O gauge 2 rail? | O Gauge Forum (2024)

keithb
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O gauge 2 rail?Nov 23, 2023 22:12:21 GMT

Post by keithb on Nov 23, 2023 22:12:21 GMT

I saw a video today of a O gauge 2 rail layout. I never heard of that. How does it work? I googled but didn't figure it out.

Thanks

rtraincollector
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O gauge 2 rail?Nov 23, 2023 23:20:18 GMTkeithb likes this

Post by rtraincollector on Nov 23, 2023 23:20:18 GMT

O 2 rail is O scale. There is a differencesin size. Not a lot but noticeable

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harborbelt70
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O gauge 2 rail?Nov 23, 2023 23:52:59 GMTkeithb likes this

Post by harborbelt70 on Nov 23, 2023 23:52:59 GMT

That would be a DC rather than AC powered layout. It means you can use DCC control which offers more prototypicalsound than 3rail O gauge and better control of things like lighting effects but wiring is certainly more complicated because of polarity. 2rail is not my thing and those who use it are generally aiming for bigger and morerealisticlayouts. As RT has pointed out the cars and engines are closer to true 1/48 scale but from the outside it is not noticeable unless you are fussy. Inside of passenger cars there is asignificant difference but that probably only matters to the likes of me.

Last Edit: Nov 23, 2023 23:55:51 GMT by harborbelt70

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At Seneca Street Station.

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steveoncattailcreek
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O gauge 2 rail?Nov 25, 2023 3:56:52 GMTharborbelt70 and ron045 like this

Post by steveoncattailcreek on Nov 25, 2023 3:56:52 GMT

. . . and don't forget battery powered deadrail. Rather than using the rails to power and control the engine, the engine is self-powered and controlled by Bluetooth or other RC.

Menards just came out with what amounts to a cute deadrail set, with two battery powered track inspection vehicles, one with manual switch and one with a handheld controller, both designed to run on traditional three rail track (as provided with the set), or two rail O gauge track.

firewood
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"Nice try, Lao Che!"

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O gauge 2 rail?Nov 25, 2023 4:54:34 GMTCountry Joe, dennym57, and 1 more like this

Post by firewood on Nov 25, 2023 4:54:34 GMT

I was an O Gauge 2-railer for quite a long time until the 3-rail bug set in. I had some 1:43 British models and a couple of shelf-switcher end-to-end layouts. I laid my own track and used regular 12 volt Dc just like the HO guys as I only had small, light locomotives. I still have a few items plus some of the Atlas/AHM O scale stuff from the 70s. The Plymouth switchers and EMD F9s were popular pieces with many modelers. The video link shows the Plymouth units - they were hefty little beasts.

Dave


keithb
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O gauge 2 rail?Nov 25, 2023 14:00:03 GMTCountry Joe, firewood, and 2 more like this

Post by healey36 on Nov 25, 2023 14:00:03 GMT

I'm a member of a 2-rail operating group in south-central Pennsylvania. We get together once a month to operate the 2-rail layouts of various members. The 2-rail scale world is quite different from that of 3-rail O-gauge. Everything in their world is highly accurate in terms of scale, and they typically operate their layouts in a prototypical fashion, i.e. train-orders, schedules, speeds, consist composition, etc. I've had more than one good-natured butt-kicking for operating transgressions, such as failing to include a boxcar between the locomotive and a string of loaded tank cars when making up an outgoing train. It can be stressful, but always funO gauge 2 rail? | O Gauge Forum (48)

firewood
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"Nice try, Lao Che!"

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O gauge 2 rail?Nov 26, 2023 3:55:39 GMTdennym57 likes this

Post by firewood on Nov 26, 2023 3:55:39 GMT

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Nov 25, 2023 10:04:58 GMT keithb said:

Thanks for all the education on 2 rail.

No worries - we're glad to help.
All the different rail/control systems are starting to merge into remote control units with steady AC voltage to the track, but once things were different.
The old school stuff I'm much more familiar with was usually AC power for 3-rail and 2-rail was DC.
2-rail DC is positive to one rail and negative on the other, reversible by a simple switch at the transformer.
3-rail AC is/was hot to the center rail and return through the outside rails which are bonded together.
One advantage in toy train 3-rail is letting the kids lay track wherever across the carpet and not having reverse-track short-circuits that 2-rail would have - the two conductors are always separated. The old tinplate toys were simply built with an insulated center pickup and grounded through the metal body and wheels - 2-rail requires insulated wheels or axles.

The older 3-rail universal motors have wire-wound fields and armatures - they need a reversing switch on the locomotive that flips power to both the armature and field windings. DC motors with permanent magnets only needed a reversing switch at the throttle.

We could open several more cans of worms like 2-rail AC, 3-rail DC.... O gauge 2 rail? | O Gauge Forum (56)

Dave

Last Edit: Nov 26, 2023 3:57:27 GMT by firewood

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O gauge 2 rail?Dec 27, 2023 13:41:36 GMTfirewood likes this

Post by ron045 on Dec 27, 2023 13:41:36 GMT

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Nov 25, 2023 14:00:03 GMT healey36 said:

I'm a member of a 2-rail operating group in south-central Pennsylvania. We get together once a month to operate the 2-rail layouts of various members. The 2-rail scale world is quite different from that of 3-rail O-gauge. Everything in their world is highly accurate in terms of scale, and they typically operate their layouts in a prototypical fashion, i.e. train-orders, schedules, speeds, consist composition, etc. I've had more than one good-natured butt-kicking for operating transgressions, such as failing to include a boxcar between the locomotive and a string of loaded tank cars when making up an outgoing train. It can be stressful, but always funO gauge 2 rail? | O Gauge Forum (63)

Where is this? I'm in Carlisle. Is this group open to new members?

