Maximum Grade and Minimum Curve Radius

Discussion in 'G Scale and Larger' started by Carole, Dec 15, 2000.

  1. Carole

    Carole New Member

    Hi everyone. Another question. What is the maximum grade and the minimum curve radius I should have in my garden railroad?


  2. Rappannahock Terminal

    Rappannahock Terminal E-Mail Bounces

    commercial available trak goes from 4ft diameter up to 20 ft. It depends on what you would like to run.

    if you run Bachmann's Shay or Climax with short logging cars then you can use the small curvature. On the other hand if you would like standard steam or diesels then I would go for the minimum of 5ft in diameter.

    Smaller curves will give more problems in unrealistic overhang of the front and end of your locomotives and cars, especially passenger cars. This can lead to frequent derailments.

    A 2.5% grade will work. Of course again you can increase it, but the view will be again unrealistic and will lead to spinning wheels of the locomotive and even stalling locomotives.

    Paul the 2nd
    Paul Van Herwegen
    HO Rappannahock Terminal Railway
    G Emerald Valley RR
  3. Carole

    Carole New Member

    Great, thanks for the info!

  4. mhampton

    mhampton TrainBoard Member

    More thoughts on grade. Prototype railroads consider anything over 2% pretty steep. Many models run at 4% with few problems. The Cass Scenic Railroad in West Virginia has grades of 11% to 13%, but they run Shay and Heisler logging locomotives.
  5. Fred

    Fred TrainBoard Member

    Concerning radius, one idea is to check out the Aristocraft catalog as it lists the minimum radius their equipment (engs & psgr cars) require.

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