Topics

New to Model Railroading and DCC

Thomas Webb
 

Hello -  
My name is Ty and at the young age of 73 I have decided to become a model railroader.   I'm vacillating between HO or N Scale but I do know that I will be using NCE for my DCC.  

Looking forward to the adventure.

Ty Webb

Don Vollrath
 

Welcome Ty.
NCE is a good choice for an easy to use DCC system. As for the scale... How good is your eyesight? You can pack a lot of RR is a relatively small area in N scale. but it is more difficult to work with due to the smaller size.  Be sure to visit local model RR expositions and/or clubs to get a better feel of what can be accomplished in either scale. Develop your interests.. Building structures, scenery or running a realistic railroad. If you will be considering DCC sound in your locos HO scale gives more variety of options. But limit your overall plans to something practical so you can complete modeling steps in relatively small stages.

DonV

vincent marino
 

unless your eyes are very strong I'd go to HO. You'll love the NCE system. I have the wireless 10 amp system that powers up all 10 locos at one time w/o an issue. The track you choose in the design stage is as important as anything you do right now, because that decision directly corresponds to the turnouts you'll use. Do your research on turnouts then design the track to it not the other way around. Also don't go under 22" radius your larger locos won't handle anything smaller. Good luck. Vinnie

Sincerely,
Vincent Marino
Vincent Marino
Affordable Roofing Contractors
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On Thu, Aug 2, 2018 at 3:02 PM, Thomas Webb <tbw.trains@...> wrote:
Hello -  
My name is Ty and at the young age of 73 I have decided to become a model railroader.   I'm vacillating between HO or N Scale but I do know that I will be using NCE for my DCC.  

Looking forward to the adventure.

Ty Webb

Glenn
 

Don't stop too fast, I am right behind you (71).

You might also consider On30. You have the size of O-scale in the space of HO. Yes, building are larger, however there are smaller ones available.

Most On30 equipment will go around 18" curves. I am using 12". I have a Heisler which goes around them. I also lean towards the 18' cars. I hope Bachmann will come out with passenger equipment near that size.

NCE is okay, there is also Digitrax, but choose the one your hobby shop sells, and find someone who will let you try them. Personally I favor the Bachmann EZ command for its simplicity, I have two, plus a walk around.

I have chosen Peco Set Track switches, they have a sharper curve and are only 6" long. Also the points lock into position without needing a switch machine or ground throw. You can add these later.

I have room for a medium size layout, but I am working on a 30" x 10' layout built on two hollow core doors. One, life is too short. Two portability, I am a loner and attend shows. I can set the layout on top of the dining room table, shhh! I use milk crates to raise the layout for when/if I hold an open house. Also the doors will stand against the wall for storage.

Of  course what you build depends on what you like to do. I did have a point to point layout, mostly a switching operation. As I go older, 50ish, I wished I could just let trains run. The new 30" wide layout will let my old bones operate from one side of the layout.

What ever you choose do it to enjoy it. And remember "It's my layout."

Glenn

Subject: [w4dccqa] New to Model Railroading and DCC

Hello -  
My name is Ty and at the young age of 73 I have decided to become a model railroader.   I'm vacillating between HO or N Scale but I do know that I will be using NCE for my DCC.  

Looking forward to the adventure.

Ty Webb

Brad Ketchen <bketchen@...>
 

Hi Ty, welcome to the hobby. Is it the first run? I was out of it for 20 some odd Years and came back with a bang. 

N scale is good for long runs. There's a good column in Model Railroader dedicated to N Scale run by Jim Kelly. But if you want a 'switching layout' HO is the way to go. Depends on what you want to achieve vs real estate. Also..depending on your patience...mine is little especially when it comes to detailing an Atlas $300 locomotive.. but having to detail N scale...not for me! Some people struggle with oversized hand railings and accuracy on N scale. Depends too on how picky you are.

NCE is a good system. I run an NCE Power cab on a small HO switching layout myself.

Happy Railroading
Brad

On Thu, Aug 2, 2018 at 3:02 PM, Thomas Webb <tbw.trains@...> wrote:
Hello -  
My name is Ty and at the young age of 73 I have decided to become a model railroader.   I'm vacillating between HO or N Scale but I do know that I will be using NCE for my DCC.  

Looking forward to the adventure.

Ty Webb

Greg Harter
 

I'm 77, started building my current HO layout in 1978.  It will NEVER be 100% finished.  

Good luck to you, all I've read in response to your email is excellent in my opinion, especially the turnout issues regardless of what guage you choose.

