Re: Scale Weights - Doubt It


Re: Scale Weights - Doubt It

Tom Jones wrote:

"Electronic throttles are great - until you want to simulate momentum effects in the rolling stock,
not locomotives, as was the topic of the thread. In specific, we were discussing how to make a
boxcar or other freight car appear to be of the same mass as the prototype. This would include being
able to "dutch drop" the car, have the car roll down a hump and into a marshalling yard at
prototypical speeds and all the way to the end of the track, etc. Our models may be excellent
physical representations of the real thing, but they operate like toys because friction remains a
real constant and does not scale down. Hence, the thrust of the thread was how to overcome
the effects of friction so that the models would appear to be real in their actions and reactions."

How are you planning to overcome the laws of physics? It seems to me that the only way to mimic the
way scale cars move would be to DCC power them all and have the prototype movement you want to mimic
hardwired into the controller. This obviously brings it's own problems until a cheap traction motor
style wheel set that can be installed into freight and passenger car trucks and a like sized decoder
is available. Of course that path gives us the opportunity to be able to 'set' the brakes of the
model on grades and perhaps have operating couplers.

Until that happens I don't think there's a way to make free rolling scale cars approach the movement
of real cars.

Then after accomplishing this you run into the problem of how our layouts aren't actual scale
models, in fact most don't even approach being scale. Most are so drastically foreshortened that a
1:1 freight car's dynamics when scaled down acting under the forces of momentum would roll much
farther than most of our sidings and yards are long. A freight taking a mile to stop would take how
many dozen laps of most of our layouts to achieve that? That's if you don't have a point to point,
in that case it just goes over the edge because the world is flat. Here there be dragons and they
find model railroad equipment to be tasty. That's why it keeps disappearing off the edge of the
layout, never to be seen again. :-)

The more you try to mimic the prototype the more you end up demonstrating the reality that our
models are basically toys, well, expensive toys.

Eric Petersson

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