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Benefits of Hornblocks vs. Rigid Chassis Construction with Bearings?

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I have been eyeing a Comet Terrier chassis for a project I've been working on, and I've downloaded the instrustion sheet to read about it before potential buying. I noticed that it suggests the use of Hornblocks for a sprung chassis, so I'm wondering about the benefits of a sprung chassis vs a rigid chassis with bearings. Thanks for any help you can provide!

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Getting a rigid chassis square and free of twist with all the axles in the same plane is very difficult. There is only one perfect and an infinite number of almost right!  By fitting sprung or equalised bearings you remove the need for absolute square completely. 

Even if you can built a perfectly square chassis you will only have three wheels in firm contact with the rails which compromises current collection. Of course if your track is perfectly flat!!!


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Hello TM,


Hornblocks make so much difference in fact an 0-4-0 won't go anywhere without them. Worst case scenario a cardboard 0-4-0 chassis made using a 6" rule. and the axles lined up by eye on a cutting board.



And a video of it working: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-TtpHJpefRQ&feature=emb_logo


These HB's are from High Level models and very good they are too. I send out in exchange for a nice message a PDF detailing how to make a loco from card, if you let me know your email I will gladly send it to you.


Cheers - Jim


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A standard single beam compensated chassis is arguably easier to set up than a sprung one, although some might argue that it depends on who's springing system you use.


I now install compensation on all locos, including in OO, because of the improvement in running qualities and current collection.


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