The Museum

 

 

Note: This is a private museum and not open to the public.

It is in seven main areas:

Down the staircase with a Lionel Gauge 0 transfer table and various track and turntables, the Foyer beckons with a pre-WWII Hornby Gauge 0 tableau, and other early Gauge 0.

Down the staircase with a Lionel Gauge 0 transfer table and various track and turntables, the Foyer beckons with a pre-WWII Hornby Gauge 0 tableau, and other early Gauge 0.

The Foyer Alcove - the Hornby 0 tableau in the centre, the Early North American Hafner, Edmonds-Metzel to the left, and a medley of Gauge 0 curves to the right.

The Foyer Alcove - the Hornby 0 tableau in the centre, the Early North American Hafner, Edmonds-Metzel to the left, and a medley of Gauge 0 curves to the right.

Main Hall (End Wall), featuring North American and European 0 and H0 Gauges and track formations from the 1930s to the present.

Main Hall (End Wall), featuring North American and European 0 and H0 Gauges and track formations from the 1930s to the present.

The Main Hall (Main Wall) displays (for the most part) various North American and European track from the 1920s onwards.

The Main Hall (Main Wall) displays (for the most part) various North American and European track from the 1920s onwards.

The Main Hall (Far Walls), with enticing displays by Ives, Bing, Märklin, Dorfan, American Flyer from 1900 to the 1930s. In the foreground is an operating Hornby-Dublo 3-rail layout.

The Main Hall (Far Walls), with enticing displays by Ives, Bing, Märklin, Dorfan, American Flyer from 1900 to the 1930s. In the foreground is an operating Hornby-Dublo 3-rail layout.

The Train Room Side Wall, featuring mostly a variety of pre- and post WWII Gauges H0/00, post WWII Gauges H0e, N, Z and TT, and an eclectic mix of miscellaneous Gauge 0, both pre- and post-WWII

The Train Room Side Wall, featuring mostly a variety of pre- and post WWII Gauges H0/00, post WWII Gauges H0e, N, Z and TT, and an eclectic mix of miscellaneous Gauge 0, both pre- and post-WWII

The Side Hall, with an eclectic selection of pre- and post-WWII Gauges 0, 0n16.5 and TT

The Side Hall, with an eclectic selection of pre- and post-WWII Gauges 0, 0n16.5 and TT

Background

Many years ago, when I taught a "Basics of Model Railroading" class at a community college, I always took with me a "track board" (a framed piece of homasote 48" by 18") to demonstrate the various scales and gauges of the model railway hobby. On one side there was the range of popular gauges, and on the other a display of various track formations, mostly in H0 scale.

It was not until I was wondering what to do to decorate a long basement wall, that the flash idea occurred to me to expand on this nugget of model railway history to illustrate more makes, more time periods, and gauges that had not been represented before.

So that is how this museum came about. It is devoted to a representative display of toy train and model railway track as it has evolved and diversified from over 100 years ago. It may well be unique in its theme. It has been designed to include all gauges from Standard Gauge/Gauge 2 all the way through N to T. It includes all major manufacturers and a selection of secondary ones, and a cross-section of all types of trackwork and track formations produced over the years. 

To get you into the toy train mood, click here for "the Railway Steam Gallop" by Kaj Pindal, noted Canadian animator and animation educator.

Or for the Toccata for Toy Trains.

Gallery of Exhibits

Gauge 2
Märklin Gauge 2 curved track, for both steam and clockwork. Ca 1900. Rare.

Märklin Gauge 2 curved track, for both steam and clockwork. Ca 1900. Rare.

Märklin Gauge 2 straight track, for both steam and clockwork. Ca 1900. Rare.

Märklin Gauge 2 straight track, for both steam and clockwork. Ca 1900. Rare.

Standard/Wide Gauge

Notes:
  1. The four major makes of Standard/ Wide Gauge track (Lionel, Ives, American Flyer and Dorfan) were all interchangeable as to length, and curve. Eight pieces form a circle with a diameter (at the outside rail) of 42".
  2. Lionel had patented the name of this gauge-width (2 and 1/8") as "Standard Gauge", which obliged its competitors to refer to theirs as "Wide Gauge".
  3. Lionel, Ives and Dorfan all followed the 2-1 track pin arrangement, whereas AF favoured 3-0.) 
Lionel Standard Gauge 45 degree crossing. 1930s

Lionel Standard Gauge 45 degree crossing. 1930s

Lionel Standard Gauge remote-controlled turn-out. 1930s.

Lionel Standard Gauge remote-controlled turn-out. 1930s.

Lionel Standard Gauge 8-position turntable. Hand-operated. The turntable itself is 35 cm long. 1930s.

Lionel Standard Gauge 8-position turntable. Hand-operated. The turntable itself is 35 cm long. 1930s.

Ives Wide Gauge Left Hand turn-out. 1920s.

Ives Wide Gauge Left Hand turn-out. 1920s.

Ives Wide Gauge 90 degree crossing. 1920s.

Ives Wide Gauge 90 degree crossing. 1920s.

American Flyer Wide Gauge turnout.
1920s into the '30s.

American Flyer Wide Gauge turnout. 1920s into the '30s.

Dorfan Wide Gauge turnout. Unique bar-lever-type throw. 1920s.

Dorfan Wide Gauge turnout. Unique bar-lever-type throw. 1920s.

Lionel.

Lionel.

Ives

Ives

Dorfan

Dorfan

American Flyer

American Flyer

MTH (Mike's Train House) Today, MTH makes reproduction Standard Gauge track. It is exactly the same length as that of the original makes, but has four ties instead of three, and follows the 3-0 track pin arrangement.

MTH (Mike's Train House) Today, MTH makes reproduction Standard Gauge track. It is exactly the same length as that of the original makes, but has four ties instead of three, and follows the 3-0 track pin arrangement.

Gauge 1
Märklin double (scissors) crossover with centre track. Designed for stations with a through running middle track. For steam and clockwork. Ca 1910. Very rare.

Märklin double (scissors) crossover with centre track. Designed for stations with a through running middle track. For steam and clockwork. Ca 1910. Very rare.

Märklin 6-position turntable. Hand-operated and hand-painted. The turntable itself is 26 cm long, suited to the diminutive length of the early locomotives. 1910.

Märklin 6-position turntable. Hand-operated and hand-painted. The turntable itself is 26 cm long, suited to the diminutive length of the early locomotives. 1910.

Märklin 45 degree crossing, for either clockwork or steam. Ca 1910

Märklin 45 degree crossing, for either clockwork or steam. Ca 1910

Märklin Y turnout, for steam or clockwork. Ca 1910.

Märklin Y turnout, for steam or clockwork. Ca 1910.

Märklin 3-way turnout. Remarkable early production of this track formation, rare if not unique before WWII. Ca 1910.

Märklin 3-way turnout. Remarkable early production of this track formation, rare if not unique before WWII. Ca 1910.

Märklin Left Hand turnout, for either clockwork or steam. Ca 1910

Märklin Left Hand turnout, for either clockwork or steam. Ca 1910

Märklin Gauge 1 stop-reverse track, with the trip lever in the "up" position. The end ties are stamped Roman Numeral I to signify the gauge, and the disk of throw lever is stamped  A to denote that this is a curved track with a connector prong at one end.

Märklin Gauge 1 stop-reverse track, with the trip lever in the "up" position. The end ties are stamped Roman Numeral I to signify the gauge, and the disk of throw lever is stamped A to denote that this is a curved track with a connector prong at one end.

Märklin curve Type A (connecting clip at one end), for steam or clockwork operation

Märklin curve Type A (connecting clip at one end), for steam or clockwork operation

Märklin curve Type A (connecting clip at one end), for electric operation

Märklin curve Type A (connecting clip at one end), for electric operation

Märklin bufferstop

Märklin bufferstop

Bing curve for electric operation. Note the "grasshopper" track connectors

Bing curve for electric operation. Note the "grasshopper" track connectors

Bing. A remarkable rare wye turnout, suitable ONLY for clockwork or steam operation! A formation no longer feasible to produce economically in the coming electric train era. Ca. 1910.

Bing. A remarkable rare wye turnout, suitable ONLY for clockwork or steam operation! A formation no longer feasible to produce economically in the coming electric train era. Ca. 1910.

Carette. Made in Nürnberg, Germany until 1915. Early electric blade-style third rail with a fish-tail-type connection. Also note the 'grasshopper" style track connectors. (Carette specialized in toy street (tram) cars.)

Carette. Made in Nürnberg, Germany until 1915. Early electric blade-style third rail with a fish-tail-type connection. Also note the 'grasshopper" style track connectors. (Carette specialized in toy street (tram) cars.)

Ives. The only major North American Manufacturer to make Gauge 1. From 1910 to 1920. Unique bicycle-spoke shaped third rail. Rare.

Ives. The only major North American Manufacturer to make Gauge 1. From 1910 to 1920. Unique bicycle-spoke shaped third rail. Rare.

Modern Gauge 1 and Notes on G Scale vs. Scale 1

G Scale started out as a generic description of narrow gauge Scale 2 (1:27 or 1:28, technically Gauge 2n) trains; as opposed to Scale 1 (1:32) trains, both running on a 45mm gauge (Gauge 1) track. (The difference in scale [where it is being observed] is or should be readily noticed in the size of the track ties as between that made, for example, by LGB for Scale 2, and that by Märklin-Maxi for Scale 1.)

There has been a real resurgence in popularity of Gauge 1 for "large" trains, and some real confusion has been created by popularly referring to both the true Scale 1 trains and all the variety of narrow-gauge scale trains running on 45mm track, as "G scale". The emergence of F Scale that seeks to define an exact modelling ratio of 1:20.32 (or 15mm to the foot) for one specifically-defined scale of narrow gauge trains running on 45mm (Gauge 1) track, identified as Fn3 Scale; is a step to refine the labelling of this generic conglomeration of "large scale" trains on 45mm track. Confusing? Yes - there are as many as six or seven scales ranging from 1:32 to 1:13.7 using 45mm gauge track.

Note: the meaning of "G" has been variously ascribed to "Garden"; or "Grosse [Bahnen]" as in German for "large [trains]"). The "F" of F Scale stands for Fifteen mm to the foot, and other refining scales for trains using 45mm track are sure to emerge.   
Märklin-Maxi Scale 1 track, the only true Scale 1 in this tableau, as opposed to the G Scale examples with their Scale 2-sized ties.

Märklin-Maxi Scale 1 track, the only true Scale 1 in this tableau, as opposed to the G Scale examples with their Scale 2-sized ties.

LGB G Scale track with underlay.

LGB G Scale track with underlay.

LGB G Scale turnout.

LGB G Scale turnout.

Aristocraft G Scale 45 degree crossing. The popular Polk's Aristocraft Trains line closed its doors in 2013.

Aristocraft G Scale 45 degree crossing. The popular Polk's Aristocraft Trains line closed its doors in 2013.

Lionel G Scale.

Lionel G Scale.

Peco's contribution to G Scale - G-45.

Peco's contribution to G Scale - G-45.

Gauge 0

Gauge 0 - European

Bassett-Lowke (UK)

BASSETT-LOWKE by Bing. Bing made track for, or influenced the design of other manufacturers, notably Hornby, Bassett-Lowke, Ives and American Flyer. Note the "grasshopper" style of track connector designed to click into a slot in the web of the adjacent rail.

BASSETT-LOWKE by Bing. Bing made track for, or influenced the design of other manufacturers, notably Hornby, Bassett-Lowke, Ives and American Flyer. Note the "grasshopper" style of track connector designed to click into a slot in the web of the adjacent rail.

BASSETT-LOWKE by Bing. Bing made track for, or influenced the design of other manufacturers, notably Hornby, Bassett-Lowke, Ives and American Flyer. Note the "grasshopper" style of track connector designed to click into a slot in the web of the adjacent rail. Large radius to accommodate the early scale steam locomotives made by B-L, possibly 36" radius. Courtesy Mike Powell, UK.

BASSETT-LOWKE by Bing. Bing made track for, or influenced the design of other manufacturers, notably Hornby, Bassett-Lowke, Ives and American Flyer. Note the "grasshopper" style of track connector designed to click into a slot in the web of the adjacent rail. Large radius to accommodate the early scale steam locomotives made by B-L, possibly 36" radius. Courtesy Mike Powell, UK.

