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Module Specifications and Standards


Introduction

The object of these standards is to provide the specifications for an HO scale modular railroad system. This system is to serve as a portable layout to be used at conventions and public displays.  We adhere to all of the Hub Division, Inc. and NMRA specifications.

Module size:    Straight Module - 24" x 48" (not including width of fascia board and backboard.

Height:            Floor to top of roadbed = 40"

Clearances:    Vertical from top of rail = 3" minimum
                      Horizontal from center of track = 1" minimum
                      This applies to, but is not limited to, all bridges, signals, and tunnels.

Mainlines:       Outer Main is measured 5" from the front face of the front frame member, not from  fascia board.  Inner main is 7" from the front face of the front frame member.

Track:             Mainline must be code 100 rail and ties must be .045" thick (Atlas or Peco, we  prefer Peco).  Hand laid track if acceptable.  All track off the mainline must be  electrically insulated from the mainline, powered separately, and can be built free style.   Our suggested track locations (from the front face of the front frame member are 3"(passing siding), 5"(required main line), 7"(required main line), 10" (local main track), (the balance of these tracks are used for yards, etc.) 12-1/2", 14- 1/2", 16-1/2", 18-1/2, 20-1/2" and 22-1/2" (this track is used to travel along the rear of the modules and/or used to bring cars in from hidden set-up track behind the back boards).

Track Ends:     Both main lines must end 4 1/2" from each end of the module.  Other track ends should match this unless the module owner is furnishing contiguous modules.  (Contiguous modules are a series of modules depicting one scene which must be assembled in a given order and will be considered as one module for club purposes).

Connecting      Each module is connected by a standard 9" piece of commercial straight track, such as Atlas Code 100 track.

Sidings:            Must be no less than 2" from either main line track.

Grade:             Main line and interconnecting track grades is 0%.

Turnouts:         Main line must be at least Code 100 PECO mediums (approximately a #6).  Hand laid turnouts in the main line are discouraged.

Diamonds:       Only commercial Code 100 diamonds are allowed in main line trackage.

Crossovers:     Must be insulated at crossover track to electrically isolate the two mail line tracks.

Roadbed:        Roadbed can be any material the is 3/16" (5 mm) thick.

Ballast:            Main line ballast must be Woodland B-92 medium gray, but can be diluted up to a 50% mixture of Woodland B-75 fine gray for a more realistic look.

Highway         Roadway material must be a least 1/32" below top of rails and allow for RP25 crossings:  standard wheel flanges on the inside of each rail.

Uncouplers:    None are allowed in the Main Line.

Scenery:         Scenery shall be finished with no white plaster or wood top showing (exceptions are allowed with the approval of the layout coordinator for new modules only).  Scenery shall end at least one inch from the edge of the module so as not to conflict with the adjacent module (exceptions for contiguous modules).

Signals:           All block signals and grade crossing flasher systems shall be independently powered and will not employ track detector circuits which need to be connected to the main line track current to operate.  Independently operated opto-electric systems are suggested alternatives.

Backboard:    Backdrop sky shall be painted blue using one of the following paints.
                        Sherwin-Williams Baby Blue #SW1787
                        The Home Depot BEHR Interior Flat Wall 1050 UP White Quart with the following:
                                    COLORANT         QZ.         48ths         96ths
                        B LAMP BLACK                 0             1                 1
                        D THALO GREEN               0             3                 0
                        E THALO BLUE                  0             8                 0

Passing :         If a passing siding is used, it's center is recommended to be either 10" or 3" from the front of the module.  Front and rear passing or local tracks must be electrically isolated from each other.

Any module which develops track or electrical problems which endanger other member's equipment or safety shall not be allowed to be used in any subsequent setup until all such defects are corrected.

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