Combining narrow gauge and standard gauge on one line is fun. It offers some operating opportunities and some wiring challenges. It is really not that hard.
The Dual Gauge Trackage Rules
- There are still only two polarities
- The two rails that are closest together share the same polarity for standard and narrow gauge.
- The isolated rail is the shared rail for the opposite polarity for narrow and standard gauge.
- The dual gauge turnouts work fine as long as you remember to wire from the point side of the turnout and isolate the diverging routes on the frog side.
Mixed Train Proof Of Concept
It is one thing to know the theory. The real enjoyment comes from testing how the theories play out in practice. So for my proof of concept test train, I included a Denver and Rio Grande refrigerator car that I converted, painted and lettered.
Even though it is hard to find ready-to-run HOn3 Denver and Rio Grande freight equipment, it makes for an interesting project to re-letter other makers' car bodies. With the case of the Micro-Trains HOn3 Refrigerator Cars, the underbody must be modified to back date it to the pre-1921 Denver and Rio Grande narrow gauge era. Later on, I'll be doing a couple of postings on this fairly simple conversion.
The body's roof is what makes this conversion appealing. It is close to what I have seen in my research. A good source of information on Denver and Rio Grande (and Western) freight equipment and cabooses is Robert E. Sloan, A Century + Ten of D&RGW Narrow Gauge Freight Cars, 1871 to 1981, or the website, http://drgw.free.fr/DRGW/Freight/Wagon_en.htm. You can also talk to Tommy Gilbert at Gilbert's Hobbies in Gettysburg, Pennsylvania.