1/32 Promoting Better Wheels and Track

Discussion in 'G1/32' started by David Halfpenny, 20 December 2012.

  1. JimG

    JimG Western Thunderer


    I didn't know about these - and you are correct, Mark's price is probably better than I can get for a small order. :)

  2. JimG

    JimG Western Thunderer


    I'll get one from Mark. Easier than going through all the ordering procedure with profile drawings and probably a good bit cheaper than the price I would get. :)

  3. David Halfpenny

    David Halfpenny Western Thunderer

    Similar to G1MRA, Neil, but I can't put numbers to it.
    Maybe I should?

    Then there's an American NRMA standard as well, intended for two-rail indoors, which I've seen ridiculed by Americans online.

    Here are the only wheel and track standards I've got Numbers for:
    - Old Coarse - ish
    - G1MRA Standard
    - G1MRA Standard, refined
    - G1MRA Fine
    - ScaleOne32
    - Exact Scale

    Plus this non-standard:
    - Slaters F-series
    which usually need tweaking to be usable.

    Nominal sizes and settings are not the whole story.
    There are also:
    - permitted Tolerances
    - unintended errors
    - springing /compensation / weight
    - length of wheelbase
    - side-play of centre axles
    - self-steering
    - flange depth / coning

    Each factor has a real-world logic that cumulatively makes things either better or worse. The trick is to offset the Minuses with the Pluses so that every vehicle (within a given Standard) can run happily on every such track.
    . . . (It's basically the age-old Interchangeable Parts conundrum, solved in various ways down the centuries, most recently 200 years ago by French brainpower plus British and American military investment.)

    A random example of how they dovetail together could be.
    "If your long four-wheeled van splits points or flange-climbs, consider:
    - checking the track
    - softening the springs or increasing the weight
    - reducing flange depth (counter-intuitive?)
    - increasing tread-flange radius
    - allowing wheelsets swivel to follow the track (self-steering)."
    In other words, a very similar pattern of logic to what British Railways did with its Ferry Vans - for exactly the same reasons.

    Neil likes this.
  4. Dikitriki

    Dikitriki Flying Squad

    Hi Neil,

    I looked into this carefully before embarking my G1 odyssey.

    Without putting figures on it (which I will have to do when I come to build my pointwork), I have found the following to have identical wheel standards, to within production tolerances:

    Finescale Brass

    All 1/32 of course. What this does mean is that I am OK to derive my own bastard gauge and check rail clearances through the pointwork so my track standards match the wheel standards.

    Neil likes this.
  5. David Halfpenny

    David Halfpenny Western Thunderer

    Oh, splendid, Richard - an early decision makes everything much more straightforward.
    Following RTR (in this respect) gives you maximum Route Availability on other people's tracks, and therefore the broadest possible market.
    I don't think it's going to give you any mechanical constraints on the BLP - as long as you space the frames to fit the wheels rather than the drawings and leave enough meat on your wheel castings.

    Track details to match these wheels are ordinary G1MRA Standard, viz the top half of this PDF:


    (If you still hanker for True Scale wheels after this conversation, the same site has the ScaleOne32 wheel and track data on the same menu tab at:
  6. Yorkshire Dave

    Yorkshire Dave Western Thunderer

    Hi David

    I've been reading this thread out of idle curiosity.

    As I model nothing larger than O scale and just to satisfy my inquisitiveness what is a swing-crossing? Is it what it says it is or is it something sinister like a switch diamond or stub switch? Or is a a crossing for swings :oops:?

    And swing nose points - are these floating frog points?
  7. JimG

    JimG Western Thunderer

    The crossing can either have fixed closure rails and win rails and the crossing nose pivots to rest against either wing rail knuckle giving a continuous path for the wheel. Or the crossing nose can be fixed and the wing rails and the closure rails adjoining them can move to allow either wing rail to sit against the crossing nose, again giving a continuous path for the wheel tyre. This latter type is more often used as a spring wing crossing.