BASSETT-LOWKE with wooden ties, intended for garden railways? Possibly manufactured for B-L by Bing. 1930s.

BASSETT-LOWKE with wooden ties, intended for garden railways? Possibly manufactured for B-L by Bing. 1930s.

Bassett-Lowke (UK), with wooden ties, suitable for outdoor clockwork, steam or electric operation. Made for Bassett-Lowke by Bing (Germany). 1930.

Bassett-Lowke (UK), with wooden ties, suitable for outdoor clockwork, steam or electric operation. Made for Bassett-Lowke by Bing (Germany). 1930.

Pre-WWII Hand-laid 16.5 mm gauge track. Supplier or distributor not known, could be through Bassett-Lowke, or could be GEM, Exley or Romford. Longitudinal wooden stringers and wooden sleepers, tinplate chairs and elevated third rail. Pioneer adult model railway enthusiasts in the 1930s were obliged to build their own track using any one of a number of specialty suppliers.

Pre-WWII Hand-laid 16.5 mm gauge track. Supplier or distributor not known, could be through Bassett-Lowke, or could be GEM, Exley or Romford. Longitudinal wooden stringers and wooden sleepers, tinplate chairs and elevated third rail. Pioneer adult model railway enthusiasts in the 1930s were obliged to build their own track using any one of a number of specialty suppliers.

Biller Bahn (Germany)
Billerbahn (Germany): A range of narrow gauge trains found commonly at construction sites. Gauge 0n16.5. The track range was with wood ties, and consisted of track, simple left and right hand turnouts and a short wheel base turntable. Made from 1935 to 1978.

Billerbahn (Germany): A range of narrow gauge trains found commonly at construction sites. Gauge 0n16.5. The track range was with wood ties, and consisted of track, simple left and right hand turnouts and a short wheel base turntable. Made from 1935 to 1978.

Close-up of Biller Bahn track (see left).

Close-up of Biller Bahn track (see left).

Bing Germany)

Upper: Bing Gauge 1 straights and curves Lower: Bing Gauge 0 clockwork and early electric circles, with a 45 degree crossing, and to the right, electric turnouts. At the bottom, a rheostat track.

Upper: Bing Gauge 1 straights and curves Lower: Bing Gauge 0 clockwork and early electric circles, with a 45 degree crossing, and to the right, electric turnouts. At the bottom, a rheostat track.

Bing: a pair of hand-operated turnouts for electric trains. ca 1920.

Bing: a pair of hand-operated turnouts for electric trains. ca 1920.

Bing turnout. Beside the throw lever are two terminals, presumably for a direction indicator that is missing. Throughout the life of a major manufacturer, turnouts varied as to tie or base plate design, and were offered with accessory options.

Bing turnout. Beside the throw lever are two terminals, presumably for a direction indicator that is missing. Throughout the life of a major manufacturer, turnouts varied as to tie or base plate design, and were offered with accessory options.

Bing: A rheostat track that permits the electric current to the live rail to be varied.

Bing: A rheostat track that permits the electric current to the live rail to be varied.

"Stop/Reverse" track made by Bing for American Flyer. When the trip lever is raised, the locomotive would either stop or stop and reverse direction by virtue of engagement with a similar lever in the chassis of the locomotive that would be activated when the track trip lever is in the "up" position.

"Stop/Reverse" track made by Bing for American Flyer. When the trip lever is raised, the locomotive would either stop or stop and reverse direction by virtue of engagement with a similar lever in the chassis of the locomotive that would be activated when the track trip lever is in the "up" position.

Early BING clockwork, hallmark narrow tie, cambered, no track connectors. Eight pieces to a circle, 25" diameter measured to inside rails.

Early BING clockwork, hallmark narrow tie, cambered, no track connectors. Eight pieces to a circle, 25" diameter measured to inside rails.

BING early electric, single-prong track connector, cambered, 6 pieces to a circle, 18.5" diameter centre-rail to centre-rail, track pin pattern 3-0.

BING early electric, single-prong track connector, cambered, 6 pieces to a circle, 18.5" diameter centre-rail to centre-rail, track pin pattern 3-0.

Bral (Italy)

Donated by Tony Penn (HRCA), UK and Professor Ted Howard, UK

Donated by Tony Penn (HRCA), UK and Professor Ted Howard, UK

Bral was started in 1902  by Roberto Braglia in Milan, Italy, as a toy factory, and in the 1930s it produced a successful Italian version of Meccano.
In 1947 Bral introduced a range of 0 gauge trains, using 20 V AC four-wheeled motors. For an example of a turnout, see under the "Other Toy Train Track Images" page. The track is distinguishable by a unique track connector design of a moveable latch;  and also by an unconventional third rail design (see the  "Track Identification" page). The track's identification is by research from Tony Penn, HRCA (UK). 

Bub or Karl Bub (Germany)

Karl Bub bridge and ramps. 1934. Karl Bub assumed the toy train assets of Bing at the time of its departure from Germany. (See "Manufacturer Histories".)

Karl Bub bridge and ramps. 1934. Karl Bub assumed the toy train assets of Bing at the time of its departure from Germany. (See "Manufacturer Histories".)

KARL BUB electric. Note the Märklin-style double-prong track connector. The very lightly embossed "KB" on the outside edges of the ties identifies the make; and the equally-light figure "8" on the inside edges of the ties indicates the required number of pieces to form a circle (likely 24" diameter).

KARL BUB electric. Note the Märklin-style double-prong track connector. The very lightly embossed "KB" on the outside edges of the ties identifies the make; and the equally-light figure "8" on the inside edges of the ties indicates the required number of pieces to form a circle (likely 24" diameter).

Chad Valley (UK)

Chad Valley (UK): 45 degree crossing. Chad Valley was a less expensive version of Hornby, and more toy-like. 1930s.

Chad Valley (UK): 45 degree crossing. Chad Valley was a less expensive version of Hornby, and more toy-like. 1930s.

Chad Valley (UK) "set" oval without other track formations.  Note: the inner circle is by its competitor Mettoy (UK). Both manufacturers offered inexpensive clockwork trains during the 1930s.

Chad Valley (UK) "set" oval without other track formations. Note: the inner circle is by its competitor Mettoy (UK). Both manufacturers offered inexpensive clockwork trains during the 1930s.

Chad Valley left-hand turnout. The curves were six pieces to a circle.

Chad Valley left-hand turnout. The curves were six pieces to a circle.

CHAD VALLEY (UK). Six curves to form a 24" diameter circle.

CHAD VALLEY (UK). Six curves to form a 24" diameter circle.

Chad Valley turntable

Chad Valley turntable

Chad Valley was one of the UK's leading toymakers for most of the 20th century. Chad Valley had a Gauge 0 system in the 1930s with distinctively green-painted track bases and ties for its inexpensive clockwork trains in competition with Mettoy and the higher-priced Hornby range. In particular, some accessories, such as bridges and stations, were often to be found on Hornby layouts.  Chad Valley also offered a "set" oval without other track formations - see left.

Faller (Germany)

Faller (Germany) brief post WWII foray into Gauge 0: A 30 degree asymmetrical crossing.

Faller (Germany) brief post WWII foray into Gauge 0: A 30 degree asymmetrical crossing.

Faller is a German toy company founded in Stuttgart in 1946 by brothers Edwin and Hermann Faller. Faller now specializes in making scenery, plastic model kits and other accessories for model railroads but briefly experimented with Gauge 0. 

Fleischmann (Germany)

Fleischmann: A straight (or "siding-format") parallel as opposed to a Y parallel (see Hornby) turnout. Rare formation. The ties are fibre-based, a medium that was prone to warping, and was soon replaced by plastic.

Fleischmann: A straight (or "siding-format") parallel as opposed to a Y parallel (see Hornby) turnout. Rare formation. The ties are fibre-based, a medium that was prone to warping, and was soon replaced by plastic.

Fleischmann was founded in Nürnberg, Germany in 1887 by Jean Fleischmann, as a toy company. the firm specialized in toy boats in the 1920s and 1930s. Fleischmann went into Gauge 0 production in 1949, but abandoned it soon after introducing its H0 trains in 1952.

Hornby (UK)

Hornby "Meccano Series". 1920s. 1 ft radius Y turnout. (predecessor of the "Hornby Series" so popular in the 1930s). This earlier trackwork is lighter, with Bing-style throw levers. 1918 to 1926.

Hornby "Meccano Series". 1920s. 1 ft radius Y turnout. (predecessor of the "Hornby Series" so popular in the 1930s). This earlier trackwork is lighter, with Bing-style throw levers. 1918 to 1926.

Hornby "Meccano Series": 1920s. 60 degree crossing

Hornby "Meccano Series": 1920s. 60 degree crossing

Hornby "Meccano Series": 1920s. 1 ft radius left-hand turnout

Hornby "Meccano Series": 1920s. 1 ft radius left-hand turnout

E33 eimg 0113hornby0cwtableau

Hornby ("Hornby Series"): Gauge 0 clockwork tableau. 1930s. A Hornby electric train was the dearest wish (after a cricket bat) of every English boy of that generation. Hornby was the pre-eminent popular UK toy train make of that era. Shown here is a clockwork oval with 1 ft radius curves and with two sidings. Note however that the turnouts (points) and the curves in the sidings (spurs) are 2 ft radius. Also shown are No. 1. and No. 2 bufferstops, the standard half-straight track level (grade) - crossing, two turntables - the smaller one dating from the 1920s before the advent of larger locomotives added to the Hornby range. Also a cross-over for Hornby's double-track system that permitted an oval layout to be built with ready-made double track units of straights and curves. Hornby, unlike Märklin and Lionel, the other two popular pre-WWII manufacturers of 0 Gauge trains, never made remote-controlled turnouts (points).

Hornby ("Hornby Series"): Hornby offered a double-track system (both clockwork and electric) that included double straight and curved track, left-and-right hand crossovers (such as the one illustrated here), and double track level (grade) - crossings. This system permitted one to build an oval with ready-made double track units.

Hornby ("Hornby Series"): Hornby offered a double-track system (both clockwork and electric) that included double straight and curved track, left-and-right hand crossovers (such as the one illustrated here), and double track level (grade) - crossings. This system permitted one to build an oval with ready-made double track units.

Hornby long 60 degree (acute angle) crossing, clockwork

Hornby long 60 degree (acute angle) crossing, clockwork

Hornby: Early "Hornby Series" 6" turntable. 1920s.

Hornby: Early "Hornby Series" 6" turntable. 1920s.

Hornby ("Hornby Series") level (grade) crossing is a well-played-with accessory that was available for both clockwork and electric, and in a double-track version.

Hornby ("Hornby Series") level (grade) crossing is a well-played-with accessory that was available for both clockwork and electric, and in a double-track version.

Hornby: "Hornby Series" 11" turntable to accommodate the larger locomotives that were being offered in the 1930s. Available both in clockwork and electric.

Hornby: "Hornby Series" 11" turntable to accommodate the larger locomotives that were being offered in the 1930s. Available both in clockwork and electric.

Hornby "Hornby Series" - an early design 2ft radius right-hand turnout  with a bar-type base plate (see "Track Identification" and sleepers (ties) at the "heel" of the turnout.

Hornby "Hornby Series" - an early design 2ft radius right-hand turnout with a bar-type base plate (see "Track Identification" and sleepers (ties) at the "heel" of the turnout.

Hornby "Hornby Series" later partial plate 2 ft radius (standard for all Hornby Series turnouts) left-hand turnout with unpainted tinplate sleeper (tie) on the heel curve.

Hornby "Hornby Series" later partial plate 2 ft radius (standard for all Hornby Series turnouts) left-hand turnout with unpainted tinplate sleeper (tie) on the heel curve.

Hornby "Hornby Series" later partial plate 2 ft radius (standard for all Hornby Series turnouts) left-hand turnout with black-painted tinplate sleeper (tie) on the heel curve.

Hornby "Hornby Series" later partial plate 2 ft radius (standard for all Hornby Series turnouts) left-hand turnout with black-painted tinplate sleeper (tie) on the heel curve.

