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The Irish N-gauge debate

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I'm at a point where my new shed is nearing completion. External landscaping and internal second fixing almost complete. Before I start thinking any more about layout scheme I wanted to check out the viability of N gauge in Irish. I was highly impressed with Gerry Byrne's 'Llangollen' at Enniskillen but does it work with Irish layouts?

 

I'm not debating the track dimensions, purely space available.

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It works if you're obviously willing to scratchbuild and kitbash everything required for the layout of course. Propriety track always looks a bit chunky to me, especially the height of the rails, but 2mm finescale looks very nice.

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. . . I wanted to check out the viability of N gauge in Irish. I was highly impressed with Gerry Byrne's 'Llangollen' at Enniskillen but does it work with Irish layouts?

 

Hi Tony. One of the reasons Gerry's superb layout works so well is the availability of quality N gauge RTR BR Outline locos and rolling stock. There are no RTR Irish locos or rolling stock for N gauge, so it would need resprays of British outline N gauge models, or if diesel era possibly 3D bodies to put on modified BR chassis, or adapted N gauge kits. If you are going for steam era than it will be easier for you to convert British outline RTR stock. For modern era there are suppliers of vinyl body transfers as an alternative to repainting. Noel

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I've often thought about doing an N gauge Irish layout. Surely British outline professionally repainted would be quite acceptable given the scale.

Patriot Class, Fowlers, 08 diesel.

 

I have a shapeways body shell for a 141 that looks reasonable.

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2mm fine scale might work well. The Society now produces flexitrack and easy to make points, while there are replacement wheel sets which can be fitted in a matter of minutes to diesels.

We're 3D printing to come up with some loco bodies, then considerable potential would be possible. The extra half millimetre of 2FS would make a different too, especially with correct profile rail.

Broad gauge should be 10.5mm, which works out at only about 1mm wider, compared to 4.5mm if using 00 track in 4mm scale.

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I'm at a point where my new shed is nearing completion. External landscaping and internal second fixing almost complete. Before I start thinking any more about layout scheme I wanted to check out the viability of N gauge in Irish. I was highly impressed with Gerry Byrne's 'Llangollen' at Enniskillen but does it work with Irish layouts?

 

I'm not debating the track dimensions, purely space available.

 

Westy does a range of 2mm transfers for Irish outline. UK outline 4-wheel goods should be easy enough to convert. ElectraRailwayGraphics do adhesive vinyl sides to convert UK outline Mk 1,2 3 and 4 coaches to Irish outline: http://www.electrarailwaygraphics.co.uk/ (see International section). Their website mentions a link to Shapeways.com to obtain the Class 201 body which fits a Graham Farish Class 66 chassis. https://www.shapeways.com/search?q=irish&type= list 121, 141, cement bubbles/bogies etc. Alphagraphix do a range of coloured card kits which could be reduced by 50% by photocopying and built up on plasticard etc Some UK outline buildings may suit with small changes....

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Tony, given the size of your shed, N gauge would open up many more possibilities.

 

For Omagh, you'll be probably limited to repainted British vans and wooden open wagons. If someone might 3D print a CIE "H" van or two, they would suit. There are some British wagon types that can approximate the GNR / UTA prototypes, given a decent repainted.

 

There are several 0.6.0 locos (from memory, I think at least one LNER type) which could do as UG or D class goods locos. A stanier LMS (not BR) 2.6.4T might approximate as a "Jeep".

 

That leaves AEC railcars....maybe a one-off scratchbuild project. Steam could haul old wooden bodied British coaches of LMS origin, masquerading as ex-NCC stock in UTA livery.

 

Way more opportunities.

