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  1. #1
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    Turnout #/Radius Question?

    Forgive my ignorance as I'm a recent convert to N from HO...

    But in N scale is there a chart somewhere which shows the radii from the curve of a given turnout number? For example, what is the radius of a #5, #6 or #7 turnout in N scale?
    Metro Red LineUnder the streets of Los AngelesCheck out my N scale layout blog!

  2. #2
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    Exclamation Radii of Turnouts

    There is no radius of a numbered turnout, the track through the frog and beyond is straight. The turnout number is the proportion at which the rails diverge from the frog. A number 7 turnout diverges one inch for every seven inches, while a number 4 diverges one inch for every four inches. This is the same in any scale from G to Z.

    The only commonly used turnout in N with a radius is the Atlas Snap Track turnout, which is 19.5 inch radius. :cat:

  3. #3
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    Smile

    Peco also specifies a radius for their turnouts.

    More data on Peco.

    But, specifically, Peco does not specify their turnouts with a number. They use small, medium, large.

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  4. #4
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    Peco turnouts, with the exception of their newer US prototype versions (someone correct me if I am wrong), do have a radius because they are curved through the frog (which I have read follows European prototype practice, though I have not confirmed this authoritatively).

    Jeff

  5. #5
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    Red,
    Are you asking what radius correspond to each turnout to make a crossover or a ladder or such?

    Eric
    Eric Bufkin

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by Colorado5O View Post
    Red,
    Are you asking what radius correspond to each turnout to make a crossover or a ladder or such?

    Eric

    Yep, petty much. I'm making my track plan and especially trying to find out how much of a curve I would need for yards and double-track mains.
    Metro Red LineUnder the streets of Los AngelesCheck out my N scale layout blog!

  7. #7
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    There is no radius of a numbered turnout, the track through the frog and beyond is straight.
    Actually, there are two radii for a turnout: the closure radius and the substitution radius. The closure radius is the actual radius of the points and the rails before the frog, and determines what equipment can run through. The larger substitution radius is the continuous curve you could splice the turnout into smoothly.
    Fan of late and early Conrail... also transition-era PRR, 70s Santa Fe, BN and SP, 70s-80s eastern CN, pre-merger-era UP, heavy electric operations in general, dieselized narrow gauge, modern EFVM and Brazilian railroads in general... why bother trying to list them all?

  8. #8
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    Red and all tuned in,

    I've thrown this fish out here before and got some negative feed back. That's ok.

    What you read above is correct. However, if you want a simple way to determine the radius compatibility of a switch take a piece of prefab track IE., 11' radius curve place it over the switch starting at the points, over the frog and to the diverging or curved part of the switch. This solution will not be 100% fool proof but it will help you determine which switch to place on a curve enabling you to leave the main straight into a siding or secondary main.

    I am waiting to hear someone explain the geometery approach to solving this problem. As much as I like geometery it can be perplexing at times.

    Most N scale switch providers will provide radius equivalents either in the instructions provided or on their websites. Worth checking it out.

    Have fun and give the info sharred by all particpants here a try. Bring back your resolution and keep us posted.
    RickH

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  9. #9
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    What type of track are you planning on going with?

    Over all I'd suggest you pick up a one left and one right turnout, Make a few cardboard templates and lay them out. If you were using Kato I have photographs building ladder and compound ladder yards..
    Here:
    http://www.railimages.com/gallery/Yard_Design
    ----

  10. #10
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    I wouldn't use a turnout as part of a curve. You will end up with car trucks picking frogs on turnouts. Especially if you attempt to shoe-horn a #4-#5 turnout as a substitute for portion of a curve. PECO is based on European standards for trackwork, and the way I understand, they allow for curved frogs on turnouts. In the US most railroads have staight track through the frogs.
    It's your layout, you can do with it what you want. But spend the $ and time to put the BEST possible track work in the beginning, your trains will run like they should, and stay on the tracks
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