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Standards are always hard--I wrote a book on the invention of standard time. It was enacted by the Association of American Railroads in 1883, and not ratified in law till 1918. It worked because most people found it useful. There were a significant number of people who complained and refused to go along with a measure they didn't seek and didn't vote for. But most people went along because the innovation made sense.

I have no idea if the NMRA's proposals makes sense, and I can't say I see any crying need for standards (though I like aristo's socket pretty well), but if they come up with stadards that work, that fit a need, thy'll be accepted.
 

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Sitting firmly on the sidelines for many moons, I am reminded that as far as large scale goes, the NMRA is rather like the cure for which there is absolutley no disease whatsoever.

Large-scale NMRA - forgotten but not gone.

My $0.02.

tac
www.ovgrs.org
 

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I watch the NMRA because you never know when a manufacturer might "embrace" their standards in G scale, so I want to know what might be coming.

On this subject though, I encourage people to read the new standards about to be approved, it's not bad. I compare these standards to G1MRA and Morop on my web site.

"track and wheel standards" under the TRACK section.

Regards, Greg
 

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On this subject though, I encourage people to read the new standards about to be approved, it's not bad. I compare these standards to G1MRA and Morop on my web site.


Greg,

Thanks for the thoughtful page on standards. You are right - there isn't much practical difference between NMRA 'Standard' and the G1MRA.

Which, to me, just means that NMRA should stop playing with themselves and adopt G1MRA, instead of causing confusion. Anyone who has thought of or experienced the problem has already adopted it.
 

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By accepting another outside groups standards would in effect negate a very big part of their very reason for existance, so that will never happen no matter how logical those other standards are.
 

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We fought them to a standstill last time, and the nmra used the G1MRA standards as the basis for the new LS standards.
Voted on and approved.

Manufacturers ignored them, once again stating "there are no standards", same argument they used when we used to point out to the G1MRA standards.

Now we have someone who really likes to see his name in print pushing not only new standards, but new prototype standards for one company (which, I do hope, they have sunk).

Bottom line:

We had G1MRA as basis for nmra standards, voted on and approved last time.

Now, as Vic says, the reason for existence of the nmra is to create standards, we are at it again.

Did you know that the nmra does not look at specifics of what works and what does not?

One person fairly high up in "the organization" told me that once that actual track gauge is set, they apply a mathematical formula to the numbers to come up with everything else.

Wonderful.
 

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Posted By Curmudgeon on 06/03/2009 9:38 AM
We fought them to a standstill last time, and the nmra used the G1MRA standards as the basis for the new LS standards.
Voted on and approved.

Manufacturers ignored them, once again stating "there are no standards", same argument they used when we used to point out to the G1MRA standards.

Now we have someone who really likes to see his name in print pushing not only new standards, but new prototype standards for one company (which, I do hope, they have sunk).

Bottom line:

We had G1MRA as basis for nmra standards, voted on and approved last time.

Now, as Vic says, the reason for existence of the nmra is to create standards, we are at it again.

Did you know that the nmra does not look at specifics of what works and what does not?

One person fairly high up in "the organization" told me that once that actual track gauge is set, they apply a mathematical formula to the numbers to come up with everything else.

Wonderful.



You forgot the Fudge factor, TOC
 

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Hey Grant!

I hope things are going well....

Can you email me the picture you used to have on your site that has the SD-45 climbing up out of the rails? The too tight back to back? I've tried to explain this to many people, but your picture tells all!

Regards, Greg
 

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That's the one!

If it's ok, will show it on my web site with credits to you. It''s a great example of what incorrect back to back gauge does, now put a 15 pound loco on top of that motor block and wonder how axles can be pulled out of the gear "hub" inside...

Regards, Greg
 

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Be my guest to do so Greg. However I also point out that I did not take this photo but in fact , John Sipple, editor of Model Rail News did, after a review of one of my turnouts in that particular magazine. John is a passionate advocate of track and wheel standards and felt that this photo said it all.
 

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That's great! I've had some nice emails with John and I subscribe to that magazine. I like the unbiased viewpoint of that magazine. I'll credit both of you guys to be careful!

Regards, Greg
 

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Posted By lownote on 06/02/2009 8:40 AM
Standards are always hard--I wrote a book on the invention of standard time. It was enacted by the Association of American Railroads in 1883, and not ratified in law till 1918. It worked because most people found it useful. There were a significant number of people who complained and refused to go along with a measure they didn't seek and didn't vote for. But most people went along because the innovation made sense.

I have no idea if the NMRA's proposals makes sense, and I can't say I see any crying need for standards (though I like aristo's socket pretty well), but if they come up with stadards that work, that fit a need, thy'll be accepted.




Good point, lownote. Standard time is a fascinating topic - I recall reading an article about it in Smathsonian Mag. It was on the 100th anniversary, so this would have been in the 80's.