Hornby "Hornby Series" open-plate (see "Track Identification") electric 2 ft radius left-hand turnout

Hornby "Hornby Series" open-plate (see "Track Identification") electric 2 ft radius left-hand turnout

Hornby "Hornby Series" bar-type base (see "Track Identification") electric 2 ft radius Y turnout

Hornby "Hornby Series" bar-type base (see "Track Identification") electric 2 ft radius Y turnout

Hornby "Hornby Series" Y-format (as opposed to siding-format (see Fleischmann 0 below) parallel turnout to go from single to double track operation in Hornby's double track system, and vice-versa.

Hornby "Hornby Series" Y-format (as opposed to siding-format (see Fleischmann 0 below) parallel turnout to go from single to double track operation in Hornby's double track system, and vice-versa.

Hornby "Hornby Series" 90 degree crossing for electric trains. 1930s. Black tin-plate base.

Hornby "Hornby Series" 90 degree crossing for electric trains. 1930s. Black tin-plate base.

Hornby "Hornby Series" 45 degree crossing for electric trains. 1930s. Black tin-plate base.

Hornby "Hornby Series" 45 degree crossing for electric trains. 1930s. Black tin-plate base.

Hornby "Hornby Series" buffer stops Above: No. 1 standard for all locations Below: No 2 hydraulic for terminal stations. 1930s.

Hornby "Hornby Series" buffer stops Above: No. 1 standard for all locations Below: No 2 hydraulic for terminal stations. 1930s.

HORNBY "Meccano Series", early 1920s, succeeded in the mid-1920s by the "Hornby Series". Comparatively flimsy, note the Bing-style early track connector and the narrow Bing-style ties. 6 pieces to a circle.

HORNBY "Meccano Series", early 1920s, succeeded in the mid-1920s by the "Hornby Series". Comparatively flimsy, note the Bing-style early track connector and the narrow Bing-style ties. 6 pieces to a circle.

HORNBY "Hornby Series" clockwork 2 ft radius, also of course made as 3-rail. No camber. "Meccano" stamped on the tie edge. 2-1 track pin formation. 12 pieces to a circle.

HORNBY "Hornby Series" clockwork 2 ft radius, also of course made as 3-rail. No camber. "Meccano" stamped on the tie edge. 2-1 track pin formation. 12 pieces to a circle.

HORNBY "Hornby Series" electric 1 ft radius, also of course made for clockwork. No camber. "Meccano" stamped on the tie edge. 2-1 track pin formation. 6 pieces to a circle.

HORNBY "Hornby Series" electric 1 ft radius, also of course made for clockwork. No camber. "Meccano" stamped on the tie edge. 2-1 track pin formation. 6 pieces to a circle.

JEP (France)

JEP (Jouet de Paris, France) 90 degree crossing, 1930s. Firm founded 1902, produced Gauge 0 trains until 1948, then went to H0, closed in 1969

JEP (Jouet de Paris, France) 90 degree crossing, 1930s. Firm founded 1902, produced Gauge 0 trains until 1948, then went to H0, closed in 1969

Mamod (UK)

Mamod (UK) die-cast turnout for steam-operated trains. Note the Bing-style throw. Mamod was founded in 1937 by Geoffrey Malins, and Mamod is a contraction of 'Malins Models'.

Mamod (UK) die-cast turnout for steam-operated trains. Note the Bing-style throw. Mamod was founded in 1937 by Geoffrey Malins, and Mamod is a contraction of 'Malins Models'.

Märklin (Germany)

Märklin: Left-hand "open plate" (see "Track Identification") clockwork turnout. It is stamped on the outside of the straight stock rail with the "Bicycle" logo (see "Track Identification") with 0 (Gauge) L (left hand) 8 (8 pieces of curved track to a circle).

Märklin: Left-hand "open plate" (see "Track Identification") clockwork turnout. It is stamped on the outside of the straight stock rail with the "Bicycle" logo (see "Track Identification") with 0 (Gauge) L (left hand) 8 (8 pieces of curved track to a circle).

MÄRKLIN clockwork half-curve, with its earlier track connector design similar to that of Bing. (Märklin later went to the double-prong track connector design.)

MÄRKLIN clockwork half-curve, with its earlier track connector design similar to that of Bing. (Märklin later went to the double-prong track connector design.)

Märklin: 60 degree crossing - clockwork.
Identified in the centre plate with 0 (for Gauge) and the ornate pre-Bicycle logo (see "Track Identification").

Märklin: 60 degree crossing - clockwork. Identified in the centre plate with 0 (for Gauge) and the ornate pre-Bicycle logo (see "Track Identification").

MÄRKLIN electric, later double-prong track connector, no camber. 8 pieces to a circle. Track connectors on the A,B,C,D,E,F system - see my "Track Identification" page.

MÄRKLIN electric, later double-prong track connector, no camber. 8 pieces to a circle. Track connectors on the A,B,C,D,E,F system - see my "Track Identification" page.

Märklin: Left-hand "open plate" (see "Track Identification") electric turnout. It is stamped on the outside of the straight stock rail with the "Bicycle" logo (see "Track Identification") with 0 (Gauge) L (left hand) 12 (12 pieces of curved track to a circle).

Märklin: Left-hand "open plate" (see "Track Identification") electric turnout. It is stamped on the outside of the straight stock rail with the "Bicycle" logo (see "Track Identification") with 0 (Gauge) L (left hand) 12 (12 pieces of curved track to a circle).

MÄRKLIN electric, 2 half-curves, later double-prong track connector, no camber. 12 full pieces to a circle. Track connectors on the A,B,C,D,E,F system - see my "Track Identification" page.

MÄRKLIN electric, 2 half-curves, later double-prong track connector, no camber. 12 full pieces to a circle. Track connectors on the A,B,C,D,E,F system - see my "Track Identification" page.

Mettoy (UK)

This ubiquitous Mettoy bridge was a popular substitute for the rather more expensive Hornby bridge. Careful examination will disclose the centre slots for the insertion of a third rail for electric trains. 1930s.

This ubiquitous Mettoy bridge was a popular substitute for the rather more expensive Hornby bridge. Careful examination will disclose the centre slots for the insertion of a third rail for electric trains. 1930s.

Mettoy (UK). a sturdy one-lever controlled turnout formation, which unfortunately did not permit figure-8 operation, only in two conjoined circles. 1933 to 1956.

Mettoy (UK). a sturdy one-lever controlled turnout formation, which unfortunately did not permit figure-8 operation, only in two conjoined circles. 1933 to 1956.

Mettoy (UK). Four curves to form a 15" diameter circle.

Mettoy (UK). Four curves to form a 15" diameter circle.

The Mettoy (Metal Toy) company was founded in 1933 in Nottingham, UK. The firm is most famous for its line of die-cast toy motor vehicles of their Corgi Toys branch created in 1956, but during the 1930s the company made a variety of low cost toy trains powered by clockwork motors to compete with Hornby.

Paya (Spain) 

Paya (Spain) curve. Note the outside track connector, a stout wire that hooks into the adjoining tie.  Paya was founded in 1902 and started to produce trains in Gauge 0 in the 1920s. It was the last European manufacturer to produce gauge 0 trains (into the 1960s).

Paya (Spain) curve. Note the outside track connector, a stout wire that hooks into the adjoining tie. Paya was founded in 1902 and started to produce trains in Gauge 0 in the 1920s. It was the last European manufacturer to produce gauge 0 trains (into the 1960s).

Pionér Expressen (Denmark)

Pionér Expressen made trains in  H0 and 0 gauges. Founded  in 1948 by Knut Petersen in Copenhagen, and production was until 1965. Commemorated in a Danish postage stamp series, see my Postage Stamps - Railways and Traction. (Scroll to Denmark.) It would appear that track was made with and without red-painted ties (sleepers). See also Other Toy Train Track Images. Donated by Gilbert (Gilly) Lambert, Fla USA, identified by Paul Chapman, UK.

Note that the tie-pins are both at the same end of the track, contrary to usual European preference.

Note that the tie-pins are both at the same end of the track, contrary to usual European preference.

Eight pieces to a circle. Black tie, although red is showing under the black. But the paint appears to have been professionally applied and is consistent with that of the other black-tie pieces in the circle of track.

Eight pieces to a circle. Black tie, although red is showing under the black. But the paint appears to have been professionally applied and is consistent with that of the other black-tie pieces in the circle of track.

Gauge 0 - North American


Hafner - Edmonds-Metzel - Chicago Flyer - American Flyer family
(See "Manufacturer Histories")
The outer and inner circles and the crossing are early Hafner. The middle circle is believed to be Edmonds-Metzel, precursor to American Flyer. The inner circle, make unknown, is only 12" in diameter. All ca 1910.

The outer and inner circles and the crossing are early Hafner. The middle circle is believed to be Edmonds-Metzel, precursor to American Flyer. The inner circle, make unknown, is only 12" in diameter. All ca 1910.

Hafner turnout. Note the tramway-style connecting rail moved by the upturned traversing lever, Ca 1910.

Hafner turnout. Note the tramway-style connecting rail moved by the upturned traversing lever, Ca 1910.

Hafner 90 degree crossing. Clockwork. Ca 1910.

Hafner 90 degree crossing. Clockwork. Ca 1910.

A 90 degree crossing that came with a Hafner consignment, and is styled after the Hafner design. Despite the appearance of a centre-pick-up, it is a clockwork unit, as there is no electrical connectivity underneath. Possibly by a contemporary manufacturer.

A 90 degree crossing that came with a Hafner consignment, and is styled after the Hafner design. Despite the appearance of a centre-pick-up, it is a clockwork unit, as there is no electrical connectivity underneath. Possibly by a contemporary manufacturer.

A partial-plate left-hand turnout, identified by the tie design as early American Flyer, or possibly Hafner.

A partial-plate left-hand turnout, identified by the tie design as early American Flyer, or possibly Hafner.

Hafner: Curved track, original production after Hafner formed his own firm. (See "Manufacturer Histories"). Note the distinctive "bump" in the centre of the tie, but Hafner never went into three-rail electric production.

Hafner: Curved track, original production after Hafner formed his own firm. (See "Manufacturer Histories"). Note the distinctive "bump" in the centre of the tie, but Hafner never went into three-rail electric production.

Later HAFNER, no centre bump.

Later HAFNER, no centre bump.

Unidentified - possibly EDMONDS-METZEL - very early, portions of the tie were used to create the clamps to hold the rails, a generally abandoned practice by the 1920s.

Unidentified - possibly EDMONDS-METZEL - very early, portions of the tie were used to create the clamps to hold the rails, a generally abandoned practice by the 1920s.

American Flyer open-plate (see "Track Identification") right-hand clockwork turnout with Bing-style throw lever.

American Flyer open-plate (see "Track Identification") right-hand clockwork turnout with Bing-style throw lever.

American Flyer open-plate right-hand clockwork turnout with American Flyer-style throw lever.

American Flyer open-plate right-hand clockwork turnout with American Flyer-style throw lever.

American Flyer open-plate right-hand electric turnout with American Flyer style throw. Note the insulated connecting rails to avoid a short circuit as the locomotive pick-up passes over them.

American Flyer open-plate right-hand electric turnout with American Flyer style throw. Note the insulated connecting rails to avoid a short circuit as the locomotive pick-up passes over them.

American Flyer 45 degree clockwork crossing, identifiable by the tie design.

American Flyer 45 degree clockwork crossing, identifiable by the tie design.

American Flyer full-plate left-hand remote-controlled electric turnout. Note the fish-tail-type third rail connection at the toe of the turnout.

American Flyer full-plate left-hand remote-controlled electric turnout. Note the fish-tail-type third rail connection at the toe of the turnout.

American Flyer 45 degree partial-plate electric crossing, identifiable by the American Flyer label in the lower centre of the heart of the crossing.

American Flyer 45 degree partial-plate electric crossing, identifiable by the American Flyer label in the lower centre of the heart of the crossing.

American Flyer full-plate right-hand hand-operated electric turnout. Note the fish-tail-type third rail connection at the toe of the turnout.

American Flyer full-plate right-hand hand-operated electric turnout. Note the fish-tail-type third rail connection at the toe of the turnout.

Early AMERICAN FLYER, with centre "step" and straight tie-edges in a "V" shape. Cambered.

Early AMERICAN FLYER, with centre "step" and straight tie-edges in a "V" shape. Cambered.

Early AMERICAN FLYER, straight parallel tie edges, cambered, no centre "step".

Early AMERICAN FLYER, straight parallel tie edges, cambered, no centre "step".

