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How Much Should Rolling Stock Weigh

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  • How Much Should Rolling Stock Weigh

    The caption says it all:

    "How much should a piece of 0N30 rolling stock weigh?" When adding weight, when is enough is enough?

    "How about locomotives?"
    Tom M.

  • #2
    Well ...You old hands would know more about this than me....but, IMO, there is a strong possibility of adding "too mucgh" weight.

    What I mean, is, what is the difference if you add the weight to the cars or the engine? You still are increasing the load on the engine. If you add 2 Oz weight to the loco, isn't that the same as it pulling that much weight in a couple cars?

    I realise that adding some weight will stabilize some cars and help them roll better....Oh well.....Just my 2 cents anyway.....

    The Geezer

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    • #3
      Tom,

      My general rule of thumb has been to leave the Bachmann stuff alone as it already seams to be heavy enough. Anything I scratch build or most resin kits need to have a little weight added to help keep them on the tracks. I would at least use the NMRA HO standards of 1 once for the car plus 1/2 ounce per actual inch of car length.

      ON3 standards are 1-1/2 oz per car plus 3/4 oz per actual inch of the car length.

      JMO - maybe split the difference.

      For engines the only one I have weighted down is the Mighty Midget and I added close to 3 onces to it so it would stay in contact with the rails and have some traction.

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      • #4
        Here is an information PDF; http://www.nmra.org/standards/sandrp/pdf/rp-20_1.pdf same as what the guys are saying above.


        Louis L&R Western Railroad
        Pacific Northwest Logging in the East Coast

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        • #5
          All in all, wouldn't adding weight decrease the number of cars

          (length of train) you could normally pull?

          The Geezer

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          • #6
            Some of the ones I am building seem a little light. I'll check them out against the standards.

            Guess I need to hit the boxing days sales and buy a small scale. ( NOT today )

            Are the Bachmann Porters heavy enough?
            Tom M.

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            • #7
              Small scale: Tom - I got one from the post office for less than $30.

              It is a really nice digital scale that will work on AC or battery.

              It gives pounds, ounces & fractions thereof.

              Just a suggestion -

              Geezer

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              • #8
                Geezer,

                Yes it will reduce the number of cars you can pull but they will stay on the tracks.

                Tom,

                I have not had trouble with weight in my Porters. The boilers are made of cast metal. If you do add weight to the 0-4-0 add it carefully to balance the added weight evenly from front to back or you may have issues that you did not start with.

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                • #9
                  Tom

                  My understanding that main reason for adding weight to car is to have all the cars the same weight so you do not have real heavy car on the back of a train and a light car between the engine and the heavy car.In a sharp curve the light car will derail every time. Back when I had an HO scale layout I had this problem until went through my rolling stock and weighted them all the same.This also happened on the full size railroads in many timetables there is a note about placing empty flats on the rear of a train to prevent derailing in curves.As for a locomotive you have to find a balance between weight and traction.I plan to follow NMRA HO Standards.For whats it worth my 2 cents.

                  Alan Ashworth
                  Alan Ashworth

                  Down South

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                  • #10
                    Guys,

                    Thanks for the info ... I'll try and follow the NMRA as I don't need to re-invent the wheel ..
                    Tom M.

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                    • #11
                      Alan, interesting insight. Thanks for that input. Since I have such short consists and I am enamored with realistic slow operation I lean towards adding as much weight as I can. Not sure if this is sensible or in fact, not recommended.

                      Arthur
                      Arthur

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