Radius Gauge

Can somebody tell me what the correct spelling of track setter is,
track seta, track setta and of course track setter throws up nothing.
Whay can't they just call it a radius gauge.
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Even with the inclusion of 30" into that, they're not much good if you're wanting to lay parallel tracks at scale distance apart.
In any event I've always found it easier to lay curves by eye, a system which allows you to incorporate transition curves.
Reply to
John Turner
In message , John Turner writes
What is the scale distance that tracks of that radius should be separated by? Why not use the Peco double-track template to lay the second track once the first one is laid?
Reply to
Jane Sullivan
Varies. Different raiwlays had different standards at different times, and all had differenet standards for different types of track. Eg, straight yard tracks were usually closer together than mainline double tracks. The railways also allowed for the effects of overhang on curves.
Unless you use prototypical radius curves, your main consideration is whether or not locos and cars (wagons, carriages) will interfere wiith each other on curves or not. Generally speaking, you can't use protoypically correct (scale) spacing with most model railway curves. Experience shows that the following track separations (center to centre) work well with small and medium sized locos and cars as indicated. Interpolate for intermediate radii.
15": 2-3/4" or 70mm (max. car length: about 40ft) 18": 2-1/2" or 64mm (max. car length: about 50ft) 24": 2-1/4" or 57mm (max. car length: about 60ft) 36": 2-1/8" or 54mm (max. car length: about 80ft.) 48": 2" or 51mm (close to scale spcaing; no size restrictions on rolling stock)
Other considerations: a) space for you to get your fat fingers between cars when rerailing them; b) transitions (easements, spirals) at each end of a curve, which reduce the overhang in that region, so that closer track spacing is possible c) aesthetics: you may be able reduce all the above spacings by about 1/8" (3mm) - experiment with the equipment you want to run.
PS1: One of the tightest mainline radius curves in North America was at Boston Bar in the Fraser Canyon, British Columbia, on the Can. Pacific. It was eased in later years. In N. American nomenclature, it was a 23 degree curve, which would scale out to about 36" radius in HO, or about 41" in true OO (EM, P-4, etc). Trains were restricted to 25mph or less around this curve.
PS2: Minimum yard track spacing in N. America used to be 13ft, or 1.8" (45.4mm) in HO. It has been increased to 15ft or more for safety and reasons. It was wider in heavy snowfall regions - wanna guess why? :-) Mainline track spacing on tangents (straight track) used to be 15 to 16ft (2 to 2-3/16", 52.5 to 56mm in HO), but has also been increased by a foot or two.
PS3: with very large cars, railroads experience the same problems with curves and line-side clearannces that model railroaders do. Oversize cars and loads are be routed to avoid problems, but even so, temporary changes in track side structures and even overbridges are sometimes made to permit their safe passage,
Reply to
Wolf Kirchmeir
But some of these coined names are a little infuriating, Plumb Center always winds me up. Then there is More Than, now is that More Thn, I can never remember.
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Expecting very basic knowledge of mathematics from the sort of people who dream up these names might be unduly optimistic...
Reply to
Arthur Figgis
I submit that on or about Thu, 11 Aug 2005 16:57:32 +0100, the person known to the court as "John Turner" made a statement ( in Your Honour's bundle) to the following effect:
Speaking as a novice, I find the Tracksetta quite handy. I lay the inner curve, using the Tracksetta to lay the track and running it round the curve to ensure it's smooth. I have them in many radii, so I can use them to help with the transitions as well.
Once I have a nice smooth curve (checked by running some free-running stock round), I use a couple of 6ft way gauges to lay the parallel tracks.
The result is not perfect, but it's not bad. I wish I could build pointwork as well as I can lay curves...
Guy --
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"To every complex problem there is a solution which is simple, neat and wrong" - HL Mencken
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Just zis Guy, you know?

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