    Crossing Nose Swinging

    Swing Wing Crossing
    Spring Wing Crossing - voestalpine VAE Railway Systems

    Yorkshire Dave likes this.
  8. David Halfpenny

    David Halfpenny Western Thunderer

    Dave, it's a device that lets wheels cross a rail without there being a permanent gap in it. Therefore:
    - the wheel is supported without jolting throughout the passage,
    - there's no need for a check / guard rails to keep the flanges away from a gap
    and therefore,
    - there's no restriction on Back to Back.

    There are several types, and I casually used 'swing-crossing' to encompass them all without using the jargon for any particular type.

    - the old Tinplate type where wing rails and switch blades are in one piece on a long thin 'turntable':

    Tinplate turnout.jpg

    - stub switches with a waggling bit where the rails would normally cross:


    - 'up and over' devices, as used in the Welsh slate quarries and still used on American industrial sidings

    - a 'self-guarding frog" Low speed, but that's sometimes OK when shunting a train across tracks, as we do:


    - a Crossing Frog / Point /Nose that swings from side to side between fixed wing rails:

    Swing-nose crossing.jpg

    This model crossing is G1MRA VP Dick Moger's prototype, designed specifically to allow ScaleOne32 vehicles to use a G1MRA exhibition layout.


    - Wing Rails that swing from side to side around a fixed crossing nose.
    Thanks to JimG for the link to this next picture. Although it shows a type with check / guard rails, it nevertheless shows swinging wing rails:

    spring wing crossing.jpg

    Swinging Crossing.jpg

    This model crossing is of that type and could be designed to allow ScaleOne32 through, but was in fact installed on a G1MRA exhibition layout purely to save space in a tight corner of a miniature coal mine.

    G1MRA-Wallahs are keen to evolve this kind of crossing for the purpose of demonstrating 'Finescale' models in public - Because You're Worth It :)

    Similarly, 'Finescalers' could use some of the less hideous varieties to be able to host G1MRA Standard stock on at least part of a Finescale layout.

    Last edited: 7 March 2017
  9. Yorkshire Dave

    Yorkshire Dave Western Thunderer

    Thank for the guided tour David. Most enlightening.
  10. Neil

    Neil Western Thunderer

    Once again many thanks for the detailed replies, I know more than I did this morning.
    unklian likes this.
  11. mickoo

    mickoo Western Thunderer

    The BLP frames will be the correct width, if not then there's no point continuing with a high fidelity model.

    Luckily the BLP has narrow frames anyway as Bulleid opted to sit the frames on top of the axle boxes rather than bolt them to the inside, the BR Britannia and 9F are the same as well incidentally; possibly the 'Duke' and Clans too.

    Frame width is 3' - 6 1/8" over plates or 33.44 mm in 1:32.

    unklian likes this.
  12. Simon

    Simon Flying Squad

    Look, this is all well and good, but I can't help but think that the track and wheel relationship is all being made to sound much more difficult and complicated than it really is.

    I am a bodger, no false modesty here - I am unable to deal in exactitudes in the way that many others are. But I can read, add up and can use tools, even sometimes gauges. It is on this basis that I have built my models and railway, with help from friends - I don't fret over tolerances, I do make mistakes, I do think through cause and effect.

    Whilst I think Dick Moger's swing nose point is well made and an elegant solution to the problem it sets out to solve, it really misses the point at so many levels. Why? Because we are interested in making a believable model of the whole railway as far as we can, and whilst there will always be compromises, this HAS to include the track.


    David, I appreciate your intentions are good, but;

    holds no appeal for me whatsoever.

    Why would I want to host G1MRA standard stock on my railway? Build the railway and you will find that people will build stock to run on it - that is proving to be my experience. With all due respect there are plenty of G1 railways running the pigging awful "Standard standard" - why any sane individual with any choice in the matter and who purports to recreate a railway in miniature would want to add another is completely beyond me.

    I don't wish to sound rude, but I am getting fed up with endless pontificating from people who appear long on theory and short on experience - show us your trains!

