Royersford Modular Model Railroaders


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MODULAR STANDARDS REFERENCE SHEET

TRACK
HEIGHT
FLOOR TO TOP OF RAIL
RAIL
CODE
TRACK CLEARANCE HORIZ. & VERT.
TRACK CENTERLINE TO MODULE FACE
TRACKS SETBACK FROM MODULE ENDS
TRACK SPACING CENTER LINE TO CENTER LINE (STRAIGHT)
TRACK SPACING CENTER LINE TO CENTER LINE (CURVED)
TRACK SWITCHES
WIRE GAUGE AND COLORS

MAIN 1

40" 100 1-1/32" Horiz.
3" Vert.
5" 4.5" 2.0" 2.5" #6 or larger 12-16
gauge
RED

MAIN 2

100 1-1/32" Horiz.
3" Vert.
7" #6 or larger 12-16
gauge
YELLOW or ORANGE

MAIN 3
(if used)

100 1-1/32" Horiz.
3" Vert.
9" #6 or larger 12-16
gauge
BLUE

OTHER
TRACKS

MAY
VARY
100 MAY VARY MAY VARY 1.5" or 4.5" MAY VARY MAY VARY #4 or larger 12-16
gauge
OTHER
TRACK
  • Between module-end bridge track and first curve or track switch, a minimum of 3" straight track is recommmended.
  • Insulated rail joiners are required between all electrical blocks or sections, as "air gaps" are unreliable.
  • Curves (main lines) 32" radius minimum (standard)
  • Curves (branch lines) 24" radius minimum (standard)
  • Curves (industrial tracks) 18" radius minimum (recommended)
  • Clearance dimensions above are for main line tracks, to allow all types of rolling stock. On sidings, industrial tracks and spur tracks, clearance should be adequate for any cars that would reasonably be expected to use those tracks (e.g. double-stack cars are not expected to be sent to coal tipples.)
ELECTRICAL
  • Standard Plugs:
    TRW #P302 and #S302 OR
    Radio Shack #274-201 and #274-202OR compatible substitutes from other sources.
  • Pin Assignments:
    Wide blade (pin 1) connects to outside rail,
    Narrow blade (pin 2) connects to inside rail.
  • As viewed from the front of the module:
    Female connectors are at the left end of the module.
    Male connectors are at the right end of the module, with 18" of cable (12-16 gauge wire.)
  • Color coding for plugs:
    Outside main track (track 1) - RED
    Second main track (track 2) - YELLOW
    Third main track (track 3) - (if used) - BLUE
    Other tracks - Label as needed.
  • Terminal blocks to be used at each end of module. Between connectors and terminal blocks, wire of 12-16 gauge is to be used. Between track and terminal block, wire of 22 or 24 gauge may be used. This lighter-gauge wire is easier to attach to the rails, and is acceptable for short-distance "feeder" wires.
  • For additional electrical guidelines,
    see NMRA Standard S-9.
  • Between wall plug(s) and transformer(s) a cord of sufficient capacity is required.
  • Use of surge protectors or spike arrestors is recommended.
  • Additional precautions may be required by code, or by management of show venues.
  • In case of uncertainty in electrical practice, consult recognized resources and/or a qualified advisor.
SCENERY
  • Skyboard height: 8" to 18" allowed. 14" recommended.
  • Details of individual module scenery are left to the builders of those modules, but generally should resemble other modules on the railroad in season and geographic region.
  • Complete scenery is encouraged for all module builders.
  • The front face of the module should be painted (or stained and varnished) to present a finished appearance. Provision should be made for attaching signs identifying the club and the individual modules.
ROLLING STOCK
  • Rolling stock (locomotives and cars) should be maintained in good condition, and will be subject to inspection before use on the railroad. Owners of cars and locomotives are responsible for the maintenance of that equipment, and for correcting any problems with that equipment. Equipment which does not operate reliably, or which causes interference with smooth operation of the layout may be rejected.
  • Rolling stock to be used on the railroad is to be painted and lettered before use on the railroad, especially during shows. (no "undec" equipment.) Weathering is optional, but recommended.
  • Each car and locomotive should have a unique number, to allow for operations, as well as reporting of problems with equipment.
  • Each car and locomotive is to be marked with the owner's name or initials, for identification purposes.
OPERATIONS
  • Trains should be operated at reasonable speeds.
  • Cars and locomotives within each train should be of similar era to maintain realistic trains.
  • Coupling cars should be done at slow speed to avoid damaging equipment.
  • Damage to any car or locomotive must be reported to the owner of that equipment ASAP.
  • Locations of derailments should be noted, so that track can be inspected and repaired as needed. Cars and locomotives involved in derailments should also be noted.
  • Any cars or locomotives which derail twice should be removed immediately for re-inspection.
MODULE CONNECTIONS
  • C-clamps (recommended) or spring clamps (acceptable) shall be used to fasten modules together.
  • Adjustment screws at bottom of legs should be used to ensure that track surface can be made level, even when modules are set up on imperfect floors.
  • 9-inch connecting tracks (snap track or similar piece of track) are to be used to connect main line tracks on adjoining modules. Connecting tracks on yard or siding tracks may be 9" long or 3" long. Connecting tracks are required, as rail alignment between modules cannot be guaranteed to be precise enough for reliable operations without any connecting tracks.
MISCELLANEOUS
  • The front face (toward the public viewing aisle) of the module should be painted (or stained and varnished) to present a finished appearance. Finishing the rear face of the module is optional, but recommended.
    Provision should be made for attaching signs identifying the club and the individual modules.
  • Each module should be able to stand on its own legs, without needing to be attached to other modules to stay standing. This helps speed up the setup and breakdown of the layout, since some individuals can be setting up modules, while others attach them together and others adust and level them.
  • The layout should not be left unattended during shows. Members may take breaks, but should alternate these. Someone should always be on hand to answer visitors' questions, operate trains, and keep an eye on the layout, its contents, and its surroundings.
The standards on this sheet are those used by Royersford Modular Model Railroads, and while they are similar to, and generally compatible with, the N.M.R.A. modular standards, they are not identical.
You may print this page, and use these standards if you wish, but only you can determine if they are suitable for your needs or the needs of your group.
If you wish to follow the N.M.R.A. standards, please obtain a copy of those standards from the National Model Railroad Association directly, or from their authorized representatives.


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