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Author Topic: switchback  (Read 1677 times)
112040025

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« on: November 18, 2008, 12:24:00 PM »

does anyone have any advice on building and operating a HO switchback. how long must each end of the siding be for a train. can a prairie enginge pull up a 5 car train on these switchbacks or do you need a shunting engine?
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what is the point of going fast. you are just going in circles!
ebtnut

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« Reply #1 on: November 18, 2008, 02:06:58 PM »

Switchbacks are usually used to gain elevation where there is no room to put in a turning loop and/or to avoid drilling a tunnel.  On logging and industrial lines, the grades on switchbacks could exceed 10%.  What I suggest doing is tacking down a couple of lengths of flex track on a 1 x 4 and see how much grade it takes before your loco can't pull the 5 cars without slipping.  The tail track(s) of the switchback need to be long enough accommodate the length of your train, with maybe a little extra so you don't run off the end.  For your 2-6-2, I am going to guess that a grade of about 3% (1" elevation gain in 36") is about the maximum  for those 5 cars.
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richG
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« Reply #2 on: November 18, 2008, 04:46:57 PM »

Here are some links.
http://www.google.com/search?hl=en&ned=us&q=model+railroad+switchback&btnmeta%3Dsearch%3Dsearch=Search+the+Web

Rich
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Jim Banner

Enjoying electric model railroading since 1950.


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« Reply #3 on: November 18, 2008, 07:22:32 PM »

On my H0 home layout, I have a switchback on an industrial branch line.  The tail of the switch back is just long enough to accommodate a switcher and two forty foot cars.  This requires the operator to double or triple his train up and down the hill.  At 8% grade and 15" radius turns, he couldn't handle much more anyway.  If an operator starts getting bored with this, he gets a road switcher assigned to him.  This requires that he come within a couple of scale feet of the bumper before he can throw the switch.  By the time he gets good at that, somebody will "accidentally" drop a 50' car on the exchange track for him.  Switchbacks can be a lot of fun.
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Growing older is mandatory but growing up is optional.
pdlethbridge
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« Reply #4 on: November 18, 2008, 08:09:32 PM »

So is John Allens timesaver,
http://www.wymann.info/ShuntingPuzzles/sw-timesaver.html
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