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OO commercial track - interoperability?


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This time last year I decided to re-kindle my interest in railway modelling. I have had about 30 years "off". Luckily my collection and stock was still in my parents loft, despite them moving at least 4 times since I left home. Things have changed since the early 80s..... and not just prices. Ebay has been very good, but there has also been some apalling rubbish on there too (which always gets sent back). Standards of layouts is impressive now, and I have still to get to grips with "static grass applicators" and DCC. (Zero 1 was the big thing when I quit).

 

The plan is a West of London urban GWR layout, on 2 levels, allowing the passage of long trains, with a lower level engine shed, Heljan turntable, goods yard and brewery. No stations I am afraid.

 

Please don't ask why, as there is a long explanation as to "why" I have amassed a fair amount of Hornby nickel silver set track and flexi track. My qustion is:

 

Is Hornby nickel silver set track compatible with other set track in OO such as PECO? (If so, what code?)

 

Thanks

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Hornby and Peco Settrack are all code 100 and are very much compatible with each other although for personal preference I tend to stick with Peco for points as 1 - they do a greater range, 2 - they seem to be marginally cheaper than the Hornby ones and 3 - they last longer than the Hornby ones as well, far less failures and problems with the Peco ones I have tended to find.

 

Bachmann's settrack is also absolutely fine as it is in fact the former Hornby Austrian factory made stuff re-branded when Hornby transferred their track production to China some years ago.

 

As far as I can recall the only Code 100 'train set' type track sections I have found to be NOT compatible with each other (or indeed anything) was the old Lima stuff in their train sets of many moons again, dreadful rubbish with weird fish plates and slightly different rail profiles.

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I am not too certain about the rail profile, but as Peco use a special rail joiner to join code 75 to 100 I can see no reason why you cannot connect the 2 together.

 

The main element is the gauge which both will be 16.5, code 100 will be nearer to the size. I have just found an old bit of Hornby track with an old bit of Peco and they do fit together, you may have to squash the Hornby fishplates a bit

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The main element is the gauge which both will be 16.5, code 100 will be nearer to the size.

I've read this a couple of times and I still can't understand what you meant about code 100 being 'nearer to the size'?

 

All set track is code 100, code 75 is used for Peco Streamline (flexi is available in code 100 and 75 though its not really set track by definition). Rail profile is largely irrelevant with normal RTR wheels and is pretty much identical profile for the two ranges (Peco/Hornby).

 

I agree with John that Peco points are better and when I did have an old trainset circuit in 00 to test with I found the running through Peco frogs was better as well.

 

If you haven't bought many points already its really worth looking at the small radii Peco Streamline point if you can to allow larger locos better traversing of crossovers.

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I have noticed a difference in code 75 Peco rail,

and other manufacturers code 75.....

the Peco code 75 has a wider bottom, and looks slightly more like flat-bottomed rail

(it fits into exactoscale concrete slepers, which were made for f/b rail!)

 

As for code 100, the old Lima stuff was indeed a tad chunkier.

As an earlier poster said, you may have to tweak / open / squash rail-joiners,

but Peco + Hornby should fit....

 

You may also want to look at the sleeper heights.

From memory, there wasn't much difference between the brands,

but if you're sticking the track down, to a nice flat baseboard,

you may need to check for slight discrepancies,

and pack the height up a tad- with paper / thin card....

 

Good luck!

Marc

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Many thanks for all the replies.

 

The post mentioning adaptors did spark a memory - you could buy Triang (fat chunky) to Hornby (not quite so chunky) - I will stick to Code 100 and buy more PECO points should the need arise.

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There is an incompatibility between Hornby and Peco points that will concern you if you use surface mounted point motors - the pegs onto which the point motors fit are of difference thickness so you will need to match each point to a motor from the same manufacturer.

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there are only so many line side huts you can fit in.

That's true but the newest, small, Hornby, surface-mounted point motors fit suggly to the side of the track and (mostly) pass under the overhanging rolling stock. If anything hits the motor, it is probably because your track is not level. They can be tricky to set up but all mine work perfectly.

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I think most points have been covered off nicely, but to summarise (from my viewpoint!!!):

 

- Triang track - forget it - not compatible with anything else

- Hornby and PECO Code 100 is perfectly compatible

- Many (including me) much prefer PECO points - more prototypical for one thing and less 'plasticky'

- PECO do a nice little coversion rail joiner for Code 75 <--> Code 100

 

A note on points: You are pretty much stuck with PECO for many types including single and double slips and long crossings.

 

Don't forget that although there is a choice of insulfrog or electrofrog for many types of points: Electrofrog can perform better in terms of liability to short out (but one needs to remember to solder and wire appropriately to provide the correct polarity).

 

An excellent resource for wiring points etc is:

 

http://www.wiringfordcc.com/switches_peco.htm

 

:D

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