hmm what gauge

well after digging out a lot of old stock from my mums loft and being out the hobby for a good few years (well 6-7 years i'm planning on a return

new house we've moved into has a rather nice sized loft circa 60 ft by 40 ft useable space
thinking about a layout once i finish flooring the loft(nearly done) just looking for other peoples thoughts on what scale/gauge to go for
in my teens it was a mix of consistently modern image O N and OO with a hint of EM at the tail end sold all my OO and Em when i originally gave up and i still feel O gauge is too large for the space i have (wanting a decent couple of loops with a few focal points ie yard couple of stations(one thru one terminus)
anyways to cut a long story short i'm starting from scratch and want to know the following
* Thinking of either a north east england(late 80's -90's layout or central belt scotland so it will be plenty of DMU's and loco hauled freight first off can i still get lima 156's or are they long out of production (maybe consider a few 158's at some point had a brace of bachmann ones when they first came out(sweet)
* do bachmann do a 37 yet? * do bachmann still catalouge items 3 years before release? * can anyone reccomend some good modern ish image dmu kits to start with for a beginner to kit building i'm pretty handy with my hands but its new territory previously my best effort was a few O gauge parkside wagons
* do i really want to get back into modelling my heart says yes but my bank balance says no; i've done the 20 something fast cars phase and now moving into settled family life so i need a hobby :)
i know a long winded spiel but its been a while and i just nee convincing the hobby's as fun as i remember it to be
regards
Rob
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Yes, but avoid the refurbished ones - they have some very noticeable shape errors. The recently released unrefurbished blue ones (you could get away with these in a late 80s/early 90s period) are a big improvement though not perfect. Certainly the shape is there, so I'd recommend it if you don't mind the odd detail error.

We're still waiting for much of the 2004 range. :-)

The DC Kits range - http://www.dckits.co.uk/ - is reputed to be fairly straightforward though I'm yet to attempt any myself. I was considering a 108 before Bachmann announced theirs.

You know you want to, in spite of the cost ;-)

The quality of OO models has improved in recent years but beware some turkeys like the aforementioned refurbished 37. We're still behind the quality of American and European HO models, but things are getting better with some promising new diesels on the way from Hornby this year - that just happen to fit into the era you've chosen ;-)
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hornby in proper model shocker. well i never
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"Rich Mackin" wrote

That's an overstatement Rich, it would be much fairer to say "we're still waiting for some of the 2004 range", but then we're only just into 2005.
John.
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It would seem, sadly, that many of the omissions are the major ones - 66s, Mk2s, Mk1 Pullmans. :-(
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"Rich Mackin" wrote

Some would agree, but for me the only really important items not yet released from the 2004 catalogue are the OBA air-braked wagons, and I suppose I'll take a look at the Mk2s when they eventually appear.
Bachmann had an extremely ambitious programme for 2004 and to their credit they've managed to produce a significant proportion of what they promised, with one or two key releases due very soon.
John.
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Phil: That kind of space available lends itself to 'American' (or 'Scaninavian' type scenic layouts with single winding tracks if you are into scenary modelling (that has improved considerably over the years).
The current Model Railroader has a supplement showing building techniques. Modern scenary construction can be lightweight even of mountains.
Using a North American prototype would offer a greater range of stock than Scandinavian, and at lower prices - but might end up spending as much or more 8-)
Equally you could use the space to add distance between stations on a UK or continental layout - and there is pleanty of stock for both in OO/HO. The standatds have improved considerably in the last few years.
For N - I'm biased (against) - thats long trains runnin through lanscsape but nothing you can do with them (its easier to shunt etc in OO/HO).
Equally, you could go the other way and have an indoor LGB layout.
An example of a UK layout of North Devon in 5m x 6m or 8m x 4.5m can be found from this link... http://www.fillin.co.uk and click on the small image. I like the idea of a train having a choice of routes - that you can get with 3 stations / 2 routes. Other examples are available on other websites.
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On Sun, 30 Jan 2005 23:41:03 GMT, "Rob"
Rob,

A lot of 7mm modellers would give their eye teeth for a 60' x 40' space for a layout. You could get a very good layout in that space, whether you modelled a branch line or main line style layout. With some basic maths, allowing for ten foot radius curves on a simple oval in the space would leave you with forty foot straight sections on the long side and twenty foot straight sections on the shorter sides. Those lengths give plenty of room to model pretty decent stations and the ten foot radius curve is quite generous for 7mm FS standards, and no where near minimum for Scale7 standards.
Have a look at the late David Jenkinson's book "Modelling Historic Railways" which is really his efforts in modelling the Settle and Carlisle line in 7mm. He comes up with some quite complex plans in spaces with are a fraction of what you have in area. In fact, I think the spave you ahve available is not far short of the space used by W,S. Norris for his famous 7mm layout..
After deciding on 7mm, you then have to arrange for the Lottery win :-)
Jim.
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"Jim Guthrie" wrote

(snipped)
My guess is that in any given space, the larger the scale chosen the cheaper the layout eventually costs.
Imagine trying to fill 60' x 40' with N-scale gear. The tendency is always to cram in more and with the cost of quality N-scale equipment the cost would potentially be horrific.
John.
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"John Turner" wrote:

