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Offline Rohit279  
#1 Posted : 09 September 2019 18:11:51(UTC)

Joined: 12/09/2018(UTC)
Posts: 27
Hello Friends,

How do I determine the ideal slope ( gradient ) for my layout ( C tracks ) ? Does it depends on the loko Confused or the number of traction wheels ? I read somewhere that 2 % gradient is considered acceptable. How can I be sure ?Confused

Would appreciate some guidance on this subject.



Offline Jabez  
#2 Posted : 09 September 2019 20:31:43(UTC)

Joined: 30/08/2016(UTC)
Posts: 627
Location: Brussels
As far as I can gather, Maerklin in its literature suggests 5% but more conservative users usually suggest 3%. I interpret this as meaning that almost any reasonable loco/load combination will climb a 3% slope, but a perfectly laid and progressive slope of 5% average is possible. There are many members here who will undoubtedly give you their experience.
I heard that lonesome whistle blow. Hank Williams
Offline DaleSchultz  
#3 Posted : 09 September 2019 20:34:40(UTC)

Joined: 10/02/2006(UTC)
Posts: 3,243
there are two aspects to that question...

if you are only concerned about the train getting up the slope... then you can do some tests, and probably keep under 5%

if you are concerned about how the track and trains look when they run up and down the slope then in my book, 2% is the maximum.

Intellibox + own software, K-Track
My current layout: https://cabin-layout.mixmox.com
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Offline morsing  
#4 Posted : 09 September 2019 21:27:54(UTC)

United Kingdom   
Joined: 16/08/2014(UTC)
Posts: 467
Location: Aylesbury, Buckinghamshire

And as always, my problem with slopes was going down, not up. When I had a 4% slope exiting a curve, because the weight of the cars pushed the couplers to one side, the buffers would catch and derails the rail. Every time!

I am setting up a layout with only 2% slopes and minimum R3, hopefully I won't have this problem anymore.

I never had a problem going up a 4% slope.

Modelling west Denmark era IV - possibly with some out-of-place elements!
Marklin C-track + CS3
6m2 layout to be controlled by RocRail
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Offline Rohit279  
#5 Posted : 13 September 2019 15:32:42(UTC)

Joined: 12/09/2018(UTC)
Posts: 27
Thanks guys for all the responses and advise... The way I understand, 2 % should be a safe bet.
Offline Minok  
#6 Posted : 13 September 2019 21:27:32(UTC)

United States   
Joined: 15/10/2006(UTC)
Posts: 2,125
Location: Washington, Pacific Northwest
Its a complex question that depends upon a variety of factors only you know:
1) Length of the train - that is how much (and long) weight will the locomotive need to pull? If you run short (3 car) trains, vs prototypical (7-11) car trains it affects the maximum grade your loco can pull. If its a freight train with 20+ coal cars.. its different again.
2) The loco - the traction tires and the weight of the loco matter. Traction tires help, more driven axles help, heavier locomotive helps.
3) As mentioned - its not just the up but the down affect and how the couplers work that comes into play -so how are all the cars coupled together (types of couplers and their interactions)
4) Curves and super-elevation - how does the grade interact with any curves and/or super elevation on the track. A 5% straight only incline is better than a 5% in an R1.

In the end, its best to experiment, especially if you are thinking about giving up on a design feature or layout aspect that you think will only be realizable with a specific grade to enable its existence in the limited space. Test it out, don't just discard or assume based on pure numbers and common wisdom.
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