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Thread: How accurate is SCARM?

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    Default How accurate is SCARM?

    Hi folks,

    Been playing with SCARM using Kato Unitrack and I'm really close on several connections- is there any wiggle room when using SCARM? Would anyone feel comfortable making just slightly off connections with unitrack? Or should I only do something that is sure to be all aligned properly to make it foolproof?

    Thanks for any thoughts on your experience.
    The Redwood Empire Route

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    I have found that SCARM is very accurate when using Kato Unitrack. I have found that SCARM is more rigid than Kato Track. The times I built a layout and then designed it in SCARM, I found that I sometimes had to sub out Kato track for Flex track just to get it to connect.
    Jerry

    If you haven't broken something along the way, you haven't learned anything.

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    SCARM computes locations very precisely, so that you know just how far you'll have to bend things to make them fit. But there is a user-changeable setting that determines how well two tracks have to align for SCARM to deem them to connect rather than overlap. Go to Settings > Edit > Tolerances.

    The default is 2 millimeters.

    In a non-unitrack environment, of course there's less need to play with the tolerance setting - if I sketch something out in SCARM I mostly use sectional track, but use one piece of flex wherever needed to (for instance) make both ends of a siding connect to the main line.

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    Thanks for the info. Yes I'm having trouble connecting say, a 3 track ladder back together. So when you use flex track you use the Kato adapter piece to allow yourself to connect Atlas flex in there?
    The Redwood Empire Route

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    There is no need to use a Kato adapter piece . Code 80 Altas or Peco track with cork under , will line up virtually perfect , if it doesn't shims can be put under to make it perfect . Shim can be from anything that is water resistant (for painting and scenery) and really thin , and i mean thin . Just use a atlas joiner , and remove the unijoiners

    Steve

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    Gotcha! Thank you! Any noticeable issues at places where flex and Unitrack connect? More derailments? Loss of power?
    The Redwood Empire Route

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    I have used the Kato adaptor with differing levels of success, for what they cost it is worth trying them though. As for SCARM, I pushed this on the UK equivalent of this forum ngaugeforum.co.uk when it first came out and there was just some Peco and Kato bits to play with, Mixy is the guy who designed the original software and has always been really helpful if anyone has had any issues so feel free to get in touch with him https://www.scarm.info/index.php?page=contact

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    The Kato adapter is designed to connect Tomix track to it . It just happens to work ok with some other tracks . It was and isn't designed for Atlas track , it just marketed by Kato USA that way .

    Steve

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    Quote Originally Posted by aflica View Post
    There is no need to use a Kato adapter piece . Code 80 Altas or Peco track with cork under , will line up virtually perfect , if it doesn't shims can be put under to make it perfect . Shim can be from anything that is water resistant (for painting and scenery) and really thin , and i mean thin . Just use a atlas joiner , and remove the unijoiners

    Steve
    I can confirm this is correct. The Kato Adapter track is designed to connect Kato to Tomix track. Kato only lists the adapter to flex track feature because it's a marketing gimmick.
    Jerry

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    Fifer Hobby has a nice article on cutting pieces of unitrack to length (cut out a section of roadbed in the middle, slide the ends together, then trim the rails to length and glue the two roadbed ends together). You can also use this to replace a few short pieces with a longer piece adjusted to length, to reduce joiners. I use XtrackCAD, and either piece together combinations of short pieces, or use an adjustable section, to get the tracks to meet up, and plan on replacing them with single pieces trimmed to length.

    Andy

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    There's a little more wiggle room to the Unitrack than in SCARM. My layout didn't come out exactly as in SCARM, but close enough.

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    Quote Originally Posted by BigJake View Post
    Fifer Hobby has a nice article on cutting pieces of unitrack to length (cut out a section of roadbed in the middle, slide the ends together, then trim the rails to length and glue the two roadbed ends together). You can also use this to replace a few short pieces with a longer piece adjusted to length, to reduce joiners. I use XtrackCAD, and either piece together combinations of short pieces, or use an adjustable section, to get the tracks to meet up, and plan on replacing them with single pieces trimmed to length.

    Andy
    That's a good idea too, thanks Andy!
    The Redwood Empire Route

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    Quote Originally Posted by BigJake View Post
    Fifer Hobby has a nice article on cutting pieces of unitrack to length (cut out a section of roadbed in the middle, slide the ends together, then trim the rails to length and glue the two roadbed ends together). You can also use this to replace a few short pieces with a longer piece adjusted to length, to reduce joiners. I use XtrackCAD, and either piece together combinations of short pieces, or use an adjustable section, to get the tracks to meet up, and plan on replacing them with single pieces trimmed to length.
    I suspect this would work with Bachmann EZ track also, thoughts?
    Fergy
    CT&OT Railways (N, HO, O, G)

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