Ron

I'd rather be lucky than good.

healey36
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O gauge 2 rail?Dec 27, 2023 13:49:00 GMT

Post by healey36 on Dec 27, 2023 13:49:00 GMT

Gettysburg-Hanover-Westminster-Frederick-Mt. Airy-Other...it rotates around. I don't know if they'd have interest in new "members" (it's a rather informal group), as operating sessions occasionally get pretty crowded. I can ask next time I see them.

Last Edit: Dec 27, 2023 13:56:19 GMT by healey36

rtraincollector
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O gauge 2 rail?Dec 27, 2023 14:39:50 GMTfirewood likes this

Post by rtraincollector on Dec 27, 2023 14:39:50 GMT

I had some Lima 2 rail O scale passenger cars. I really liked them, they where the first passenger cars I ever saw withinteriors. I bought my first set of them around 1977.

This will take you to over 900 train pictures
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O gauge 2 rail? | O Gauge Forum (2024)

FAQs

How far apart are the rails on an O gauge track? ›

O gauge model railroad tracks typically have their rails spaced 1.25 in (31.75 mm) apart with the United States National Model Railroad Association (NMRA) standard allowing spacings between 31.75 mm and 32.64 mm.

Why does O gauge have 3 rails? ›

The use of a third rail in rail transport modelling is a technique that was once applied, in order to facilitate easier wiring. Early O gauge track pieces. All metal, with a small fibre insulating washer beneath each central rail chair.

What does 2 rail mean? ›

The terms double and triple rails simply refer to the number of horizontal rails on a split rail fence. In general, you can have a double or a triple rail. This means you have two or three horizontal pieces of wood along the rail ranch fencing.

What is the narrow gauge on the O gauge track? ›

Staying with this scale, a narrow gauge train will need narrower tracks to run on (just like in real life). These model tracks are called On30 tracks and have the same gauge as 00/H0 track (the difference being that On30 track has different sleeper spacing so they appear closer to narrow gauge tracks aesthetically).

What is the spacing for 0 gauge track? ›

Note: The Guild Standard track centre distances are 80mm between main lines and 90mm between sidings. Additional spacing may be necessary on curves, refer to Part 2, Section 1.3.

What is the standard distance between rails? ›

How wide are railroad tracks? The US standard railroad gauge is 4 feet, 8.5 inches (Gauge means width between the two rails). The U.S. federal safety standards allow the standard gauge to vary from 4 ft 8 in (1,420 mm) to 4 ft 9 1⁄2 in (1,460 mm) for operation up to 60 mph (97 km/h).

What is the difference between o scale 2 rail and 3 rail? ›

In 2 rail system one track is positive while the other is the return. there are advantages and disadvantages in both systems. In 3 rail, while the centre track or stud looks unreal, there is no problem with a return loop (while in 2 track, sectioning is required).

Are all O gauge trains the same? ›

First thing: Scale and gauge are two different things entirely. All O gauge equipment runs on track 1.25" in gauge, but not all of the equipment is the same size... O scale (1:48): Pretty simple and straightforward. 1/4" = 1 foot.

What gauge is a Lionel train? ›

Most Lionel trains run on two similar, related track gauges: O gauge and O-27 gauge.

What is the minimum distance between two rails? ›

The minimum distance between two tracks is 3.50 m. This figure comes from the history of the railways. The previously defined half vehicle gauge was 1575 mm.

What is rail 2 rail? ›

The Rail 2 Rail® program allows Metrolink Monthly Pass holders to travel on Amtrak Pacific Surfliner trains along the Ventura County and Orange County lines at no additional charge, including Saturdays and Sundays.

Why do freight trains have two locomotives? ›

Flexi Says: Trains have multiple engines to provide more pulling power. Multiple engines collectively become more powerful that provide more work in the same time.

Why does Japan use narrow gauges? ›

Clearly, it is safe to assume that Japan's choice of the 3'6" narrow gauge was based more on the cheaper construction cost than on the demands of topography. Norway gradually replaced its narrow gauge track with standard gauge but Japan did not take this road because of economic and military considerations.

Why are British trains so narrow? ›

Rails of a narrower width were used where terrain was more tricky, such as mountainous regions, across rough ground – such as forested areas or supplying the trenches during wartime – and for lines in more rural, lesser populated areas, due to their lower construction and operating costs.

What is super O gauge track? ›

Ordinary O gauge track has 3 identical tubular rails. In addition to replacing the outside tubular rails with “T” rails, the inside third rail of Super-O track was replaced with an “invisible” third rail made of copper that provided a most attractive alternative to traditional tubular track.

How far apart are the rails on a railroad track? ›

The US standard railroad gauge (distance between the rails) is 4 feet, 8.5 inches. That's an exceedingly odd number. Why was that gauge used? Because that's the way they built them in England, and English expatriates designed the US railroads.

How much space is between tracks in OO gauge? ›

Assuming your using OO gauge then the distance between track centers should be 67mm.

What is the distance between two rails on a track called? ›

Explanation: The clear minimum vertical distance between the inner sides of the two tracks is known as the railway gauge i.e., the distance between two tracks on any railway route is called a railway gauge or track gauge.

What is the distance between rails 00 gauge? ›

The standard spacing for double track in OO scale, when using brands like Hornby, Peco Settrack, or similar, is 67mm. This measurement is taken from the centre of one track to the centre of the next track, as shown in the photo below.

References

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