[modeleng] Re: [modeleng] 3½ versus 5

  • From: David Everett <deverett2003@xxxxxxxxxxx>
  • To: modeleng@xxxxxxxxxxxxx
  • Date: Mon, 26 Sep 2005 12:42:53 +0100 (BST)

Hi Jem

First you must ask yourself why you want to build a loco.  Is it to have as a 
showcase model or
will it be a working engine?  If working will it be on a private track for you 
+ family and
friends or will it be on a club track?  If a club track, will you want to 
engage in public
passenger hauling?  3-1/2" will be very limited in serious passenger hauling 

The limiting factor on what loco you build will be the size of the driving 
wheel you can turn - on
an M10 this will be 7" AS CAST.

So it boils down to whether you want an express passenger type in 3-1/2"G or a 
workhorse type in
5"G.  There is the possibility of NG which would give you a large engine in 
either gauge.

Once you get going with the construction, you will find that 5"G is easier for 
the fitting out
because things are that much bigger and so are easier to hold and get at, 
especially between the
frames.  If you are looking at close to scale, then it it is definitely easier 
in 5"G.  As to the
amount of work, there probably isn't a lot of difference between the two gauges 
so with 5"G you
will end up with a lot more loco for your efforts.

There are also the cost and weight factors to take into consideration.  How 
deep are your pockets
and how agile are you at lifting?  A 5"NG loco will be quite heavy.
I started off in 3-1/2"G and regretted it.

Enough rambling - I won't even start on didgital readouts!  Hope this has given 
you food for



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