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Offline Mr. Ron  
#1 Posted : 02 December 2022 18:59:06(UTC)
Mr. Ron

United States   
Joined: 05/07/2020(UTC)
Posts: 288
Location: Mississippi, Vancleave
Great Britain uses OO gauge vs America uses HO gauge. How many modelers use OO gauge track and how many use HO gauge track?
Offline EMD_GP7  
#2 Posted : 02 December 2022 21:22:59(UTC)
EMD_GP7


Joined: 23/11/2010(UTC)
Posts: 181
Location: U.K. Midlands
H0 track and 00 track is exactly the same Gauge at 16.5mm between the rails. The difference is SCALE.
H0 scale is 3.5mm to the foot ( 1/87) where 00 scale is 4mm to the foot ( 1.76) the only difference will be in scale size sleepers or rail cross section to suit the scale.
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Offline Bryan  
#3 Posted : 02 December 2022 22:53:49(UTC)
Bryan

Australia   
Joined: 08/09/2010(UTC)
Posts: 170
Location: Bowral, NSW, Australia
OO scale 4mm to the foot (1/76), came about in the 1930's with Trix and Marklin model railways using this standard. It was half O-gauge (32mm gauge), as this larger scale was the previous popular gauge of model trains and usually clockwork. Marklin OO was introduced in 1936 and Meccano with their 1938 Hornby-Dublo copied and improved on the OO scale. You must remember in the 1930's there were only manufactures scales and all different. It was not until the early 1950's that the European model train manufactures agree on the half zero scale at 1/87 and a gauge of 16.5mm. From hence Marklin made all their subsequent models to the H0 scale. The last OO loco to be replaced by Marklin was the 3015 crocodile in 1975, with the 3056 H0 model.

With Hornby-Dublo they did not change their company scale and continued up to 1965 with the OO scale on 16.5mm rails. Dublo was the UK market leader and Tri-ang thus copied Dublo's scale in the early 1950's with Tri-ang Railways. Tri-ang eventually became the current Hornby Railways, aquiring the Hornby trademark in 1965. Hornby Railways (Tri-ang) continued with the OO scale (1/76) to this day, probably due to backwards product compatibility.

The same thing happened with Rivarossi. They started with OO scale in 1947, however used their own 1/80 scale initially. Mr Rossi stated the first models were based on Trix as a starting point. With the introduction of the 1953 H0 European standard Rivarossi too became 1/87 with all their subsequent non Italian model railways. However the Rivarossi Italian outline models stayed 1/80 H0 until at least the demise of the Lima group of companies. Not sure what is done now with Italian Rivarossi made currently by Hornby in China. Mr Rossi stated he continued the 1/80 scale for product compatibility, he had too much established tooling in this scale and thus also never changed it for Italian model train outline.

Also OO scale is not 00 as seen today on packaging, it is double O, not double zero or noughts. H0 is half zero.

I may have some facts wrong, however the basic story on OO is how I see it, and will probably be corrected.

regards
David
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Offline kiwiAlan  
#4 Posted : 03 December 2022 01:30:42(UTC)
kiwiAlan

United Kingdom   
Joined: 23/07/2014(UTC)
Posts: 7,387
Location: ENGLAND, Didcot
Originally Posted by: Mr. Ron Go to Quoted Post
Great Britain uses OO gauge vs America uses HO gauge. How many modelers use OO gauge track and how many use HO gauge track?


As others have pointed out, the track gauge is exactly the same for both scales - just that OO scale at 1;76 is using the incorrect gauge track for true scale. In the UK there are two other gauges of track used by purists who want more true to scale track, one is EM and the other is P4. P4 (prototypical 4mm) is done to true 4mm/foot scale and EM essentially sets out to run OO stock on more prototypical gauge track (from memory it is somewhere around 18mm gauge).

Another reason why OO has stayed in the UK instead of going to H0 is the significantly smaller loading gauge of UK railways compared to European railways. This meant that attempting to model UK locomotives in H0 scale made it very difficult to find powerful enough motors that were small enough to fit in the body of an H0 scale British locomotive, so the solution was to stick with the 1:76 scale. Despite the scale inaccuracy of the track, because there is so many models out there now at 1:76 scale, changing British modellers to H0 would be a near impossible task. This is why various discussions in this forum about Marklin producing a UK prototype loco as a surprise model are mostly smoke and mirrors, as the market at 1:76 scale would be too small for Marklin to make an economic success, and it would be essentially shunned in Europe except for a few diehard collectors who want Marklin 'shelf queens'. But if Marklin produced a UK prototype at 1:87 it would have no market penetration in the UK (or anywhere else modelling UK prototype) and would still be quite a small market in Europe or other places that do model 1:87.

There is a group of modellers in the UK who model UK prototype in H0, but they are an extremely small group, and there is no way that they would be a large enough market for a manufacturer to make UK models in 1:87.

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Offline Bryan  
#5 Posted : 03 December 2022 04:54:38(UTC)
Bryan

Australia   
Joined: 08/09/2010(UTC)
Posts: 170
Location: Bowral, NSW, Australia
Originally Posted by: kiwiAlan Go to Quoted Post
Originally Posted by: Mr. Ron Go to Quoted Post
Great Britain uses OO gauge vs America uses HO gauge. How many modelers use OO gauge track and how many use HO gauge track?


