We started handlaying code 40 track on our club layout for several reasons. Appearance being one of the primary ones, N Scale just looks better on small rail, especially in pictures. It gave us much more freedom in design because we could lay the turnouts to match the track plan and not force the layout to match a commercial turnout. We started in 1981 when there were not as many commercial choices and there was (still is) a very limited choice for curved turnouts.
When we started there were no narrow tread wheels which many of us now use and we discovered a handful of turnouts that needed to be relaid due to too large a flangeway. Now you can run anywhere you want on the club layout with fine flange, narrow tread wheels and not have any trouble at all. There are two yards that have code 55 flex track because of difficult access but all the turnouts for those yards are handmade. Most yards, including the two largest ones, are laid with code 40. We have a lot of experience with this with around 25 scale miles of track and over 200 turnouts.
We also do a few other things differently. Many of us (myself included) cut off the magnetic uncoupling lever from couplers, when operating we uncouple with picks. Several members have replaced their couplers with body mounted Z Scale couplers and one of them is now converting to MT True Scale couplers.
San Diego, CA