View single post by Bob D
 Posted: Thu Apr 23rd, 2015 01:31 pm
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Bob D


Joined: Wed Apr 1st, 2015
Location: Portsmouth, Virginia USA
Posts: 674
I've been in 3-rail for about 20 years and currently have a 12x12 3-rail layout. About the only advantage to 3-rail is there's a load of stuff out there for running on 3-rail track.

But...most of it can be converted to 2-rail, especially the rolling stock. Engines require a lot more work as the drivers/wheels have to be turned down/replaced so the wheels will ride on the rail and not off the rail on the pizza-cutter flanges.

All my 3-rail equipment now has Kadee couplers and the diesels have fixed pilots instead of those awful-looking pilots that swing with the trucks.

I now have a 2-rail Weaver RS3 (it came 3-rail but I got some NWSL 2-rail wheels and converted it) and will most likely build a 2-rail shelf switching layout.

There are some folks who run equipment with 2-rail wheels on 3-rail equipment, but when going over switch frogs the wheels will dip unless a shim is placed at the bottom of each frog.

With the MTH DCS system, it can run off AC or DC from what everybody says, I haven't tried it (I currently have both MTH DCS and Lionel TMCC on my layout and can run all brands of 3-rail engines).

I just ordered a battery-powered RC system from Tony Walsham in Australia to install in my RS3 or in one of the 3-rail engines I have, a MTH Railking 2-8-0. If this works as planned I may be converting the other 12 engines I have to BPRC.

3rd Rail/GGD makes their equipment on both 2 and 3-rail and have come out with some of the best looking passenger cars I've seen. Pricey but you get a great looking model.

Bob D.

Last edited on Fri Apr 24th, 2015 06:30 pm by Bob D

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