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  1. Philphil

    Suburban Tokyo Themed Layout

    Hello everyone! Today marks one of the first days that I've begun work on an actual (hopefully) N-Scale layout! As these first two pictures demonstrate, I finally arranged a deal to get some space for a small layout, which at the moment is 16' × 2' (really only 20", because of the upper shelf support poles.) Eventually, when time, useable space and family permit, I have plans to expand it into a reversed 'F' shape, through the use of additional shelves along a different wall, and a heavy duty wooden center island table left over from some HO-scale projects. The shelving on the rear wall will the be top part of the letter 'F', and will add about 11' by 2' (again, only 20" of that useable). Final dimensions of the center island table TBD. (Possibly 5' × 6'?) I'll try and post the potential track plan(s) later tonight! I am also always open to feedback, so please chime in, it might really help me out! Thanks for your interest! ~Phillip R.
  2. Need for High Speed

    21000 series Urban liner

    hey, I was just wondering did Kato ever make the 21000 series (Urban liner) in HO gauge? and how long ago did they make it?
  3. Watch your step! Train's incoming! As you may know, I'm Waisneed, I like Trains *vrooom*. And a living room with lot's of space I can use temporarily. Mostly for a month at a time. And because of this, I have enough time to just build something without planning that much ahead. It's also a lot easier to just try to fit something with the available pieces when furniture is moveable, isn't it? The couch had to move a little bit more towards the TV, and there was enough space for the all important TRAINS! Who want's to watch the telly nowadays anyway? ^^;; But it could use somithing more to liven it up. It looks so empty and barren. As I didn't have any N-Scale buildings (Except the overhead stations), I just used what was at hand: Video Game Consoles. And as it turns out, those make for great big buildings of all kind: What do you think about this? It was my first 'real' layout with multiple feeders, all electric switches and overhead wire masts.
  4. Alright guys, stupid question here, I have a couple of Microace and Greenmax EMU sets coming in (soon, hopefully?) and I know they're still equipped with those big, gross hook couplers that originally came with them, so I'd really like to replace those with the EMU couplers Kato makes. The Microace models are 50000-series sets, and the Greenmax models will be two sets of 30000-series, 9000-series, and one set of 634-series cars (if I can ever find them!) Since I'm not very versed in Japanese I haven't been able to find any videos or sites showing the process, or even the coupler parts I would need to do the conversions, so any help in this would be appreciated! Thanks!
  5. I'm looking for spare parts sheets and some spares for my Kato N scale Nohab locomotives. Namely i would like to get two pairs of pilots. The warm region vertical type with the coupler cutout on the front. Any color would do, but i don't know the part numbers. Also any seller is good as long as they ship to Hungary and hopefully accept Paypal.
  6. Hello all I am new to the site. I have a few kato and micro ace sets that could use a new home. I will start out with this set I have to say it is used and has DCC in it. Not sure what it is worth at this point but I have priced between $500.USD and $850.00 USD. I would take offers on this. I am in the USA.
  7. Does anyone know of a good website with a list of Kato Japanese locomotives and their corresponding "drop-in" decoders. All the lists I can find are only for their NA models, but I know that many of the light boards used in NA models are also used in the Japanese models and therefore there are compatible decoders out there for many Japanese models as well. Thanks
  8. Here a small update of my project. I finally got the woodwork of the table ready and fitted the tracks. All seems to work out fine. Now wiring can start in earnest.
  9. Does anybody on this forum have experience with the system delivered by GamesOnTrack? See http://www.gamesontrack.com/pages/webside.asp?articleGuid=164198 I saw this being demonstrated at a fair the other day and it seemed quite reliable and versatile. It is a Danish made system whereby the position and identity of a train (or any other moving object) is detected using Ultrasonic sound. The system has 3 transmitters/receivers to triangulate a miniature transmitter/receiver fitted in the roof of a train. Allegedly there is no need for complex block detection and ditto wiring. By configuring your lay-out and the length of your trains in the computer, and the constant triangulation of the signals, the PC figures out where the train is (and its head and tail) and gives commands for its speed. There is something for interior lights as well. The PCB in the train is wired between the wheels and the motor just like DDC. Turn-out control is provided as well but not specifically made for KATO 2-wire turn-outs. The system appeals to me because it seems to be possible to implement a train automation system without extensive block wiring (which is difficult to do in an existing lay-out with completed scenery). Does anybody has experience with this system.?
  10. Hello all, As with any railroad there comes a time that a railroad track has to cross a roadway, which requires a grade crossing or grade separation. Since space is an issue, even in N-Scale, I am forced to opt to use grade crossings instead of separations. I can't say I'm particularly thrilled with any of the N-Scale Japanese-style crossings currently in production, but I really do like those Kato Unitram plates. Has anyone cut the plates, parallel to the track in order to space them further apart for use on standard Kato Unitrack? ~Phil
  11. Hi every one which dcc decoder I can use with KATO EF57?
  12. Hello all, I have been adding the detail parts and dcc'ing a Kato ef58 that i've had for some time. When I took the body off, I noticed that there are guides above the cabs for tail lights, as well as the headlights. Shining a light through the body confirmed that the light was delivered to the lenses for the tail lights, so I set about adding some leds to illuminate the tail lights, as there is space to do so. Inside the ef58. LEDs can be added to the grey box at either end of the model. I used 3mm LEDs, pre wired with a resistor. Grey box removed. The guide for the headlight lens goes through the gap on the left, you need to drill a hole on the right hand side for the light to pass through.
  13. Alrighty guys, stupid question here: Since Kato doesn't make non-banked curved viaduct track, how hard is it to remove the double track that came attached to the viaduct? Is it just screwed in? And if that's true, would I just be able to unscrew it and glue two single curved pieces of track onto it, assuming the screw holes don't match up? I'd like to change the geometry of the standard Kato viaducts to get 22.5-degree curves instead of the standard 45-degree curves, just for a change. Or is there a better way to do this? I'd try it for myself, but the track hasn't arrived yet. -Phil
  14. tgv_obsessed

