I am going to start building a new layout and am wondering what switch number should i use for crossovers and in the yard that would be eaqual to the real railroad, a class 1 railroad. And what are the best looking and good quality switches. Thanks, Mike
yard switches at least at the yard I work at are #10 and up.Your gonna need alot of space to a yard ladder with #10
As noted, unless you are building in an abandoned gymnasium (and good for you if you are), prototype numbered switches take up a lot of room. And unless you increase your minimum radius correspondingly, turnouts with the larger numbered frogs offer little or no benefit operationally, as the radius becomes the limiting factor.
Originally Posted by Mike Nowakowski
Unless you are in N scale, there are no mass-produced commercially-available turnouts with frogs larger than #8. It's certainly possible to handlay trackwork, of course, to get any frog number you would like.
The majority of modern offerings in commercial track systems work well for their intended purpose....to afford model trains enthusiasts to enjoy playing with scale trains in a confined space. Some are better than others in terms of reliability, to be truthful, but people determined to make something work almost always find a way to get the reliability they want.
The best looks, though, that's a problem. Each of us brings their own form of perception and subsequent appreciation for the hobby and what it means for them in the way of enjoyment. At one extreme are the plug, shove, and play train enthusiasts who want a quick fix. At the other extreme are those who will take years to plan out a dream layout, and who will lay their own track by hand in strict fidelity to a given railroad's methods. They'll detail those track elements so well that you'd swear you are looking at photos of the real thing. Turnouts offered commercially run from rather cheap-looking and utilitarian snap switches and on up to the Proto 87 versions and handlaid ones that are improved even beyond what their purveyors envisioned at the time. You can add metal and plastic castings for plates and frogs that look incredibly realistic. Add some weathering compounds, including paints and powders, and you would amaze even yourself.
So, what is your standard? If it is undefined, then I suggest you engage in that process because before you please us, or visitors, or win anyone's approval for your methods and choices, you would want to please yourself. On Sunday morning, before the family is up, and before any guests come by, when you have some time to enjoy the trains all by yourself, will you be most pleased with what you deem to be the best, or with what others tell you is the best?
By the way, you might also refer to the answers from the last time you posted a similar question on what is the "best" track:
At that time, a full line of PECO Code 83 track was not available, but that would be another good option today.
I have decided that i am going to use #8 on the crossovers and #6 in the yards. But what i am getting at is who sells the switches with out the sheet metal points that move? I am looking for the ones that have the rail as the points. I know Atlas is the one with the sheet metal points.
I suggest looking into hand laid turn-outs. These are not really that hard to build and, I believe, yield the best looking and functioning turn-outs.
Check the info on the web sites of these two companies.
Fast-tracks give you the basic good quality hand laid turn-out whereas Proto87 Store will allow you to super-detail the turns to very realistic appearance and operation.
Originally Posted by Mike Nowakowski
Well, everything has been mentioned except Tillig.
Tillig elite is a German brand which is code 83 and has continous point blades.
Maybe Reynauld's or a similar european brand import would stock them in the USA?
I'm going to try this brand myself. I plan to use the proto 87 tie bars to improve strength (the Tillig tie bars are very fine plastic). I have compared the Tillig and Walthers Shinorhara code 83 and the Tillig track has taller ties, but narrower rail. So the Walthers track joints connect both but the Tillig track joiners are too narrow for Walthers code 83 rail. I haven't compared wit hAtlas code 83 nor Peco code 83.
Tillig doesn't mention USA style switch numbers, but you should be able to google switch numbers and get the radius divegence in degrees and compare them that way. Perhaps we can go over it on this thread later?
Hope that helps.
For some reason Tillig is ringing a rather loud bell as the maker of a cross over I saw in a pic once, don't think anyone else makes one:
Double Crossover, with double slips at each end. A true 'Puzzle Switch".
Always been tempted to pick one up if I could ever find it anywhere, and look for an excuse to use it on a layout.