On30 Newbie

Discussion in 'On30 Forum' started by MT Hopper, Sep 18, 2007.

  1. MT Hopper

    MT Hopper MT Hopper

    Being a newbie to On30, and to therefore try to plan a layout, I would like to know if folks use On3 gauge or O standard gauge clearances when laying out their track plans? I am running three Grandt Line Porter 0-4-0 's a B-man Forney, and a B-man Shay so far. I would like to run a B-man 2-8-0 and 2-6-0 also, so clearances are of great interest.

    Cheers from the heart of the continent

  2. 60103

    60103 Pooh Bah

    Will: I think On3 clearances should be big enough for On30. O standard would give you an exaggerated narrow gauge look that you might or might not like. Are you looking at NMRA charts? (I don't have mine handy)
    Your problem areas are likely to be passenger cars (inside curves) and the pilots or cowcatchers on the steamers (outside of curves).

    Repy posted from Ile des Chenes, on the left bank of the Seine.
  3. Jim Krause

    Jim Krause Active Member

    If I remember correctly (which doesn't always happen) the Bachmann passenger cars are scaled from Colorado narrow gauge equipment with On30 trucks. Can't remember where I read that; however. The car body is 7 1/2' X 34' when measured. Some research might be in order as to the width of 30 inch narrow gauge equipment.
    To answer your question, my opinion is go with 3 foot narrow gauge clearances.
  4. nkp174

    nkp174 Active Member

    That is correct. The Bachmann Coaches are shortened Jackson & Sharpp 36" gauge coaches...the exact same as much of the D&RGW roster...except shorter.

    The Bachmann On30 mogul is a dead ringer for the C&S Brooks moguls which were 36" gauge. It is an extremely popular engine to regauge for this reason.

    So...On3 clearances should be just fine...although you can have sharper curves.
  5. MT Hopper

    MT Hopper MT Hopper

    Thank you all for your help. I'll go with using the NMRA On3 a.k.a. On36" gauge clearances.

    Cheers from the Heart of the Continent

  6. fsm1000

    fsm1000 Member

    I found that for an 8 foot wide body and 40 foot length I need to make a 3 inch wide clearance. Let me explain. I measure from the center of the rails to the outside 1.5 inches each way. This allows for the overhang of a long and wide car.
    I do this on my tight curves down to 15 inch radius as I measure it from the inside rail.

    Using this I never have problems with clearances for tunnels or buildings etc.
    Of course if the radius is not as tight then you will have tons of room using the method I use.

    I hope that helps.
  7. MT Hopper

    MT Hopper MT Hopper

    Thanks fsm1000. Being new to the internet and to On30 I had a Homer Simpson "Doh!" moment and then went to the NMRA web site. Their standards appear to coincide with your practices.

    Cheers from the Heart of the Continent
  8. fsm1000

    fsm1000 Member

    Will lol don't compare me to nmra. I make my own guages etc and while I like what they say I tend to use my own ideas rather a lot. For instance I use 12 and 15 inch radius for O scale ;) Go figure eh? lol
    Also I measure from the inside rail and not the middle when I measure my radius. I do this for personal convenience and that is not nmra practice either.
    So it is an either or as in either my way or nmra way lol.
    Anyhow if you are new then follow nmra, you can't go to far wrong that way anyhow. :)
  9. sumpter250

    sumpter250 multiscale modelbuilder

    In the late fifties, very early sixties, there was a magazine called "Model Trains". They had a mascot, a drawing of a monkey, which they used to highlight certain topics, or special interest items. They had a contest to name the "mascot", and the winner was "M T Hopper", as in Model Trains Hopper, because the mascot hopped around the magazine, and as in empty hopper, because it was after all, about model trains.
    Will, it just brought back some very old memories. :thumb:
  10. sluggs

    sluggs New Member

    Hello all, my name is sluggs, I am back in to model railroading after a dozen or so years and I,m sure some of you can help me with some questions. Thanks for letting me join.
  11. sluggs

    sluggs New Member

    Most of the "stuff" I have been storing for years is On3, I have ordered a Bachmann 2-6-0 and was thinking of regauging to On3, is there a kit available? Trying to regauge grandt porters and a work goose might be tough..... BTW I am free lancing so (almost) anything goes.
  12. MT Hopper

    MT Hopper MT Hopper

    Sluggs Regauging

    Sluggs please excuse me but i'm uncertain as to whether you are trying to get all your equipment to run on On3 (36" gauge) OR are you trying to set it up for On30 (30" gauge) ???

