Back to… HO Scale? wtf???

I started out in HO Scale and soon got interested in N Scale (but never pursued it). For me, S Scale was just an accident caused by P-B-L: I was looking for a model of Southern Pacific’s SPNG #9 and the only one I could find was P-B-L’s in Sn3 – so I bought it. To make things worse, they had SPNG box car kits and were planning on importing 2 or 3 SPNG combination cars. I bought some box car kits and both combines. Later I found a P-B-L SPNG #8 on eBay and got it at a really good price. From there, things started spiraling out of control. River Raisin Models announced SP Mikados – in S Scale. Conveniently (unfortunately) these were the same locomotives that ran on SP’s Jawbone branch that interfaced with the Slim Princess line at Oweno. Soon I had grand plans for a huge Slime Princess line running all the way from Laws to Keeler, with a ‘close to scale sized’ Owenyo (I won’t even talk about my foray into American Flyer). Only problem is I don’t have the room. Even building ‘just’ Laws would need about 20 linear feet of wall space, and I just don’t have it. The way I see it, the choice would be to build an over-compressed version of Laws in S Scale or do something else. Laws in 16 feet wouldn’t even look like Laws, so why bother? And I DO want a model of Laws ‘some day’…

Long story short, I found a web site that talks about Achievable Layouts – you know, layouts you can actually build:) Funny thing – one of his recent posts was about none other road than the Southern Pacific narrow gauge line. His track plan was for Zurich, a small town just south of Laws. In O scale it would be 17 feet long, to make it look right in S Scale I’d probably keep it at 17 feet, but then I got to thinking… If I kept it at 16 feet (my max room for right now) it would look even better in HO scale. I could practice building with inexpensive HO scale kits instead of learning how to build, detail, weather, etc. with expensive S Scale kits. I wouldn’t have to leave my nice Sn3 locos sitting out in the dusty garage (the only place I have room for a layout right now). So my plans for now are to build a model of Zurich in HO Scale. It will be Southern Pacific, but standard gauge (with good reasoning behind it – will explain in a later post).

Meanwhile, in S Scale news, my P-B-L Climax in Sn3 got here yesterday and it is awesome. I made some bad decisions when I ordered it though, hope to talk about those in the next few days too…