is it too steep, pics of layout?

Discussion in 'HO Scale Model Trains' started by deablo, Jun 8, 2002.

  1. deablo

    deablo New Member

    go to my website below and go to the photo page and look at the "elevation". Is it too steep, it's about 3.5% grade and reaches a height of 2.oin. Is it too steep?


    Check out my website at
  2. sumpter250

    sumpter250 multiscale modelbuilder

    The grade is too steep when you can't get a train up it. If you go DCC, you can run a helper to get the train up the grade.
  3. deablo

    deablo New Member

    How steep should it be?

  4. sumpter250

    sumpter250 multiscale modelbuilder

    In spite of what you may hear, the steepness of a grade on a model layout is whatever you"re comfortable with.
    If you want the rivet counter's view,,,,,. The Uintah ran its 2-6-6-2Ts on a 7.5% grade( that's 7'-6" rise, every 100'), and when the engine headed donwgrade, the waterglass would show empty, indicating that the crownsheet was dry!!!! They added a second steam dome, and lowered the crown sheet to prevent a disaster.
    Oh, by the way, there was an 80 degree ( about a 11"-12" radius, in HO) curve in that 7.5%grade which was later reduced to 66 degrees (about 15"). This was 3" gauge railroading, and extreme at that.
    The normal accepted grade is about 2%, but again, it's what you are comfortable with. You can run helpers, or double the hill( this is where half the train is brought up, and the loco goes back down and brings the other half up).
  5. Vic

    Vic Active Member

    Hi Dave, Checked the site very nice!!! And the layout looks great! Really like your benchwork...looks like a cabinetmaker built it!

    Like Pete says the grade is best when its whatever you can handle. Its all dependent on what kind of "pulling power" you've got and the weight of the cars. Some of the trackwork books say that 3% is about max for mainline trackage but I wouldn't think that you are going to have any problems with what you have already considering how smoothly you've transitioned the grade.
  6. alkcnw

    alkcnw Member

    Hey Dave, I'm know expert but it looks fine to me!!:eek:
  7. Bill Stone

    Bill Stone Member


    Speaking of keeping the crown sheet wet.....

    Some roads with excessive grades (including many logging roads) always ran their locos with the cabs down hill --- in other words they ran forward up hill, and reverse down hill --- to make sure they kept the crown sheets covered.

    Of course this worked out somewhat naturally, as most logging roads didn't have loco turning facilities at the logging camp end (usually up hill) anyway.

    Bill S

Share This Page