HO or N...again with the question (sort of a long ramble)

Welp, I'm finally going to do it. In the past I have modeled HO, and have even completed a layout. But this was like 15 years ago.
So here is the deal. I have been allocated space by the powers that be (wife) and have an area of about 10'6" x 10'6". It would be around the walls and 2 feet deep. I can build one three walls and on one of the walls can even extend it another six feet for staging, but the maximum width of this would be 9 inches. My dilemma is the age old question of HO or N. If I build HO, it would be an industrial layout, lots of switching, small trains and nothing larger than a GP-60. If I build N, well...the space avialable would allow me the opportunity for some mainline modelling and include things like passenger service, etc... I would be modeling early to mid 90's either way. Than I have to consider costs. It would actually be cheaper in the long run to model HO, as I wouldn't need the amount of rollingstock and locomotives for the layout...if I do N, I would probably have to double the number so the layout wouldn't look like an abandoned line.
There are other things as well...I have some N equipment laying around (I bought my first KATO SD-70 a few months ago, Bombardier commuter cars, etc). But, just a few weeks ago I bought 3 Athearn Genesis 50' boxcars in HO on a whim. I am impressed by both the quality and detail on both scales. When I brought home the blue foam I bought today (see other thread), I placed some HO scale track and set the cars on it to see how it would look. I did the same in N to see if I would be inspired. I wasn't because, in my case, both offer advantages (see above). I can't make up my mind. Ugh...
Then there is the trackplan issue. With HO, I can do some slamming and jamming and knock out a fairly realistic trackplan for an industrial layout. I've never designed anything for mainline running, which I would do for N. I've sat down and tried to do something in N, but I get the equivalent of writers block on this issue. I've read the books, looked at track-plans, tried to do things based on real areas, and can't come up with anything.
The other advantage of doing N scale is I could do things like signaling, dispatch, run schedules, etc... With HO, it would basically be modeling locals. I actually would like to model the mainline thing, but am nervous about going with N because I've never done N before.
So, in summary...I like HO because I am familiar with it, I know I can do a layout in HO. I like the N scale stuff that is out there, but am nervous because I have never really done anything in N. N scale would allow me to do stuff that I have always wanted to do (mainline running, signals, etc..), but am unimaginitive when it comes to track planning.
Now the question is what do I do. Do I want to stay with something familiar or try a new challenge? I don't know...what would you do? My wife wants me to make up my mind. I will be sitting on the couch...both of the latest Walthers catalogs spread out (The HO and the N/Z ones) and will sigh...and she goes "What?" and I go "I just can't make up my mind" and then she goes "ARGH!!!". :)
Thanks for letting me ramble, as that is pretty much what I did.
-John *You are nothing until you have flown a Douglas, Lockheed, Grumman or North American*
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You could do both... Allocate 2 walls to N, and one to HO. (Think John Allen TimeSaver.)
A couple things to think about: It takes more of everything expensive to do N scale, but longer trains may balance it out. Make the layout modular so it can be removed, and also built little by litte. An engine, a few cars and 5' of N scale track are enough to entertain you as you build more. If you want to paint human figures, I recommend HO.
Puckdropper puckdroppersplace.tk (See the model railroading section for how I built my modules)
Ditch wrote:

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That is the plan...I am in an apartment right now, but should be moving on in 18 months or so.

I was thinking about that last night when I went to bed. The figures aren't that bad, but if I want something like a cat walking around an alley...it is just going to look like a blob of plastic.
-John *You are nothing until you have flown a Douglas, Lockheed, Grumman or North American*
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Salvι

in
aren't
is
well you could paint it pinkish and hang it outside a chinese restaurant....

North
you are nothing until you have flown a Sopwith , Supermarine or an Avro....... :)))))
Beowulf
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Ouch! -John *You are nothing until you have flown a Douglas, Lockheed, Grumman or North American*
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salvι

restaurant....
North
I tell my daughter that I'm going to download some chinese cat recipes, becauase she's overfed her cat to the extent that it looks as though its about to explode.......its not Persian perhaps its one of these Iraqi WMD's that everyone keeps talking about, Saddam Pussein strikes again..... Beowulf
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We sort of have a cat like that. This one dwarfs the others...but he isn't fat....just HUGE and all muscle. The thing weighs 20 pounds and his tail stands over 3 feet tall. It's like a little mountain lion living in the apartment.
Maybe I should model Tokyo and dress him up in a lizard suit and let him trash the scene...I can make the next Godzilla movie....TOHO Productions better watch out.
-John *You are nothing until you have flown a Douglas, Lockheed, Grumman or North American*
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fat....just HUGE and all muscle. The thing weighs 20 pounds and his tail stands over 3 feet tall.<
I hate to tell you this but that's not a house cat<VBG>!
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Jon Miller wrote:

