodori Member

    as someone who models in HOn30 (or trying to), I've run through the same questions on trucks.

    N scale trucks, while cheaper, will not have the right sized (diameter) wheels, and the spacing between the wheels are to small.

    N scale passenger trucks work just fine, but the archbar trucks are small. You can try using MDC or KD trucks with the NWSL wheels added in, or go with the grandt line products. You can get them cheaper at B&F Hobby (bnfhobby.com) for 6.29 each.

    You could also look into MT Allied full cushion or commonwealth BX trucks in n scale. Although they are not archbar, they are larger looking. And if you are freelancing, you can always say that your RR moved to a new truck standard. Remember it's your RR and your rules.

    The HOn30 home depot website has more details on trucks and other links to HOn30 ideas.

  4. DWP

    DWP Member

    Try http://www.bnfhoby.com/
    give them a call and ask for Al.
    the problem I had with using different trucks is the height of the
    car and the couplers.
    If you want to build some cars check out http://www.railway-recollections.com/
    He has some flat car kits that I use to scratch build on top of.
    HOn30 is not as bad as it used to be, except the Brass.
    there a several people selling resin kits out there.
  5. Glen Haasdyk

    Glen Haasdyk Active Member

    I just bought a set of MDC HOn3 trucks. The come as a kit with the wheels off the axles. It shouldn't be too hard to simply press the wheels in to HOn30 guage.
  6. nachoman

    nachoman Guest

    hey, Bob - that saddle tanker looks great! Any info on how that came together?

  7. shaygetz

    shaygetz Active Member

  8. Jac's Lines

    Jac's Lines Member

    Thanks everyone- this thread generated so many good ideas in a really short period of time (not only great answers to my question, but inspiring modelling from Shaygetz, a link to bnfhobby- can't believe I haven't run across that yet, etc.) You all have been really helpful and has given me a lot to think about. I'm going to ponder this a bit more, and will post some pictures once some rolling stock finally starts moving along the RQCRR. Thanks a lot! (and the Gauge rules!)
  9. gcodori

    gcodori Member

    Can anyone confirn that the MDC HOn30 trucks can be regauged? Are the axles cut to allow the wheels to be placed in only one gauge?

    Also, any source on the MDC parts, now that Horizon owns the distribution rights?

  10. Glen Haasdyk

    Glen Haasdyk Active Member

    I don't see a problem with re-guaging MDC HOn3 trucks to HOn30. The trucks come unassembled in the packages with the frame, wheels and axles. since you have to slide the wheels onto the axles anyway you probably can just slide them a little closer to create HOn30 guaged trucks
  11. gcodori

    gcodori Member

    when assembling the wheels on the axles, what is used to gauge them...are there any "stops" machined into the axles? Or do you just slip them on and use a gauge to check the gauge of the trucks (per instructions?)? I guess my previous post didn't make this question clear, sorry.

    If this is the case, I'll inform the HOn30 Yahoo group, as they have been debating the HOn30 truck issue for years (most use the grandt line with NWSL replacement sets).

  12. Glen Haasdyk

    Glen Haasdyk Active Member

    There are no stops that I can see. I haven't assembled the trucks yet,just bought them. The axle is just a short peice of rod.
    Oh yeah these are the trucks with the plastic wheels.
  13. JBBVry

    JBBVry Member

    well only thing about the round house trucks is they don't run worth a crap. i have 6 sets only one was worth anthing. maybe the new owners will make them better.
  14. gcodori

    gcodori Member

    Is this because they are plastic wheels? Is it difficult to get them in gauge? Do they have difficulty in rolling free (defects in axle housing)?

    What I was thinking of was machining out a jig which you would insert the axle (to the proper gauge, of course), press the first driver on. Then slide in a second jig which would properly space out the drivers to 9mm gauge. Then slide the second driver. Hard to put into words, unfortunately.

    I was wondering if using the axle "deburring" tool from micromark/NWSL to "round up" the axle housing would allow a free rolling truck. Lastly, would the truck work with replacement wheelsets (say, 33 inch wheels from atlas)? This would allow the proper sized trucks, using less expensive wheelsets instead of NWSL wheels. Lots of HOn30 users use the 33 inch atlas n scale wheelsets in their trucks to give the larger look to the wheels (33 inch works out to 17.8 in HO).

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