Author Topic: What would keep you from building a TTRAK module?  (Read 9512 times)

0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic.

JMaurer1

  • Crew
  • *
  • Posts: 1157
  • Gender: Male
  • Respect: +291
Re: What would keep you from building a TTRAK module?
« Reply #45 on: September 22, 2023, 11:52:34 AM »
0
I've been doing N Rail for over 20 years...which is why I have a tendency to still call it N Trak.

IMHO, the biggest issue with TTRAK is it being displayed on standard tables...WAY TOO LOW (which makes it easy for kids to 'intervene'). One of my issues with N Rail is that the modules are too low at 40 inches...something that I think Freemon fixed with their greater height. Truth be told, I never liked the triple track mainline which is why most of our modules use Alt blue instead of the triple track but that is beside the point. I really like the idea of being able to build something and complete it (or at least having it possible to complete) in a weekend, but when you are done, unless you are at a show or with several others, you don't really have anything you can run (I know, same for Freemon and N RAIL, but at least you usually have more track to run on).

If it helps people get into the hobby, I'm all for it, no matter what it is. We need more people in the hobby, and it is a great hobby to have. In the end, however, there seem to be be better alternatives...at least as far as I'm concerned, out there. I also don't like seeing the pool of N scalers being watered down by having to choose one standard over another and only being able to interact with that one standard. All of the groups need to get together and agree on one standard and stick to it so everyone can play together.
Sacramento Valley NRail and NTrak
We're always looking for new members

Ed Kapuscinski

  • Global Moderator
  • Crew
  • *
  • Posts: 24060
  • Head Kino
  • Respect: +7944
    • Conrail 1285
Re: What would keep you from building a TTRAK module?
« Reply #46 on: September 22, 2023, 11:56:51 AM »
+4
This has been a great discussion.

As you can tell, I'm a fan of the format, but yes, there are some very real drawbacks.

One of the interesting things that seems to be a common answer to "What keeps you from getting involved in TTRAK?" is "Other TTRAKers".

That makes sense.

Being the big tent that it is, and with the intentionally low barrier to entry that it provides, it's not surprising that TTRAK has a large enough contingent of folks who the gang here might not want to invest the time into hanging out with which, at the end of the day, is a huge factor in driving participation.

There were a few things that spurred me to start this thread:

@AlkemScaleModels has talked about doing a Proto-TTRAK setup at the next MARPM event and I wanted to see what interest there might be around here in contributing to it.

I've started working on adapters to allow us to use better looking track (Atlas 55, ME 55 and 70, etc...) on modules from end to end by allowing the track to use the critical part of TTRAK: Unijoiners. I was curious to see if I'm answering a question that nobody was asking or if I just invented something better than sliced bread.

[ Guests cannot view attachments ]

[ Guests cannot view attachments ]

[ Guests cannot view attachments ]

altohorn25

  • Crew
  • *
  • Posts: 840
  • Gender: Male
  • Respect: +3315
    • Mini Mod u Trak
Re: What would keep you from building a TTRAK module?
« Reply #47 on: September 22, 2023, 12:01:38 PM »
+4
I'm going to sound like a snob here......so anyways......

In my opinion, 95% of T-trak modules are N-trak on steroids......and not in a good way.  Take the most unrealistic thing you can come up with, put it on the back of the module, and run two straight sections of track down the front.  It is not, and never will be, my cup of tea.

I have seen some excellent T-trak modules; it's just not the norm. 

As a previous poster put it, I think T-trak takes N scale from a true modeler's scale back to the realm of toy trains. 

On a logistical standpoint, the radius of the curves is too small to make prototypical length passenger cars look good going around the corners (again....adding to the toy like look).

Again, maybe I'm just a snob (and that's fine), but T-trak will never by my thing.  It doesn't interest me in the slightest.
Nate Pierce
Modutrak - Wisconsin Division
www.modutrak.com

robert3985

  • Crew
  • *
  • Posts: 2988
  • Respect: +1252
Re: What would keep you from building a TTRAK module?
« Reply #48 on: September 22, 2023, 12:25:28 PM »
+1
I'm all for those who want to participate in model railroading by building T-Trak modules, or Ntrak modules or FreeMoN modules.

If they want to build Star Wars, Old West, Nuclear power plants blowing up, Jurassic World, Spongebob Squarepants or animated carnival/circus (with extra-loud steam calliope music) modules, then GREAT!

If they feel compelled to use the worst-looking N-gauge track made, then that's just fine by me. Go right ahead!

However, for myself, I am not interested in scenes that aren't prototypical...the more prototypical the better as far as I am concerned. 

I am interested in realistic N-scale model trackwork, however it's achieved.

I have no desire to cater to rug-rats since it's MY money, MY time I'm expending on my sectional, portable layout which I sometimes take to shows to offer a more advanced look at prototype detailing in N-scale and what it can look like rather than displaying the lowest common denominator designed for "easiness" and "convenience".  If the kiddies want to see what's running at my 52" railhead to floor height mainlines, Dad can pick them up and walk them around the layout. 

