Re: MTL Switch grinding
- The debate on Micro Trains Roadbed track has been hot and heavy since the switches hit the market. My question is are we trying to make and require more than what it was intended to do?
My take on the product is this is a step forward for those entering the market, as you can purchase a train set, a power pack, a loop of track, to which you can later add a siding, and it is all plug and play on a table top or carpet. This is about as close to being bullet proof as anything is in this scale. Admittedly there is a problem with the rail climbing over rail joiners when assembling it sometimes, but still once you fix that problem and it runs well.
The problem as I see it we want to push the product beyond what it was intended for. I know have 70 feet of double track main line using this track with two yards and several cross overs and it forms a complete loop on my benchwork. I also have 65 feet of single track point to point hand laid track with Fast Tracks and Wright switches and includes some dual gauge N + Nn3. Both run reliably for me but the effort put into the hand laid to get it to this point is far greater than putting down the MTL roadbed track for Z. What I can run on the Nn3 I can also run on the Z but not always the other way around.
What I am working on is to see if I can use ballasted micro trains track and get to look as good as the west coast modules and I think it will be close but no cigar. The MTL Flex and Wright turnouts seem to produce a better show piece in addition to running well.
So you got to decide what you want. I think it is not to change the MTL road bed product but to instead use the MTL Flex and come out with a totally different switch and accessories to go with this piece of track. Maybe we need a Micro Engineering in Z now to provide for this market. Having said that, I remember the growing pains with their first switches. So get used to it is not going to be all things to everybody and to push the envelope you have to be prepared to try and fail and then do it again as that is part of the learning process. Sometimes you have to work at making something work for you. That is how I discovered how easy it was to convert the MTL switches to power routing and to run a double track main line with corss overs using the MTL switch.
While I am new to Z (2004) I am not new to model railraods and have been involved in Nn3 for almost 30 years now. So from that I have learned allot about track and making things run on this track gauge, taking apart Marklin mechanism and making them do things their designers never envisioned them to do. Since 2004 I have learned allot about Z specifically, fixing, running, playing on the Golden Blackhawk and Central City with Mister Dave, Ed and Don along with the three of our wives the two Judies and Dora and others over the years since the Cincinatti National in 2004 and first Z-scale convention in Columbus.
My back ground was before retirement as an engineering technologist in the marine industry 20 years, commercial pilot, flight engineer and airline pilot, 15 years, and in my earlest years as a marine radio operator in the days of tubes 5 years. So my work was always finding solutions to problems and making it work in the field.
I'll get down off my soap box now. Got to keep having fun.
--- In email@example.com, Larry Card <lpcard@...> wrote:
> > MTL is a great company. They have vision and are helping move Z to new
> > levels of popularity while taking some giant risks. I applaud them for this.
> > But, trains must run on track. MTL has a chance to blow Marklin's 1972
> > technology out of the water. But, this has not happened. I will tell you this
> > though, if MTL does make the two changes that I have suggested, the whole Z
> > community is in store for a great out of the box product.
> Here's another suggestion. Take the damn things off of that molded roadbed and sell them that way as well. It would take some work but it would give another welcome option to Marklin, Peter Wright or hand-layed turnouts.
> Larry P. Card
> Franklinton NC
> Windows Live Hotmail®: Celebrate the moment with your favorite sports pics. Check it out.
> [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
- In a message dated 8/1/09 1:21:13 PM, andy_r@... writes:
> Do you know what isAndy,
> happening to the Marklin product lines in the future, post bankruptcy?
It is too soon to say. I know from my contacts with Marklin that the Z line
is part of their long term plans. But it really depends on the new owner
once they are established. The Z line is now under the control of the Trix
team. There are some in Marklin who want to bring it back to the Marklin fold.
We are all waiting for this time of uncertainty to come to an end.
Ztrack Magazine Ltd.
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Distributor American Z Line
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