HOn30 Narrow Gauge
I'm also starting to get into HOn30. Also known as HOe (in Europe) or HOn2-1/2. This is HO "scale" on N gauge track. N gauge track measures 30 inches in HO, hence the "30" in HOn30. 30 inches in also 2.5 feet, that's where the "2-1/2" in HOn2-1/2 comes from.
I had (or so I thought) "invented" this concept, in an unusual way. Having no idea that HOn30 existed, I came across a drawing of a narrow-gauge mining loco in an old dictionary my wife's aunt gave us. I noticed from the measurements this mining loco would scale - in HO - to using an N scale Bachman 0-4-0 Docksider with a modified boiler. Imagine my surprise and delight when I found this whole sub-specialty in HO narrow gauge existed!
The drawing above is from Appleton's Cyclopedia of Applied Mechanics: A Dictionary, D. Appleton and Co., 1880. Here's what it says about illustration, "Figure 2891 represents a locomotive built by the Baldwin Locomotive Works, and working in a gold mine in Forest City, California. Iy is employed in a tunnel 4,000 ft. in length, in which is a track of only 20 in. gauge, laid with T rails, and having grades, some of which are as steep as 200 ft. per mile."
The more traditional HOn3 is 3 feet or 36 inches between the rails. The nice thing about HOn30 is there are a lot of N scale mechanisms that can be used to make an HOn30 locomotive. Below is a comparison of HO, HOn30 (or N gauge), and Z gauge track. The Z scale 0-6-0 will be used to make a 18" gauge mining railroad.
For more information on HOn30, see the HOn30 "mail car" page.
Train & Trooper
is a good source of parts and kits.
Narrow-gauge HOn30 mining layout.
copyright 1995-97 MLRollins