Interested in Z-Scale...few questions though.

Discussion in 'N / Z Scale Model Trains' started by MinnMonkey, Apr 11, 2005.

  1. MinnMonkey

    MinnMonkey Member

    I am interested in starting back into model railroading, however I have very limited space, so Z is very appealing to me.

    My biggest question is since I do not have a permenant place for a setup, is it possible to create a layout that is more than just a simple loop on a small table without fasting the tracks to the table? I would like to be able to setup and take apart the setup when ever I need the space, plus it gives me the flexibility to try new things.

    My second question is if anyone has any recommendations for a good startup kit. I do not want to invest a whole lot of money into this until I give it a try.
  2. MasonJar

    MasonJar It's not rocket surgery

    Sectional track with roadbed is available in both HO and N, but I am not sure what your options are in Z. Creating and re-creating a layout from tracklaying on up can be very time consuming.

    I would suggest that there are a number of ways to address using a small space besides simply going with a smaller scale:

    - A modular layout that can be set-up and taken down/stored when not in use.
    - The narrow gauges - the "rule-of-thumb" is that narrow gauge in one scale will fit in the space of the next smallest scale - e.g. HOn30 fits in space of N, or Nn30 fits in space of Z.
    - A different focus - rather than a loop/continuous run layout, you can try a switching puzzle, or a point-to-point, or an industrial switching layout.
    - A mini- or micro-layout. This type may be as small as a pizza box, or a briefcase. There are concessions to "prototypical-ness" like really tight curves or implausible scenes, but they can be fun too.

    Hope this helps with your layout. And welome to The Gauge! :)

  3. MinnMonkey

    MinnMonkey Member

    Thanks for the response!

    After doing some more research, I have decided to go with N-Scale (much more affordable). I went to a local hobby shop and looked around, and decided on puchasing the Kato K1 starter pack. I also bought an inexpensive locamotive.

    Everything works great, but an oval can be kind of boring. So I am thinking of buying some more track. I am reading alot about the minimum radius I can use..any pointers (I am not too concerned about asthetics at this point, so an over hang doesn't really bother me)? My workspace is current 25"x6' and I would like to use Katos 9 3/4" radius if possible until I get more space.
  4. Zman

    Zman Member

    7 1/2 inches is the absolute minimum N scale turn radius, but be aware that longer engines and cars will have difficulty negotiating such a tight turn, and they won't look at all prototypical.

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