Another reason why OO has stayed in the UK instead of going to H0 is the significantly smaller loading gauge of UK railways compared to European railways. This meant that attempting to model UK locomotives in H0 scale made it very difficult to find powerful enough motors that were small enough to fit in the body of an H0 scale British locomotive, so the solution was to stick with the 1:76 scale.



Yes, I have often seen the quote of, it was the motor size and UK loading gauge that kept the UK British outline to the 00 scale. This was correct pre-WW2, the only magnet DC material available was cobalt steel and it was this bulky magnet size that brought in the limitations. Trix and Marklin by passed the DC motor problem and continued with a smaller 20V AC motor, based on their O-gauge designs, reduced in size for their OO scale railways. Even early Rivarossi was AC, as said before, they were based on Trix initially, the motors were very similar. Meccano with their Dublo motor design were the very first to use DC 12V motors in H0/OO and became the industry standard eventually. In O-gauge, late pre-war, Bassett-Lowke also introduced 12V DC to their range using the cobalt magnets.

However, after the war, Dublo replaced the cobalt magnets with Alnico alloy types in 1950. The magnets were far stronger in magnetic strength, took up far less space, plus the coil size of the armature could and was reduced. From then on really, motor design size was no longer a factor in OO scale limitations.

Tri-ang Railways introduced their first OO Princess around 1952, and this from the outset had a Alnico magnet motor. Its motor design with slight modification became the X04 which was their standard motor produced right up until the 1980’s.

In 1959, Tri-ang Railways introduced their TT scale model trains and these were ¾ the size of their OO scale brothers. Even this proves the point that motor design was not a factor in continuing the OO scale. We then only have to go to 1962, with the introduction of Lone Star OOO (N gauge later) UK electric trains to really prove motor design was not a factor.

It is very interesting what development current Hornby have undertaken. They have introduced TT:120, a completely new system, basically a full circle with the 1959 TT version. The question is, will this address the OO scale problem in the British model train outline market. It has more realistic couplings, to the TT scale exactly, no compromises. Will this take over from the odd ball UK OO scale, probably wrong, however doubt it ever will. Model train enthusiasts for most, like continuity and probably why we like Marklin.


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Offline rmsailor  
#6 Posted : 03 December 2022 09:52:25(UTC)
rmsailor

Scotland   
Joined: 20/01/2006(UTC)
Views messages in topic : 562
Location: Kirkcaldy, Fife

one of the main reasons for the adoption of British 00 was the use of over-scale (steamroller) wheels. This pushed out cylinders on locomotives and axleboxes and hence bogies and solebars to which they were attached. Bodies had then to be wider to fit and other dimensions correspondingly increased to keep them in proportion.
It was probably the introduction of Hornby Dublo in 1938 withe their, for the period, high quality locomotives that set the UK to the use of 00. British Trix used a slighty smaller scale, 3.8 mm/foot, up until their demise but their prewar offerings were much more toylike.
Bob M.
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Offline kiwiAlan  
#7 Posted : 03 December 2022 14:30:05(UTC)
kiwiAlan

United Kingdom   
Joined: 23/07/2014(UTC)
Posts: 7,387
Location: ENGLAND, Didcot
Originally Posted by: Bryan Go to Quoted Post

...
However, after the war, Dublo replaced the cobalt magnets with Alnico alloy types in 1950. The magnets were far stronger in magnetic strength, took up far less space, plus the coil size of the armature could and was reduced. From then on really, motor design size was no longer a factor in OO scale limitations.


Yes, but by then OO scale was well entrenched, and so manufacturers would have continued making OO items.

Originally Posted by: Bryan Go to Quoted Post

In 1959, Tri-ang Railways introduced their TT scale model trains and these were ¾ the size of their OO scale brothers. Even this proves the point that motor design was not a factor in continuing the OO scale. We then only have to go to 1962, with the introduction of Lone Star OOO (N gauge later) UK electric trains to really prove motor design was not a factor.


Actually motor size is still a problem for UK N scale, which is 1:148, not 1:160 like the rest of the world.

Offline Mr. Ron  
#8 Posted : 03 December 2022 18:26:13(UTC)
Mr. Ron

United States   
Joined: 05/07/2020(UTC)
Posts: 288
Location: Mississippi, Vancleave
Thank you all for clearing up the HO/OO mess. Motors today are small enough, but changing track gauge to .743" (fine scale) won't happen any time soon. My original question was actually "how many modelers in the UK or elsewhere use the P4 scale (.743"/19 mm) instead of HO track(.649"/16.5 mm). I have never seen any track sold at 19mm gauge.
Offline kiwiAlan  
#9 Posted : 03 December 2022 19:43:30(UTC)
kiwiAlan

United Kingdom   
Joined: 23/07/2014(UTC)
Posts: 7,387
Location: ENGLAND, Didcot
Originally Posted by: Mr. Ron Go to Quoted Post
Thank you all for clearing up the HO/OO mess. Motors today are small enough, but changing track gauge to .743" (fine scale) won't happen any time soon. My original question was actually "how many modelers in the UK or elsewhere use the P4 scale (.743"/19 mm) instead of HO track(.649"/16.5 mm). I have never seen any track sold at 19mm gauge.


I think people prepared to do P4 will hand lay track. I suspect the same happens with EM.
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