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Modern OO finescale concrete sleepered track


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It's well-known that PECO have done concrete sleepered Code 100 for some time, but has the code 75 finescale version with correct UK outline sleeper spacing been considered? Given how well the bullhead FS track has been received I imagine that a similar modern equivalent FB track would be well received by the  D&E era finescale community.

I'd be interested to hear others' opinions on this.

 

Davy.

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17 minutes ago, Mad McCann said:

It's well-known that PECO have done concrete sleepered Code 100 for some time, but has the code 75 finescale version with correct UK outline sleeper spacing been considered? Given how well the bullhead FS track has been received I imagine that a similar modern equivalent FB track would be well received by the  D&E era finescale community.

I'd be interested to hear others' opinions on this.

 

Davy.

 

They introduced Code 75 concrete sleeper some years ago. Not quite OO, but significantly better sleepering than the Code 100 equivalent. Concrete sleeper code 75 points are also available 

 

Code 75 concrete sleeper  (I've linked Kernow rather than Hattons for variety - and also because the Peco site didn't turn up in my quick search)

 

 

 

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I had a chat with the local peco rep shortly after the bullhead was released and was told at present there is no plans to redo the existing FB range due to the extent of the existing range

 

 

on the flip side I would love to see correctly spaced track without all the work required but understandably peco would have to weigh up the no doubt considerable cost of retooling their  existing range while competing with kit built track and their own existing products 

 

david

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17 hours ago, blueeighties said:

Rubbish. It looks so much better than standard Streamline. 

How can it look better when thy have not introduced it?

In either form, scale or existing.

Please read the first line in my post before applying your comments to the later part.

Of course the track is far better than what went before.

My post was about the details regarding point work.

But then why bother to be constructive when it is easier to make a rude comment 

Bernard

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17 hours ago, d winpenny said:

I would love to see correctly spaced track without all the work required but understandably peco would have to weigh up the no doubt considerable cost of retooling their  existing range while competing with kit built track and their own existing products 

 

I agree. It would cost Peco to re-tool it, so they would naturally pass this cost on to the customer by raising prices, but the current stuff would still be available because it is for the much larger North American market.

Peco's consideration is therefore: "Would UK customers therefore pay more for new tooling or just buy the cheaper existing stuff?"

 

Some are happy to re-space sleepers, but I think the fastest I could achieve when doing this was 30 minutes per yard of flexi to modify & lay, which is a significant amount of work. I really don't blame anyone for considering it too much effort, although it really does make a bog visual improvement.

 

2 of us have insisted on re-spacing sleepers on the club layout & after laying most of the main line, those who are building the layout with us are starting to appreciate how much better it looks.

There are obviously doubters in the club who believe we are wasting our time but I am sure we will eventually win them over.

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2 hours ago, Bernard Lamb said:

How can it look better when thy have not introduced it?

In either form, scale or existing.

Please read the first line in my post before applying your comments to the later part.

Of course the track is far better than what went before.

My post was about the details regarding point work.

But then why bother to be constructive when it is easier to make a rude comment 

Bernard

To be fair I find your comment ambiguous (the quoted one even more so), and don't think BE was particularly rude. I agree that if they offered 'proper' FB pointwork it would be huge and few would have room for it, but given the massive compromises on the existing pointwork it's hard to imagine any attempt at fidelity (potentially at the expense of durability) not being an improvement. Even offering something with correct sleeper spacing and doing away with the 'hinging' closure rails would be a marked improvement for those wanting something a bit better.

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5 minutes ago, njee20 said:

Even offering something with correct sleeper spacing and doing away with the 'hinging' closure rails would be a marked improvement for those wanting something a bit better.

The new bullhead range fits this description. They are suitable for more situations than reading through this thread seems to suggest:

 

BH points were common long after FB rail was introduced so using the 2 together is correct for many modellers.

I see many layouts with concrete bearer pointwork, but when were these introduced on BR? I never saw them until early 21st century & this was in the station throat of Paddington. I seem to pay far more attention to the real railway than many modellers too.

So on what layouts would concrete bearer points be correct? Main lines with track re-laid since 2000. There are not many of these.

For anyone else, FB track with wooden bearer bullhead pointwork really is an acceptable compromise.

