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Scale tree heights for On30 loggers

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  • Scale tree heights for On30 loggers

    A visitor stopped by the house this past weekend to see my progress. There was carefully worded question concerning the diameter and size of my trees. I have several tree trunks in excess of 3" diameter, with the majority in the 2"-3" range. I have one complete tree that stands over three feet tall and occupies a prominant position on a corner of the layout. The visitor thought these to be way too big. I had to explain that these trees were actually scaled down below the rest of the layout by almost 50%. A true scale tree would actually extend over six feet in actual height on average, with proof over prototypes that were logged that would push the 7' mark in 1/4'' scale. He didn't believe me so I had this photo handy. If anybody tells you your trees are too big, whip this out and show it to them. If you model something other than the Pacific northwest, imagine a live oak at 60' in height. That would be 15" in scale. Old growth pines in the south can grow over a hundred feet tall. Trees are pieces of the layout that boggle the brain when the mind is trying to see in scale. For some reason, living things this size are mentally shrunk in our mental images. The brain wants to see them smaller than they are. Naturally they are often modeled in that way because most people don't take the time to run out and climb one of those big suckers with a tape measure, or chopped one down to see for themselves. Well here's a photo of a group of guys who actually did it.

  • #2
    I have noticed that industries on model railroads tend to be compressed too much. On30 has some of the worse examples. Other lists want small quaint buildings not to overpower small dioramas. If your industry isn't as big as a boxcar, why would it need a railroad. Big trees are a reason to have a railroad. Most forests in the model world resemble a nursery, small puny trees. Industries should be big, trees should be big like real life



    • #3
      You guys make a good point on relative sizes . For example , my HO Cornerstone Blast Furnace that will be part of my steel mill , is almost N Scale .There are articles on converting it to HO but it is a lot of work .If you didn't tell anyone , the furnace would look OK , but for a true size , nobody makes one ....too big I guess .

      My Edmund Fitzgerald ore carrier is 6 1/2 feet long and should be 8 1/2 feet ( 729 foot ship )

      Like you say , I guess we mentally shrink things .



      • #4
        I have some of Rusty's Stumps. These will be a great addition to my On30 diorama.