    Kato, Tomix, Peco double track spacing

    Tomix spacing is 37mm; Peco setrack is 35mm; Kato is 33mm; and Peco 55 is 26mm. Now I know that Tomix and Peco setrack are fine for 11inch (280mm) and 12.5 inch(315mm) curves in parallel for long coaches not to hit each other, and, I know that Peco 55 spacing is probably a little narrow. But what about Kato? I am looking at variation pack V14. I have read that the spacing is a little tight for longer rolling stock to pass each other. Does anyone know if this is 'internet expert logic' or reality? In my mind, and shifting peco track a couple of millimeters in, it seems to be fine, but if anyone knows say if trains with BR mk4 or long continental coaches can pass each other with those radii and 33 track spacing, then I can probably start investing in Kato which is a lot easier to get hold of here in the UK
  15. Hello everyone, I'm on the hunt for some software not too terribly expensive (hopefully) that lets you plan out an N scale track plan. I only plan to use sectional Kato Unitrack, so an archive of Kato track parts is a must. Do you have recommendations or programs that you would avoid? (By the way, I am using a PC) ~Phil
  16. Hello All, Having a break from the kiha 40 build, I looked at dcc'ing a kato dd51. I had not removed the body from the dd51, just looked up on the net about dcc for the dd51 and from what I saw, the loco was not dcc ready, but some had used the circuit board for the ef65 to dcc the dd51. So, I ordered a circuit board. A bit later I got round to taking the body of the dd51 and found that it was already fitted with the same circuit board as an ef65, complete with 8 pin socket! With the ordered circuit board already in the post, I got round to thinking what else I could use it for. I have a number of Tomix ho models, non of which are dcc ready. Some time ago I got a mint second hand ef81, and with it being a similar shape to the ef65, I thought that swapping the Tomix circuit board for the Kato one should be possible, and am pleased to report it is. The original board is easy to remove, as nothing is soldered to it. Unplug the wires, remove the clips for the motor connectors (keep the clips), and then unclip the board from the chassis. Next, remove the clips on the chassis that are for holding the original board in place, as the Kato board will sit on top of the plastic dividers each side of the motor. The motor terminals attach to the Kato board by the number 15 on the cutting mat, place the contacts on the underside of the board and use the clips from the original board to secure the contacts in place. The wires from the pickups attached to where number 16 is on the mat. Also, please note that on the left hand side of the motor, you need to remove some of the plastic in the middle of the divider, this is to allow clearance for the gold coloured component on the left side of the Kato board. Position the board with the underside of the dcc socket (right hand side on board) on the flywheel side of divider. It's tight, but the socket will be clear of the flywheel.
  17. Hi everyone! Can anyone tell me what is the part number for the KATO E4 Max diaphragm coupler (between each car in a set, NOT the nose couplers!). I was thinking that while I am in Kyoto & near the KATO shop I should try to get some.... one of my E4 Max trains has a single broken coupler. On the motor car. The retaining pin on the bottom has gone, so whenever the train enters a curve, the motor car causes the whole train to derail! Not very prototypical for the Shinkansen..... Ewan
  18. I had an issue with the detection tracks that KATO supplies with the KATO 20-652 Automatic Crossing Gate. These are only available as 62 mm tracks. In my lay-out the rail crossing is located in the tracks leaving the station. The barriers should close when a train leaves the station. If I installed a single detection track after the turnout before the signal, the barriers would close too late. Because the crossing is quite close to the station, I needed two detection tracks, one at the end of each platform such that the barriers close when either train A or B leaves the station (see photo). This requires the left detection track to be 64 mm long. I first try to use a 62 mm track and squeeze the platform in between. That proved to be too tight an forces the outer edge of the track upwards. So I needed to make the detection track longer... After ample consideration I dared to disassemble the detection track and saw one of the ends off. Using the end of the ballast bed and the rails of a 64 mm track I managed to extend the detection track to 64 mm. See photo's for the result. Now all fits well around the platform.
  19. An interesting Kato tram layout with an inner Unitram loop and dual outer stock track lines and a four track tram depot. Video by Jeremy de Korte.