    J_F_S, daifly, Peter and 1 other person like this.
  13. David Halfpenny

    David Halfpenny Western Thunderer

    Fair enough, Simon. I've learned what I wanted to know. Wrap up time.

    We've seen in this thread that the Relationship is challenging for John's 'Social Inclusivity', where many people with many trains actively want to share many tracks. I think we've done that to death now, and can leave it to G1MRA's Hearties.

    We've also seen that it's tricky for a manufacturer wanting to assess a new market. If Richard settles on following established makes, that means his Light Pacifics won't run on your railway - and vice versa.

    But on the other hand, you've hit the nail on the head with:
    This is the nub of it - if you build your own stock for your own line, wheels and rails aren't complicated: just pick any coherent standard (as opposed to G1MRA's incoherent one) and stick to it. Sorted.
    . . . Lovely photo, which makes your case crystal clear.

    However, in addition to running your railway and producing excellent videos, you are also making frequent and public remarks (like 'pigging awful' ) that imply you'd like G1MRA to, um, up its game, and preferably before they turn your hair grey. I also see that, while G1MRA expands its pigging empire, 1/32 Finescale seems to be struggling to the point of invisibility - no new tracks, few takers for super-detailed engines, new manufacturers forced to make hard decisions, and nowhere to chat but here, in a corner of someone else's forum.

    All that prompts obnoxiously motherly souls like myself to imagine that there's a Problem to be Solved, or at the very least a Bridge to be Built. To fantasise that, one day, ScaleOne32 might become the Main Line, with today's dominant 'Pig Standard" consigned to the Nostalgia corner, along with Tinplate.

    At the moment, it looks as though Gauge One (like most scales at one time or another) is a right old a mess, and the talented people who know how to put it right are either too bruised or too inward looking to bother. If that's the fact of the matter, I can understand. But I don't think it has to be like that for ever.

    So if y'all would like bridges building, I'm happy to help.
    While there's no clear solution to the Standards conundrum, opportunities include (amongst other things) bringing stunning 1/32 vehicle models to any public event where Gauge One has a toe-hold. Regardless of which Standard has centre stage, Dick's turnout (admittedly too hideous for a true 'model of a whole railway') would enable other people to see how your models look and perform - with G1MRA, ALSRM, Model Engineering Societies and Host Model Railway Clubs footing the bills, rather than yourselves.
    . . . It's a thought, anyway.

    I can equally see that my relentless sheep-dogging could be an irritating irrelevance, in which case I'll cheerfully butt out.

    unless somebody does something, G1MRA will carry on with Pig Standard, because it knows none else. People like Pete Waterman will carry on defecting to Gauge 0 where Finescale has elbowed itself a place at the table. Expensive 1/32 kits and rtr models will continue to be distorted around pizza-cutter flanges and steamroller treads. (A Light Pacific can stand that kind of treatment, but a little shunting engine can't.)
    . . . And if you aren't really all that bothered - it is only a hobby - why the grumbling?

    I know many people - particularly you Simon - have tried and tried and tried, and that the Canute analogy is an apt one. But if you'd like to take advantage of the existing infrastructure, healthy bank balance, colour journal, liability insurance, meetings, regional groups and sheer global reach of scruffy old G1MRA to advance your demonstrably superior Case for Scale - with the prospect of making things better for your individual selves - then the offer is there.
    . . . Thing is, you can take advantage of all that (for what it's worth), while simply ignoring the Posturing and Politics - after all, thousands of the members do just that.

    And, if you'd rather Differentiate your Brand, raise your own subs, organise your own admin, build your own realistic layouts and run your own stands and events, that's fine too - arguably better if you can drum up sufficient resources. I'll stump up a subscription and keep my gob shut :)

    I like that challenge because, if I might put this ever so gently, that is exactly what I hear from the uninformed proverbial Average Enthusiast about 'Finescale' . . .

