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  • Topic: New Article Posted: On the Naming of Scales and Gauges

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    • February 17, 2012 9:34 AM EST
      • Toronto, ON., CAN.
         
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      A new article titled 'On the Naming of Scales and Gauges'
      has been submitted by John Le Forestier

      http://www.largescalecentral.com/articles/view.php?id=144
    • July 19, 2012 11:06 AM EDT
      • Juniata Falls, Pennsylvania
         
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      I'm afraid I'd have to disagree with the article, pretty much in its entirety. Not trying to say you are wrong about the whole gauge/scale controversy, but about getting rid of the letters.

      I personally think that there is an easier way to go: Use the letter to designate the gauge of the track (by the way, this is done by nearly all newbies in Large scale) and then tack-on the ratio. Aristo & USA's mainline products would be identified as G29. MTH would be G32. Bachmann's new stuff would be G20.3 (could be just round to whole numbers?) Vintage Lionel would be O48 and HO standard would be HO87.

      This method permits ABSOLUTE certainty of the gauge of the railroad, and even tells you what scale the modelling is done in. Three characters. G26 for LGB's later American equipment, G22 for their meter gauge.

      For those who don't care about scale correctness, they can be certain to get equipment compatible with their existing railroad simply with the letter, and conversly, when trying to model multiple gauges on the same layout, you cane also be certain that equipment will match: On3/36 becomes HO48, 36" guage 1/29 scale becomes O29(or there abouts)

      Just a thought.
    • July 19, 2012 11:20 AM EDT
      • Deer Park, Washington
         
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      Jason, I followed you, not necessarily agreed with you though, until you blew it with the 0 (not "O") n3 being labeled "HO48." That doesn't work out, as the 0n3/0n36 (same thing) doesn't run on HO track. Perhaps you are referring to 0n30?

      Also, the correct label of the gauge that we use in Large Scale is "1 gauge," not G.

      There already is an attempt to label the gauge/scale, done by the Enema Ray. They use "A" for 1:29 on 1 gauge track, "F" for 1:20.3 on 1 gauge track "G" for 1.22 scale on 1 Gauge track and so on. I do not remember what they use for 1:32, but yo can look it up, if you want. Why re-invent the wheel, just to make it more confusing?
      ____________________________________

      Not only does my mind wander, sometimes it walks off completely.

       

      Some people try to turn back their odometers.  Not me.  I want people to know why I look this way.  I've traveled a long way, and some of the roads weren't paved.  Will Rogers.

    • July 19, 2012 1:10 PM EDT

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      Quote:
      There already is an attempt to label the gauge/scale, done by the Enema Ray.
      More accurately, there was an attempt at such a labeling scheme. (That's where the "H" in John's article came from.) Fortunately, cooler heads prevailed (i.e, those who are actually modeling large scale) and the NMRA backed off. Their current standards place all the various scales (1:32 to 1:20.3) under a generic "Large Scale" heading, with wheel and track standards which cover the entire spectrum. Only 1:20.3 is broken out to its own specific scale (designated "F" scale), largely because one of the guys we were working with to author the standards makes F standard gauge stuff and felt that needed to be addressed in the standards. Within the NMRA standards, Neither "G scale" nor "#1 scale" exist as individual identities. It's also worth noting that despite the NMRA's designation of "F" for 1:20.3, it's acceptance by the large scale community (manufacturers, publishers, and modelers alike) has been lackluster at best. Neither Bachmann nor Accucraft use it, and it's very rare that you'll see "Fn3" published in either GR or the Gazette. The "norm" in large scale is to define the specific scale by its ratio. There was, about 15 years ago, a push to have the large scale manufacturers identify their scales by "LS##" where the ## would be the scale. So 1:32 would be LS32, 1:22.5 would be LS22, etc. There were even ads taken out in the magazines to promote it. As evidenced by its overwhelming popularity today, you can see how far that got. The system made logical sense, which is probably what doomed it. Goodness knows we can't have clarity in large scale. But that's large scale where the track gauge is the common denominator. We run our trains outdoors where unless we make a concerted effort to create a specific scale environment, a 1:32 locomotive will look just as plausible running past a boxwood as a 1:20.3 loco. The outdoors itself, being ultimately 1:1, tends to blend in well with a variety of scales. We can "get away" with a lot more rubber-scaling. Indoors, it's completely different. An indoor railroad (even large scale ones) are usually done to one very specific scale, so running something that's not to that scale looks noticeably out of place. That's why a scale-centric identification system works well in that environment. The letters have been around for decades upon decades, and the way they do it makes sense. (Though I'd like to see more consistency in the number that follows the "n" designator for narrow gauge--is it expressed in feet or inches? There's "On30", but "HO 2 1/2.") And Steve, while I agree that "#1 gauge" is historically the correct term, "G gauge" has become the more common designator as it relates to most large scale trains. Good? Bad? It's just the mutable nature of language. Later, K
      ____________________________________
    • July 19, 2012 1:56 PM EDT
      • Deer Park, Washington
         
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      Kevin, I guess that I'm a traditionalist (some would say "Old Fhart")

      I grew up with Zero Gauge (0) (or zed for the Canadians, though the Good Lord only knows why), Half Zero (H0) for the Geeks, and then there was "S" which was used for that odd Gilbert produced American Flyer stuff that the weird kid down the block had.