Greg Harter

Mark Cartwright
 

Ty...
Before beginning any layout....I suggest reading 
A Clean Well Lighted Place by Earnest Hemingway.
Consider this tale upon your next visit to a Train Store; where the older owner and the much younger (angry) clerk want you to buy something for your layout....Anything ....Even if it doesn't work.  May you find meaning in your layout, even if your endeavors are a speck in the vast indifference of model railroad suppliers; who seem to care less if your locomotive can actually run upon the track they sell.
=====
If I was to suggest.....and I probably shouldn't. 
I could write at least three apparently very different suggestions as to Scale. Not comparing each scale to the other but simply speaking to their individual attributes.   In the end, I went primarily with N Scale in an O Scale Space.  To test my theories on what I might want and must have's...aka Givens and Druthers > I created an Oval Tri-Way Loop on an 8 inch shelf,  around the top of the ceiling of my Bedroom consisting of N, HO and O Scale beginning on the inside with 28" Radius Kato N Scale Unitrack. The next outside oval is Kato HO and the final is Lionel O-72 Fast Track.
===> Physics doesn't scale > Those things which are equal to the same thing are equal to each other. - Euclid
Meaning? O Scale Bridges measure out very well to N Scale but require the Spacing of O Scale in order to run/operate both track with trains.
======
Don't skip on the Radius of your Curves, the even lay of your track, don't try to fit too much in too small a space and if you want your layout to operate...Keep  your first layout simple and complete it.
====
I would perhaps suggest, buying a Box Car in each scale, even Z Scale. 
Don't do anything with them, other than look at them and handle each one.
Then get a section of track and try putting the box car on the track.
=====
As for DCC....Ugh!
I believe the way you lay and run your track and then hook it all  up (Conductivity) has more to do with successful DCC/Sound than specifically which DCC Command System you eventually decide to purchase. Plus how well you can keep it clean.
Why? 
Cause in my travels of buying defunct layouts...I have ended up with nearly a dozen different DCC Command Stations. All of them have good attributes. After testing them all on a plethora of vastly different decoders, I began to appreciate the hassle of installing LokSound Decoders and running them all on a slightly more expensive ESU ECoS System; also purchased second hand at less than half price to MSRP.  
Model Railroading even the choice of the best, doesn't necessarily need to be expensive.
I have good things to say about the Digitrax Zephyr, the Bachmann Dynamis, The MRC Prodigy and the  NCE Systems. That is to say, I have good things to say about Buddhism, Christianity, Judaism and several other religions; which I have also studied independently on my own. DCC Discussions can resemble Religious Discussions....Which ever you decide upon...Good Luck!
With than said...What is important to successful DCC/Sound Operations?
I believe DCC with SOUND should at least begin to consider Soldering Nearly Every Damn Connection. > Everything and Everywhere <  
===  DCC information is sent in packets of information...So any glitch in your trackage/conductivity and your decoder will reset; may travel a few inches and then reset again.....Learning to appreciate 8 hour LokSound Sound Decoder installs in a Brass Locomotive versus an MRC Drop In Sound Decoder in a Kato Plastic Shell Locomotive  -- aka 5 minute installation is a learning curve which has taken years to master.
=====
=====
This bit of wisdom has taken me nearly 58 years to understand.
Create what is a manageable Layout for your life before they lay you out....in a Clean and Well Lighted Place.
In the words of Abraham Lincoln, what ever you decide on becoming Be a good one.
:)) Mark

Luther Stephens
 

Mark (and others),

There is no mention of S Scale. I will leave it at that.

Luther Stephens

Brad Ketchen <bketchen@...>
 

Well with S Scale there's an issue with product availabilty. 


On Saturday, August 4, 2018, Luther Stephens <lcs464@...> wrote:
Mark (and others),

There is no mention of S Scale. I will leave it at that.

Luther Stephens

John Bishop
 

Let me put in my 2 cents for O scale. I have a three  car garage in Southern California, and built layout around my sports car in the middle stall. It's traction/two rail, and while the curves are limit what I can run, I also belong to a modular group where I can run bigger, longer stuff.  The picture is at Havens, on the Sacramento Northern. The water heater is in the background.

John Bishop

On Saturday, August 4, 2018, 5:27:24 AM PDT, Brad Ketchen <bketchen@...> wrote:


Well with S Scale there's an issue with product availabilty. 

On Saturday, August 4, 2018, Luther Stephens <lcs464@...> wrote:
Mark (and others),

There is no mention of S Scale. I will leave it at that.

Luther Stephens

Luther Stephens
 

I suggest the issue with product availability is knowing where to look. The best place to start is with the NASG. Web site is nasg.org. The site is loaded with photos of almost everything S. Also links to the makers of current products and dealers/hobby shops that carry S products. S uses the same dcc products and wiring as HO and other scales.
I have recently converted my 11 locos to battery power using MRC's loco Genie products. Makes wiring a lot simpler.

Luther Stephens

Brad Ketchen <bketchen@...>
 

Greg...turnouts have always been a big issue...especially crossovers. I've scaled down my track plans because of...
I personally like the Micro Engineering brand. But still...having a small switching layout i've reduced the number of them and model reality. As Lance Mindheim says "a model of a railroad". And Pelle Soesberg has been open in 'Model Railroader' mag that he uses trains as an excuse to model reality in 1:87:1 scale! 


On Friday, August 3, 2018, Greg Harter <greg1462@...> wrote:
I'm 77, started building my current HO layout in 1978.  It will NEVER be 100% finished.  

Good luck to you, all I've read in response to your email is excellent in my opinion, especially the turnout issues regardless of what guage you choose.

Greg Harter

Brad Ketchen <bketchen@...>
 

I can see S scale working out in the battery dept. What size batteries and are they rechargeable?

Cheers
Brad


On Sunday, August 5, 2018, Luther Stephens <lcs464@...> wrote:
I suggest the issue with product availability is knowing where to look. The best place to start is with the NASG. Web site is nasg.org. The site is loaded with photos of almost everything S. Also links to the makers of current products and dealers/hobby shops that carry S products. S uses the same dcc products and wiring as HO and other scales.
I have recently converted my 11 locos to battery power using MRC's loco Genie products. Makes wiring a lot simpler.

Luther Stephens