1:87 Scale Equals How Much in Inches......

Discussion in 'HO Scale' started by RussHart, Feb 1, 2010.

  1. RussHart

    RussHart TrainBoard Member

    If I am correct it comes out to about 1/8 inch equals a foot for building structures and etc. Or would 3/16 be closer to the real scale.
  2. DiezMon

    DiezMon TrainBoard Supporter

    the closer would be 1/8.
  3. r_i_straw

    r_i_straw Staff Member TrainBoard Supporter

    A scale foot is close to an eight of an inch but not quite. It is just a bit more. 3/16" is a foot in S gauge scale. Even though 1/4" is a foot in O scale it does not work out the same for Half O or HO. The gauge may be half but the scaling factor is not. A closer measure would be 3.5 mm for an HO foot.
  4. RussHart

    RussHart TrainBoard Member

    Thanks r_i_straw I had searched the net but did not find it.
  5. lexon

    lexon TrainBoard Member

    This is a very easy question to answer. I just divide any prototype measurement by 87. Or multiply any HO scale measurement by 87. I am not a math expert. I just keep a calculator handy or use the calculator application in my PC when on line.

    Below is just one link for a Google search for :
    model railroad scale calculator

    You can find a tremendous amount of almost any kind of answers if you search the Internet.

    Model Railroad Life Size Scale Calculator

  6. Robbman

    Robbman TrainBoard Member

    87.086 is what I use
  7. watash

    watash Passed away March 7, 2010 TrainBoard Supporter In Memoriam

    Hey Robbman, that difference is why your trains wont run on Rich's layout. HA!

    I went there and searched for HO Scale, and all I got was Google Adds. They show "O" and "N" but nothing I could find for HO.
    I don't see well enough to get there, see? C? Sea?

    ONE HO Foot is .137795276+ actual inches.
    I use .1378" on My Micrometers and Vernier Scales whenlaying out engine parts.
    So here is what I have used:
    On structures .138" is close enough to look right to me.
    .01148294+ is one HO inch, so I yse .0115" and it balances out. I don't work that close on a house anyway! Uts jusrt for layout.

    A BNSF engine hand rail I measured is 1-1/4" diameter, so in HO, you divide the one inch by 4 to get 1/4 inch at .002870735, and use .0028 if you have a 1/10th indicating nike. But the Hand Rail 'to scale' would be .0115 + .0028 = .0143"

    Look on the AWG Wire Gage Size chart to find the nearest wire to use.
    The #28 is .013" (0.032mm) & #26 is .016" (0.041mm) .
    You have to have 0.036mm to get .014" wire. (28 Ga. eectrical wire is usually solid single strand coated copper for wiring up switches, and way too easily bent to make hand rails of. Stranded wire is the same #28 Ga. (in outside dia.), but is made up of five to 15 tiny strands of coper wire for flexability. Expensive too!
    Usually Music Wire is best for any wires that might get handeled, and some piping, brass and copper are both good for piping until you get up to about 45 thousandths of an inch diameter, then it gets too stiff.

    If thkis doesn't help, you weren't paying attention, HA!
    Last edited by a moderator: Feb 2, 2010
  8. RussHart

    RussHart TrainBoard Member

    Do What?????? LOL

    Thanks watash I will keep this info I was looking and asking mainley for buildings but this will come in handy when I start building cars and etc. Im doing the 180ss probley the later part and I have a few cars that are from the modern area and I am going to take the bodies off and build flat cars and box cars out of them will be a lot of work that I have never done beffore but I am going to try it and see how they turn out.
  9. yankinoz

    yankinoz TrainBoard Member

    I use a scale ruler - then 1 foot = 1 foot :)
  10. watash

    watash Passed away March 7, 2010 TrainBoard Supporter In Memoriam

    Hey Russle, I may have confused you.

    "On structures .138" is close enough to one foot to look right to me.
    If you want to measure for windows etc. one HO inch is .0115" see?
    It only makes a difference if you have a pair of windows side by side when each is from a different manufacturer.
  11. RussHart

    RussHart TrainBoard Member

    Thanks watash for that info
  12. MarkInLA

    MarkInLA TrainBoard Member

    Hi Ash and others. Nice to be workin' the sidings again.. While on this subject, isn't HO really 87.1 (point-one ,morethan 87. Or, that little bit smaller that real)? Waz up wit dis ? MR states it this way time to time. 87.1 ...
  13. Mike Sheridan

    Mike Sheridan TrainBoard Member

    I believe H0 is actually defined as 3.5mm to 1 foot which is about 1/87.0857.....
  14. NYW&B

    NYW&B Guest

    Point of information - HO was indeed 1/2 O-scale when it started out, because O-scale was done to 1/43.5, not 1/48. The 1/4" to the foot scaling (1/48) was an American concept, as compared to the European 1/43. In fact, back just before 1950 there was a heated battle in the magazines among hobbyists whether American O-scale should be 1/48, or 17/64. In the end, of course, 1/4" to the foot won out, because it was simpler for figuring model dimensions.

  15. RussHart

    RussHart TrainBoard Member

    This post gets real interesting you guys know your stuff
  16. Benny

    Benny TrainBoard Member

    The easiest is to use 3.5 millimeters as a foot [or 7 millimeters to 2 feet] or just get a darn scale ruler! Micromark and Walthers both have nice rulers, one even has track railhead width, athe other has a drill hole index chart on it, I don't remember which is which, but htey are extremely handy!
  17. rclanger

    rclanger TrainBoard Member

    I have seen 87 and 87.1. I do believe 87.1 is correct, but have been told 87 is close enough.

    I personally use 87.1.
  18. Train Kid

    Train Kid TrainBoard Member

  19. Northeast Fan

    Northeast Fan TrainBoard Member

    I remember when Linn Westcott always used that 1:87.1 when referring to HO. It got kind of irritating after awhile.
  20. MarkInLA

    MarkInLA TrainBoard Member

    Hey RussHart, unless you are planning on moving your mother in law into a scratch built HO hotel or house of yours, no one will notice or object to using 1/8 inch-to-a- foot to build in HO with. Life is too short for 'rivet counting' when it comes to simple structures on the layout. "Jake's filling station" out on the lonely , sagebrushed blacktop (though I 'd rather concrete),especially in the distance, is not only OK in 1/8 inch/foot, but it being a tad small can help the illusion of the garage's distance... Go do it and I'll bet not a one visitor (hopefully not your mother in law ) will catch it !! Of course , if you are going to build a Vandebuilt tender for an old brass 10 wheeler, or an MOW car, or a Warren truss (Russ) bridge this needs exactitudes and should be measured with precision using some ways the other rails have suggested . Have fun ! H E L L O, its a MODEL railroad, not O-ring fabrication or rocket boosters for the space shuttle.. Dig ? FUGGEDDABOUDIT...
    Last edited by a moderator: Feb 13, 2010

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