For beginner model railroading hobbyists that face space constraints, N gauge model railways provide an excellent way to set-up a great layout in a small space.
As one of the most popular model railroading gauges, there are a variety of model trains and accessories available to model railroading hobbyists in this scale.
Because these trains are smaller, you will also be able to build long trains for your model railroad. Overall, the N gauge gives hobbyists the opportunity to construct some of the most realistic model railways in operation.
A Bit About N Gauge Model Railways
The size of the N scale follows a 1/160 ratio. A gauge is the name given to the in-sides of a railway’s tracks, the distance between the left and right outer rails. Simply put, the N gauge is suited to N scale model trains and accessories.
Seeing an N scale train and its tracks will help you to form a better understanding of how these trains and accessories measure up against other scales. Once you know how the N scale looks you will always be able to select and purchase the right accessories for your N scale model railroad’s layout. This includes its buildings, scenery, extra cars, figurines, and the list goes on.
N gauge model railways feature a few nice advantages that railways in larger scales don’t. One of these advantages is that you can create a relatively large model railroad in a very small space.
For example, many HO gauge model railways require at least a 4-foot by 8-foot table for their track plans, while N gauge railways often only need a 2-foot by 4-foot table for theirs.
Another advantage is that their small scale allows you to create a number of detailed scenery pieces for use in a relatively small area. Also, mountains on an N gauge model railway are seldom more than a foot high, while mountains on layouts in larger scales may need to be a couple of feet high in order to look good.
Can You Combine The N Scale With Other Scales?
You may be wondering whether or not N scale equipment can be used on layouts that feature a larger scale. One way that they can be used to complement model railroads that feature a different scale is to use them to create an illusion of depth, especially on a larger layout.
For example, you could choose to use an N gauge model train towards the back end of your O scale layout, which would make this train look as though it is far off in the distance.
Some HO gauge model railroaders have found this to be particularly helpful. One hobbyist built a layout using HO gauge trains for his city scene, at the front of his layout, and towards the back of his layout he used an N gauge model railway to make it look as though his trains were operating in an entirely separate town.
One of the best N gauge sets available to hobbyists is the Royal Blue Passenger Train Set – N Scale available from Historic Rail.
Introduced in the 1890s, the Royal Blue passenger train ran along the Baltimore and Ohio lines, and provided first class passenger rail services between New York and Washington DC.
This complete N gauge set is lead by a 4-4-0 American steam locomotive. Following this locomotive is:
- A tender with a powerful motor and a realistic coal load
- Two old-time coaches
- A combine
Each of these features a clerestory roof, glazed windows, a detailed under-frame and authentic Baltimore and Ohio markings.
Accompanying this train you will receive a 34 inch by 24 inch oval E-Z tack, a power pack/speed controller, and an easy to understand set of instructions. Together the locomotive and the tender measure in at a length of 4 inches. If you are going to be modeling a passenger service railway, this train set will serve you well.
Overall, the advantages offered by N gauge model railways can’t be matched by larger scales, and perhaps this is why these spectacular looking small trains are quickly becoming some of the most popular model trains among hobbyists in Europe and Japan.