Has anyone ever followed the slightly odd-sounding Railway Modeller (I think) plan idea for a layout where one models the scenery first, with a skeleton post-Beeching railway, and backdates it bit by bit? You'd end up with a nice model landscape and 6 feet of track in this case, but I always liked the idea.
Mark.
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I have to disagree...
I frequently see the same prototype locomotives that are priced at $200 US in N selling for well over $1200 in O _scale_ (not tinplate toys - compare quality with quality). With the scale factor 4:1 and the price at 6:1, it's still less expensive to do the _same_ train in N scale. Of course, the typical train in O scale seems to be no more than 20 cars and usually much less, while the N scale trains can easily be 40-100 cars, so it tends to even out. While it's true you _can_ put nearly 4 times the layout in the same space, and costs for populating the layout with structures are therefore higher due to greater density, it's also true that an N scale layout is usually narrower (which cuts down on the amount of scenery necessary and can get you more realistic distances between stops).
I'm in the planning stages now of a new (second) multi-level layout that will have a 5 scale mile double track mainline (in N scale, of course). Typical width of the "shelves" is going to be 12-18 inches, with end loops and yards only 3 feet deep. A center peninnsula will also be 3 feet. While a 12 inch shelf width is great for N, in O it's barely wide enough for double tracks, much less scenery.
I'll grant that the _tendency_ is to try to cram in more - one that I'm resisting (so far, sucessfully!). I don't want people to be able to get on the train in one spot and walk down the train to the next stop without the train moving! <<grin>> With yards at each end and a yard in the middle of the run, I've got room to operate 50 car trains and actually have the run take a couple hours of fast-clock time... and will be able to easily run 4-8 trains at a time for open house shows. (DCC is great!)
Benchwork planning is done, a scale model of the train room and benchwork has been made, and next is painting the walls blue... ;)
--

Joe Ellis

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"Joe Ellis" wrote

Can't argue with that, but one doesn't have to *buy* locos. Most of the O-gaugers I know build there own.
John.
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On Mon, 31 Jan 2005 12:44:53 -0000, "John Turner"
John,

I think that probably works with smaller sized layouts - where the 7mm layout will tend to be a branch line style and the smaller scales could be more main line in style with a lot more locos and rolling stock.
However, in a large space, you could go to town in 7mm scale in main line style with a large loco stud and a lot of coaching and freight rolling stock, and the pounds signs would be flashing everywhere :-)
Jim.
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well looks like its a change of plans guys
wife has decreed that putting the study up into the loft is now a no no so i now have circa 75ftx 40ft to play with in other words the full loft :) :) :)
but as a result theres a damn site more flooring to be done before i can start building baseboards
a friend suggested N gauge but then i was terrified when i worked out my plan for a two height layout with 2 double track ovals round the outside of the loft would give me at least a proper scale 10 miles between terminuses :) so i think its definitely 00 in a twin oval arrangement with one terminus and a thru station with a tmd based on a collation of haymarket and motherwell ie dmu's everywhere with loads of filthy blue diesels :)
anyone know if knightwing still do the fuelling station kits and anyone reccomend some nice loco sheds that wont look out of place at a nice very late 80's early 90's tmd oh yeah and i have a great notion for working the railway as a railway with no fiddle yard coaching stock depot down one side of the loft and a proper goods yard /port on the other anyone care to loan me a few thousand pounds to get my trackwork in place?
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Or - and to my mind far more appealingly - go to town on the scenery. In that space you could get a /real/ railway-in-a-landscape effect in O with a branch or tertiary cross-country route ambling from one station to another through the countryside. To take it to extremes you could model a goodish section of something like the Van Railway almost to scale - and the cost of scenic materials would be more than compensated for by only having to buy two engines (Slaters' Manning- Wardle tanks), two coaches (probably scratch, but at a pinch Stroudley -type 4-wheelers might do) and 20-odd wagons. Not operationally dramatic (particularly if you ran it to timetable[1]!), but it wouldn't half look nice :)
[1] Oh, it's wednesday. I'd better run a train..
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Comments from a 7mm modeller:
The sale of your existing bits and bobs should fund a couple of brass locos (08, 26, 108), thereafter you're into kit building. My modelling period ends circa 1960, so I build Parkside or Slaters' kits, but modern image kits are often resin, brass of a mix of materials. Looks like hard work! Everything in 7mm will cost more than the smaller scales, but if you factor in the time taken and the space available then after the initial plunge you should find the annual cost to be similar to 4mm.
Oh and join the Gauge O Guild.

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John Bishop

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I don't want to be a 'wet blanket', but normally joists in lofts are for supporting the ceiling and not designed to take the weight of flooring and the subsequent loads that this implies. Unmodified they are unlikely to meet building regulations which has implications for both when you come to sell the house with 'house portfolios' coming in from 2007 and for insurance quite apart from the safety aspect.
Alan
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sorry alan :)
concrete floor in my loft :)
converted flats
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