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Old 21st November 2011, 00:20   #1
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Default Father and Son 4x3 HO layout Project

So my son is turning 9 this December so we've jumped from the wooden Thomas The Train World to HO grade Thomas Set. I have to turn to the community for help and assistance.

3x4 Table current

Would like to build-out a design similar to:

The parts list: (I have no idea, cause the current set is made up of snap-fit E-Z Track«)
4 Atlas 821 9" Straight
19 Atlas 831 15" 30D Curve
3 Peco SL-92/192 LH Small turnout
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Old 21st November 2011, 02:07   #2
RW James
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Default Re: Father and Son 4x3 HO layout Project

Welcome Tazman to one of the friendliest forums on the web. First - I like your track plan. It's really very similar to the one built by Rev. Awdry himself:

For more information on this layout - go here

As you probably already know, 4x3 is pretty small and there will be some that say 15 inch radius is too tight. But really, as long you don't try to run Gordon or Henry on the layout and stick with engines like Thomas, Percy, or even James - you should be fine. I know because my radius is 12 inches and it works well with those engines.

Another thought: Are you planning to use that table for the new layout? I wouldn't. You can build a much better table from scratch. I would try to sell that table. They are much coveted by other young Thomas fans.

Don't hesitate to ask questions - and keep us informed of your progress. You're going to have fun.
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Old 21st November 2011, 05:47   #3
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Default Re: Father and Son 4x3 HO layout Project

Peco switches may not drop straight into the layout plan. I just measured one and the small turnout is 7 1/4" long. You will need some odd sized straights to match it.
Worse, the "curved" side of it won't drop in to a circle. The angle at the end is 14 degrees (approx) while the normal curves are 30. Also, the curve of the switch is 24" radius (or so).
Nobody I know makes a 15" radius switch. You might be able to find an 18" radius Peco Set-track switch and put another 18" curve in the opposite corner. This would make the geometry work.
Measure your switches carefully. On many of the train-set types the curve starts about 1.5" from the end.
I like the idea for the layout. Are the boxes to be stations or factories?
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