Q:

What scales are model steam engines designed in?

A:

Quick Answer

Model enthusiasts design and make model steam engines in a number of different scales, which typically range anywhere from 1:220 up to massive 1:4 models. Each common scale has a letter designation that makes it easy to match trains to tracks and accessories.

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Full Answer

Common scales for model steam engines include 1:160 (N), 1:87 (HO), 1:64 (S), 1:48 (O) and 1:22.5 (GN3). Trains in the 1:22.5 scale and larger are usually outdoor "live steam" trains that are fully functional.

Letter designations help simplify the process of matching trains to all their auxiliary parts in the same scale. For instance, the HO scale, or 1:87, is extremely popular with indoor train enthusiasts because the trains have a high level of detail but do not take up excessive space.

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