Edited by jhb171achill

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There are plenty of Irish N gauge 3D models available on shapeways:

 

A Class loco https://www.shapeways.com/product/3FN5T8J96/n-scale-irish-railways-a-class?optionId=544872

C Class loco https://www.shapeways.com/product/JJ9BRY73C/cie-class-c201-n-scale?optionId=384093

071 Class loco https://www.shapeways.com/product/D4WZNFH5D/cie-class-071-n-scale?optionId=407067

141/181 Class loco https://www.shapeways.com/product/GNXBTYWKN/cie-class-141-181-locomotive-n-scale?optionId=392047

201 Class loco https://www.shapeways.com/product/BEJBHYWTD/ie-class-201-locomotive-n-scale?optionId=337680

 

Cement Bubble https://www.shapeways.com/product/8CVL8ULD4/cie-bulk-quot-bubble-quot-cement-tank-n-scale?optionId=335447

Cement Bubble 6 pack https://www.shapeways.com/product/4KTMPGAX2/6-pack-cie-bulk-quot-bubble-quot-cement-tank-n-scale?optionId=335507

Bogie Cement https://www.shapeways.com/product/DKCS2QAJP/n-scale-irish-bogie-cement-tank?optionId=522874

Double Beet Wagon https://www.shapeways.com/product/KPMG7FZFB/cie-beet-wagon-n-scale?optionId=336578

Bulleid open Wagon https://www.shapeways.com/product/H9T89G9HX/cie-bullied-open-wagon-n-scale?optionId=351827

Park Royal Coach https://www.shapeways.com/product/95EE2GWBC/n-scale-irish-railways-park-royal-suburban-coach?optionId=57770903

Bogie Fertiliser https://www.shapeways.com/product/S2AMM4YDU/irish-railways-fertilizer-wagon-n-scale?optionId=63402488

Craven Coach https://www.shapeways.com/product/2ZKCS2ASA/cie-cravens-built-coach-n-scale?optionId=341103

Craven Coach https://www.shapeways.com/product/P4V4YPTSE/cravens-built-coach-n-scale-without-base-plate?optionId=336408

Dutch GSV https://www.shapeways.com/product/MAZMU22R6/n-scale-werkspoor-dundalk-gen-van?optionId=517373

 

Irish Bogies https://www.shapeways.com/product/2DD4HLVFK/1-pair-of-n-scale-standard-irish-railway-bogies?optionId=353254

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It boils down to this Tony - if you want prototype fidelity and slow speed shunting 4mm, even 7mm is where you need to be at. Plenty stock available, all sorts of track permutations abound, and relatively easy to scratchbuild buildings in 4mm.

 

But, if you want to replicate something that means so much and just "play trains" with a squinted eye, as repainted graham farish lookalikes spin around, then N gauge might be the way to go.

 

Answer that conundrum first, then worry about finessing shapeways toothpaste prints, P4 back-to-back gauges, or any of the more quarrelsome issues of gauge/scale. Figure out what you want out of this on a wet saturday evening, with a beverage of choice when it's all done and dusted - then proceed.

 

"Lay track in haste, repent at leisure"

 

R.

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Glenderg, as my posting suggests, the thread is simply teasing out the possibilities. Eyesight may not be able to cope with N - it's hard enough to put the single lever braking lever on a GN wagon!

 

To replicate the Goods Yard at Omagh in 4mm scale alone, would require a space of 1700mm long.

Edited by TonyMcGartland

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To replicate the Goods Yard at Omagh in 4mm scale alone, would require a space of 1700mm long.
1700mm is about 5½ feet - is there a digit missing Tony?

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yeah, 5'7" ish isn't really enough to do omagh justice in 4mm.

 

Can you post an ordance survey map or similar that can be scaled from, see how big it really is?

 

Anyway, question I asked is do you want to play trains or shunt wagons on a scale diorama?

 

R.

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Yeah, I see where you're coming from. The Goods Yard measures about 1700mm when scaled, out to the first exit point of the yard. This would allow only shunting, to allow any decent trains running I would have to take certain aspects of the Omagh track plan and use modellers licence to create free movement. I'm considering something more freelance with aspects of Omagh because its an impossible shape on plan.

 

The attached is Omagh passenger station with Goods Yard

Omagh 1-2500.jpg

Edited by TonyMcGartland

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I have modeled in N scale for nearly 40 years and seem to have had more success in completing layouts in N then in the larger scales. I initially started in N out of frustration with trying to squeeze a OO gauge layout into an 8X6 box room, together with problems with less than satisfactory running with contemporary OO gauge locos and my beginners efforts at scratch/kitbashing Irish locos and rolling stock.

