Code 55 or 80?

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Marlin39

Member
What are most of you guys using? There seems to be more variety/options available from Atlas, in code 55 than 80. I'd rather start out right than have to go back and regroup.
Thanks
 

Burlington Bob

Well-Known Member
I'm going with code 55 from Atlas. If you have any older rolling stock with the pizza cutter flanges, they will need to be replaced with low profile wheelsets to avoid hitting the plastic nubs that hold the rails to the ties. Also, older locos with deep flanges are not compatible with Atlas code 55 but Peco code 55 doesn't have that problem due to the fact that the inside rail is deeper due to the fact that it's actually code 80 buried in the ties or at least that is my understanding. I've never bought any of it but some people like it because of the backwards compatibility.
 

migalyto

Well-Known Member
On every forum I'm a member on this is a fiercely debated topic! I used Atlas code 80 flex, with Peco turnouts. I think code 55 tie spacing looks a little better, but with a good ballast job, they both look pretty good.
 

montanan

Whiskey Merchant
I would definitely go with the code 55. I was in N scale years ago and after moving to HO scale, I went to code 70 rail just because of the grossly oversize rail in N scale.
 

otiscnj

Well-Known Member
I'm helping a friend build the Central Midland, but in N, not HO, using code 55. He's said several times, that if he had to do it again, he'd go with code 80, and he's been in N scale for years.
 

wombat457

Well-Known Member
Staff member
I use Peco Code 80 because of it's versatility. The only real issue you will find between code 55 and code 80 is the "age of the trains/rolling stock" that will/might be run. Older trains and rolling stock have deeper wheel flanges that code 55 doesn't particularly like. The only other issue might be the appearance. Some say that code 55 is more realistic looking but I'd suggest that is more a personal preference than an "issue".

Bottom line, if your only going to be running "new equipment" code 55 will suit. If your going to be running older equipment then err on the side of "better to be safe than sorry" and go with code 80.
 

Marlin39

Member
I use Peco Code 80 because of it's versatility. The only real issue you will find between code 55 and code 80 is the "age of the trains/rolling stock" that will/might be run. Older trains and rolling stock have deeper wheel flanges that code 55 doesn't particularly like. The only other issue might be the appearance. Some say that code 55 is more realistic looking but I'd suggest that is more a personal preference than an "issue".

Bottom line, if your only going to be running "new equipment" code 55 will suit. If your going to be running older equipment then err on the side of "better to be safe than sorry" and go with code 80.


I'm starting from scratch, buying new, so I started purchasing code 55. The Atlas stuff, with brown ties, looks a lot better than the black tie code 80 I was going to use.

Thanks everyone for the input.
 



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