Unidentified, embossed "DRP" (German State Patent), but in the light of the similarity of the tie design, possibly made by Bing for American Flyer.

Unidentified, embossed "DRP" (German State Patent), but in the light of the similarity of the tie design, possibly made by Bing for American Flyer.

Early AMERICAN FLYER clockwork, cambered, no Centre "step", wavy tie edges.

Early AMERICAN FLYER clockwork, cambered, no Centre "step", wavy tie edges.

1920s electric AMERICAN FLYER , cambered ties, with flared straight tie edges.

1920s electric AMERICAN FLYER , cambered ties, with flared straight tie edges.

1930s electric AMERICAN FLYER, note the 2-1 arrangement of track pins, and the straight narrower ties with outside screw holes for baseboard fastening. No camber.

1930s electric AMERICAN FLYER, note the 2-1 arrangement of track pins, and the straight narrower ties with outside screw holes for baseboard fastening. No camber.

AMERICAN FLYER track to go with its innovative "Burlington Zephyr" train. The fourth rail is to sound the diesel horn. 1930s, state of the art a half-century before DCC!

AMERICAN FLYER track to go with its innovative "Burlington Zephyr" train. The fourth rail is to sound the diesel horn. 1930s, state of the art a half-century before DCC!

Ives
Upper: Ives Wide Gauge Middle and lower section: Ives Gauge 0 clockwork figure-8. In the centre are Ives Gauge 0 electric track and track formations. All 1920s.

Upper: Ives Wide Gauge Middle and lower section: Ives Gauge 0 clockwork figure-8. In the centre are Ives Gauge 0 electric track and track formations. All 1920s.

Ives right-hand clockwork turnout.

Ives right-hand clockwork turnout.

Ives clockwork 45 degree crossing

Ives clockwork 45 degree crossing

Ives right-hand, hand-operated electric turnout with long one-piece connecting rails.

Ives right-hand, hand-operated electric turnout with long one-piece connecting rails.

Ives left-hand hand-operated electric turnout, with long frog and short connecting rails.

Ives left-hand hand-operated electric turnout, with long frog and short connecting rails.

Ives bridge and ramps. Finials missing. Ca 1925

Ives bridge and ramps. Finials missing. Ca 1925

IVES clockwork. Eight pieces to a circle, 24" diameter. Cambered.

Note: Ives identified its track consistently, stamped simply"Ives".

IVES clockwork. Eight pieces to a circle, 24" diameter. Cambered.

Note: Ives identified its track consistently, stamped simply"Ives".

IVES electric. Still eight pieces to a circle, but a slightly wider diameter, probably 27".

Notes: (1) Ives followed the 3-0 track pin arrangement  (All three pins at one end, but one pin is missing.)

(2) Ives identified its track consistently, stamped simply "IVES".

IVES electric. Still eight pieces to a circle, but a slightly wider diameter, probably 27".

Notes: (1) Ives followed the 3-0 track pin arrangement (All three pins at one end, but one pin is missing.)

(2) Ives identified its track consistently, stamped simply "IVES".

Lionel
Lionel manually-operated turnout. Note the open-plate-type base, similar to that of Märklin and Hornby of the same era. 1920s.

Lionel manually-operated turnout. Note the open-plate-type base, similar to that of Märklin and Hornby of the same era. 1920s.

Lionel green-pre-WWII base Manual turnout No. 021, with insulated connecting rails (non-moving section) to avoid short circuits from passing locomotive collectors.

Lionel green-pre-WWII base Manual turnout No. 021, with insulated connecting rails (non-moving section) to avoid short circuits from passing locomotive collectors.

Lionel green-pre-WWII base remote-controlled turnout No. 012.

Lionel green-pre-WWII base remote-controlled turnout No. 012.

Lionel green pre-WWII base 45 degree crossing (note the open-plate base)

Lionel green pre-WWII base 45 degree crossing (note the open-plate base)

Lionel post-WWII Manual hand-operated turnout (solid-plate base) No. 42

Lionel post-WWII Manual hand-operated turnout (solid-plate base) No. 42

Lionel black post-WWII base 90 degree crossing

Lionel black post-WWII base 90 degree crossing

Lionel No. 106 bridge and ramps. Pre-WWII.

Lionel No. 106 bridge and ramps. Pre-WWII.

Lionel transfer table post-WWII. For use at engine houses to move a locomotive from one road to another. Märklin is the only other known manufacturer of this feature in this gauge. The traverser itself is 17 1/2 inches long.

Lionel transfer table post-WWII. For use at engine houses to move a locomotive from one road to another. Märklin is the only other known manufacturer of this feature in this gauge. The traverser itself is 17 1/2 inches long.

Lionel uncoupling track post-WWII.

Lionel uncoupling track post-WWII.

LIONEL TRACK and CURVES
The Lionel design of its traditional Gauge 0 track (except for its O27 range), both pre- and post-WWII,  provides for curled tie-flanges for its slide-on track connectors (see my "Track Identification" page). The track has no camber, and Lionel (like Hornby) stamped its name consistently on the tie-edge.

The overall design is very similar to that of, and is interchangeable with, Hornby, except that
(a) Lionel favoured the 3-0 track pin arrangement, and
(b) Hornby only offered 24" and 48" diameters, whereas Lionel (its O27 range aside) offered 31", 42", 54" and 72" diameters.

LIONEL O31, pre-WWII.

LIONEL O31, pre-WWII.

LIONEL O31 pre-WWII, with terminal connection.

LIONEL O31 pre-WWII, with terminal connection.

LIONEL O31, post-WWII.

LIONEL O31, post-WWII.

LIONEL O54, post-WWII.

LIONEL O54, post-WWII.

LIONEL O72, pre-WWII.

LIONEL O72, pre-WWII.

Lionel T Rail
(Information courtesy Cary Coverdill. I am indebted to Cary for drawing this remarkable track to my attention.)
This track straddles the toy train era and the model railway world. It is pre-WWII, made between 1936 and 1942. While not true 'scale' track (the ties/sleepers are too large and widely spaced) the rails are roughly shaped as North American prototype railroads use, and the sections of track are joined by the use of fishplates, nuts and bolts - similar to the 40 foot long sections used for decades by the prototype.  The only diameter of curve was 72" (O72), including turnouts, to allow for operation of the near-scale, and 'true' scale prewar models Lionel built.  These included the M10000 articulated streamliners, the similarly-constructed Hiawatha, and of course the flagship of the entire Lionel production history: The model 700E Scale Hudson, and the small fleet of true scale freight cars that went with it. This trackwork is highly sought after by collectors and afficionado Lionel trains operators alike. The only components available are: 15" straight, O-72 curve (16 sections per full circle), a 90 degree crossing, plus manually and remote control O-72 turnouts.  Extremely pricey in today's market, curve pieces sell for $18 and up, with straights commonly selling for close to $30. A full set of connecting hardware (original, like new) consisting of one under-rail clip (center rail - like modern O-scale or HO), two fishplates and four each nuts and bolts sells for over $10, but the look, the very rigid nature of the track, and the die-cast ties (painted black) all give a fantastic appearance - indeed the Cadillac of "toy train" track. (Some turnouts are illustrated in Other Toy Train Track Images ).
Two O72 curves bolted together.

Two O72 curves bolted together.

A closer-up view of an O72 curve

A closer-up view of an O72 curve

Die-cast tie/sleeper - no camber - two outside fastening holes. Note the fastening clamps simulated to look like spike heads.

Die-cast tie/sleeper - no camber - two outside fastening holes. Note the fastening clamps simulated to look like spike heads.

Close-up of the track connection system with fishplates, nuts and bolts.

Close-up of the track connection system with fishplates, nuts and bolts.

The rotary counter-sunk spanner specially designed for tightening the nuts at the fishplates

The rotary counter-sunk spanner specially designed for tightening the nuts at the fishplates

Dorfan
Dorfan left-hand manually-operated turnout. Unique bar-lever-type throw. 1930s. 2-1 track pin formation.

Dorfan left-hand manually-operated turnout. Unique bar-lever-type throw. 1930s. 2-1 track pin formation.

Dorfan. Identifiable by its similar tie design to that of Lionel, but distinguishable by its 2-1 track pin arrangement and the slight coloured sheen of its ties.

Dorfan. Identifiable by its similar tie design to that of Lionel, but distinguishable by its 2-1 track pin arrangement and the slight coloured sheen of its ties.

Gargraves
Gargraves: turnouts
Above: Later version with fixed frog and moveable-end connecting rails
Below: Earlier version with full length moveable connecting rails.
Moulded tinplate base to simulate wooden ties

Gargraves: turnouts Above: Later version with fixed frog and moveable-end connecting rails Below: Earlier version with full length moveable connecting rails. Moulded tinplate base to simulate wooden ties

GarGraves, a US specialty track manufacturer since 1940, has made track with wooden ties for many years, but offers many options today to suit modellers' preferences in the major gauges.

GarGraves, a US specialty track manufacturer since 1940, has made track with wooden ties for many years, but offers many options today to suit modellers' preferences in the major gauges.

Miscellaneous
An interesting early (post WWII) concept of flex track. 52" long. No flexibility from side to side, but worked well for "uphill and down-dale". Made by Parfait Products of Chicago, Ill. Very noisy, not a success.

An interesting early (post WWII) concept of flex track. 52" long. No flexibility from side to side, but worked well for "uphill and down-dale". Made by Parfait Products of Chicago, Ill. Very noisy, not a success.

027 and Super-O
Notes:
1. These are of the same gauge width as Gauge 0, but 027 or 0-27 came to be a generic term in North America for a more affordable range of Gauge 0 clockwork and electric trains. Its major manufacturer was Louis Marx & Company who started to produce cheaper Lionel-style clockwork and electric trains during the Great Depression and after WWII. Its track was lighter (with a rail height of approximately 7mm, as opposed to approximately 9mm for Gauge 0), and since eight of its curves formed a 27 inch diameter circle, it became identified as "027" track. (Somewhat confusingly, Marx also produced 042 curves in this light range.) Its introduction forced Lionel to compete with a similar inexpensive range, producing O27, and also O42 and O54 in this lighter track. 
2. The same phenomenon occurred in the same time period in the UK, with competition from such firms as Chad Valley and Mettoy, which likewise forced Hornby to compete in the same range with its "M" series, although Hornby did not reduce its standard Gauge 0 rail height. (It has never been determined what "M" stood for.)
3. The "027" designation, however, did not migrate to Europe, nor is it appropriate to describe the earliest Gauge 0 track in that way, even though rail heights at the time of the development of Gauge 0 were in the same rail height range as 027. 
4. The post-WWII Lionel "Super-O" range (see below for an example of its track) gets included in this "027" category because of its similar lesser rail height, but correspondent Cary Coverdill advises: "While it is true that the cross-section of Super-O is more like 0-27 than 'full height' 0-gauge, the diameter of all Super-O curves was 36". My suggestion would be to indicate this distinction between 0-27 and Super-O.")
5. Throughout all of these web pages, I refer to "number" gauges with Arab numerals (00, 0, 1, 2 etc.), but it should be noted that Lionel refers to Gauge 0 with O as a letter rather than a number, therefore also O27, O31, O42, O54, O72, Super-O and so forth. (Info courtesy Cary Coverdill.) 
No logo on the plate, but identified by a Marx collector as definitely MARX. (Thank you, Don!) Gauge 027 (light Gauge 0). Date uncertain, but definitely pre-WWII.

No logo on the plate, but identified by a Marx collector as definitely MARX. (Thank you, Don!) Gauge 027 (light Gauge 0). Date uncertain, but definitely pre-WWII.

MARX 90 degree crossing, clockwork.

MARX 90 degree crossing, clockwork.

MARX 90 degree crossing

MARX 90 degree crossing

SAKAI (Japan) 3-rail crossing. 90 degrees.

SAKAI (Japan) 3-rail crossing. 90 degrees.

LIONEL 3-rail crossing. 45 degrees.

LIONEL 3-rail crossing. 45 degrees.

LIONEL uncoupling track

LIONEL uncoupling track

LIONEL open-plate left-hand manual turnout

LIONEL open-plate left-hand manual turnout

MARX full-plate remote-controlled turnout

MARX full-plate remote-controlled turnout

K LINE (USA) remote-controlled turnout just before its acquisition by Lionel in 2006.

