Discussion in 'HO Scale Model Trains' started by zachary, Apr 28, 2008.

1. ### zacharyMember

hello all i would like to know what type of curve radius i can get on a five foot wide layout and will it be large enough for large locos i know this has probaly been posted more than a fair share of times but i couldnt find anything useing the search thanks zachary flowe
2. ### stevechurch2222Member

around a 25" or 26" radius.
3. ### Santa Fe JackMember

Do the math! You've got 60" to play with, minus a couple of inches on each edge for clearance and safety, bring it down to maybe 54". That'd be the diameter. Halve it to get the radius: 27"
4. ### zacharyMember

thanks santa fe jack will big steam and large desiels run on 27 inch radius relably
5. ### eightyeightfan1Now I'm AMP'd

A lot of the large steam(Big Boys, Challengers, Alleghenys do require at least a 24" radius, but can run on a 22'. 27" they will not only run good, but look pretty good also.
Should have no problem with the big modern diesels.
6. ### wjstixMember

A quick way to estimate what will fit is to figure you want around 2" between the edge of the table and the track, so take the width of the benchwork/train table, subtract 4" (2" on each side of the table). That gives you the diameter of the circle of track, divide in two for the radius.

So 5 ft. wide = 60" wide; 60-4=56". Divide by 2 = 28" radius curve.

Now you probably don't want the track too close to the edge, and you might want to allow another inch or so for scenery so you might want to go an inch or two tighter, but 28" radius would be the absolute largest you could fit in. 26"-28" radius should work for pretty much anything you'd want to run. Walthers passenger cars require 24" radius curves, even big steam (BLI 2-10-4) will go around 24" radius curves.
7. ### b28_82Member

My cab forward looks funny going around my sharpest curve of 26''ish but it'll do 'er.
8. ### TriplexActive Member

Just do some testing to make sure that your longest engines and cars won't sideswipe.
9. ### zacharyMember

thanks guys for your help on this i am comeing back to ho defitinely even if it is a small setup thanks zachary flowe
10. ### Russ BellinisActive Member

If you need to get too close to the edge of the benchwork for comfort in order to get a larger radius, just use a piece of flexible masonite about 2-3 inches tall around the edge of the layout to make a catch fence. You could do the same thing with a piece of clear plexiglass.
11. ### zacharyMember

russ thanks i am going to use a 26 inch radius that should do for what i am planning on im planning a engine repair shop with a loop aruound it so i can do some contiuse running thanks again zachary flowe
12. ### sgtcarlMember

May I make a suggestion? If you have a flat, narrow edge on your layout, try using some foam pipe insulation to keep equipment from going over the edge. (plus, it's softer to lean on, if you need to make a long reachsign1.)