    Cheers from the Heart of the Continent
  13. sluggs

    sluggs New Member

    At the time that I wrote the message I was uncertain as to what my options were as far as On30 vs On3. Last night I found the article in the Nov/Dec 1998 issue of the NG&SL Gazette written by BoB Brown. With this new info I have decided to go with On3, mainly because 90% of my kits are On3. I hope I can stay in the forum becaus I'm sure the info that will be passed among us will help me in my modeling.
    Thanks, Sluggs
  14. sumpter250

    sumpter250 multiscale modelbuilder

    Hi Sluggs, welcome to the gauge!
    Technically, the On30 forum is a subforum of Narrow Gauge Model Railroading. You may find there is more of On3 discussed in the main forum, than here in the more specialized (On30) forum. If you want to keep your posts here, that's fine, but, if you want, I can move them to the Narrow Gauge Model Railroading forum, or you can simply open a new thread there.
    I believe there is a kit, to convert the Bachmann 2-6-0 from 30" to 36" gauge, but I can't remember who makes it.
  15. nkp174

    nkp174 Active Member

    Sluggs....I might be able to help :wave:

    I've performed this conversion before. As you can see...the Bachman mogul looks quite nice pulling On3 C&S freight cars. Grandt Line makes (or at least used to make) the conversion parts. The parts were: replacement axles and frame overlays.

    Additionally...I learned that the pony truck axle was changed by bachman after the Grandt conversion kit...and this replacement was not compatible with my engines. I found that I could just pull the wheels out far enough to overcome this. I also found that I had to trim a couple places on the frame overlays for them to fit. Lastly...the cylinder block casting isn't wide enough for On3...so I fixed it by cutting the cylinders off and gluing styrene shims in place to widen it. Adding appropriate tender trucks (I'd recommend purchasing Grandt's trucks over Precision Scale's...I've used both) will bring the tender up to the appropriate level (with On30 trucks...it is 1 scale foot too low). The last step in the conversion isn't necessary...but helpful...and that is to raise the draw bar...it is borderline too low for the tender.

    The only problem I have left to deal with is getting the drivers quartered...I've found this difficult to do by eye...so I'm either going to build a jig or get a NWSL quarting tool.

    Attached Files:

  16. sluggs

    sluggs New Member

    Thanks for the info. Wheel quartering is a large pain, and if you screw up by a few thousands, it will never run smoothly. Bob Brown simply pulled the wheels out a scale 3 inches on both sides and used epoxy to fill the spaces in the wheels. I will give this some serious thought before I begin the conversion, quartering each driver pair exactly is tough using the NWSL jig and in the past have had good and bad results. My favorite RR is the Sierra, but when I get involved in prototype modeling I tend to get too analytical (anal) and end up frustrated. That's why I'm going freelance this time. My Harley will be prototype! Thanks for the help, I will stay in touch.

  17. sluggs

    sluggs New Member

    I will start a new thread in the narrow gauge forum, but drop by here from time to time and pick up info...... there's nothing like someone else doing a project and when I read about it my creative juices begin to flow. That is why these forums are so beneficial to all. Thanks.

  18. sumpter250

    sumpter250 multiscale modelbuilder

    I'm good with that. It's nice to see a little more activity around here, I know I'll be interested in seeing what you've got going on.
  19. sluggs

    sluggs New Member

    I'm good with that. It's nice to see a little more activity around here, I know I'll be interested in seeing what you've got going on.

    If any of the On30 guys want to stray to On3 for a project, I took thr tip on making the On30 B-mann mogul into On3, checked out Grandt Line and here's some info
    7014 Frame Spacer
    7015 Axle Kit for On3

    Thanks again

  20. sumpter250

    sumpter250 multiscale modelbuilder

    What I have going on, currently, is helping to build a 1/35th scale military diorama for GCLaser, so we can display our "ammo crates" at the ihobby show in Rosemont, Il.. Onec that show is over, I might be able to spend a little time with narrow gauge.

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