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rack railway/cogwheel locomotive models


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Hi there,

Recently Roco announced their new products, and their new cogwheel locomotives caught my attention. After some further searches, it appears that other brands (fleischmann, kato-hobbytrain-lemke, marklin,...) have also made/is making similiar items.

I've been thinking about the possibility making a small layout with these trains, but I have almost no knowledge about these products, and I hardly find any information online. Does anyone here have experience with them?

Some of my concerns are...

1. How steep slope can they climb? Roco said theirs could go up 35%, is that true? what about others?

2. How is the performance of the cogwheel tracks and trains? Does the model have difficulty navigating?

3. There are different gauges available, from HO to HOe. Is there a preference?

And feel free to remind me if you came up with any.

Thanks in advance!

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I have owned the Fleischmann N one, but never used it on rack track and found an annoying design flaw. Mine had the pickups bearing on the flanges, which quickly cut holes in them. Attempts to obtain a replacement part weren't a success as the worm drive mesh was never right after. Pity as it's a handsome model and was a very decent runner before then. I may go back and see if I can cure the faults using what I've learned from building pickups to upgrade OO kits.


There were two versions, a six wheeler with outside frames and a later inside frame one with side rods and a representation of the motor. There was also a track cleaning loco using the same bodyshell, but I don't think it has the rack drive cog. I've seen all three in green, blue/white, and red versions with the track cleaner also appearing in yellow.


Their HO ones look a reasonable bet, they offer a four wheel steeplecab electric (based on the real E69 locos) and I think two steamers, a green 0-6-0 and I think a blue 2-6-0. Coaches are based on four wheeled Bavarian prototypes (as with the N scale models) but painted blue and white. There are 3d print files to make NEM coupler pockets to suit these on Thingiverse. Fleischmann HO of this era tended to be a bit clunky but mechanically robust, so while I don't own any of these models they're on my wish list.

Edited by Welshbloke
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