K LINE (USA) remote-controlled turnout just before its acquisition by Lionel in 2006.

MARX clockwork . Almost identical to, and often confused with, Hafner. The distinction is the single tie-hole. The track pins have the 0-2 arrangement.

MARX clockwork . Almost identical to, and often confused with, Hafner. The distinction is the single tie-hole. The track pins have the 0-2 arrangement.

 MARX electric. Identical tie design as for the clockwork range. The track pins are of the 0-3 arrangement.

MARX electric. Identical tie design as for the clockwork range. The track pins are of the 0-3 arrangement.

MARX electric, large radius 042.

MARX electric, large radius 042.

LIONEL O27 clockwork. Pre-WWII. Donated by Malcolm Laughlin, Belmont MA USA

LIONEL O27 clockwork. Pre-WWII. Donated by Malcolm Laughlin, Belmont MA USA

LIONEL 027 Pre-WWII.

LIONEL 027 Pre-WWII.

LIONEL O27 Post-WWII

LIONEL O27 Post-WWII

LIONEL O54 light rail. Post-WWII.

LIONEL O54 light rail. Post-WWII.

LIONEL "Super O" with a thin blade-type third rail to disguise it. Similar design to that of track by Carette and Trix Express. 1957 to 1966. (Dates courtesy Mike, Moderator, Super O Yahoo Group.) See also under "Track Identification" - third rail.

LIONEL "Super O" with a thin blade-type third rail to disguise it. Similar design to that of track by Carette and Trix Express. 1957 to 1966. (Dates courtesy Mike, Moderator, Super O Yahoo Group.) See also under "Track Identification" - third rail.

HORNBY M Series, with the narrow Bing-style tie (cambered). Six curved pieces to form a circle.

HORNBY M Series, with the narrow Bing-style tie (cambered). Six curved pieces to form a circle.

Gauge 0 - Envoi
There is no doubt that Gauge 0 dominated the toy train era of living memory, and for those who recall it so fondly today, it was in fact a synonymous term for that era: Gauge 0 = toy trains, and Gauge 0 remains the embodiment of magic of that age for generations of youngsters.

The pieces displayed here may also answer, we hope, some questions of those who collect, have inherited, or simply stumble across something that was stashed away in an attic for years and years, waiting to be rediscovered ...     
From a collector's point of view, curved track is always the most plentiful, so it is not perhaps surprising that in any consignment, there are usually more curved track pieces than one knows what to do with. So for this museum there was created this medley of "0ld-fashioned curves". It grew somewhat haphazardly as consignments were received, or pieces were sought after to enlarge the display.

From a collector's point of view, curved track is always the most plentiful, so it is not perhaps surprising that in any consignment, there are usually more curved track pieces than one knows what to do with. So for this museum there was created this medley of "0ld-fashioned curves". It grew somewhat haphazardly as consignments were received, or pieces were sought after to enlarge the display.

Gauges S, EM, H0/00, H0n3, H0m, H0e, TT, N, Z, T. 
   

Gauge S

Top: Traditional American Flyer track post-WWII

Immediately below: straight track, Japanese-made.

L to R: American Flyer 90 degree crossing, American Flyer remote-controlled turnout;
unknown early make, centre tie missing; then modern track by A.C. Gilbert, Miller, Shinohara, Tomalco. (American Flyer, as the A.C. Gilbert Co., ceased production in 1966.)

Bottom: 36" reproduction length of traditional AF track available from Lionel.

Top: Traditional American Flyer track post-WWII

Immediately below: straight track, Japanese-made.

L to R: American Flyer 90 degree crossing, American Flyer remote-controlled turnout; unknown early make, centre tie missing; then modern track by A.C. Gilbert, Miller, Shinohara, Tomalco. (American Flyer, as the A.C. Gilbert Co., ceased production in 1966.)

Bottom: 36" reproduction length of traditional AF track available from Lionel.

Bing: This 28mm Gauge track (that we would now consider as S Gauge) was made as early as 1912 as a "department store" circle for a tram car or a simple train. It was marketed at the time as 00 Gauge, well before Bing's "table top" trains in what we now recognize as 00 Gauge. This circle is stamped with a combination Bing trademark and as "Made in Bavaria", which confirms it as still being marketed well into the 1920s. Donated by Mark DiVecchio, California, USA; and identified by Fred van der Lubbe, the Netherlands.

Bing: This 28mm Gauge track (that we would now consider as S Gauge) was made as early as 1912 as a "department store" circle for a tram car or a simple train. It was marketed at the time as 00 Gauge, well before Bing's "table top" trains in what we now recognize as 00 Gauge. This circle is stamped with a combination Bing trademark and as "Made in Bavaria", which confirms it as still being marketed well into the 1920s. Donated by Mark DiVecchio, California, USA; and identified by Fred van der Lubbe, the Netherlands.

EM GAUGE (18 mm) P4 GAUGE (18.83 mm) 
Left to right:
EM Hand-laid (Brook-Smith system);
EM Hand-laid copper-clad sleepers (ties) Code 70;
H0/00 16.5 mm Superscale SMP (for comparison to EM);
EM Scaleway SMP;
P4 Hand-laid 18.83 mm.

Left to right: EM Hand-laid (Brook-Smith system); EM Hand-laid copper-clad sleepers (ties) Code 70; H0/00 16.5 mm Superscale SMP (for comparison to EM); EM Scaleway SMP; P4 Hand-laid 18.83 mm.

The UK equivalent of H0 scale (1:87) in popular use today (British H0 is largely defunct) is 00 scale (1:76), whereas H0 gauge, to correspond to its 1:87 ratio, is 16.5 mm. The result is that British prototype stock running on H0 gauge is slightly but noticeably under-gauged. The equivalent correct gauge is 18 mm, or more precisely, 18.83 mm.
Shown at left, from left to right:
EM Hand-laid (Brook-Smith system) – EM Hand-laid copper-clad sleepers (ties) Code 70 – H0/00 16.5 mm Superscale SMP (for comparison to EM) – EM Scaleway SMP  – P4 Hand-laid 18.83 mm. (SMP stands for Scale Model Productions.)

Today, other fine scale track options are also available.
Track samples and information provided courtesy Peter Dobell, Elliot Lake, Ont.
Gauge H0/00 (16.5 mm) Review of Trix, Märklin and Triang makes
During the production period of each make, most manufacturers offered at least one variant  of their basic track design. Several (such as Fleischmann [Profi], Roco, Bachmann [EZ track], Lifelike, Atlas, have offered their original basic design track with plastic ballast or roadbed bases.  At least two (Peco and Roco) have offered track with concrete ties.
However three major makes have gone through definable "generations" of track designs. They are Trix, Märklin and Triang-Rovex/Hornby.
Of these, Trix is arguably the most complicated, not only because of the longevity of the production period, but also because there were two companies involved - Trix-Twin in the UK, and Trix Express in Germany. For a history of the Trix Company, see under Toy Train Manufacturer Histories.
TRIX
There were three major generations of Trix 3-rail track:
Generation 1 (UK and Germany)
The original bakelite based tinplate rail track from 1935 to the mid 1950s. The turnouts for this were:
Pre-war: full length rail with a single external solenoid actuator for the remotes and large extension for the operating lever and solenoid which became an obstacle to compact track arrangements.
Post-war (UK only) 3/4 length straight/full curve with a double coiled internal solenoid for the remote actuator. Much smaller design could handle back-to-back arrangements.
Generation 2 (UK and Germany)
A fibre based track, tinplate rails with a blackened centre rail. Presumably an attempt to disguise the fact there was a third rail present. Mid 1950s to mid 1960s. The turnouts for these also had two versions:
a.) The earlier one had a full straight with a 4/5 curve - good only for Trix rolling stock
b.) A later "Universal" version was introduced (in the UK only) that could accommodate any kind of rolling stock, from the original coarse Trix wheels to fine-scale.
Generation 3 (Germany, but see Note 5)
A very high quality plastic based track with nickel silver rails. It also had a blackened centre rail. This was introduced in the mid-1960s to succeed Generation 2 and remained available until around 1998.
Notes:
  1. Essentially, what is identified as Trix Express was made in Germany, and what is identified as Trix Twin was made in the UK. The occasional piece of Trix Express track with “Made in England” molded in has been found but appears to be an exception.
  2. The original bakelite track was made by both Trix Express and Trix Twin, but all the pre-WWII points were the same, either one fat solenoid or a manual lever (Bing-style) perpendicular to the track. There was a Trix Express version with the track indicator illuminated internally, mostly sold in America.
  3. Electrically-operated points with the solenoids were made both in Germany by Trix Express, and by Trix Twin in the UK. There was a post-WWII Trix Twin version with a three-quarter straight track length. Other than two small terminals the appearance of manual vs remote was identical.
  4. With the introduction of Generation 2 came the “lollipop” connector. Again Generation 2 was made by Trix Express in Germany and by Trix Twin in the UK. The earlier non-universal version points designs were very similar with the exception that Trix UK used the same grey plastic cover for manuals and remotes, Trix Express used a smaller cover for the manuals, and the remotes had a rotating direction indicator. The later “Universal” points were only made by Trix UK. 
  5. With the introduction of Generation 3 came the “fishtail” connector, and since Trix Twin had already gone out of business by then, it was made only by Trix Express, except that it was also sold by Trix Twin in the UK as Trix “Supertrack” from 1964 to 1973 (which is when Trix Twin went out of business). One interesting point is that plastic inserts were offered to convert these points and crossovers to accept scale wheel flanges. NOT universal – it was one or the other. These conversion kits are VERY rare.
  6. Trix made track interfaces that would allow one to connect Generation 2 track (lollipop) with Generation 3 (fishtail) track. There were also ramped transition rails to connect Generation 1 Bakelite to Generation 2 fibre-based track.
  7. With the introduction of 2-rail in 1967, the “Twin” concept of two trains running independently was still possible by using overhead catenary as a second power source, but Trix had lost the uniqueness of twin running from the track. In fact any other manufacturer with a catenary option (such as Märklin) could offer the same.
Generation 1 bakelite track knuckle connector, Trix Express and Twin

Generation 1 bakelite track knuckle connector, Trix Express and Twin

Generation 2 "lollipop" connector, fibre-based track, both non-universal and universal

Generation 2 "lollipop" connector, fibre-based track, both non-universal and universal

Generation 3 "fishtail" connector

Generation 3 "fishtail" connector

Generation 1 pre-WWII original bakelite-based tinplate track from 1935 to the mid-1950s.

Generation 1 pre-WWII original bakelite-based tinplate track from 1935 to the mid-1950s.

Generation 1 post-WWII Twin Trix (UK) only 3/4 length straight with full curve, smaller switch stand base could handle back-to-back configurations.

Generation 1 post-WWII Twin Trix (UK) only 3/4 length straight with full curve, smaller switch stand base could handle back-to-back configurations.

Generation 2 fibre-base track, tinplate rails with blackened centre rail. This earlier version had a full straight with a 4/5 curve, only for Trix rollingstock

Generation 2 fibre-base track, tinplate rails with blackened centre rail. This earlier version had a full straight with a 4/5 curve, only for Trix rollingstock

Generation 2 later "universal" version introduced in the UK only, that could accommodate any kind of rollingstock.

Generation 2 later "universal" version introduced in the UK only, that could accommodate any kind of rollingstock.

Generation 3: a high-quality plastic-base track with nickel silver rails with blackened centre rail. Available until around 1998, made by Trix Express, but see Note 5 above.

Generation 3: a high-quality plastic-base track with nickel silver rails with blackened centre rail. Available until around 1998, made by Trix Express, but see Note 5 above.