  20. Thanks for looking. It's time again to let go some of the train sets that have been decided to be out-of-region, out-of-era, out-of-company and out-of-likeness... Up for grabs are: ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------ Kato 10-1280 [Limited Edition] Hankyu Series 9300 (8-Car Full Set) Packaging - Original Kato Bookcase with sleeve. All 8-cars stored in bookcase belonging as per original Kato packaging Condition - 9.8/10 *almost mint with less than 3mins running time. Running time - very minimal running, close to pristine new condition Motor - YES in car number 7, tested running very smoothly. Couplers - Original Kato couplers Directional Lighting - White headlights with front lighted destination board & red taillights on both end cars. Interior Lighting - NO. Misc. parts -Default from Kato. Antenna have been attached to the roof of the cab cars. Additional parts included such as the interchangeable destination board Note - pillar for interior lighting have been snapped off a little at the top, previously to cater for interior lighting. Doesn't affect future interior lighting in any way. Please see picture for more details. Instructional booklet - YES, default Kato. Decals - available, brand new, un-used Additional information - Classy, Beautiful and rare set of the Hankyu 9300 series Full consist! Limited edition set that is rare now. Printed 'Women only' carriage included. Must have for Hankyu collectors and great for diorama with other Hankyu trains or within the Kansai area. Smooth runner even at low speed, and set in pristine condition with minimal running time around 3 mins. SOLD* Please check photos of the set below: SHIPPING* Sorry I could not factor in shipping anymore in my sales as there is a huge hike recently from SingPost which I really do not know why... Typically, one bookcase will cost: US$15 in a padded envelope to Asia. US$25 in a padded envelope to US, UK, Europe and Australia. (Others please enquire) OR US$25 in a BOX to Asia. US$40 in a BOX to US, UK, Europe and Australia. (Others please enquire)
  21. I need your esteemed expert advice! I have a 4 platform commuter station as shown in below pics. I have the KATO 23-200 station (with the green roofs) which fits nicely to a 2 platform station with 23-100 series platforms. However I need somehow passenger acces to the other two platforms. I see a few options: 1) pretend that the platforms 3 and 4 are accessible by underground passage. Not a very credible excuse. 2) Replace the KATO 23-200 station by 23-122 and -123 (the ones with the red roofs). These buildings do not fit with the Kato 23-100 platforms and covers. So I would need to buy all new platforms 23-120. An expensive solution. Not sure if tapered platforms are available for this tiled series platform. 3) Expand the existing 23-200 station with another one. Quite a bit of handy work is needed. Did any of you ever tried? Pls note that I struggling to design the station square as well. No need to comment on that! Many thanks Jan
  22. Dear Japanese train modelling enthusiasts, Happy New Year to you all! I have a question to you. I need to add catenary supports to a single track viaduct made up with the KATO 20-400 viaducts and the 23-017 piers (as shown below). The packaging of these items does not give me any clue on how to fix the catenary supports to these piers. Does any of you know of a clever way of doing it? Kind regards, Jan Photo's are taken from the Sumida;s Crossing site (my first go-to place for such questions).
  23. Hello, I am still looking for the following models: - 1x Kato 3076-1 E-Lok ED79-0 mit Single-Arm Pantograph -> http://www.1999.co.jp/eng/10226808 - 1x Kato 7008-7 Diesellok DD51 Cold-Specification -> http://www.1999.co.jp/eng/10261542 - 1x Kato 7008-2 Diesellok DD51 Hokutosei -> http://www.1999.co.jp/eng/10046468 Thank you for looking!
  24. Hey guys, I'm slowly starting to build up track and other supplies for a small N-scale layout mostly using Kato-brand Unitrack. Currently, Kato has a very limited amount of their unitrack available with concrete ties, and I'm just wondering if anyone has ever tried to repaint the black wood tie track pieces to make them look like their concrete-tie counterparts? If so, could you tell me the color(s) used or recommendations for potential colors? ~Phillip
  25. This is probably a stupid question: I am looking for a (preferably European to avoid import duties) supplier, of the kind of blue-white wires similar to those used by Kato for the track power supply. I need to extend the standard track power wires while avoiding the relatively expensive KATO extension wires (263 Yen for less than 1 meter wire) as well as the KATO distribution box (see the pics below). I also want to use them to make my own version of the Kato wired Uni-Joiner.