# Glimer of sanity on the horizon

Spent this weekend looking at the job and explaining about minimum radius curves, train lengths, point lengths and 4mm to the foot as a scale.
The 'mountains' are now to be 'a hill or two' and we are starting with the high level oval running round the walls (lift up section across doorway). This will have a station that is actually the fiddle yard (4 tracks inside the building), a smaller junction station diagonally opposite, where the branch to the industrial lower level joins the main line. That way we can get the circuit up and running, adding the industrial bit and the quay to the lower part later, this means he will not be leaning over delicate stuff on the front of the board whilst 'doing' the upper level.
It is all starting to look a lot more doable.
He's keen on using a shop (wants to see what he is buying) and is now looking at the Hornby Elite controller. For the moment I have retrieved some old OO stuff for him to play with to get a sense of scale.
He bought sopme 'large radius' curves, which give a 31 inch dia circle, which I would have thought was about as tight as they would go (apparently the chap in the shop told him there is an even tighter radius. Bit concerned as so many makes these days specify nothing less than 'second radius' - I wasn't there, not sure about this at all).
Woodwork starting this week.
Regards
Mike
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Suggest get him a peco catalogue, has lots of dimensions in it as well as track geometry.
What make of track curves are they ? Peco show 1st radius 2*14 5/8 = 29" 2nd radius 2* 17 1/4 = 34.5 " 3rd radius 2* 19 7/8 = 40"
Hornby ... 1st radius 2*371mm = 29" 2nd radius 2*438mm = 34.5 3rd radius 2*505mm = 39.7
Seems you've got 1 and a bit radius which is too small for most modern locos.
Cheers, Simon
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Had intended to pick the catalogues up on the trip to the shop, but he wasn't up to the trip. I'll get him one at my end and take it over with me. He is just starting to get a handle on what can be done in the space available.
I think it could end up rather good, but I'm still having a problem adjusting after 20 years playing in N myself (the proposed track plan would just about fit on a decent dining table in N).
Thanks for the assistance, I was tired, not used to the scale, wanting to get it right as he will probably only get one shot at this and dealing with some fairly unrealistic expectations on his end.
Regards
Mike
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Out of curiosity, where do the definitions of the various radii come from ?
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writes

Peco from the Peco catalogue and Hornby from Hornby catalogue - might be on their website as well. Both for settrack. Both give it as a radius, Hornby in mm and Peco with fractions of an inch.
Cheers, Simon
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Thanks, but not what I meant (bad phrasing on my part I suspect).
What I meant was, who decided what constitutes a first radius, and a second, and a third. Since Peco and Hornby seem to pretty much the same, it looks like a "standard".
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writes

It's a de facto standard, dating back I think to the days of Tri-ang Super 4 track in the 1960s, which had two radii, small and large (it might even go back to Series 3 and Standard). These were perpetuated into System 6, and when the third radius was added small and large became first and second respectively. There is now a fourth radius as well.
When Peco Setrack came out the radii were the same as Tri-ang (later Hornby) but I have a feeling that the geometry of the pointwork might be slightly different.
Why the actual radii are what they are is a question I can't answer. Perhaps something to do with getting a double track oval on a 3 feet wide board? The distance between centres of 2.625 inches allows long vehicles to pass on the curves without hitting each other.
Hope this helps.
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Regards

John

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The geometry of Series 3 (the short black widely spaced sleepers) and Standard (integrated sleepers on grey ballast base) was different in that the smaller radius was 13.5 inches. The common feature was that the larger radius for Series 3 and Standard was 17.25 inches which is the same as the current second radius. Standard straight pieces of track were 7.25 inches long and each curved section was 30 degrees.
I think Standard 4 and the systems that followed were an attempt to tidy up the geometry to give closer parallel track centres and make more complex track formations easier in terms of using a pair of turnouts to form crossovers.
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Bill Campbell