MÄRKLIN
Over its long period of manufacturing H0 scale trains, Märklin has offered three major generations of track design, namely M (for Metall [metal]), K (for Kunststoff [plastic]), and C (for Click [as in together]). Märklin introduced its H0 scale trains in 1935, and with it came its first version of M track (Version A) , the original 3600 - 3700 series, with a solid metal base, two outer running rails of one electrical polarity, and a centre pick-up rail for the other.  (This version is compatible [except for a slight difference in track-base height], with Hornby-Dublo 3-rail track.)
The second version (Version B) of M track was offered in 1953 at the same time as the firm's major design change to stud contact pick-up or electrification. Märklin had reportedly acquired the rights for its "Modell Gleis" [model track] from the French firm of Vollard & Brun in the early 1950s, who produced track consisting of plastic ties embedded in a metal roadbed. Märklin copied and improved it, at the same time converting the method of current pick-up design to stud contact operation. This was a seminal marketing decision on the part of Märklin as the hobby generally was moving to electric 2-rail operation at the time.
Note on 2-rail versus 3-rail and stud contact operation:
The major advantage of 2-rail operation is of course prototypical appearance, and Märklin sought to address that issue (indeed arguably, successfully) by its introduction of a largely invisible and unique stud-contact system of power supply. In offering stud contact pick-up, Märklin sought to retain the major advantages of this amended form of 3-rail operation in that it does not require the necessary wiring for reverse loops and also retained the option of train-activated accessory operation by means of short isolated running track lengths wired to the accessory and "tripped" by the passing of the train wheels.
Version B of the M track was however expensive because of its production requirements and did not sell well, whereupon Märklin produced its more economical 5100-5200 Version C of M track in 1956.
In 1969, Märklin introduced its K track, its aim to have its track design be closer to those being marketed by competing manufacturers of the day, but M track continued to be available until 1990.
In 1996, Märklin reverted to offering a track with (this time) a molded track base - C track.
Note: A converter track was offered from M track to K track.
Märklin track generations, L to R: M track 3-rail 3600-3700 series; M track stud contact 5100-5200 series; C track, K track.

Märklin track generations, L to R: M track 3-rail 3600-3700 series; M track stud contact 5100-5200 series; C track, K track.

TRIANG-ROVEX, TRIANG-HORNBY
Quick history:
Rovex Plastics Limited  was set up in 1946 and initially made model cars, but moved into the model train market to supply trains to the UK department chain Marks & Spencer. It was acquired in 1951 by Lines Brothers Ltd., who moved the Rovex plant to a new factory at Margate, Kent, UK, in 1954, and the updated product was sold under the Triang name (three Lines [brothers] = a triangle, hence Tri-ang). Triang trains had already appeared in hobby shops in 1953, and with the move to Margate, proved strong competition to Hornby-Dublo and Trix Twin. In 1964, Meccano Ltd. ceased production of Hornby-Dublo and was acquired by Triang, with the range now being marketed as Triang-Hornby. In 1971, Lines Bros. went into receivership. The former Triang-Hornby was sold to Dunbee-Combex-Marx (DCM), and became Hornby Railways in 1972. DCM in turn was liquidated in 1980, and Hornby Railways became Hornby Hobbies, surviving into a renewed sound financial footing by 1986.
L to R: Triang-Rovex "Standard" track 1952-1962; Triang-Rovex Series 3 track 1958-1965; Triang-Hornby Super 4 track 1962-1973; Triang-Hornby System 6 track 1973 - essentially to the present as Hornby Railways. Note: A converter rail was offered to allow transition from Super 4 to System 6.

L to R: Triang-Rovex "Standard" track 1952-1962; Triang-Rovex Series 3 track 1958-1965; Triang-Hornby Super 4 track 1962-1973; Triang-Hornby System 6 track 1973 - essentially to the present as Hornby Railways. Note: A converter rail was offered to allow transition from Super 4 to System 6.

GAUGE H0/00 (16.5 mm) Museum General
Bing: Introduced its "table top" (not to be confused with TT gauge) clockwork trains in the UK in 1922, followed by the electric train version in 1924. L to R: 30 degree crossing, 3-rail, clockwork right hand turnout, clockwork 30 degree crossing.

Bing: Introduced its "table top" (not to be confused with TT gauge) clockwork trains in the UK in 1922, followed by the electric train version in 1924. L to R: 30 degree crossing, 3-rail, clockwork right hand turnout, clockwork 30 degree crossing.

All pre-WWII, L to R: 
Hornby-Dublo clockwork, Bing clockwork, 
Hornby-Dublo electric, Bing electric,
Trix Express/Trix Twin electric (the "twin" referring to the ability to run two trains independently on the same track). 
Hornby-Dublo track donated by Peter Scrimshaw, Hornby-Dublo Emporium, Brampton, Ont.

All pre-WWII, L to R: Hornby-Dublo clockwork, Bing clockwork, Hornby-Dublo electric, Bing electric, Trix Express/Trix Twin electric (the "twin" referring to the ability to run two trains independently on the same track). Hornby-Dublo track donated by Peter Scrimshaw, Hornby-Dublo Emporium, Brampton, Ont.

Post-WWII, L to R:
Hornby Dublo 2-rail electric,
Triang-Rovex "Standard" (grey base),
Triang-Hornby Series 3,
Triang-Hornby  Super 4,
Triang-Hornby System 6,
Post-WWII Trix Express (Germany) 1964-1998.

Post-WWII, L to R: Hornby Dublo 2-rail electric, Triang-Rovex "Standard" (grey base), Triang-Hornby Series 3, Triang-Hornby Super 4, Triang-Hornby System 6, Post-WWII Trix Express (Germany) 1964-1998.

Trix-Twin (UK) and Trix Express (Germany) turnouts, all post WWII:
L to R:
Trix-Twin bakelite base,
Trix-Twin and Trix Express fibre-base non-Universal, 
Trix-Twin fibre-base Universal,
Trix Express plastic base with nickel silver rails (also sold in the UK as "Trix Supertrack" from 1964 to 1973).

Trix-Twin (UK) and Trix Express (Germany) turnouts, all post WWII: L to R: Trix-Twin bakelite base, Trix-Twin and Trix Express fibre-base non-Universal, Trix-Twin fibre-base Universal, Trix Express plastic base with nickel silver rails (also sold in the UK as "Trix Supertrack" from 1964 to 1973).

Hornby-Dublo: A double junction made up from two right hand turnouts (points) and a right hand 20 degree crossing. Post WWII. The only manufacturer known to have made a double junction in one piece is Wrenn. See below.

Hornby-Dublo: A double junction made up from two right hand turnouts (points) and a right hand 20 degree crossing. Post WWII. The only manufacturer known to have made a double junction in one piece is Wrenn. See below.

Post-WWII, L to R:
Triang-Rovex "Standard" turnout (until 1962); Triang-Rovex Series 3 20 degree crossing; Triang-Rovex Series 3 turnout;
Triang-Hornby Super 4 turnout; Triang-Hornby System 6 turnout.

Post-WWII, L to R: Triang-Rovex "Standard" turnout (until 1962); Triang-Rovex Series 3 20 degree crossing; Triang-Rovex Series 3 turnout; Triang-Hornby Super 4 turnout; Triang-Hornby System 6 turnout.

Märklin arched bridge. Märklin developed an extensive H0 electric train range well before the outbreak of WWII.

Märklin arched bridge. Märklin developed an extensive H0 electric train range well before the outbreak of WWII.

A wide range of accessories had always been essential for the effective marketing of an electric train system, and this continued with the development of H0/00: Märklin truss bridge. Hornby-Dublo and Märklin 3-rail track was interchangeable.

A wide range of accessories had always been essential for the effective marketing of an electric train system, and this continued with the development of H0/00: Märklin truss bridge. Hornby-Dublo and Märklin 3-rail track was interchangeable.

Turntables were a de rigueur and popular accessory with all major manufacturers. This 1/5 position Hornby-Dublo 3-rail turntable was made until the line was discontinued in 1960.

Turntables were a de rigueur and popular accessory with all major manufacturers. This 1/5 position Hornby-Dublo 3-rail turntable was made until the line was discontinued in 1960.

Fleischmann manually-operated 1/7 road turntable.

Fleischmann manually-operated 1/7 road turntable.

Hornby-Dublo gated level (grade) crossing.

Hornby-Dublo gated level (grade) crossing.

A very popular Hornby-Dublo accessory was the travelling post office. The push button activated the mail car catcher by means of the contact rail beside the track; to deposit and/or pick up a mail bag. Post-WWII.

A very popular Hornby-Dublo accessory was the travelling post office. The push button activated the mail car catcher by means of the contact rail beside the track; to deposit and/or pick up a mail bag. Post-WWII.

Hornby-Dublo truss bridge. The track is laid separately.

Hornby-Dublo truss bridge. The track is laid separately.

Triang-Rovex truss bridge. Wooden base and plastic trusses, as opposed to tinplate and die-cast. the new order. 1960s. Donated by Tony Griffiths, Brampton, Ont.

Triang-Rovex truss bridge. Wooden base and plastic trusses, as opposed to tinplate and die-cast. the new order. 1960s. Donated by Tony Griffiths, Brampton, Ont.

L to R: Fleischmann immediate post WWII remote-controlled; Jouef right hand turnout, remote control Roco single slip 15 degrees, with foam base; Roco crossing 15 degrees.

L to R: Fleischmann immediate post WWII remote-controlled; Jouef right hand turnout, remote control Roco single slip 15 degrees, with foam base; Roco crossing 15 degrees.

L to R: Jouef double-slip 15 degrees;
Jouef left-hand turnout, remote control; Fleischmann pre-Profi-Gleis double-slip 10 degrees.

L to R: Jouef double-slip 15 degrees; Jouef left-hand turnout, remote control; Fleischmann pre-Profi-Gleis double-slip 10 degrees.

L to R: Märklin M track 3-rail double-slip 30 degrees; Märklin M track stud-contact double-slip 30 degrees; Märklin K track stud-contact three-way turnout.

L to R: Märklin M track 3-rail double-slip 30 degrees; Märklin M track stud-contact double-slip 30 degrees; Märklin K track stud-contact three-way turnout.

Wrenn: A one-piece 3-rail fine-scale crossover, made in the immediate post-WWII era with fibre sleepers (ties). The fibre was prone to warping and was soon replaced by plastic that had started to make its debut as the medium of choice,  of course still in use today.

Wrenn: A one-piece 3-rail fine-scale crossover, made in the immediate post-WWII era with fibre sleepers (ties). The fibre was prone to warping and was soon replaced by plastic that had started to make its debut as the medium of choice, of course still in use today.

Wrenn: A universal-scale 2-rail one-piece double junction, with a fibre tie base. Ca 1950.

Wrenn: A universal-scale 2-rail one-piece double junction, with a fibre tie base. Ca 1950.

Wrenn: An adaptor ramp to transition from surface-level track to Triang-Rovex "Standard" track. 1950s.

Wrenn: An adaptor ramp to transition from surface-level track to Triang-Rovex "Standard" track. 1950s.

Trix: An adaptor ramp to permit connection between Trix Twin and Trix Express first Generation (bakelite base) track to second Generation Trix Twin and Trix Express fibre-based track. Mid-1950s. Donated by David Tulett

Trix: An adaptor ramp to permit connection between Trix Twin and Trix Express first Generation (bakelite base) track to second Generation Trix Twin and Trix Express fibre-based track. Mid-1950s. Donated by David Tulett

This early plastic-base H0 track was produced in 1938 as part of the A.C. Gilbert Company's "Gilbert H0 Line". Their Gauge S trains predominated after WWII, and ironically "Gilbert H0" never really "took off", although H0 of course did, and soon pushed S Gauge into the background.

This early plastic-base H0 track was produced in 1938 as part of the A.C. Gilbert Company's "Gilbert H0 Line". Their Gauge S trains predominated after WWII, and ironically "Gilbert H0" never really "took off", although H0 of course did, and soon pushed S Gauge into the background.

This curiosity is Eldon Industries' (much better known for their slot cars) very brief venture into trains. This piece is remarkable for its very sharp radius.

This curiosity is Eldon Industries' (much better known for their slot cars) very brief venture into trains. This piece is remarkable for its very sharp radius.

Shinohara: Three-way turnout. This and other popular formations such as double slips, curved turnouts, crossings and double cross-overs are still sought after today despite Shinohara's use of (hard to keep clean) brass rails. 1970s onwards.

Shinohara: Three-way turnout. This and other popular formations such as double slips, curved turnouts, crossings and double cross-overs are still sought after today despite Shinohara's use of (hard to keep clean) brass rails. 1970s onwards.

Shinohara double (scissors) cross-over, brass rail.

Shinohara double (scissors) cross-over, brass rail.

Casadio (Italy): A curiosity is this tramway-style turnout with only one connecting rail. Believed to be ca 1960.

Casadio (Italy): A curiosity is this tramway-style turnout with only one connecting rail. Believed to be ca 1960.

