I haven't tried running EM profile wheels on P4 track, so I can only take the author of the articles advice at face value.
I think the issue started with intermittent derailments when the authors grand children were visiting, similar problems occur on a high proportion of model railways regardless of gauge or standards when there are visitors about.
Visually there is little difference between 21mm point and crossing work laid to EM or P4 standards, the plain track will look exactly the same. The only real difference is that flangeways are 0.32-0.35mm narrower in P4 than EM not exactly noticeable at normal viewing distance.
Building large complex 21mm gauge layout in a short space of time is basically out of the question unless you are a Tony Miles that has the ability to recruit and manage a team of to build and operate a large layout.
I am not sure if the S4 Society currently supply track gauges and axles suitable for 21mm gauge.
Very good John! The bottom line appears to be that one can build track to 21mm P4 standards, but use EM section wheels and it works. Is that right?
The article in MRJ was written by a modeller who had built a large railway which suffered from persistent derailments. Apparently this is a relatively common problem at exhibitions which leads to complaints about unreliability, the need for constant fettling, etc. Needless to say there has been some debate on the subject.
In my opinion this is a matter of horses for courses. Obviously it is pleasing to build a railway as accurately as possible and to develop skills as one goes along, but on the other hand few people have the luxury of being able to spend lots of time on their hobby, so a compromise has to be made. The mind's eye is a wonderful help for this, provided one doesn't take any close-up photographs which unfortunately the/my mind's eye refuses to accept. So my own conclusion so far is that I would like to build railway models as accurately as possible, within my limitations of time and skill, but also concentrating on what is visually important (obviously the thing has to work well).
I also throw in the idea that for any prototype there are a number of things that really characterise it in a model, which are probably subjective to each modeller. So a modeller should try to get these details right, while many other aspects may be compromised with minimal effect. For me big clunky wheels, rods, etc, ruin the effect, so finer running gear is highly desirable.
I would like to build in 21mm gauge and make use of finescale track to achieve that delicate look. The use of EM wheels seems to be a great compromise, providing slender wheels with a much greater chance of them staying on the track. The S4 society have all the gauges needed for track and wheel set construction to P4 standards, including 21mm gauge. Maybe better not to mention that EM wheels might be used?
I am an early to mid 80s' man up to Mk 3 era so am really interested.
Haven't ordered yet as was waiting to decide what to do so I will definitely buy 2 plough in CIE finish.
Likewise with the Tara's I have held off. Not so much by the colour but by the roof.