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Ho Scale Train Layouts and Its Essence

By Guest Author On August 18, 2011 Under Improve Your Life

For those of you who are interested in scale train layouts and have not yet immersed yourself in that specific hobby, you may want to know that the most popular and well-known modern railway scale in the non-English speaking and even the English speaking world is called the HO scale. The standard ratio dimensions in HO scale would be one real foot is equivalent to 3.5 millimeters.

The term HO has a different derivation as the acronym doesn’t stand for a particular word that uses the exact letters. The “H” means half in HO while the “O” is in fact zero but pronounced as such since the zero’s half or O scale is approximately 1:87. The O scale was named following the bigger 1, 2 , and 3 scales and the term has been colloquially pronounced as “aitch – oh” instead of aitch-zero. The O gauge model for the modern railways became popular during the start of the twentieth century having the standard width of 32mm and a standard model scale of 1:45.

The real reason behind the HO scale train layout was development and introduction even before World War II is that there has been a clamor for people not having ultra large houses to have a train scale which is half the size of the O gauge. Aside from being suitable for smaller home setups, it would be more cost effective to manufacture and faster to make and because of these goals that the HO scale train layout or the HO gauge was conceived.

It might be a surprise to you to find out that as early as 1922 a company in Nuremberg, Germany named Bing has been selling tabletop railway scales for years now and the gauge 16.55mm was what they were using for the quasi-ballasted raised tracks and during this time this scale has not been introduced as the OO or HO. To complement these scale train efforts by Bing, a company called Kibri designed and marketed scale train accessories that will coincide with Bing’s scales and measurements. At the same time these scale trains run on with a clockwork drive but beginning 1924, most scale trains run on electricity.

The OO gauge which is also known as the half naught gauge was most talked about in the 1935 Leipzig Spring Fair and it was given the name Trix Express. The rails became tin ballasts in what came about as the Marklin version and it is in contrast to the system of Bing wherein the tracks were attached and directly stamped on the ballast making the track and the ballast a single sheet of metal.

The HO scale trains came to life out of need as the Depression caused so many industries to lay off and people had to live with what is available and cheaper, thus the HO smaller scale that comes cheaper and much easier to manufacture so hobbyists in the US enjoyed making the HO scale better as it allows modelers to fit a lot more details and scale miles into the given small area.

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