Discussion in 'HO Scale Model Trains' started by jhh72, Sep 26, 2007.

  1. jhh72

    jhh72 New Member

    Hi everyone,,I have recently purchased a lot of old original Rivarossi steam locos (Bigboys,challengers,Cab Forwards,Heislers,Mikados etc etc) some with the red box others are AHM and im curious will these old girls run on code 83 as the flanges are bigger than the new Rivarossi and Spectrum Bachmann of today?Or play it safe and stick with 100? Also any comments comparing Peco,Atlas and Shinohara flexi track and turnouts,,? In the past i always used Peco 100 but the new Peco 83 looks very tidy as well as the shinohara 83??I do not know anything about Atlas.very happy to go 83 for all the reasons providing the locos with bigger flanges will run on it?

    Cheers Everyone
  2. MasonJar

    MasonJar It's not rocket surgery

    I can't answer your question about the flanges, but I'll tackle the other question...

    At the local modular club, most people use Peco Code 100 turnouts and Atlas Code 100 flex track. This has been a very reliable combination. With the introduction of the "North American" style Peco Code 83 turnouts, some people have moved to that. Again, not problems.

    I have used Walthers/Shinohara Code 83 turnouts with Atlas Code 83 flex with no problems. The addition of a spring or ground throw is required, as the W/S turnouts do not have the positive action of the Pecos. But their appearance is superior to the (European style) Pecos in my opinion. Now that Peco has the NA-style out in Code 83, I may try one or two of those to compare.

    Hope that helps.

  3. scottcn

    scottcn Member

    I'm using the North American-style Peco code 83 track and have had no problems with it and it looks a lot better than my former track (code 100 Atlas in brass and steel - that track was 15+ years old and needed to go).

    Just as a caution: I ordered some Peco turnouts and rail joiners and Atlas flex track (all code 83) from Tony's Trains, I think, and the invoice said that the Peco rail joiners would not work with the Atlas flex track. Sure enough, the Atlas track is slightly wider at the base of the rail so the Peco rail joiners can't slide on. Can be dealt with, but it's an annoyance, to be sure.

    I have no idea about the flanges on the older locos you just bought. Sorry I can't help there.
  4. MasonJar

    MasonJar It's not rocket surgery

    For the record, the Atlas Code 100 joiners join the Atlas Code 83 flex track to the Walthers/Shinohara Code 83 turnouts quite nicely...! ;) :D

  5. Nomad

    Nomad Active Member

    I can't help with the flanges either, but stay away from Atlas turnouts since you running steam. They are not too steamer frendly, imo.

  6. nkp174

    nkp174 Active Member

    As far as Atlas turnouts...the snap-switches are to be avoided but the custom like work great...I speak from many years experience with both code 100 and code 83. I've never had a derailment from custom line #4 even with 4-8-4s speeding through. On the other hand...operator error has caused trouble...once sending a PA-1 and a full passenger train into the a catastrophic crash...I didn't check that a switch near the edge of the layout for future expansion was thrown towards the edge of the layout. I agree with Loren on the snap switches...they are are junk (imo) and I don't understand why they make them.

    As far as rail sizes...the Code 100 work with everything. I've found that my old AHM/Rivarossi hudson doesn't like Atlas's code 83 frogs...the frogs are too doesn't derail, but it does hop. My old Bachman John Bull is the same way.

    I would suggest testing one of each turnout. for rail sizes...

    Code 100 is fine for the Pennsy...but oversized for everyone else.
    Code 83 is much better...fine for modern mainlines.
    Code 70 is perfect for steam era mainlines. I plan to use this exclusively in the future. (it is also fine with the my old rivarossi hudson if I hand lay or if the frogs are real frogs...not those bottom filled in things like atlas uses) Shinohara has a code 70 line and Micro Engineering makes some beautiful code 70, 83, & 100 stuff.

    Shinohara and Peco seem to usually be the turnouts of choice...they look much better than the atlas...although the atlas custom line can be had for around $8...which is why I've always preferred them.

    As previously stated...code 100 and 83 rail joiners are essentially the same.

    EDIT: The red box stuff should be compatible with commercial code 70, 83, & 100 was their main marketing campaign of the mid 90' red box berkshire runs just fine on my atlas code 83 track. My old AHM hudson has flanges which are around 0.064" tall...which would work on track as small as code 70 if it was handlaid with glue (as opposed to spikes)...the turnouts are always the issue with flanges...but I doubt that commercial C70 flex track would work at all with AHM stuff.
  7. pgandw

    pgandw Active Member

    Honestly, those old Rivarossi may or may not work on code 83. Why not buy a couple of pieces and test and let the rest of know the result?

    enquiring minds want to know...
  8. jhh72

    jhh72 New Member

    Hello and thanks to all for your replies..most helpfull..
    The best thing to be sure is for me to go buy some new Peco 83 flexi and one left and right Peco 83 large turnout and set up a test run crossover for the BigBoy and all other locos and rollingstock i have..that way ill be sure there will be no issues..small outlay to save a big headache! I must say the new Peco 83 looks the go...if all ok i would imagine my smaller locos with old type bigger flanges should run thru smaller turnouts..see what happens:thumb:
  9. diesel

    diesel Member

    Hey I wasn't gonna write this because I thought it was 'just us' persay in our experience with our Peco code 83 switches. BUT we have 3 staging yards. One is all Peco switches and they can be at times a little fussy. Although I must look closer at these some time soon and take a good look at the points.

    In any case thanks for the Steam info on those Atlas switches there Grewsome, we have a guy who runs mostly brass steam.


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