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StevieB

Peco and RTR EM Gauge Track

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It has recently been announced that Peco is to produce RTR EM gauge track for the EM Gauge Society in the form of flexi track and LH and RH B6 turnouts. I’ve no idea of the costs involved, but it must pay for both of the two parties to become involved in this venture. I wonder if this brings the possibility of RTR 21mm gauge track any closer. Surely the first step is setting up a 21mm gauge society.

Stephen

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1 hour ago, StevieB said:

It has recently been announced that Peco is to produce RTR EM gauge track for the EM Gauge Society in the form of flexi track and LH and RH B6 turnouts. I’ve no idea of the costs involved, but it must pay for both of the two parties to become involved in this venture. I wonder if this brings the possibility of RTR 21mm gauge track any closer. Surely the first step is setting up a 21mm gauge society.

Stephen

Peco are a long way behind other manufacturers in terms of EM track and pointwork. 

Reasonably priced EM gauge bullhead flexible track has been available from a number of manufacturers for the last 20-30 years, the lack of ready assembled points are less of an issue in EM & S4 for bullhead track as the railway and modelers tend to build custom built formations to fit the available space.

Its difficult to see the 10-20 people in the world who work in 21mm having the same level of influence on manufacturers as the EM or S4 Societies.

For the average 21mm gauge modeler building/assembling locos and stock and laying track is funner  than sitting on a standards committee🙂, which is why nearly every one of us works to their own personal track and wheel standard. 

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I'm a reluctant 21mm adopter, only for the reasons that I have to be, if that makes sense. I chose 21mm and Code 100, for reliability and ease of use. I've thought about the 21mm thing for a long time, and a standard crossover would be about 4 foot long, a "shorty" about 2. So there's a practical limitation there, even if there were the customer base to support it. 

The other issue around 21mm is the design itself. If something is so much as a mouse hair out, you've failed, and failed spectacularly. 

It does fall better into the 3D printed sphere than the mass manufacturing, bit of allowance for reshaping. 

However, StevieB's suggestion of a 21mm Gauge Society is a great idea. I know Scalefour are the keepers of that particular gate, but it really should be a separate entity that sets practical limits on design etc. 

Just to be clear, I'm personally a big fan of 21mm and would help out in any way I could. 

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8 minutes ago, Glenderg said:

....The other issue around 21mm is the design itself. If something is so much as a mouse hair out, you've failed, and failed spectacularly. ....

I am reminded of Samuel Beckett's thoughts on failure.

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Fine for artistic folks to be prepared to lose some goauche, ink, canvas and time. That is the beauty of art. 

Sadly, none of the above applies to a commercial entity, no matter the desire. Shur the bauld Sambo would be done by now if heart ruled the head...

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On 11/9/2018 at 11:26 AM, StevieB said:

It has recently been announced that Peco is to produce RTR EM gauge track for the EM Gauge Society in the form of flexi track and LH and RH B6 turnouts. I’ve no idea of the costs involved, but it must pay for both of the two parties to become involved in this venture. I wonder if this brings the possibility of RTR 21mm gauge track any closer. Surely the first step is setting up a 21mm gauge society.

Stephen

It looks like an attempt to secure the future of the EM gauge society. The Society have commissioned Peco to manufacture the track, which will be sold to members through the Society store and to the general public at the Societies Expos. Its possible that the society is faced with falling membership as a result of the improvement in the standard of OO gauge rtr models over the past 20 years. 

A leading British wheel manufacturer recently told me that demand for EM wheel sets and axles had fallen considerably and was planning to discontinue supply once stocks were exhausted, rather encouragingly overall demand for wheels and detail parts remains buoyant and he has recently invested in new machinery

It may be that people are content to stick with OO because of the improved running because of improved mechanisms and near universal of NMRA RP25 110 wheel sets compared with what was produced in the 70s & 80s, people who are more concerned about more accurate track and wheel standards are selecting S4 rather than EM. 

I am not sure on the merits of a 21mm Gauge Society, I think an overall society/lobby group similar to the National Model Railroad Association to represent Irish Modellers broad and narrow in all scales, both to advise on standards and provide a repository for information and potentially models and layouts of historic modelling significance.

 

 

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