"Tru-scale" track with pre-formed milled wooden base, to which a realism-conscious modeller could spike his own track. This was popular in the 1960s. Above: A genuine Tru-scale Y-turnout formation. Below: A Japanese imitation.

"Tru-scale" track with pre-formed milled wooden base, to which a realism-conscious modeller could spike his own track. This was popular in the 1960s. Above: A genuine Tru-scale Y-turnout formation. Below: A Japanese imitation.

Casadio (Italy): A single-slip, a common track formation in Europe, also made by Roco and Peco. 1960s.

Casadio (Italy): A single-slip, a common track formation in Europe, also made by Roco and Peco. 1960s.

Graham-Farish Formoway and Liveway track
This UK manufacturer entered the model railway market in the late 1940s, offering in the 1960s a popular and complete system of 00 flexible track and track formations that filled for the serious modeller a real vacuum between the early 1950s Wrenn fibre-based track and the subsequent emergence of Peco as a predominant supplier of trackwork in most major scales.  
Formoway (insulfrog) Y points

Formoway (insulfrog) Y points

Liveway (electrofrog) 3 ft radius Right-hand turnout

Liveway (electrofrog) 3 ft radius Right-hand turnout

Note: Not in the museum, but illustrated here from the GF 1965 Handbook. 
Formoway single-slip

Formoway single-slip

Formoway three-way points

Formoway three-way points

Formoway double-slip

Formoway double-slip

H0m
H0m stands for H0 scale (1:87) in metre gauge, or a 12mm model railway gauge, the same gauge as for TT Scale (1:120, see below)
Tillig-Pilz H0/H0m railshift on dual gauge track, allowing an H0m train to move from one side of the track to the other in preparation for curving away on the opposite side.

Tillig-Pilz H0/H0m railshift on dual gauge track, allowing an H0m train to move from one side of the track to the other in preparation for curving away on the opposite side.

Peco 20 degree crossing

Peco 20 degree crossing

Tillig-Pilz H0/H0m right-hand turnout, allowing an H0m train to divert from dual gauge track, referred to as a simple bifurcation.

Tillig-Pilz H0/H0m right-hand turnout, allowing an H0m train to divert from dual gauge track, referred to as a simple bifurcation.

Tillig-Pilz H0/H0m right-hand turnout, allowing an H0m train to divert from dual gauge track that continues on the straight, referred to as a full bifurcation.

Tillig-Pilz H0/H0m right-hand turnout, allowing an H0m train to divert from dual gauge track that continues on the straight, referred to as a full bifurcation.

H0n3
H0n3 stands for H0 scale (1:87) in a 3 ft gauge, or a 10.5 mm model railway gauge.
H0e
H0e stands for H0 scale (1:87) in a 30" gauge, or a 9mm model railway gauge, the same gauge as for N Scale (1:148/160, see below)
Tillig-Pilz H0/H0e right-hand turnout, allowing an H0e train to divert from dual gauge track, referred to as a simple bifurcation.

Tillig-Pilz H0/H0e right-hand turnout, allowing an H0e train to divert from dual gauge track, referred to as a simple bifurcation.

Top: Peco turnout and track

Middle: Roco flex-track

Bottom: Roco flex "industrial" track (note the irregular ties)

Top: Peco turnout and track

Middle: Roco flex-track

Bottom: Roco flex "industrial" track (note the irregular ties)

Gauge TT (12mm)
H.P. Products USA 1947-1968. Donated by Glen Reed, Fenelon Falls, Ont.

H.P. Products USA 1947-1968. Donated by Glen Reed, Fenelon Falls, Ont.

Triang-Rovex (UK) Type A track. Discontinued in favour of Type B (no base) in 1959.

Triang-Rovex (UK) Type A track. Discontinued in favour of Type B (no base) in 1959.

Triang-Rovex Type B. Pair of turnouts, left manually-operated, right remote-controlled.

Triang-Rovex Type B. Pair of turnouts, left manually-operated, right remote-controlled.

Triang-Rovex (UK) Type A long straight track. Discontinued in favour of Type B (no base) in 1959. Donated by Tony Griffiths, Brampton, Ont.

Triang-Rovex (UK) Type A long straight track. Discontinued in favour of Type B (no base) in 1959. Donated by Tony Griffiths, Brampton, Ont.

Top: Unknown, possibly GEM. (Note the outside pin holes for track fastening.)

Bottom: Krüger (Germany).

Both donated by Larry Murphy, Lindsay, Ont.

Top: Unknown, possibly GEM. (Note the outside pin holes for track fastening.)

Bottom: Krüger (Germany).

Both donated by Larry Murphy, Lindsay, Ont.

Rokal (Germany): L hand-operated R remote-controlled turnout. 1947-1969.

Rokal (Germany): L hand-operated R remote-controlled turnout. 1947-1969.

Berliner TT Bahnen (Zeuke)  1957-1993, then assumed by Tillig-Pilz. Donated by Larry Murphy, Lindsay, Ont.

Berliner TT Bahnen (Zeuke) 1957-1993, then assumed by Tillig-Pilz. Donated by Larry Murphy, Lindsay, Ont.

Wrenn: scissors (double) crossover. Fibre ties (sleepers). Ca 1955 to 1970.

Wrenn: scissors (double) crossover. Fibre ties (sleepers). Ca 1955 to 1970.

Wrenn: Left and right turnouts (points), and a curved turnout in the middle. Fibre ties. Ca 1955-1970

Wrenn: Left and right turnouts (points), and a curved turnout in the middle. Fibre ties. Ca 1955-1970

Wrenn: Right-hand crossover. Fibre ties. Ca 1955 to 1970.

Wrenn: Right-hand crossover. Fibre ties. Ca 1955 to 1970.

Gauge N (9 mm)
Top: Lone Star (UK) die-cast push-along track. originally 000 Gauge (8mm).
Middle: Lone Star Early Trebl-0-Lectric 
Below: Peco flex track Code 80.

Top: Lone Star (UK) die-cast push-along track. originally 000 Gauge (8mm). Middle: Lone Star Early Trebl-0-Lectric Below: Peco flex track Code 80.

L to R: Lone Star Trebl-0-Lectric 000 Gauge (8mm) remote-controlled and manually-operated turnouts; crossing 18 degrees - the beginning of N scale.

L to R: Lone Star Trebl-0-Lectric 000 Gauge (8mm) remote-controlled and manually-operated turnouts; crossing 18 degrees - the beginning of N scale.

Top: Fleischmann Piccolo crossing.
Middle: Minitrix double-slip
Below: Trix crossing.
All 15 degrees. Variously 1960s - 1970s.

Top: Fleischmann Piccolo crossing. Middle: Minitrix double-slip Below: Trix crossing. All 15 degrees. Variously 1960s - 1970s.

Fleischmann Piccolo turnout, remote-controlled.

Fleischmann Piccolo turnout, remote-controlled.

Fleischmann Piccolo hand-operated double-slip. 15 degrees.

Fleischmann Piccolo hand-operated double-slip. 15 degrees.

Arnold-Rapido uncoupling track; and below, a double-slip, both remote-controlled.

Arnold-Rapido uncoupling track; and below, a double-slip, both remote-controlled.

Minitrix double-slip, remote-controlled, 30 degrees.

Minitrix double-slip, remote-controlled, 30 degrees.

Clockwise from 1 o'clock: Peco de-rail. Fleischmann Picollo manually-operated curved turnout. Shinohara curved turnout. Arnold-Rapido remote-controlled turnout. Arnold-Rapido manually-operated turnout. Micro-Engineering Code 55 DCC-ready turnout. Arnold-Rapido curved turnout, remote-controlled.

Clockwise from 1 o'clock: Peco de-rail. Fleischmann Picollo manually-operated curved turnout. Shinohara curved turnout. Arnold-Rapido remote-controlled turnout. Arnold-Rapido manually-operated turnout. Micro-Engineering Code 55 DCC-ready turnout. Arnold-Rapido curved turnout, remote-controlled.

Arnold-Rapido three-way turnout, remote-controlled with manual option

Arnold-Rapido three-way turnout, remote-controlled with manual option

Fleischmann Piccolo curved turnout, manually operated

Fleischmann Piccolo curved turnout, manually operated

A collage of ATLAS crossings - a number of angles 20 - 30 - 45 - 60 and 90 degrees for versatile track layout designs

A collage of ATLAS crossings - a number of angles 20 - 30 - 45 - 60 and 90 degrees for versatile track layout designs

Latter-day track with moulded bases:
top to bottom: Lifelike, Bachmann, Tomix and Kato.

Latter-day track with moulded bases: top to bottom: Lifelike, Bachmann, Tomix and Kato.

KATO - Unitrak streetcar/LRT system - double 90 degree crossing.
(Display fastened with trim screws.)

KATO - Unitrak streetcar/LRT system - double 90 degree crossing. (Display fastened with trim screws.)

Peco single-slip (above) and double-slip (below). Both Code 55.

Peco single-slip (above) and double-slip (below). Both Code 55.

Peco double (scissors) crossover. Code 55.

Peco double (scissors) crossover. Code 55.

Peco "set-track" turnouts very useful for siding ladders and tight locations (9" radius).
Above: early design with solid connecting rails.

Peco "set-track" turnouts very useful for siding ladders and tight locations (9" radius). Above: early design with solid connecting rails.

Peco - setrack 22.5 degree crossing

Peco - setrack 22.5 degree crossing

Peco - 10 degree crossing

Peco - 10 degree crossing

Peco - large radius curved turnout (electrofrog, i.e frog electrified in the direction of travel)

Peco - large radius curved turnout (electrofrog, i.e frog electrified in the direction of travel)

Above: Roco (Austrian) curved terminal rail
Below: Bachmann grade-crossing rail

Above: Roco (Austrian) curved terminal rail Below: Bachmann grade-crossing rail

Arnold-Rapido "gold-plated" sectional track in celebration of the 150th anniversary of Germany's first railway Nürnberg-Fürth 1835.

Arnold-Rapido "gold-plated" sectional track in celebration of the 150th anniversary of Germany's first railway Nürnberg-Fürth 1835.

KATO turnout

KATO turnout

Shinohara large radius curved turnout

Shinohara large radius curved turnout

Shinohara double-slip. Code 80. 10 degrees. Shinohara no longer makes N gauge track.

Shinohara double-slip. Code 80. 10 degrees. Shinohara no longer makes N gauge track.

Shinohara - three-way turnout

Shinohara - three-way turnout

Lima (Italy) - sharp radius turnout, designed for either manual or remote operation. donated by Bob Kingsmill, Woodville, Ont.

Lima (Italy) - sharp radius turnout, designed for either manual or remote operation. donated by Bob Kingsmill, Woodville, Ont.

Atlas Y turnout. Code 80.

Atlas Y turnout. Code 80.

Below: the fine-scale version of N is P2, hand-laid to an exact gauge of 9.42 mm. Code 40. Compared to a standard piece of Code 80 GT sectional track (above).

Below: the fine-scale version of N is P2, hand-laid to an exact gauge of 9.42 mm. Code 40. Compared to a standard piece of Code 80 GT sectional track (above).

Top: Atlas Code 55 turnout - note the fine scale ties as opposed to the usual ties for Code 80, which is usual for N Scale. 
Note: "Code" refers to the height of the rail. For instance "Code 100" is rail 0.100 of an inch high, the traditional standard in H0 Scale. N scale has traditionally been Code 80 (0.080"), but Codes 55 (0.055") and 40 (0.040") are now on the market.

Top: Atlas Code 55 turnout - note the fine scale ties as opposed to the usual ties for Code 80, which is usual for N Scale. Note: "Code" refers to the height of the rail. For instance "Code 100" is rail 0.100 of an inch high, the traditional standard in H0 Scale. N scale has traditionally been Code 80 (0.080"), but Codes 55 (0.055") and 40 (0.040") are now on the market.

Micro Engineering turnout, Code 55.

Micro Engineering turnout, Code 55.

Graham-Farish (UK) pair of manually-operated turnouts. 1970s.

Graham-Farish (UK) pair of manually-operated turnouts. 1970s.

Gauge Z (6.5 mm)
Märklin (MiniClub) manually-operated turnout, crossing and flex track.

Märklin (MiniClub) manually-operated turnout, crossing and flex track.

Micro-Trains manually-operated turnout.

Micro-Trains manually-operated turnout.