      The rich doctor who lived on the hill scratch built some stuff in 1 gauge, and the banker who lived across the street from the doctor imported some stuff in 2 gauge. Both were cool to the kids because we got to see/sometimes run (not play with) their stuff on occasion.

      And then there was the 1:1 stuff down in Appleyard that we could get cabrides in before the suits took over the railroads.

      Those were the days.
      ____________________________________

      Not only does my mind wander, sometimes it walks off completely.

       

      Some people try to turn back their odometers.  Not me.  I want people to know why I look this way.  I've traveled a long way, and some of the roads weren't paved.  Will Rogers.

    • July 19, 2012 2:12 PM EDT
      • UK/Ontario/Oregon
         
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      You were around with 2 gauge? :O

      Did you ever serve with Captain John Paul Jones? :O

      tac, ig and The Constantly Amazed Boys
    • July 19, 2012 2:17 PM EDT
      • Port Orchard, Washington
         
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      What about some crazy guy that is building 56.5" gauge track in 1/29th scale? ;) Shouldn't we start creating a new name for that scale/gauge combination? :P
    • July 19, 2012 3:01 PM EDT
      • Deer Park, Washington
         
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      tac said:
      You were around with 2 gauge? :O Did you ever serve with Captain John Paul Jones? :O tac, ig and The Constantly Amazed Boys
      I was his Surgeon. I was also ten. Memory dims. All I remember is that it was big, bigger than the doc's.
      ____________________________________

      Not only does my mind wander, sometimes it walks off completely.

       

      Some people try to turn back their odometers.  Not me.  I want people to know why I look this way.  I've traveled a long way, and some of the roads weren't paved.  Will Rogers.

    • July 19, 2012 3:21 PM EDT
      • Coldstream, British Columbia, Canada
         
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      Well, well, well JLF I have some fundamental News for you: when designating a scale for drawing and other purposes the integer of 1 stands for the size of the item drawn/described. The value after the : designates the number the integer is to be divided by. which means if the original is 1000 millimeters long the 1:87 version of same will be 11.49 millimeter

      In clear text an item that is drawn/produced 87 times smaller than the original has a scale of 1:87 - NOT 87:1! Unless of course the H0 trains in your world are 87 times larger than the original. :) :D :lol: That would make it a lot easier to fix if you can find a large enough crane.

      BTW I find it very amusing that the wheel is reinvented yet again! Have at it! :O :O
      ____________________________________

      Cheers

      HJ
      ---

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      Inspire­d by the r­eal world

       

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    • July 19, 2012 3:31 PM EDT
      • Coldstream, British Columbia, Canada
         
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      Jason Gallaway said:
      ......... For those who don't care about scale correctness, they can be certain to get equipment compatible with their existing railroad simply with the letter, and conversly, when trying to model multiple gauges on the same layout, you cane also be certain that equipment will match: On3/36 becomes HO48, 36" guage 1/29 scale becomes O29(or there abouts) Just a thought.
      Hmmmmm Very interesting! Are you aware that for "0 scale" there are three different values? 1:43, 1:45 and 1:48! Instead of giving them random letter it would be a bit closer to call them "1:43/32mm"; "1:45/32mm" and "1:48/32mm" and precisely the same could be done with every scale. Humour on! Admittedly there is a problem with this. Those who are mathematically challenged may mess up when calculating which is now the accurate scale/gauge combo. :D ;) :D Humour OFF!
      ____________________________________

      Cheers

      HJ
      ---

      Coldstream, BC  Canada


      Inspire­d by the r­eal world

       

      English language hobby website 

      highly RhB centric, but most of it can be applied to other railway projects

    • July 19, 2012 3:31 PM EDT
    • I think what is clear is that model train scale/gauge nomenclature is clear, concise, and easy to follow. And any other system developed would be equally clear, concise, and easy to follow.

