Can a 8x8 square layout accommodate three sets of tracks-outer track standard gauge of 83, inner 72 and further inner lgb? If the average consist length of a std gauge train is approx 8-10 ft will the 8x8 do visual justice? Or should it be 8x12?  Thanks for your advice

Ash Standard

Original Post

Is an 83" circle is about 22' in running length? A 9 foot train would have about 13' tail to nose then? If you like it then it's fine.

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Thanks Booby. Not sure if you are asking me a question. My train math is non existent sorry. Just eNted to make sure if the 8x8 can accomidatd track sizes 83,72 and lgb all three and if an average 8 ft consist can look visually ok?

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Ash,

For historical reasons Standard Gauge track diameters are nominal. i.e., not exactly the named dimensions.  Here are the actual dimensions of all three rails of the available circles of Standard Gauge track:

(42, 57, 72 and 87 curve tracks result in concentric circles that are on exact 7-1/4" centers.)

STD42 (2.143 gauge, 2.268 c to c) 45º-8/circle

STD57 (2.134 gauge,2.259 c to c) 30º-12/circle

STD72 (2.125 gauge, 2.250 c to c) 22.5º-16/circle

STD84 (2.125 gauge, 2.250 c to c) 22.5º-16/circle

STD87 (2.125 gauge, 2.250 c to c)22.5º-16/circle

If your table is only 8’x8’, and you need  wide radius curves (much preferred for the larger sets), then you will only have circles of track, no straight sections.  Lengthening the layout will allow for up to 4’ of straight track on two sides, which is both visually and operationally superior.  The extra space and straight track will also facilitate the placement of accessory structures, which IMHO are essential.

Kirk Lindvig, USA Track LLC

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I agree with Kirk. Something other than loops will increase enjoyment for the long term...plus add real estate for display or decoration.  Decoration with G or STD sized buildings EATS square footage. To store a Flying Colonel would eat up 6-7 square feet.... a 840 powerhouse is the same. A semi circle of 444 roundhouses and a 200 turntable eats 20 square feet!  So... more is better!

Prewar Tin...Any maker, any gauge, anytime!

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Kirk and Rob, you convinced me to move up to 8x12. Over the weekend I may trespass to 8x16. Thanks for the cheerleading with specs and insight. A terrace station and a ****’s gate would suffocate a 8x8. Thanks

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ash standard posted:

Can a 8x8 square layout accommodate three sets of tracks-outer track standard gauge of 83, inner 72 and further inner lgb? If the average consist length of a std gauge train is approx 8-10 ft will the 8x8 do visual justice? Or should it be 8x12?  Thanks for your advice

Ash Standard  ld

Ash,

An 8x8 square layout is the same size as four SGMA corner modules bolted together.  While that size layout will accommodate 3 circles of Standard Gauge track, depending on the radius of track you install and the specific trains you run, you may find your trains constantly hitting each other due to the "overhang" and the "underhang" of the locomotives and cars you run.

SGMA initially installed MTH's wide radius curved track (83) on our modules, but through experience soon discovered that our expensive Standard Gauge trains would occasionally hit each other while passing on the corners.  After significant testing, SGMA changed its module standards so that the outer mainline on our modules used USA Track's STD87 curved track.  This new standard eliminated most (but not all) contact between Standard Gauge trains on our corner modules.

Based on SGMA's experience and testing, I recommend you purchase and install USA Track's STD87 curved track on your square layout vice STD83.

Bob Nelson

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ASH also needs to consider the radius of the inner LGB loop (R1 or R2 presumably?) and its spatial interface with the standard gauge radii.

vita sine litteris mors est  (Seneca)

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Rob English posted:

I agree with Kirk. Something other than loops will increase enjoyment for the long term...plus add real estate for display or decoration.  Decoration with G or STD sized buildings EATS square footage. To store a Flying Colonel would eat up 6-7 square feet.... a 840 powerhouse is the same. A semi circle of 444 roundhouses and a 200 turntable eats 20 square feet!  So... more is better!

More is ALWAYS better.

Or... Too much of a good thing - is just enough.

Jim

Jim Waterman

Lee Lines Limited

Custom Built Standard Gauge

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TRUE, but it is amazing what you can do with an 8' X 7 1/2' space. I have three track ovals: 072 standard on the outer, an LGB R2 in the middle, and finally an inner standard 042 oval. I run a three car state set behind a Lionel Classics 2-400E on the outer loop, a 26" Piko BR 24 pulling three PIKO 14" DR beer reefers plus an LGB P/B wagen on the middle LGB loop, and a 408E pulling two 214R reefers and a red 217 caboose on the inner oval. I have a number of the smaller tinplate accessories such as the 126 station, the 437 signal tower and an AF 102 station. I also have the SG Lionel weigh scale with an LCT red 216 hopper displayed on it, and two different 436 power stations plus a 438 signal tower. Finally, three LGB circus animal cars with a wonderful Schleich assortment of elephants, tigers and lions plus two trainers on/near a 3' section of LGB display track. ALL of the above on an 8' X 7 1/2' display. Works for ME! You just have to be creative, and "never say never"! (WINK)

vita sine litteris mors est  (Seneca)

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