Clearance questions

phantom Oct 24, 2015

  1. phantom

    phantom TrainBoard Member

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    Clearance questions.


    In HO what is the idle height clearance for double stack trains? I'm planning a layout that may use helix's.
     
  2. dalebaker

    dalebaker TrainBoard Member

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    Hi Sean,

    The helix at our club was built so it could be adjusted. When I joined we could not run a stack train on it because of clearance issues. We got in and adjusted it one morning to address a couple of spots. We are running double stack cars on it now. The tight spots give us about 1/8" clearance. I would say since its in a helix, a 1/4" would be fine.
     
  3. BoxcabE50

    BoxcabE50 Staff Member TrainBoard Supporter

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    I would agree with the one fourth inch minimum. Also, being in a helix, be certain you can get your hand in there to do any work necessary. Such as grasping a car to re-rail it....
     
  4. phantom

    phantom TrainBoard Member

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    So the measurement from the base of the road bed to the top off the next level should be ? See I'm planning a new layout. I have been modeling in G scale for the last 10 years. My wife has agreed to let me use the spare back bedroom to build an HO layout. So I will still have the BIG G scale layout in the basement. What a wife! Got a special one I do!
     
  5. dalebaker

    dalebaker TrainBoard Member

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    Sean, do you have any double stack cars and containers? If not, let me know and I will set up a unit and measure it for you.
     
  6. phantom

    phantom TrainBoard Member

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    No not yet. I have vary little equipment in HO at this time. I have a 4-8-4 NYC, a gp 38 and a gp 9 and one caboose.
     
  7. John Smith

    John Smith TrainBoard Member

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    From deck to ceiling should be about 6 inches. This gives you 1/2 inch for roadbed and track, 4 and 1/2 inches for double stacked containers in well cars, and about 1 inch for space/spare. Hope this helps! JMS
     
  8. phantom

    phantom TrainBoard Member

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    Yes this dose help. Glad I asked. I was a bit off. Thanks guys!
     
  9. cajon

    cajon TrainBoard Member

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    22' is the maximum height for US RR equipment. Get a scale ruler & measure that height to know if any overhead obstacles are above your rails.
     
  10. retsignalmtr

    retsignalmtr TrainBoard Member

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    I measured my double stack cars from the railtop to the top of the upper container. It comes out to 2-13/16" . so 3" would be ok for the cars. Now you just have to add in the height of the cork or whatever roadbed you use and the height of the track. Probably the total would be 3-1/2 " to 3-3/4".
     
  11. COverton

    COverton TrainBoard Member

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    Always....always....but always....mock it up and measure it. Assumptions and here-say cause a lot of grief, and so do random errors in measurement and in construction. I made a cardinal booboo of that nature on my last late layout. I planned and built what I thought were safe clearances of 3 3/4" to accommodate a Trix HO scale GG1 with pantograph. First tunnel it ran into upon firing up the GG1 after ALL the track and portals were made, including setting the helix clearances, it fouled the pantograph. How the aitch could that have happened?!?! You see, I had no plans at the time to build a catenary, so I failed to appreciate that the unrestrained pantograph was necessarily going to rise to the height permitted by both spring tension and limiters. That came to about 3/8" higher than my minimum clearance. Had I actually gone to the trouble of setting the locomotive on rails and measuring it from rail to the tip of the extended pantograph, I would have saved myself from aggravation and the resultant restriction of how I operate the locomotive from thence forward.
     

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