There's always the huge Lego Layout the pre-schoolers can go admire instead of trying to grab trains off my tracks...and I'll probably be dead and gone in 15 years anyway, so I want to do what I want to do...just like the Star Wars guys want to do what they want to do.

I enjoy emphasizing the excellent scenery-to-track-ratio that N-scale possesses, instead of emphasizing its smallness, tight radii, sectional track, no skyboard, low height, high rails.

Yup, it takes me about three hours with help to set up my modules at a show, then another hour or so setting out cars and engines to run...but, it's what I choose to do, including renting the big U-Haul trailer, owning a 3/4 ton Suburban to tow it...but the layout makes a much different impression than the un-themed, low-level, tiny moduled, sectional tracked, no-skyboard T-Trak modules running trains at a scale 200MPH next to Gregg's and my setup.

Yeah, T-Trak doesn't have to be the "lowest common denominator" in either what's being modeled or what a local club decides to allow...BUT, too often most of what's being displayed really isn't "model railroading"...but fantasy scenes with a couple of train tracks running through them.

I like to cater to those interested in "model" railroading, superdetailing, prototype Layout Design Elements, hand-laid custom track, DCC, signaling, etc. etc.

There's plenty of catering to the kiddos going on at shows...time to cater to the adults a bit since it's OUR money, OUR time and OUR efforts going into our modeling...not Junior's. Hmmm...have I said that before???

That's why I am not interested one whit in T-Trak, although I admire good work in whatever format I see...I'm just too busy with my own portable layout to even consider another format.

Cheerio!
Bob Gilmore
« Last Edit: September 22, 2023, 12:51:11 PM by robert3985 »

seusscaboose

  • The Pitt
  • Crew
  • *
  • Posts: 2045
  • Respect: +190
Re: What would keep you from building a TTRAK module?
« Reply #49 on: September 22, 2023, 12:28:41 PM »
0
Which hobby? Star Wars, Smurfs, Legos, haunted castles, unicorns and rainbows, UFOs? All, combinations of all, and even worse can be found masquerading as "model railroading" on TTrak modules. Not to mention the toylike appearance of Unitrack, no spiral easements or compound curves, and shiny rail with trains chasing their tails.

I saw four Star Wars modules at Altoona that I'd pay money for and dang sure should've won an award for Best in Show. 

I'm trying to keep on point here for the Cherub and keep it positive (Always with the negative waves, Moriarty, always with the negative waves - Oddball)

I think I would be ok with making a few (I have some from an Estate sale) ...  if someone didn't have his personal cocktail hour on Friday nights and would swing by occasionally to the Train Full of Basements maybe I'd be inspired.  :trollface:

bring your curves and let's set em' up.

EP
"I have a train full of basements"

NKPH&TS #3589

Inspiration at:
http://nkphts.org/modelersnotebook

k27463

  • Crew
  • *
  • Posts: 94
  • Respect: +33
Re: What would keep you from building a TTRAK module?
« Reply #50 on: September 22, 2023, 12:39:36 PM »
+2

I'm kind of surprised someone hasn't just 3d printed an entire module base and tried to sell them.  It could maybe even have little grooves for where the track goes and screw holes for the track in the right places.  Let's lower the bar even more so that we can just focus on the scenery aspect of it.  I'm considering being that person if I can find a 3d printer that can do it.   


I've printed a few T-Trak module bases (and the entire module for that matter -- partially so that I could specifically do below-track scenery.

The big obstacle is going to be cost -- I'm at nearly the cost of buying a module kit, and that's excluding the cost of the printer itself.

peteski

  • Crew
  • *
  • Posts: 31781
  • Gender: Male
  • Honorary Resident Curmudgeon
  • Respect: +4586
    • Coming (not so) soon...
Re: What would keep you from building a TTRAK module?
« Reply #51 on: September 22, 2023, 01:41:17 PM »
0
I've been doing N Rail for over 20 years...which is why I have a tendency to still call it N Trak.
NRAIL?

You've been doing N-TRAK for the last 20 years.  I've been doing N-TRAK  for the last 35+ years. N-TRAK is still alive and well.  NRAIL is not a modular standard. It  is just an non-profit umbrella entity that has taken both, NTRAK and T-TRAK under its control. That is what  happens when organizations get too big. But each modular standard is still totally separate, and you don't automatically have to do both standards.

You should be a proud N-TRAKker as am  I .

Peteski
N-TRAK member #978  :)
. . . 42 . . .

signalmaintainer

  • Crew
  • *
  • Posts: 421
  • Respect: +237
Re: What would keep you from building a TTRAK module?
« Reply #52 on: September 22, 2023, 01:41:30 PM »
-1
I'm going to sound like a snob here......so anyways......

In my opinion, 95% of T-trak modules are N-trak on steroids......and not in a good way.  Take the most unrealistic thing you can come up with, put it on the back of the module, and run two straight sections of track down the front.  It is not, and never will be, my cup of tea.

