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IST

New and exciting UniTram switch news for 2012

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cteno4

Kato took a few years working on the unitram by accounts of folks at the release. trams in japan are big time for modelers, lots of ttrak streetcar going on. they definitely took the higher end road than tomix so i think it was an effort to compete without directly competing. they had announced they had a longer term plan with the untram stuff but i dont think they elaborated any specifics other than look for other stuff to come.

 

kato has liked the modular, prebuilt approach with diotown and such so i can see unitram as pretty direct reflection of their history. they have not been super flexible in the past though to fill in the odd bits that might be easy to stay focused on their planned path. tomytec seems to be more willing to go with the flow.

 

jeff

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Hobby Dreamer

I'm optimistic about Kato... Until I joined here I never thought them small or closed minded, limited etc.. They sell a ton of trains and although not as much track as Tomix and Peco etc its hard not to find a LHS in North America without Kato products..

 

IST mentioned that the Kato representative discussed Combino trams, that I don't think are used in Japan. So they seem to want to market their tram system outside Japan.

 

So far, the Kato displays at rail shows have been either a fully detailed loop with structures or a mishmash of tram and train track that looks pretty crappy. That seems to fly in Japan but not here or in Europe. No one wants a layout as IST posted from Kato's booth. If the Kato rep discussed products I'm certain that someone attending mentioned how good it would be not to have makeshift layouts or that at least something less than 4-lane roads would be good.

 

Maybe a single track switch would be asking too much but they will have options such as track without road plate..

 

Kato has released a ton of new product recently so I trust my eyes and not the position that Kato is limited in their product philosophy etc.. They have brand new and the best trams, the best tram track system, a new array of structures that fit this system, new trams since initial release, new track as well and are displaying their stuff in Europe. And they mention new stuff coming..

 

Sounds optimistic!!!

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disturbman
IST mentioned that the Kato representative discussed Combino trams, that I don't think are used in Japan. So they seem to want to market their tram system outside Japan.

 

Doch, some Combinos are used on the Hiroden and a version of these trams was released by Modemo. :) That's a "one stone two bird thing", they could offer different liveries to cater for different geographic zones.

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Hobby Dreamer

Thanks Disturbman..

 

It seemed great that Kato would do something non-Japanese but its always smart for manufacturers to get the "2 birds"!!

 

Toronto is to use new trams in 2 years that look a lot like the Combinos so that might be fun if the livery is almost correct. The Bombardiers they plan to buy look ugly compared to others in the Flexity line..

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rpierce000

Just to reply to the coupler comment, none of Kato's trams, to my knowledge, have couplers. That does not mean they exclude couplers, it just means you have to leave the Kato nest to get into them.

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IST

Just to reply to the coupler comment, none of Kato's trams, to my knowledge, have couplers.

 

What about the German type Kato Düwag trams?

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rpierce000

I sit corrected.

 

I was referring to the UniTram series marketed in Japan with that set for those users we have been discussing.

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Hobby Dreamer

In the 2012 Kato catalog this switch does not seem to appear?

 

It "almost" looks there but there is a single track turnout that starts its turn too early to not be something other than another type of intersection. (3-way)

 

When translated, none of the descriptions sound like a turnout and the name "Yunitoramu" is used, probably because the road plate is wider.

 

Bill posted this image, which is similar enough to the proposed Kato turnout, but the image in the catalog is different having a 3rd track.

 

DAWli.gif

 

This image is similar to the proposed Kato switch but there is a single piece of track near the bottom of the catalog photo that seems to start (or end, depending how you view this) near the turn - but its too close to the the turn going north on the southern track.

 

I wonder if the "Yunitoramu" series is intended to represent prototypical track or something?

 

Anyone know?

Rick

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KenS

It looks to me like the photo Westfalen posted of the catalog shows two switches, a Wye and a left hand turnout, with a 15-degree crossing used in conjunction with the Wye.  The text you translated doesn't seem to quite match that photo. It could be that 40-211 ("R branches double track crossing") is not just a mirror image of 40-210 ("Multi-line branch intersection"). Or Kato could be showing a not-yet-listed prototype Wye in addition to one of the two switches.  I think we'll have to wait to see what shows up.  And then they'll surprise us six months later with something we never saw coming.

 

However "Yunitoramu" is just a phonetic version of the Japanese ユニトラム, which Kato uses all over their website for the existing Unitram parts. It's not a new term; it's what Google translate provides for that text on their existing pages (most of the text there is on images and untranslatable, but you can find text versions there spelled the same way).

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Hobby Dreamer

Thanks Ken!

 

And then they'll surprise us six months later with something we never saw coming.

 

I'm so impressed with Kato's throughput of new product.. At a time where a lot of stores/businesses are closing or selling less or even when Japanese model shops stop exporting its nice to see something positive and brand new!

 

Even if I were not into trams it would be fun too look at the catalog or internet sites just to see their new items..

 

Cheers..