      :D
    • July 19, 2012 3:36 PM EDT
      • Coldstream, British Columbia, Canada
         
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      Mark V said:
      I think what is clear is that model train scale/gauge nomenclature is clear, concise, and easy to follow. And any other system developed would be equally clear, concise, and easy to follow. :D
      One day one should have a poll of all the people who "play with trains" to find out how closely they follow "their" given scale. Naturally with the possibilty to mark "I don't give a fig" as one's answer. :lol: ;) :lol:
      ____________________________________

      Cheers

      HJ
      ---

      Coldstream, BC  Canada


      Inspire­d by the r­eal world

       

      English language hobby website 

      highly RhB centric, but most of it can be applied to other railway projects

    • July 19, 2012 4:09 PM EDT
      • Kirkville, NY
         
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      Craig Townsend said:
      What about some crazy guy that is building 56.5" gauge track in 1/29th scale? ;) Shouldn't we start creating a new name for that scale/gauge combination? :P
      I think your set up would be Proto-29 or P29
    • July 19, 2012 4:20 PM EDT
      • Deer Park, Washington
         
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      Hans-Joerg Mueller said:
      Jason Gallaway said:
      ......... For those who don't care about scale correctness, they can be certain to get equipment compatible with their existing railroad simply with the letter, and conversly, when trying to model multiple gauges on the same layout, you cane also be certain that equipment will match: On3/36 becomes HO48, 36" guage 1/29 scale becomes O29(or there abouts) Just a thought.
      Hmmmmm Very interesting! Are you aware that for "0 scale" there are three different values? 1:43, 1:45 and 1:48! Instead of giving them random letter it would be a bit closer to call them "1:43/32mm"; "1:45/32mm" and "1:48/32mm" and precisely the same could be done with every scale. Humour on! Admittedly there is a problem with this. Those who are mathematically challenged may mess up when calculating which is now the accurate scale/gauge combo. :D ;) :D Humour OFF!
      Not to put too fine a point on it, HJ, but it is 1:43.5. That is how they got Half Zero (Zed) at 1:87. Attention to detail, indeed. :D
      ____________________________________

      Not only does my mind wander, sometimes it walks off completely.

       

      Some people try to turn back their odometers.  Not me.  I want people to know why I look this way.  I've traveled a long way, and some of the roads weren't paved.  Will Rogers.

    • July 19, 2012 5:54 PM EDT
      • Off the Grid
         
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      Hans-Joerg Mueller said:
      Mark V said:
      I think what is clear is that model train scale/gauge nomenclature is clear, concise, and easy to follow. And any other system developed would be equally clear, concise, and easy to follow. :D
      One day one should have a poll of all the people who "play with trains" to find out how closely they follow "their" given scale. Naturally with the possibilty to mark "I don't give a fig" as one's answer. :lol: ;) :lol:
      Why don't you start a thread here? I think that even with all the fantastic modelers we have in this group we would find that the majority "don't give a fig" :) I know that when I'm building a model I get all anal about sizes and details; but then I'll run that perfectly scaled and detailed 1:20.3 model with a 1:22.5 caboose and say it looks good :)
      ____________________________________

      www.cvsry.com www.cvsry.com

    • July 19, 2012 7:06 PM EDT
      • SHUT UP MAYNARD ,
         
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      Jon Radder said:
      I think that even with all the fantastic modelers we have in this group we would find that the majority "don't give a fig" :) I know that when I'm building a model I get all anal about sizes and details; but then I'll run that perfectly scaled and detailed 1:20.3 model with a 1:22.5 caboose and say it looks good :)
      I agree 100% I model by eye...so if it looks good to me then I go with it despite the scale correctness.
    • July 19, 2012 7:19 PM EDT

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      Oh, I was SO hoping this discussion would arise again.

      Settling in with a tall cool one and a bowl of popcorn to watch the fun, I remain...

      Steve
    • July 19, 2012 9:05 PM EDT
      • Coldstream, British Columbia, Canada
         
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      Steve Featherkile said:
      ............ Not to put too fine a point on it, HJ, but it is 1:43.5. That is how they got Half Zero (Zed) at 1:87. Attention to detail, indeed. :D
      I tried to keep it to even numbers, it apparently is less confusing that way. Especially since most NA modelers are convinced the 0 (O) = 1:48 aka "quarter inch to the foot". Which is another scale to gauge mismatch. BTW when it comes to road vehicles the mfgs refer to them as 1:43
      ____________________________________

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      HJ
      ---

      Coldstream, BC  Canada


      Inspire­d by the r­eal world

       

      English language hobby website 

      highly RhB centric, but most of it can be applied to other railway projects

    • July 19, 2012 9:09 PM EDT
      • Coldstream, British Columbia, Canada
         
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      Stan Ames said:
      In 1993/4 a group of us got together to try to define the various scales in Large Scale. Much has changed since then but the the concept around this early agreement still hold. http://www.tttrains.com/largescale/nmra_large_scale_report.pdf Stan an Fn3 modeler
      Sooooo Stan, did it do any good? Reading through the fora, I doubt it! HJ a IIm modeler
      ____________________________________

      Cheers

      HJ
      ---

      Coldstream, BC  Canada


      Inspire­d by the r­eal world

       

      English language hobby website 

      highly RhB centric, but most of it can be applied to other railway projects

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