 

Adapting N allowed me to concentrate on modelling the railway with nice sweeping curves and without too much compression of station layouts, eventually building an end to end layout with a terminus and a small junction station in an 11X11 bedroom with an operating sequence based on the Mayo Line during the transition from loose coupled to liner working. I was able to run 5-6 coach passenger trains double headed by B121 Diesels, a Night Mail and a 001 hauled goods loading to 15 wagons. BR also had running powers with a Minitrix Britannia, a Peco Jubilee & a Farish Black 5 and a rake of blood and custard coaches.

 

I eventually getting round to modifying Atlas & Arnold diesels to look like CIE locos and modifying freight rolling stock, the running quality of Arnold, Atlas and Minitrix locos were far superior to contemporary OO gauge.

 

attachment.php?attachmentid=28824&stc=1attachment.php?attachmentid=28825&stc=1

The terminus was on a 7' long baseboard and would have taken a space of 14' in OO, minimum radius curves were 18" which looks reasonable in N

 

The N gauge was dismantled following a house move I later started modeling in American N Scale to get something running quickly after moving to the UK in the late 80s though I did not get round to building a layout until I returned to Ireland nearly 10 years later, though I did improve my skill in assembling brass and whitemetal kits ;)

 

Atlas, Kato and Proto 2000 locos are extremely smooth running with twin flywheel drive and good slow running characteristics. I understand that the Valve Design Bo Bo & 071/101 bodies are designed to fit on Proto 2000 chassis

 

attachment.php?attachmentid=28826&stc=1attachment.php?attachmentid=28827&stc=1

 

True to form the American layout was dismantled & re-erected after I moved to New Zealand before being dismantled and put into storage following a house move 10 years ago.

The trains are on a yard built on 2X4' X 1' wide modules track is Peco Code 55

Duncormick.jpg

121s at Duncormick.jpg

my pictures back up file 2004 400.jpg

my pictures back up file 2004 401.jpg

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I have been threatening to do an n-gauge layout for a long time, but with all of the rtr stuff out there now in OO I’ve decided to stick with that. Here is something that might be useful for anyone thinking of going down this route. I been messing about with this for years now, but I don’t think I have the skill set or the patience to see these conversations through.

C19921DB-D6B9-4929-9FEF-8BEB7E209810.jpg

 

1. Shapeways 201. Class 66 seems to be a good match.

2. Shapeways C Class and 121s. Atlas switchers alco s2 seem to be a good fit. Steps at each end would need to come off, and couplers attached. Maybe to bogies?

3. Shapeways A class. This is a class 31 frame sitting under the shapeways body. I’ve filed the motor frame back as much as I can but it’s still about 8mm too long. I think there is 4mm that can be taken from each bogie so it probably can be made work.

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It boils down to this Tony - if you want prototype fidelity and slow speed shunting 4mm, even 7mm is where you need to be at. Plenty stock available, all sorts of track permutations abound, and relatively easy to scratchbuild buildings in 4mm.

 

But, if you want to replicate something that means so much and just "play trains" with a squinted eye, as repainted graham farish lookalikes spin around, then N gauge might be the way to go.

 

Answer that conundrum first, then worry about finessing shapeways toothpaste prints, P4 back-to-back gauges, or any of the more quarrelsome issues of gauge/scale. Figure out what you want out of this on a wet saturday evening, with a beverage of choice when it's all done and dusted - then proceed.

 

"Lay track in haste, repent at leisure"

 

R.

 

I wouldn't agree with you there Richie, I have built a small N gauge American layout with shunting and continuous running in mind. I can run trains very slowly for shunting, I never had a problem with them stalling at slow speeds.

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I have been threatening to do an n-gauge layout for a long time, but with all of the rtr stuff out there now in OO I’ve decided to stick with that. Here is something that might be useful for anyone thinking of going down this route. I been messing about with this for years now, but I don’t think I have the skill set or the patience to see these conversations through.

attachment.php?attachmentid=28828&stc=1

 

1. Shapeways 201. Class 66 seems to be a good match.

2. Shapeways C Class and 121s. Atlas switchers alco s2 seem to be a good fit. Steps at each end would need to come off, and couplers attached. Maybe to bogies?

3. Shapeways A class. This is a class 31 frame sitting under the shapeways body. I’ve filed the motor frame back as much as I can but it’s still about 8mm too long. I think there is 4mm that can be taken from each bogie so it probably can be made work.