I have seen some excellent T-trak modules; it's just not the norm. 

As a previous poster put it, I think T-trak takes N scale from a true modeler's scale back to the realm of toy trains. 

On a logistical standpoint, the radius of the curves is too small to make prototypical length passenger cars look good going around the corners (again....adding to the toy like look).

Again, maybe I'm just a snob (and that's fine), but T-trak will never by my thing.  It doesn't interest me in the slightest.

Well stated. And, no, it doesn't make us snobs, but if other people think so, so what?
NSMR #1975, RMR #4

signalmaintainer

  • Crew
  • *
  • Posts: 421
  • Respect: +237
Re: What would keep you from building a TTRAK module?
« Reply #53 on: September 22, 2023, 02:06:16 PM »
-2
All of you trying to have a fruitful discussion with signalmaintainer, by now you should have realized that you won't get anywhere.  Don't waste your time.

It's really just you, Peteski. I awoke this morning and thought, "What can I do to really set Peteski off? 'Cause his opinion of me is so vital to my well-being." 🙂

Not interested in having any discussion with you, fruitful or otherwise, Peteski, because life's too short.
« Last Edit: September 22, 2023, 03:36:41 PM by signalmaintainer »
NSMR #1975, RMR #4

peteski

  • Crew
  • *
  • Posts: 31781
  • Gender: Male
  • Honorary Resident Curmudgeon
  • Respect: +4586
    • Coming (not so) soon...
Re: What would keep you from building a TTRAK module?
« Reply #54 on: September 22, 2023, 02:10:16 PM »
0
It's really just you, Peteski. Not interested in having any discussion with you, because life's too short. Anyone else without a chip on their shoulder is good.🙂 And if you want to carry this conversation on offline, PM me and I'll send you my phone number.

LOL!
I have absolutely no desire to discuss anything with you.
« Last Edit: September 22, 2023, 02:14:48 PM by peteski »
. . . 42 . . .

signalmaintainer

  • Crew
  • *
  • Posts: 421
  • Respect: +237
Re: What would keep you from building a TTRAK module?
« Reply #55 on: September 22, 2023, 02:13:33 PM »
-5
September 22, 2023, 02:13:33 PM - Hidden.
« Last Edit: September 22, 2023, 02:16:50 PM by signalmaintainer »
NSMR #1975, RMR #4

signalmaintainer

  • Crew
  • *
  • Posts: 421
  • Respect: +237
Re: What would keep you from building a TTRAK module?
« Reply #56 on: September 22, 2023, 02:29:59 PM »
-2
Yeah, T-Trak doesn't have to be the "lowest common denominator" in either what's being modeled or what a local club decides to allow...BUT, too often most of what's being displayed really isn't "model railroading"...but fantasy scenes with a couple of train tracks running through them.

My point exactly. Which hobby is really center stage? It's an uphill climb to assert that the fantasy themes are somehow back seat to the two pieces of Unitrack just passing through.

But conversely, and as photos in post #50 show, there are very well done TTrak modules showcasing terrific railroading themes, regardless of the prefab sectional track.
NSMR #1975, RMR #4

chuck geiger

  • Crew
  • *
  • Posts: 3144
  • Gender: Male
  • Las Piedras Railroad - Destination Desert
  • Respect: +2411
Re: What would keep you from building a TTRAK module?
« Reply #57 on: September 22, 2023, 03:01:07 PM »
+3
If they look like Mike Fifers, Bruce and Ed's yes. Other than that, not a fan of merry go rounds, ufo's and dinosaurs.
« Last Edit: September 22, 2023, 03:07:28 PM by chuck geiger »
Chuck Geiger
provencountrypd@gmail.com

Ed Kapuscinski

  • Global Moderator
  • Crew
  • *
  • Posts: 24060
  • Head Kino
  • Respect: +7944
    • Conrail 1285
Re: What would keep you from building a TTRAK module?
« Reply #58 on: September 22, 2023, 03:40:42 PM »
+3
If they look like Mike Fifers, Bruce and Ed's yes. Other than that, not a fan of merry go rounds, ufo's and dinosaurs.

Yeah, but if people who aren't fans of those things don't contribute, then those are all that will be there.

I guess one of my underlying assumptions of mine in this thread is that folks understand the desire to be the change you want to see in the world.

Dave V

  • Crew
  • *
  • Posts: 10926
  • Gender: Male
  • Foothills Farm Studios -- Dave's Model Railroading
  • Respect: +8547
Re: What would keep you from building a TTRAK module?
« Reply #59 on: September 22, 2023, 03:45:09 PM »
+5

I guess one of my underlying assumptions of mine in this thread is that folks understand the desire to be the change you want to see in the world.

Honestly, this might end up being the motivation for me to build one.

I fundamentally believe people--even non-railfans--respond more to realistic things that look like things they've seen (or might have seen in another era) versus the fantasy stuff or the poorly executed stuff.