    So I'll start the ball rolling, Simon!
    Here are two contrasting trains of mine, one being neither more nor less than an Evocative Toy - with challenging wheel standards:


    while the other (same gauge) is Live Steam, to dead-scale, including a believable model of the whole railway, including its landscape, structures, weather, distinctive scents and and birdsong:

    Class A Climax - Bourland.jpg

    So, Guys, now I've shown you a glimpse of mine - what have y'all got to show me, please?
    . . . and may I reproduce photos elsewhere online, attributed and crediting 1/32, ScaleOne32 as you wish?

    Thanks in anticipation, David
    Last edited: 7 March 2017
  14. oldravendale

    oldravendale Western Thunderer

    That's good, David! And power to your elbow too, Simon.

    I'm insufficiently versed in the vagaries of Gauge 1 to make any meaningful comment. I know that, as a non-engineer and someone who had never held a soldering iron in anger, when I started my 7mm modelling I defaulted to Finescale, mainly because I could build kits as they had been designed and they were freely available. I believed that this would not give me problems which I'd have found too difficult to overcome and which I'm confident would ultimately have lead me to believe that making railway vehicles is not for me. So, could that be the problem? Is the established G1 community as it is because there's more effort and knowledge involved in getting to a Fine Standard?

    As for Mickoo's/F7's wander in to G1 territory, this is surely out of a wish to produce an item which is impressive and is of the highest possible fidelity - in fact the F7 mantra for everything being done. If it helps to demonstrate to a few people that true scale detail in G1 is achievable for the effort of using a hot soldering iron and some glue (forgive me for cruel simplification, Mick!) then that surely can't be bad.

    As far as standards are concerned, I remember in early days as a technician reporting on an item of popular consumer hardware with which our products would not relate as "outside the BS/ISO Standards". Full stop. No argument. My pragmatic boss at the time said "just remember that although this other product may be wrong we should try to accommodate it. We are selling products, not standards." Carried to conclusion that way lies anarchy, but sometimes compromises may be possible.......

  15. Simon

    Simon Flying Squad

    Hi David

    I quite take your points and yes, of course you can.

    I like both of your trains too.

    As an aside though, and thinking about G1MRA here, many(?!) years ago when I was trying to make some impression on G1MRA with respect to all of the foregoing, a certain other Simon (Dunkley) appeared on the scene and we had some sort of meeting of minds, which resulted in post AGM curries, a very nice 5 plank wagon that appeared in MRJ and also ScaleOne32 standards, for what they are worth.

    Simon subsequently got fed up and left G1MRA, and I didn't. And now to the point of this shaggy Simon story; it struck me then, (but much more since) that while I generally adopted a conciliatory tone, Simon was much more abrasive, even argumentative, in his pursuit of our ideas, and do you know what - people within G1MRA paid much more attention to what he was saying.

    I know that's not really any justification for being tetchy, but I'm afraid that my judgment is coloured by this experience. I have subsequently exhibited/demonstrated "my" end of the G1 spectrum at the 2011 AGM display at Stoneleigh (in conjunction with Derek Pollard and at which you unveiled your excellent track demonstration) and with "Pomparles Siding" at the 2013 Fosse Extravaganza. I can't honestly say that any of it made much impression at either show. Likewise the article on my garden line in NL&J raised not a whisper of interest, so it's not as if I haven't tried. (Which I fully appreciate wasn't your suggestion)

    Ironically, Derek Pollard and I have discussed putting on another display at the forthcoming AGM, which would also feature the stunning building work of Pete Insole. I have to say that I am having second thoughts about it, not least because of the crass editorial comment from Peter Bird. I think such a display is quite possibly wasted on a G1MRA audience and would actually be better appreciated and do more for the cause of G1 at a good quality and well attended railway modelling show.