 

The Atlas RSD 4 /5 might be a better option than the Class 31 for motorising an A Class. Atlas locos have a very good reputation in terms reliability and slow running quality, the RSD 4-5 had similar trucks with an un-equal wheelbase to the A Class, Being to a smaller scale 1:160 compared with the British 1:148 it should be easier fit the Atlas chassis in the Shapeways A Class body.

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I have had to compromise some space in the new shed. Lawnmower, tools, bicycle and workshop table. Do I need another shed? (Joke)

 

Looking at the space available to comfortably have everything combined under one roof, it looks like either a 00 L-shape giving me about 2.5metres and 1.6metres lengths of running track combined to make a 4.1metre end-to-end 00 layout. Otherwise its an N-gauge continuous double rail loop giving me endless hours of fun that can be built in sections and possibly brought to exhibitions?

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Thank goodness my wife, has more money than sense 'cos she's just offered to buy me one of these. So out goes my toolbox, lawnmower and oddball tools out out my new shed!

 

6ffa5bb9-7dfb-41fd-b86f-e43af81cf5bb.jpg

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Thank goodness my wife, has more money than sense 'cos she's just offered to buy me one of these. So out goes my toolbox, lawnmower and oddball tools out out my new shed!

 

[ATTACH=CONFIG]28859[/ATTACH]

Have you considered that she wanted to buy this, needed to give you a motivation to approve the purchase and now you 'owe her one' as a result? PIMP

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Well actually, I'm paying for it now! I saw her browsing the 'net later in the day, she's looking at our next Cruise destination, St. Petersburg. I told her 'Don't worry about the storage box, i'll pay for it, if you're paying for the cruise'!

  • Funny 1

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I have had to compromise some space in the new shed. Lawnmower, tools, bicycle and workshop table. Do I need another shed? (Joke)

 

Looking at the space available to comfortably have everything combined under one roof, it looks like either a 00 L-shape giving me about 2.5metres and 1.6metres lengths of running track combined to make a 4.1metre end-to-end 00 layout. Otherwise its an N-gauge continuous double rail loop giving me endless hours of fun that can be built in sections and possibly brought to exhibitions?

 

Tony, not too many N-gauge Irish layouts on the exhibition circuit! Why not have a go and make this your niche? I will have my Cynwyd in N at the SDMRC Show and perhaps we could chat some more then.

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Tony, not too many N-gauge Irish layouts on the exhibition circuit! Why not have a go and make this your niche? I will have my Cynwyd in N at the SDMRC Show and perhaps we could chat some more then.

 

I really am tempted at the moment. There is a growing availability of 4mm Irish kits and RTR, wouldn't it be nice to see some growth in N.

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I have to say that after seeing those body kits, I too am tempted to change tack completely.

 

Up to now, since moving into this house a few years ago, it's a "town house" not geared towards layouts. I could have taken Tony McGartland's model and built a shed, and I have room for one, but we have two very nice olive trees which - despite Irish climate - are doing very well. As I type this, Ophelia is trying her best to bend them sideways, but they're resisting!

 

My attic is not conducive to layouts at all, although I'm going to have another look at it. Some sort of portable thing is another possibility - this might allow me to exhibit it too. My past interests were Austrian 009 and of course Irish 00. I still have a very nice collection of OBB (and German) narrow gauge stuff which I am loth to part with, though in order to fund anything new I would need to. I have 800 (currently undergoing an extremely lengthy necessary alteration), a very nice SSM J15, and a Murphy 141. 800 is goig nowhere, but a display cawe and occasional outing on a friend's layout.

 

So, do I try to pursue what would be a very small fiddle yard thing in 00, or maybe something slightly more ambitious in N? Recent posts have got me thinking. I'm spending this stormy day actually sketching out possibilities - I hadn't realised that things like Park Royal and Craven bodies were available, as well as A, C & 141's, which would be my area of interest.

 

It would be interesting to know if any member has a decent set of these Shapeways things and what they look like complete.

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JB, believe me! If I move to N I will open all sorts of possibilities of layouts with trains running long trains full of wagons. If I stick with 00 I can build end-to-end shunting layouts or a layout that runs round my shed like something out of an American Christmas movie. I don't want that. I want a small compact layout, taking in as much of Omagh as possible. I have to build everything in 00, so why not in N. Think about it, I am.

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