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Author Topic: New to ON30  (Read 12649 times)

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« Reply #15 on: March 02, 2013, 04:51:44 PM »

I was an HO scale person for many,many years and loved every moment of it. Then one day I purchased a small On30 locomotive. I could run this loco on my HO scale track and then I bought a few small pieces of ON30 rolling stock.I was hooked on these small pieces, but I wasn't ready to make that giant leap just yet. A few years passed and I acquired some more On30 pieces of rolling stock and a couple of locomotives( of the larger variety...reefers, flat cars etc.) and they too would run on my HO layout layout for the most part, except where clearances were tight.

In On30 there is not the grand variety of rolling stock and locomotives for prototypical railroads that you see offered in HO scale. In this scale I also found people were not so bound to correct colour schemes and locomotive numbers etc., etc. that I found in HO scale. Amateurs and Master craftspeople coexisted very nicely in On30. I found  that this scale challenged your creativity more than before. I enjoy seeing  precise modelling as much as the next guy and doing the same, but there should always be some fun in this great hobby of ours too.

The big day came as what direction I was going to go. Continue with HO or make that leap into On30. I decided to go the On30 route and it has been a wonderful experience. My wife thought I was nuts when I announced that I was going to dismantle the HO layout( after all she had logged more than just a few hours in it's creation also )On30 is a whole new world for me. I had to give my two or three great prototypical standard gauge railroads I had modelled for years in this process. That was the big decision for me to consider when thinking of a scale change. Also I had been a total diesel guy and was about to enter the world of steam locomotives and tenders.No Proto 1000 0r 2000 in On30. I do find now that having switched I am modelling more( and buying less at train shows as HO is still King at the train shows for items being offered for sale)

Have fun in all your deliberations. The new layout occupies the same space as the old one, just a few less structures and rolling stock than the old one and I used my HO scale track also (with some modifications ) as well.


That IS Flying Scotsman (Not a photshop!!)

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« Reply #16 on: March 03, 2013, 06:18:38 AM »

I have  built  several  end to end ( ie no continuous run) layouts over the  years   and I admit  that  I enjoy building  them,  laying  track  and doing the  scenic side of  them, BUT I find  that  when I actualy start  using  them to run trains  I get pretty bored  with  them!

Having  read  many of Iain Rice's books  I often  wonder how many of  the plans in them   were the  result of a layout  that  was  actually  constructed  and how many layouts  are made as a result of  the plans?


Close  to  the  Great  Little  Trains  Of Wales!!

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« Reply #17 on: March 07, 2013, 07:28:44 AM »

BUT I find  that  when I actualy start  using  them to run trains  I get pretty bored  with  them!

For those intrepid members who migth like to learn a bit more about operating a fairly small scale model railway in a more prototypical fashion (and learning about the prototype along the way), I can recommend visiting


Enjoy if you visit,

CNE Runner

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« Reply #18 on: March 07, 2013, 10:39:53 AM »

I would like to add some additional comments on my post concerning the Iain Rice track plan (Arendt Engineering). As is typical with Mr. Rice this one looks pretty...but doesn't work. After literally hours of trying to replicate this plan (which is in On30) with AnyRail, I have come to the conclusion that it can't be done in the space Mr. Rice has allocated (5' 3" x 16").

The next step was to try the layout in HO/OO as this would result in closer clearances. Nope, 'still didn't work. Finally I decided to try HOn30/OO9 and lo' the darn thing fit...well, almost. I had to expand the depth from 16" to 21" (although I'm sure one could compress things a little and make the plan fit its original dimensions.

I still like this plan (amazing after having a couple of previous frustrations with other Rice plans). Who knows...I may 'spring' for one of those nice HOn30 Koppel locomotives and some MinitrainS cars.


"Keeping my hand on the throttle...and my eyes on the rail"

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« Reply #19 on: March 09, 2013, 02:49:07 PM »

An advantage of On30 is that it allows some artistic license for representing both 3ft gauge and 2ft gauge US narrow gauge RRs, various industrial operations, Australian and others' sugar cane railways, various 600mm to 800mm gauge railways and industrial trams  - all with readily available HO mechanisms and wheelsets as well as with specialty On30 products.

And with a theme more along the lines of, instead pf Colorado 3 footers, an industrial or agricultural tram with their really small equipment, an O scale narrow gauge layout can be had in the space, or less, of an N scale standard gauge mainline style layout.

My own On30 is freelanced in the above direction and most power is HO Plymouth 4 or 6 wheel industrail switchers with scratch-bashed bodies. Freight and passenger cars are built along same principles.

Nothing quite like modeling in O scale and yet an entire 5 car train is only 30 inches long  Grin

When all esle fials, go run trains
Screw the Rivets, I'm building for Atmosphere!
later, Forrest
Ed Ryan

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« Reply #20 on: March 18, 2013, 02:28:25 PM »

I noticed that you are coming out with D&RGW C-19, 2-8-0 in 120:3.  Are you considering doing it in ON30?  It looks like Model Mouintain Imports is not going to do it.
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