Recently, I thought it would be fun to play around with a fast-time clock on my layout. Given that I have relatively few sidings and yard, and no real interest in making up different trains and doing the whole waybill thing, I thought I would play around with running passenger trains on some kind of schedule. Now, some of you may think that this is kind of anal, and maybe it is, but really, I’m the least anal person there is when it comes to playing with trains. Indeed, while I admire them, I think the 2RS guys are kinda nuts (I mean that in a really nice way) but I like playing and not operating. I would much prefer to get two trains running and setting things up so I don’t have to touch anything and I can just veg-out. But like I said, I thought it might be fun.

So I began to think, what kind of fast-time clock would be right for O gauge? I came up with the idea to base it all on gravity, like as follows:

Normal Gravity = 32/sec^2 (Everyone knows that, right?)

Height = 16t^2=(32t/2)*t (where t=time)

So how long to fall 480 feet? 16t^2 =480

t^2 = 30

t =√30

t =5.5772 sec

Using the same formula the time to fall 10 feet (480/48) = .7906 sec

So the "O Gauge ratio for gravity" should be 5.5772:.7906 or 6.93:1

I found a fast time clock app in the Android Play Store that provides for several different options so I chose the closest to 6.93 fast time that I could which turned out to be 6:1, whereby a 12 hour day can pass in 2 hours. The scale distances, I have 336 feet of track on my layout, would therefore spread out to a little over 3 scale miles, but with the fast-time clock would equate to 18 miles, a nice little branch line.

So, my question to all those who haven’t zoned out on any of the above is, does any of this make sense as far as the scale? Does anyone use fast-time clocks and if so, what scale do you use? Frankly, I’ll probably give it a go for awhile and then once I realize how ridiculous all this is, return to a vegetable state and just watch ‘em go.