    Best Wishes

    pakpaul, graham thorp, Peter and 3 others like this.
  16. SimonT

    SimonT Western Thunderer

    Held in a city in the south west of England? What an excellent idea.
  17. unklian

    unklian Western Thunderer

    Dear Simon you have my utmost sympathy for your endeavours . As I remarked earlier in this thread, I have seen an all too similar situation in the Gauge 3 Society. There though there is only a choice between two sets of standards, the horribly compromised set produced by the Gauge 3 Society and the much finer standards (that work well) laid out by the Spur II guys in Germany. These are also promulgated by the NEM organisation which sets standards for all model railway scales in Europe.
    When I set out my personal stall and said I was going to scratch build my rolling stock and track to Spur II standards, I was met with very little enthusiasm and a fair bit of derision laced with zenophobia. I also had that old saw of " if finescale is so great why aren't there more finescale layouts " thrown at me . So I will carry on and slowly build my layout and stock and prove to myself that it is better and if anyone else takes any notice all to the good, but I am not expecting to start a revolution any more. And yes I am an antisocial curmugeon and I don't want anybody else's trains on my layout, so there :p

    PS I don't like Mr Halfpennys post (as there isn't a don't like button) I think Simon has shown us enough of his trains to prove his point .
    Last edited: 7 March 2017
  18. mickoo

    mickoo Western Thunderer

    It's really very simple, rule 1 applies, my train set, my sand pit and I'll do as I like.

    Ironically I started out in with a green field and chose S7, but eventually became disillusioned, it's just so much hard work, excepting a few models you have to rebuild virtually everything (I'm talking engines here) and life's frankly too short.

    I've seen Heyside, it looks good (to me) and works really well and being utterly blunt, track and it's gauge are not at the top of my priorities, I'll take a similar view on G1 or more correctly will model in 1:32.

    unklian likes this.
  19. David Halfpenny

    David Halfpenny Western Thunderer

    Frankly, I think that top-notch 1/32 has made an enormous impression, Simon!
    I'm an assiduous collector (and publisher) of photos that confirm it:

    Please, PLEASE do, Simon!
    G1MRA Committee was keen to secure this display for the public 70th anniversary bash at Fosse this spring, and are seriously looking forward to you, Derek and Pete at the AGM.
    Casually using "10mm" as shorthand for "Gauge One" stings - like using "mankind" as shorthand for 'humanity" stings some women. (My present Gauge One projects happen to be 1/24 scale, so I just shrug: Peter does Narrow Gauge too.) Hey, Peter's just this guy with a gob . . . lovely man, but a habitual loose cannon (and I'd say it to his face). But even he is not agin you - he's one of the most vocal champions of 'modelling the whole railway' in Gauge One.
    Please do that too!
    But actually, if you can only resource one or the other, go for the General show. Whenever I put up a table of Gauge One models and photos, a surprising proportion of people are in awe, never realising that such a thing is even possible outside a museum.

    Now, I realise that putting effort in without getting warm feedback is disheartening.
    But what exactly is it that would have you coming back from a show feeling, "Result!" ?

    G1MRA has already added ScaleOne32 to its official list of standards (which is more than they've afforded to their large tinplate contingent). It is really keen for you to display models, and prepared to invest in you running those, should you be misguided enough to wish to do so. The RTR trade is pretty well exclusively 1/32 already (albeit on Pig Standard). The proportion of 1/32 kits is rising - and some of the pioneers of that are here. You have a meeting place here on a well-respected forum with a reputation for Quality.
    . . . What is still to fall into place?

    - Are you looking for Recruits to the cause? And if so, to what would they sign up, and where?
    - Would you like financial help with a more ambitious ScaleOne32 Demonstration, like the help already given to Regional Group racetracks?
    - Would you like a regular column in the Journal, or in a commercial magazine?
    - Are you hoping for people to step forward and ask for help building ScaleOne32 layouts?
    - Would overt praise, respect, recognition and warm handshakes from the Dinosaurs be enough?
    Or would you simply like an end to gratuitous rudeness from thoughtless autists?

    I'm getting strong feelings of disappointment, sadness and frustration, but I don't yet know what would set things back on course - or even what that course might look like.


    Attached Files:

  20. chrisb

    chrisb Western Thunderer


    I'm completely nonplussed by this thread.

    There are many modellers whose focus is realism in 1/32 scale as your collected photographs attest to. But from personal experience the bulk of the G1MRA membership simply isn't interested in either finescale or realism.

    I just don't see your point - you're preaching to the converted on this forum.