Gauge T (3.5 mm)
K.K. Eishindo: Grade (level) crossing. also available double-tracked.

K.K. Eishindo: Grade (level) crossing. also available double-tracked.

K.K. Eishindo: Straight parallel turnout. Manually-operated.

K.K. Eishindo: Straight parallel turnout. Manually-operated.

K.K. Eishindo: Crossing 30 degrees. Also available 90 degrees.

K.K. Eishindo: Crossing 30 degrees. Also available 90 degrees.

Represented Makes and Gauges


Preamble:
Scale and Gauge
Scale is the proportion of the model to the prototype. (The prototype standard gauge is 1,435 mm or 4ft 8.5in.) Scale is usually represented as a ratio, e.g. 1:87, so that 1 inch of model represents 87 inches of the prototype. Scale is also sometimes expressed as millimetres to the foot, e.g. 4 mm scale, meaning that 1ft of prototype is represented as 4 millimetres of model.
Gauge is the width between the rails, measured from inside edge to inside edge, or from centre-top to centre-top of rail.
Manufactured "narrow-gauge" track, (i.e., representing a prototype track of less than the 4ft 8.5in prototype standard gauge width (not to be confused with Lionel's toy train "Standard Gauge") is usually produced in a "lower" readily available gauge with broader ties in order to conform to scale. For instance, Scale 1 narrow gauge would be represented by a Gauge 0 track with larger ties that conforms to Scale 1, than that of Gauge 0 track. Common prototype narrow gauges are 3ft, 3ft 6 in, and 1m.

Important Note: The relationship between scale and gauge was the most significant defining distinction between the toy train era and its evolution into "railway modelling" or "model railways" that took centre-stage after WWII. The "toy train" era, that is to say the age of mostly tinplate-manufactured toy trains in all gauges produced before WWII (other than the beginnings of model trains produced and marketed by emerging specialty firms such as Bassett-Lowke in the UK), did not concern itself with the niceties of scale - its products were really defined only by gauge. The first efforts in the non-specialty market to start to define scale came with the advent of Märklin and Hornby-Dublo 00 trains in the 1930s. References to scale below in the larger gauges are therefore generally qualified as "Modern Day".
 
"G Scale"
G Scale started out as a generic description of narrow gauge Scale 2 (1:27 or 1:28, technically Gauge 2n) trains; as opposed to Scale 1 (1:32) trains, both running on a 45mm gauge (Gauge 1) track. (The difference in scale [where it is being observed] is or should be readily noticed in the size of the track ties as between that made, for example, by LGB for Scale 2, and that by Märklin-Maxi for Scale 1.)

There has been a real resurgence in popularity of Gauge 1 for "large" trains, and some real confusion has been created by popularly referring to both the true Scale 1 trains and all the variety of narrow-gauge scale trains running on 45mm track, as "G scale". The emergence of F Scale that seeks to define an exact modelling ratio of 1:20.32 (or 15mm to the foot) for one specifically-defined scale of narrow gauge trains running on 45mm (Gauge 1) track, identified as Fn3 Scale; is a step to refine the labelling of this generic conglomeration of "large scale" trains on 45mm track. Confusing? Yes - there are as many as six or seven scales ranging from 1:32 to 1:13.7 using 45mm gauge track.
Note: the meaning of "G" has been variously ascribed to "Garden"; or "Grosse [Bahnen]" as in German for "large [trains]"). The "F" of F Scale stands for Fifteen mm to the foot, and other refining scales for trains using 45mm track are sure to emerge.  

Successive Track Series
Some manufacturers have brought out successive series of tracks:
Lionel 0 [traditional tinplate {compatible with Hornby Series}, Super 0 and Fastrack];
Hornby Gauge 0 [Meccano and Hornby Series];
Trix 00 [bakelite, fibre base, plastic base]; 
Triang-Rovex/Hornby 00 [Standard, Series 3, Super 4, System 6];
Märklin H0 [M track, K track, C track];
Triang-Rovex TT [Type A and Type B].
Several H0 makes such as Fleischmann [Profi], Roco, Bachmann [EZ track], Lifelike and Atlas offer track with pre-molded track bases..

Code
Where encountered in describing model track, "Code" refers to the height of the rail. For instance "Code 100" is rail 0.100 of an inch high, and has been the traditional standard in H0 Scale. H0 fine-scale variations are Peco and Atlas Code 83 (0.083) and Shinohara Code 70 (0.070). N scale has been traditionally Code 80, but Code 55 and Code 40 are now on the market.

Miscellaneous
Not all items are positively identified. There are some "mystery" pieces, as not all manufacturers identified their track in the tinplate years.

Quoted diameters of track circles with the exhibit images vary from inside-to-inside rail to centre to outside-to outside rail.

STANDARD or WIDE GAUGE electric (57mm 2 1/8 inches) [Modern Day Scale 1:22.5 or 1:27 or 1:28]:
American Flyer
Dorfan
Gargraves
Ives
Lionel
MTH (Mike's Train House)

GAUGE 2 clockwork or steam (54mm 2 inches) [Modern Day Scale 1:26 or 1:27]
Märklin

GAUGE 2n (45 mm/1 3/4 inches) [Scale 1:26 or 1:27]
Peco G45

GAUGE 1 electric (45 mm / 1 3/4inches) [Modern Day Scale 1:32 or 1:30]:
Bing
Carette
Ives
Märklin
Peco

GAUGE 1 electric (45 mm/1 3/4 inches) [Scale 1:26 or 1:27]:
Aristocraft 
LGB (Lehmann Grosse Bahnen)
Lionel

GAUGE 1 clockwork (45 mm / 1 3/4inches) [Modern Day Scale 1:32 or 1:30]:
Bing
Märklin

GAUGE 1 battery-operated (45 mm / 1 3/4 inches) [Scale 1:26 or 1:27]:
(all-molded plastic)
Bachmann
Echo Toys

GAUGE 1n (32mm)
Peco SM32

GAUGE L (1 1/2 inches) [Scale 1:38]:
Lego

0 GAUGE Electric (32mm, 1 1/4 inches) [Modern Day Scale 1:48 or 1:43 or 1:45]:
American Flyer
Atlas 2- and 3-rail
Bing
Dorfan
Gargraves
Hornby
Ives
JEP (Jouets en Paris)
Karl Bub
K-Line
Lima
Lionel
Märklin
Marx
MTH (Mike's Train House)
Paya
Peco
Sakai

0 GAUGE steam (die-cast) (32mm, 1 1/4 inches) [Modern Day Scale 1:48 or 1:43 or 1:45]:
Bassett-Lowke (made by Bing for, wooden ties)
Mamod (die-cast, Malins Models)

0 GAUGE clockwork (32 mm 1 1/4 inches):
American/Chicago/Edmunds Metzel Flyer
American Flyer 
Bassett-Lowke
Bing
Chad Valley
Hafner
Hornby
Ives
Lionel
Marx
Märklin
Mettoy

S GAUGE (24mm 7/8 inch) [Scale 1:64]
American Flyer
"Made in Japan"
A.C. Gilbert
Miller
Shinohara
Tomalco

P4 GAUGE (18.83 mm) fine 4mm scale [Scale 1:76]:
Hand-laid

EM GAUGE (18 mm) [Scale 1:76]:
Hand-laid
SMP (Shawplan Model Products)

0n30 GAUGE  (16.5 mm) (30" Gauge)
Biller Bahn
Peco 0-16.5

H0/00 GAUGE electric (16.5 mm) [H0 Scale 1:87 or 1:76 UK]:
AHM (Associated Hobby Manufacturers)
Atlas
Bachmann
Bing
Casadio
Eldon
Faller 
Fleischmann
Garnet
A. C. Gilbert
Graham-Farish
GT 
Hornby
Hornby-Dublo
Jouef / Playcraft
Lifelike
Lima
"Made in Japan"
"Made in Slovenia"
Märklin
Peco
Rivarossi
Roco
Sakai
Shinohara
SMP (Shawplan Model Products)
Triang-Rovex
Triang-Hornby
Trix-Express and Trix-Twin Railways
Tru-Scale
Tyco
Wrenn

00 GAUGE clockwork (16.5 mm) [Modern Day Scale 1:76]:
Bing
Hornby-Dublo (by kind donation from the Hornby-Dublo Emporium.

0m GAUGE (12mm) [Scale 1:87, metre gauge]
Peco (made as H0m narrow gauge, but increasingly used by TT enthusiasts)
Tillig-Pilz

H0n3 GAUGE (10.5 mm) [Scale 1:87, 36" gauge]
Shinohara

H0e 009 GAUGE (9 mm) [Scale 1:87, 30" gauge]
Peco
Roco
Roco "industrial" (crazy ties)
Tillig-Pilz

TT GAUGE (12 mm) [1:120 or 1:101]
GEM
H.P. Products
Krüger
Rokal
Triang Railways
Wrenn
Zeuke Berliner TT Bahnen

OOO GAUGE (8 mm) [Scale 1:179]:
(all-die-cast)
Lone Star Locos

OOO GAUGE (9 mm)
Lone Star Trebl-O-Lectric

N GAUGE (9 mm) [Scale 1:160 or 1:148 (UK)]:
Arnold-Rapido
Atlas
Bachmann
Fleischmann
Garnet
Graham-Farish
GT
Ibertren 
Kato
Lifelike
Lima
Micro-Engineering
Minitrix
Peco
Roco
Shinohara
Tomix
Trix

P2 GAUGE  (9.42 mm) fine 2mm scale  [Scale 1:152]: 
(Hand-laid)

Z GAUGE (6.5 mm) [Scale 1:220]
Märklin
Micro-Trains

T GAUGE (3 mm) [Scale 1:450]
K.K. Eishindo

Represented Track Formations:
Notes:

1. Track bases and/or ties. These are tinplate, bakelite, plastic, rubber compound, milled wood or fibre according to age, gauge size and manufacturer. The rails themselves are usually tinplate, brass, steel, steel alloy, nickel silver.

2. Turnout operation. Pre-WWII turnouts are mostly hand-operated (exceptions are Lionel and Märklin), post-war turnouts and slips may be hand- or electrically-operated, and hand-operated formaitons are commonly convertible by means of an add-on switch machine by various manufacturers.

3. Frog number. Today's model railway turnouts are usually referred to as a # 4, 5, 6, 8, 10 and so forth (known as the frog number). The frog number of a turnout is an expression of the degree of the diverging route's radius sharpness. For instance, in HO scale, the converging inside rails of a #6 turnout where they meet (at the "frog") measure 6 inches from the frog to the toe of the turnout. In N scale, the equivalent for a #4 turnout is approximately 2.2 inches, for a #6, 3.27 inches, and for a #8, 4.36 inches.
A #4 turnout is therefore "sharper" (has a tighter radius) than a #6; a #6 is "sharper" than a #8; and a #8 is "sharper" than a #10.

4. Turnout anatomy. The "toe" of a turnout is where the rails of the turnout diverge (the switchstand end!).
The "heel" of a turnout is the other end of the turnout where the two tracks have diverged. 

TRACK-types
cog rail
sectional track
flex-track
dual track
hand-laid track
embedded (light rail transit) track

TURNOUTS, CROSSINGS AND SLIPS
right-hand and left-hand straight turnouts/switches/points (referred to elsewhere as turnouts)
bifurcation (where in a dual gauge track, the narrow gauge track diverges from the standard gauge track.
crossing, 90, 60, 45, 30, 25, 22 1/2 , 19, 15, 12 1/2, 10°, H0/N crossing
crossing, double, 90° embedded (light rail transit)
crossover (a connecting track between two parallel tracks)
curved turnout
double-junction turnout
double-slip
dual gauge
parallel turnout - Y formation (e.g., Hornby O Gauge)
parallel turnout - left or right hand (e.g., Fleischmann O Gauge)
railshift (where on a dual-gauge track, the narrow gauge shifts position from one common running-rail to the other.
scissors (double) crossover
scissors (double) crossover with centre through-track
single-slip
three-way turnout
wye formation
Y turnout

OTHER
bridge and ramps
buffer or bumper stops
dead-end uncoupler track
derail (catchpoints)
level (grade) crossing (with or without gates)
mail pick-up and drop track (travelling post office)
re-rail track
reverse/brake track
rheostat track
signal track
terminal connector track
track clips
transfer table
turntable
uncoupling track 
 

 

 

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