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My bet is that Hornby bought Roco's existing first radius track from Austria when it became obvious that their old products weren't competitive.
The definitive answer would have to come from Hornby's design or marketting departments of 30 years ago.
Greg.P.
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Many thanks for the follow ups, and the diversion into linguistics.
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On Mon, 25 Jan 2010 20:53:13 +0000, Adrian put finger to keyboard and typed:

Hornby invented the terms, the other manufacturers followed suit in order to make it clear to customers that their track is compatible with Hornby's.
All the measurements are based on the tightest - the "1st radius". A 2nd radius curve is designed so that a double track circuit with 1st on the inner track and 2nd on the outer will have the correct distance between the two tracks, and the same then applies for a double track circuit formed from 2nd and 3rd respectively.
Mark
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Blog: http://mark.goodge.co.uk
Stuff: http://www.good-stuff.co.uk
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"Mark Goodge" wrote

< pedant mode >
That very much depends what you mnean by 'correct distance' between two tracks. It certainly is NOT a correct scale spacing, but one designed to allow long(ish) coaches & other items of rolling stock to pass each other on tight curves without clouting each other.
< /pedant mode >
Clouting = good old Yorkshire word meaning meaning hitting or colliding.
John.
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Common down in the Midlands - especially from clout round the ear as used to be administered by teachers, police and parents in the good old disipline days. Then of course theres 'never cast a clout before april is out' know what it means but not where its from. Cheers, Simon
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It's more old Engllish than old Yorkshire.
MBQ
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The message

Certainly! The Dark Side doesn't have a monopoly of "unusual" words... <g>
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Dave,
Frodsham
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The way I recall it, the verse goes "Ne'er cast a clout till may is out" - that's the may blossom, not the month: even in the frozen North, it was getting distinctly warm long before the end of May.
David
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David Littlewood

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But surely it is a contemporaneous reference to the interminable labour government, hanging onto power at all costs, and should be read as ...
"Ne'er cast out a clot until May 6th" ?
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On Tue, 26 Jan 2010 12:58:29 +0000, invalid wrote:

There's a another saying, "Better the devil you know"!
Or, put rather better by The Who
" ...... ...... There's nothing in the street Looks any different to me And the slogans are replaced, by-the-bye And the parting on the left Is now the parting on the right And the beards have all grown longer overnight
I'll tip my hat to the new constitution Take a bow for the new revolution Smile and grin at the change all around me Pick up my guitar and play Just like yesterday Then I'll get on my knees and pray We don't get fooled again Don't get fooled again No, no!
YAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAH!
Meet the new boss Same as the old boss"
I'm afraid I am a "None of the above" voter, or would be if I were allowed to ......
Cheers Richard
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I have become...............comfortably numb

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If you really cannot tell the difference between any of the current great leaders then please do not vote. The worst thing you could do is vote for current PM based on better the devil you know - actually based on any reason.
But thanks for the reminder of the song. The missus was suprised when I pointed out that the song in CSI was from the very same group.
Cheers, Simon
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On Tue, 26 Jan 2010 21:42:48 +0000, simon wrote:

Believe me I won't be voting - the only sanction I can see against two lots of self-serving lying toads who have no interest in anyone but single issue pressure groups is to not even register to vote. Judging by the stack of registration forms the lady had the other day I'm not the only one. Perhaps when voter turnout falls sufficiently they may actually start listening to the silent majority (by asking why). In the meantime I expect many more fatuous "reports" from them blaming absolutely anything else except themselves for low turnouts.
As for the song - amazing isn't it that so many 60's/70's protest songs have become relevant again - "Won't Get fooled Again", Dylan's "Hard Rain", "Chimes of Freedom" and "Masters of War" - lets hope "The Times They Are A Changing" will be equally appropriate again - soon, though I doubt it as the UK has lost it's heart and become a nation of 'yes men' who just moan and then roll over and die.
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I have become...............comfortably numb