Before standard time you would take the train from New York to Philadelphia and have to set your watch back by 11 minutes (or whatever). It was a nightmare for those who make up the RR timetables. But apparently there were many who thought it would be an offense against God if the clock didn't read exactly 12:00 when the sun reached it's highest daily point in the sky.
 

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It would have been 1883

There were a bunch of interesting cases involving the expiration of contract--if a contract expires at, say, 6 pm on June 5, what's meant by 6 am? There's a case that reaches the Supreme Court of Iowa involving last call at a bar--the bartender is arrested for being open too late, but he claims he goes by "solar time," not standard time. The Court sides with the bartender. "natures timepiece," the court says, cannot be superseded for the mere convenience of railway companies.


Fun stuff. but mostly, people just adjusted their clocks and went on as usual



 

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Posted By neals645 on 06/04/2009 3:33 PM
Posted By lownote on 06/02/2009 8:40 AM
Standards are always hard--I wrote a book on the invention of standard time. It was enacted by the Association of American Railroads in 1883, and not ratified in law till 1918. It worked because most people found it useful. There were a significant number of people who complained and refused to go along with a measure they didn't seek and didn't vote for. But most people went along because the innovation made sense.

I have no idea if the NMRA's proposals makes sense, and I can't say I see any crying need for standards (though I like aristo's socket pretty well), but if they come up with stadards that work, that fit a need, thy'll be accepted.




Good point, lownote. Standard time is a fascinating topic - I recall reading an article about it in Smathsonian Mag. It was on the 100th anniversary, so this would have been in the 80's.

Before standard time you would take the train from New York to Philadelphia and have to set your watch back by 11 minutes (or whatever). It was a nightmare for those who make up the RR timetables. But apparently there were many who thought it would be an offense against God if the clock didn't read exactly 12:00 when the sun reached it's highest daily point in the sky.



Same thing was said about Daylight Savings Time... my Granddad was always happy to get back "on God's time" in the fall.
 

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I could be wrong (memory ain't what it usta was), but I don't think the railroads were necessarily interested in having everyone else abide by their "official" time. Rather, time zones were created by them for their own convenience and safety - as was said, scheduling, etc. was a nightmare. So long as railroad employees and station agents observed official railroad time, that was all that mattered so far as they were concerned.
 

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William F. Allen, the President of the American Railway Association, wrote in 1882: "What is local time? Merely a mean arrived at by calculation and adopted for convenience. For all ordinary business transactions one standard is as good as another so long as all agree to use it.” Allen claimed that “railroad trains are the great educators and monitors of the people in teaching and maintaining exact time.”

He argued that the people would take their time from the railroads, whether there was any enactment in law or not. The primary concern of the American Railway Association was that the federal govt., under the direction of the Weather Bureau, would introduce its own four zone system. The Weather service proposed four geometrically logical zones of exactly the same size, while what the RRs wanted was zones that changed where they already had an operational change of time. So the western boundary of the eastern zone, for example, was ragged and varied--it reflect what the RRS were already doing. So their primary goal was their own convenience, and they assumed the public would follow
 

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About 18 months ago, the NMRA made a pointed effort to reach out to a non-NMRA large scaler who has been an outspoken critic of the standards process and the NMRA's perceived lack of respect for the large scale community. At the NMRA's invitation, this particular individual paired up with another large scaler--a manufacturer (an NMRA member/official) who knows a LOT about wheels and track--and put together a set of proposed standards based largely on existing standards from other groups, common practice within large scale, with a little tolerance thrown in for what manufacturers are currently producing, provided what they produce works. The NMRA has only just recently received those numbers. (They are not reflected currently in what's posted on the web as of this writing.) One would hope (and be led to believe) that given the nature of the initial overture, this material would be accepted and acted upon.

Organizationally, I think the NMRA has a long way to go to overcome their negative perception within the large scale community. It's not insurmountable, and I believe there is a genuine interest within the organization (at least in some corridors) to take steps to do just that. They have some sizable hurdles. The NMRA, by its nature, is very scale driven.The large scale community has a scale-driven segment, but also has very sizable (arguably a good majority) population that simply likes trains through the tulips. The NMRA needs to separate the two pursuits, and focus on appealing to the scale-minded end of the hobby. They need to do this in such a way that highlights the efforts of those individuals who are of that mindset, not by chastising those who are not. You do that by example, you do that by active engagement, you do that by respecting the community and its long-standing practices and ways of doing things. Fail there, and you dig your own grave.

Later,

K
 

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Posted By lownote on 06/04/2009 5:58 PM
" For all ordinary business transactions one standard is as good as another so long as all agree to use it.”





Guess that sums it up well.
This one quote from some time ago really covers everything in life and manufacturing.

Now if all could agree, that is another matter
 
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