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The code refers to the actual height of the rail. The followings heights are used for N-scale:
- Code 80 = 0.080" tall or about 13" N scale height - the mostly used for sectional tracks.
- Code 70 = 0.070" tall or about 11" N scale height
- Code 55 = 0.055" tall or about 9" N scale height - the mostly used by modelers wishing a realistic effect for their layout. Can be used with all modern rolling stock (low flange wheels).
- Code 40 = 0.040" tall or about 6" N scale height
The turnout number describes the length needed for the diverging track to be 1 foot apart from the straight one . So the lower the number, the sharper the curve, and the higher the number, the more gradual curve on the diverging track.
- In a #4 turnout, the rails are 1 foot apart at a distance 4 feet beyond the frog
- In a #6 turnout, the rails are 1 foot apart at a distance 6 feet beyond the frog
- In a #8 turnout, the rails are 1 foot apart at a distance 8 feet beyond the frog
Note that European brands such as Minitrix or Fleischmann use a different notation for turnouts and refer to the radius of the curvature of the diverging track.
Within five years, Walthers had grown so much that larger quarters were needed. Space was found on Erie Street, where everything -- from milled wood parts to metal castings to decals -- was made in-house. 1937 also saw a new line in HO Scale, featured in its own catalog. Bill brought operating layouts to the 1939 World's Fair, which gave the hobby a big boost. Soon, though, the growing possibility of war overshadowed these successes, and supplies were becoming increasingly difficult to obtain.
During the war, model manufacturers were ordered to stop production in order to conserve critical metal supplies. Walthers produced what it could from nonessential materials. A series of ads in 1943 saw Bill literally scraping the bottom of a barrel! The postwar boom meant rapid growth for the hobby; however, small homes and new families left no room for O scale layouts, and many modelers moved to HO Scale.
The next twenty years brought great change. In 1958, Bill retired and his son Bruce took over. Just as full-size railroads were being hard-hit by new technology, so too were model railroads. Leisure time was spent in front of the TV set, not the train set. In 1960, Walthers became a full-line distributor of other manufacturers' products while continuing expansion of the Walthers lines. By the start of the 1970's, business was booming again, and Bruce's son Phil joined the company.
Expansion and diversification continue under Phil's tenure. The establishment of the Walthers Importing Division added several international lines. The manufacturing plant was modernized. Code 83 track was introduced in 1985, giving layouts more realistic proportions. In 1990, the Cornerstone Series buildings were unveiled. Combining a freight car with a related industry, the Cornerstone Series makes it possible for modelers to duplicate authentic operations, enhancing layout realism. The Train Line Deluxe Sets and locomotives debuted in 1994. These sets feature the detailing of serious models and an affordable price -- allowing newcomers to get started, and then build-on to their first set, rather than replacing it.
In 2005, Walthers purchased Life-Like from Lifoam Industries. With this purchase Walthers acquired the Proto Lines that have become the backbone of their locomotive and rolling stock segments.
Today, Walthers continues to expand, improve and develop a wide range of products. Their latest selection can be found throughout Walthers.com and their printed catalogs, along with items from over 300 other manufacturers.
Item created by: gdm on 2016-11-18 11:51:31. Last edited by Alain LM on 2017-06-11 08:44:44
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