 

Also bear in mind that for Peco, BH track & points were a financial risk. The pointwork in particular costs a lot more to produce. Would sales justify the production costs & how long would they take to meet the break even target?

In order to maintain profits & remain as a supplier to the hobby, they cannot introduce too many new items too quickly.

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I fully understand why Peco haven't done it, was just offering my thoughts on how they could offer an improvement which would probably be well received (not the same as profitable), without going to 1m long turnouts to enable scale 125mph running.

 

As for where concrete bearer turnouts would be correct then virtually any layout set in the last 10-15 years depicting a main line, I'd say that's quite a few. As you say, for certain locations you could extend that to 20+ years. Photos of the Southall rail crash in 1997 clearly shows (quite new) concrete bearer turnouts (I've done 10 seconds of research), so they were certainly more common than you imply.

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Exactoscale do these 00 gauge fast track bases, come in packs which make 2 meters, they use C&L code 82 FB rail

 

Exactoscale

4FT 106A  £8.50 (if bought from Exactoscale add 15%

00 gauge concrete sleepers for FB rail (2 metres)

 

C&L

CODE 82 FLAT BOTTOM RAIL HiHn Nickle Silver Rail 10 X 1 M  £16

 

For turnouts and crossings use

 

Exactoscale

4XX PCT02.00

Point and crossing timbers (62 - various lengths)

 

C&L

ST CHAIR - BASE FOR CODE 82 FLAT BOTTOM RAIL PACK 500

 

Either C&L or Peco Slide chairs are a good compromise

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2 hours ago, njee20 said:

I fully understand why Peco haven't done it, was just offering my thoughts on how they could offer an improvement which would probably be well received (not the same as profitable), without going to 1m long turnouts to enable scale 125mph running.

 

As for where concrete bearer turnouts would be correct then virtually any layout set in the last 10-15 years depicting a main line, I'd say that's quite a few. As you say, for certain locations you could extend that to 20+ years. Photos of the Southall rail crash in 1997 clearly shows (quite new) concrete bearer turnouts (I've done 10 seconds of research), so they were certainly more common than you imply.

 

 

But Peco have done it ... 

 

Peco concrete sleeper code 75 points

 

I'm finding this thread slightly surreal , as people argue earnestly about why it wouldn't be viable for Peco to produce products that have been in their range for at least 5 years.

 

( Can I short-circuit the debate on whether Peco should produce bi-bloc track and why there would be no point doing so by noting that they already have.... bi-block concrete sleeper track   and Steel sleeper code 75 track  )

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That’s just concrete bearers on their existing (woefully unrealistic) geometry. Pete the Elaner was suggesting there’s no market for a modern finescale OO gauge product akin to their bullhead range because concrete bearer points would be prototypical for so few layouts.

 

The suggestion is a finescale flatbottom system, with accurate OO gauge sleeper spacing and some sort of improved point geometry/design. 

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Meanwhile, the geometry compromise for those of us that cannot wait (and do not want to make our own) - I have opted for Peco Code 83 US-style track for my British outline layout, with its far superior geometry which makes such a huge difference when bogie stock rolls through, but I will struggle to make it look British, despite heavy weathering and removal of the long ties etc. 

 

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1 hour ago, Ravenser said:

 

 

But Peco have done it ... 

 

Peco concrete sleeper code 75 points

 

I'm finding this thread slightly surreal , as people argue earnestly about why it wouldn't be viable for Peco to produce products that have been in their range for at least 5 years.

 

( Can I short-circuit the debate on whether Peco should produce bi-bloc track and why there would be no point doing so by noting that they already have.... bi-block concrete sleeper track   and Steel sleeper code 75 track  )

 

 

The thread clearly shows the OP wants 00 gauge track, Peco supplies H0 scale (3.5 mm to the foot) with the exception of their new bullhead system. Clearly Peco have not done it in 00 gauge !!!!

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14 minutes ago, njee20 said:

I thought Tillig was a better option for more prototypical HO/OO gauge track geometry? Being N I have neither option!