Rick

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westfalen

If this is

DAWli.gif

is what Kato is going to make surely they could have found a prototype photo that matched because junctions like that are everywhere. I got this one while randomly taking photos of trams in Hiroshima one evening. I think we should "watch this space" because Kato are up to something. Modular switch and crossing components to make up the junction design of your choice?

post-218-13569930093306_thumb.jpg

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Webskipper

Anymore info or dates on these switches?

 

I'm almost done soldering drops to each of my tram tracks for the automation and will be installing them this week.

 

It's going to be fun dismantling the team tracks later in the year to slip in switches but so what, it'll add more dimension.

 

I wired it all up the right way. Commons are the inner rails and controlled blocks are the outside rails. This way there is not much fuss for switches.

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westfalen

We've only just gotten the new level crossing and I think it was the last of the 'coming this year' items in the 2011 catalog, so my best guess is we should see the Unitram switch sometime between now and January 2012.

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keitaro

i doubt 2013

 

mainly the reasoning being that the crossing wasn't a critical product that didn't have an alternative. therefore it was not necessary for them to rush to replace it.

 

a switch on the otherhand has not current alternative except for some homebrew job with peco or some one else's rail.

 

i wouldn't be surprised if you saw this around september.

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westfalen

2013?

That's what I meant, but as Keitaro say hopefully sooner than later. The turntable might be the thing in this year's new items that takes the longest to develop.

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rpierce000

Part No Description

40-210 Intersection  double track fork L

40-211 Intersection  double track fork R

40-031 Unitram 62mm Straight Track Plate

40-101 Unitram Curve Straight Track Plate, intersection left

40-102 Unitram Curve Straight Track Plate, intersection right

40-300 Unitram 90° intersection 62mm Track Plate

41-100 Unitram Road plate - inside intersection

 

OK, this is what the catalog, translated by my wholesaler, says is coming in 2012. I have to assume those first two items are SWITCHES!!! He does say that "intersection" means that it will either be a T or + intersection with the switch on it. Intersection L and R are Ts, I do not know what an inside intersection is. With all of these as separate parts the ability to build a much more flexible and intricate UniTram layout will be extremely extended.

 

I will get them into the US as fast as I can, I do not have release dates yet.

 

Bob

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KenS

Already covered at some length in this thread.  Do you have any new info on specific details or schedule?

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brill27mcb

Already covered at some length in this thread.  Do you have any new info on specific details or schedule?

 

Am I not understanding something? The thread you reference is this very one, and Bob's presentation of the specific part numbers with descriptions is "new info" I think.

 

Rich K.

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to2leo

That's exciting news!  I hope the product will be out by October when I am in Japan!

 

Now if Kato is going to release long articulated low floor tram, I will finally be able to complete my layout!

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KenS

Already covered at some length in this thread.  Do you have any new info on specific details or schedule?

 

Am I not understanding something? The thread you reference is this very one, and Bob's presentation of the specific part numbers with descriptions is "new info" I think.

 

It wasn't in this thread when I wrote it.   ???  One of the moderators must have moved it.

 

I'd thought the catalog numbers had been posted before, but you're right those are new.

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westfalen

I posted a scan of the catalog when it came out but we didn't have a transaltion then. We unfortunately still don't know much more as railway terminology never seems to translate well. ???

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Hobby Dreamer

Hi Westfalen!

 

You posted here on page 8:

http://www.jnsforum.com/index.php/topic,10.350.html

 

There was a translation of the tram stuff in the 2012 Kato catalog that seems to accord with the recent one from this thread. It also seems to be what we saw in the catalog photo. Kato did not show it clearly but it looks to be a "+" intersection as the track goes straight and has turnouts.

 

From the Japanese:

Multi-line branch intersection L 40-210

40-211 R branches double track crossing

Straight line trajectory Yunitoramu 40-031 62mm plate

40-101 Yunitoramu left curved trajectory crossing the plate

40-102 curved track crossing the plate right Yunitoramu

62mm orbit crossing the plate 90 ° 40-300 Yunitoramu

Highway 41-100 intersection Yunitoramu inner plate

 

The 40-300 seems to suggest a 90 degree crossover (from both this and the other text)

 

Hope this helps..

Rick

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101 Local

Kato USA Direct Newsletter - Announcement of new UNITRAM track set availability

 

http://www.katousa.com/N/Unitrack/UNITRAM.html announced today:

 

UNITRAM Street Track System

Kato USA is now taking orders for a new line of N Gauge UNITRAM track sets, and has a new website in place with all of the details of this new system!

 

The first deliveries from Japan of these new sets are expected at the end of April 2012.

 

UNITRAM is currently only available in a variety of packaged sets with Left-handed (Japanese style) street printing, and your local hobby store may need to special order them for you. All information you need can be found below, and you can contact your local hobby store to confirm availability.

 

And best of all!!!!!!

To download the English language instruction manual for the V50 and UNITRAM track system, CLICK HERE. 

That's right, a link to instructions in english!!

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rpierce000

Please note the trams are NOT listed yet. Interesting.... Velly interesting....  Plus nothing about the new stuff.

 

And, as you pointed out they left it all left hand drive. It will be interesting to see how that goes over.

 

Bob

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