Advice sought on track types

Advice sought on track types

Postby ozman2009 » Tue Oct 11, 2011 10:23 pm

Hello all

I am currently into Z scale, with an 8' by 3' apartment layout (spare bedoom) that is like most others - a WIP. Another WIP is partly arthritic fingers. The time will come when Z scale is gong to be too small and so I have started to look at alternatives. N scale offers a huge choice of models, accessories etc, but I'd only be gaining 35% in size. HO is simply too big to be practical in my space. There's always HOm or HOe, but the models in those two scales tend to be on the pricey side. In any case the accessories are still HO scale.

TT looks like a good compromise, being 85% bigger. From my research so far I can see that there's a reasonable range of locos, wagons, accessories etc, and reasonably priced for the most part. What I'd like to find out more about are the options for track. Let me state here that I am a "take it out of the box, put it together and run it" type of modeller. I've been in the workforce for 45 years and don't want to work too much at my hobby.

The prototype I have in mind is a secondary line or branch in Saxony or Thuringia (I have Saxon ancestors and Thuringia is scenic without being twee). The Austrian Tyrol is another possibility. The layout would not necessarily represent an actual location - I am a big fan of the impressionist style of art. As for period, it would be Era 3 or 4.

Over to you....
Gary
Sydney, Australia
"Never let the prototype get in the way of a good layout".
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Re: Advice sought on track types

Postby Arseny » Wed Oct 12, 2011 4:54 am

Welcome Gary!
I think Saxony or Thuringia is a good choice. TT is most popular in East Germany (former GDR)
To say more, Tillig is a Saxonian company.
There are a lot of German TT-stuff, especially for the DR (German Railways in East Germany)
You can find old BTTB models, and new ones (Tillig, Roco and so on).

If you will buy something on Ebay, try German ebay - ebay.de instead of ebay.com, you'll find a lot of TT-stuff there.
(If you have Saxon ancestors, you must know German a little? ;) )

As for track types: there is not a great variety.
Most popular is Tillig. There are ready-to-use straight tracks and curves available, and also flex ones.
Minimum radius is 267 mm, but it is suitable only for short locomotives and 2-axle wagons - for industrial line, for example.
Most popular radius is 310 mm; most long locomotives need minimum 310 mm radius
353-mm and 396-mm radius curves are also available
There are trucks on the roadbed available, if you want to buid railroad on the floor in the room.
Different types of sleepers (ties) are available too - "wooden", "steel", "concrete" ones.

If you choose Tillig, do not take switches in kit! They are very hard to assemble and can crack.
Only ready-to-use switches!

Also you can use Krueger-TT tracks. They are also known as "TT-model" in Russia (Russian "TT-model" company is a joint venture with Krueger).
http://www.tt-models.spb.ru/pro.htm
Krueger's curves are more gentle, with bigger radiuses. They are 330-mm and 376-mm.

Tillig rails are Code 83, while Krueger's ones are Code 70

Also Kuehn announced their own track system, but it is very rare.
Kuehn's curves are 321-mm and 365-mm radius.
http://www.kuehn-modell.de/gleissystem.html

Also you can find BTTB-type "U-form" tracks, but I do not recommend you to use it. They are oxidizing very quickly.
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Re: Advice sought on track types

Postby Zs12 » Wed Oct 12, 2011 5:52 am

Arseny wrote:If you choose Tillig, do not take switches in kit! They are very hard to assemble and can crack.
Only ready-to-use switches!

I would exclude the EW2 and EW2 kits, they're quite simple and easy to build.
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Re: Advice sought on track types

Postby railtwister » Wed Oct 12, 2011 9:33 am

Hello Gary,

If you are really a serious "take it out of the box" kind of guy, don't overlook the Tillig bedding track which comes with a molded plastic roadbed/ballast base, similar to Kato's N and HO scale Unitrack. More than similar actually, since it is manufactured under Kato's license, and the unique, replaceable rail joiners are actually interchangeable with Kato's Unijoiners and useable for all three scales (HO, TT, & N). The only downside is that the track at this point is rather limited in variety of curve radii and degree segments produced, and like most things TT, availability is also rather limited. In the USA, we must order it from Europe because there are no American importers/distributors who are willing to stock it due to the limited demand for TT products here.

Regards,
Bill in FL
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Re: Advice sought on track types

Postby ConducTTor » Wed Oct 12, 2011 10:22 am

railtwister wrote:..... In the USA, we must order it from Europe because there are no American importers/distributors who are willing to stock it due to the limited demand for TT products here....


While we are limited in what gets imported, the above statement is not true. http://www.eurotrainhobby.com/
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Re: Advice sought on track types

Postby CSD » Wed Oct 12, 2011 11:52 am

... and there are many stores in Europe that make it easy to order it yourself.
Mark
//S
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Re: Advice sought on track types

Postby ConducTTor » Wed Oct 12, 2011 12:28 pm

^^^ yup. The point is, getting rolling stock, track, parts, whatever, is not a problem.
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Re: Advice sought on track types

Postby railtwister » Wed Oct 12, 2011 3:08 pm

ConducTTor wrote:
railtwister wrote:..... In the USA, we must order it from Europe because there are no American importers/distributors who are willing to stock it due to the limited demand for TT products here....


While we are limited in what gets imported, the above statement is not true. http://www.eurotrainhobby.com/



Alex,

I stand corrected, as I see George has apparently restocked some of the Tillig bedding track. The last time I ordered from ETH a few months ago, they told me they did not have the bedding track pieces I needed on hand, and that they would special order the track pieces I wanted, but it would take up to 3 months to arrive, because any special order would be shipped from Europe to the USA along with their regular orders. I also checked with Reynaud's, and they told me that ETH orders went through them, and were shipped from Europe along with their orders, because they are the exclusive importer for Tillig products in the USA. They said that they don't stock any TT scale on hand, so anything I wanted, I must order through ETH. That sounded a bit too complicated for me (I am sometimes impatient), so I ordered what I needed from Modelibahnwelt 24 in Germany. Special ordering is quite different from stocking items on hand, hence my comments above. Perhaps I should have prefaced my statement with "In order to get it in a reasonable time".

I always check the ETH website first to see if what I'm looking for is in stock there before I will order anything from overseas, because the shipping from Germany is very expensive, even for small items that could fit into a padded envelope, and adds at least a week to 10 days to the order compared to getting it from within the USA. But, if it's not in stock domestically, there are not a lot of options.

Bill in FL
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Re: Advice sought on track types

Postby ConducTTor » Wed Oct 12, 2011 3:12 pm

Bill that's true. I'm just saying that checking ETH first is good - if they have what you're looking for, you get it in 3-4 days and don't get killed on shipping. If not, Europe it is.....
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Re: Advice sought on track types

Postby Arseny » Wed Oct 12, 2011 3:45 pm

Try to ask them about TT-model stuff, I mean trucks.
Maybe they could order it directly from TT-model and it would be faster?
(But if so remember that TT-model rails are Code 70, while the Tillig rails are Code 83)
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