 

Whilst there is a thought that the size of 4 mm scale timbers should be proportionately reduced to match the reduced gauge many of those who wished for 4 mm scale 00 gauge track wanted both the size of the sleepers, timbers and the spacing between them to be more representative of 4 mm scale not 3.5 mm scale . None would put up with the locos or stock to be reduced in scale pro rata even though the wheels gauge has been narrowed, 

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1 hour ago, hayfield said:

Exactoscale do these 00 gauge fast track bases, come in packs which make 2 meters, they use C&L code 82 FB rail

 

Exactoscale

4FT 106A  £8.50 (if bought from Exactoscale add 15%

00 gauge concrete sleepers for FB rail (2 metres)

 

C&L

CODE 82 FLAT BOTTOM RAIL HiHn Nickle Silver Rail 10 X 1 M  £16

 

For turnouts and crossings use

 

Exactoscale

4XX PCT02.00

Point and crossing timbers (62 - various lengths)

 

C&L

ST CHAIR - BASE FOR CODE 82 FLAT BOTTOM RAIL PACK 500

 

Either C&L or Peco Slide chairs are a good compromise

 

 

Having used Exactoscale Fastbase in the past - they're fine so long as all your track is dead straight. 

 

Once you have to curve the things, and systematically cut webbing in rigid plastic and try to get the sleepers to align properly round the curve by hand , they seem less attractive.

 

We used Peco code 83 rail as that was what was available at the time, and I recall it being quite difficult to push through the sleeper base. It was advisable to wear gloves

 

To be honest, if I was building a new layout at present I would be strongly inclined to use the Peco Code 75 concrete sleeper flexible track , mixed with the new Peco bullhead . The code 75 concrete sleeper is close enough to high-speed concrete sleeper plain track to be acceptable as OO

 

 

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6 minutes ago, hayfield said:

 

Whilst there is a thought that the size of 4 mm scale timbers should be proportionately reduced to match the reduced gauge many of those who wished for 4 mm scale 00 gauge track wanted both the size of the sleepers, timbers and the spacing between them to be more representative of 4 mm scale not 3.5 mm scale . None would put up with the locos or stock to be reduced in scale pro rata even though the wheels gauge has been narrowed, 

 

Not sure I understand your point. If the UK had adopted HO that’d be fine, but we didn’t, and to now start moving to HO would be madness for anyone who already has a collection. I see no issue with people wanting more realistic trackwork without either re-wheeling stock or handbuilding track, although I can’t imagine there is much market for a comprehensive range of modern OO gauge track as proposed. 

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I recall somebody saying years ago that FB rail is naturally taller than BH and so it might not work as well producing FB to the same standards - and perhaps code 75 rail would not look tall enough - that might then impact on the appearance unless folk would be happy just to have better spacing of and wider sleepers as the deal?

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1 hour ago, Ravenser said:

The code 75 concrete sleeper is close enough to high-speed concrete sleeper plain track to be acceptable as OO

 

I have heard that said before, but I disagree.

I think it makes enough of a difference to justify me re-spacing my own track. I am happy to do this though.

The issue is pointwork, which cannot have its bearers re-spaced. Depending on when & where the layout is based, BH may be suitable.

Pointwork bearers are spaced a little closer than plain track sleepers anyway.

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1 hour ago, Ravenser said:

 

 

Having used Exactoscale Fastbase in the past - they're fine so long as all your track is dead straight. 

 

Once you have to curve the things, and systematically cut webbing in rigid plastic and try to get the sleepers to align properly round the curve by hand , they seem less attractive.

 

We used Peco code 83 rail as that was what was available at the time, and I recall it being quite difficult to push through the sleeper base. It was advisable to wear gloves

 

To be honest, if I was building a new layout at present I would be strongly inclined to use the Peco Code 75 concrete sleeper flexible track , mixed with the new Peco bullhead . The code 75 concrete sleeper is close enough to high-speed concrete sleeper plain track to be acceptable as OO

 

 

 

Firstly that is why I stated C&L code 82 rather than Peco code 83 which as you have found is extremely hard to thread. Two thoughts as it is the Fastrack base's are easier to lay straight. to curve firstly you need to remove the inside webbing and preferably use a former. Granted Peco's webbing is easier to use but every other space between the outside sleepers widen and every other space between the inside sleepers fails to narrow. Horses for courses

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