Is too! We've got a ginger tom who matches that description - chases the neighbours dogs (and the neighbour on one occassion) and considers my baseboards to be his personal scratching posts.
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(wife)
2
another
<Snipped for space>
I made my decision the simplest way I could see (pardon the pun <g>) to do it. With my eyesight, I opted for HO because anything smaller, would be too difficult for me to work with.
--
Brian

I live in my own little world. But it's OK. They
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and
I am doing a 10 x 10. It is around the wall and will be based on through traffic on the pennsy in NJ. The centerpiece is a passenger terminal with 4 tracks Train sheds are down a level and the city is above the curves. and trains will move out in both directions. It narrows down to two tracks where the entrance is. there are sidings for mail, REA, commisary, and through freight (coal, iced produce). Electrified with GGI s and some steam. Military stuff, as well setting 1943. It will run on a timetable and be signaled. I expect to have 6 passenger trains max running during peak passenger hours. Scenery will include Jersey Meadows and mountain ridges. Set in a Mythical city between Newark and New Brunswick. Passenger mainline will be one level of three and be somewhat automated. other 2 will be industry. Much detail to background and foreshortened buildings. Large number of city structures on 3 level with freight delivery. (switching) Steel mill and heavy industry on lower level. Using 30 x 5 foot tables as a base, have put down blueboard and am pinning track to heavy board. After it works smoothly, I will jack it up onto second level with strips of 2"blueboard. Eventually some of this will be stone or steel viaducts, other parts in tunnels.
Jim Stewart
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Even people with good eyesight, HO is generally easier to work with...but the desire for longer trains seems to winning out....at least for this hour. :)
-John *You are nothing until you have flown a Douglas, Lockheed, Grumman or North American*
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Wow...I've always thought O as a little too large for my taste...but I have always been impressed with the narrow gauge O that I have seen. Do you model a specific prototype or freelance? I have always toyed with the idea of HOn3 and modeling DSP&P.

That's about all I have done with N in the mid-80's.

So true...another thing I have noticed is that if I do N, I would like to use code 55 rail...and it seems some of the older stuff won't run on it well (flanges too large). So it would mean refitting the cars I do have with newer wheelsets, etc...

Ramble away! :) I'm known for it.
-John *You are nothing until you have flown a Douglas, Lockheed, Grumman or North American*
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Myth. Model selection in N thse days is as good as in HO. You might have to look beyond you local hobby shop to find it, though.

All scales benefit from carefully laid track, true, N track does need a little more TLC, but perfection is not a basic requirement; modern N scale track is quite forgiving, regardless of what you use. (I use Tomix sectional track; I just don't have the skills or experience to work flextrack, and besides, I don't have to solder or anything now!)
--
JB/NL < snipped-for-privacy@xs4all.nl>
If anyone asks me what I am, I will say I am myself.
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as a neophyte z scaler i've been looking at all the ads, going to trainshows and stopping in at hobby shops.
as far as i can tell n scale is close enough to parity with ho in variety and availability to make the decision one of preference. and pricing doesn't seem to be that different either.
now z on the other hand...
jtm
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I dabbled in Z about the same time I dabbled with N. They didn't have much out there except for the F unit. Nowadays, I see that Z is offering more American prototypes. I am curious to see the F59 up close.
-John *You are nothing until you have flown a Douglas, Lockheed, Grumman or North American*
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snipped-for-privacy@aol.compost says...

Probably not of interest to you, but have you considered traction? Even in S, you could get continuous running in 2' with no problem.
--
Where ARE those Iraqi WMDs?

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LOL...don't get me started. I have thought about it quite a bit and even drew up a track-plan for it. Key System is my favorite. I could do a lot if I do traction...but I think my wife will shoot me if I start talking about it again.
-John *You are nothing until you have flown a Douglas, Lockheed, Grumman or North American*
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I can sympathize with you. I've been going through the same thing the past couple of months and I've even got less space than you have.
I've got a couple of N locos and a complete HO set and I've been trying to decide which way to go. I've even been to an N scale club looking for inspiration. They have a very nice layout.
But when I put the trains side by side, it just seems that the HO trains have more "personality". I guess that probably goes back to my Lionel days whenever I was a kid, but I just sort of lean toward the bigger trains.
My wife can sympathize with yours too! If I don't do something soon, she may change her mind about that space that she has allotted me. :)

(wife)
2
another
for
run to

for the

layout
etc).
a
placed
the
both
jamming
tried
going
a
never
(mainline
planning.
familiar or

make
"ARGH!!!". :)

North
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That's one thing I like about HO...the size seems right and I love the detail on the stuff available today.
-John *You are nothing until you have flown a Douglas, Lockheed, Grumman or North American*
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