What brand and code track is everyone using for NZ120? What is the closest sleeper spacing and sleeper size to NZ track? Planning ahead for hopefully starting an NZ120 layout later this year after years of been meaning to get around to it.
I was thinking Atlas code 55 or maybe Micro Engineering code 55 (ahtough ME doesnt have many turnouts) but not sure how they compare to NZ stuff.
My strong recommendation from experience is not to use Atlas Code 55. It’s too fine to work properly in NZ120. It looks good, but then remember it’s N scale 1:160 so will be actually undersized for New Zealand track.
I’d stick with PECO Code 55 as it’s both easily obtainable and reliable.
Code 55 is a little oversized for NZ120 scale. A 50kg/m rail is about 155mm high, which at 1:120 scale is 0.051 inches or slightly less than code 50.
Seems I am going to be looking at Peco code 55 track then. I guess once ballasted and stuff you have to look very close to see its not exactly to scale.
Now to just finish deciding what I want to model and come up with a design that can fit in my shed.
Yeah there is no perfect solution in NZ120 unfortunately. But then this isn’t really a scale for rivet-counting, to me the beauty of NZ120 is being able to run long trains in small spaces with lots of scenery. That said, I’d still go with Code 55 as it’s the closest as you say to NZ rail standards:
I use Peco Code 55 on the mainline and Code 80 in freight yards and sidings where the sleepers get buried. Joining these two is straight forward because the rail in both code 55 and code 80 is actually the same dimension, it’s just that with code 55 the rail is buried deeper in the ties with less rail protruding. Therefore when a standard rail joiner is used to connect the two, the rail height matches perfectly.
And while Peco Code 55 may not quite match NZR rail and sleeper dimensions, to me it’s the track painting and ballasting that makes track look good.
Happy track laying
This reply was modified 1 month, 3 weeks ago by Ianz120.