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· Registered
40 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
To mark out roads accurately :-
Simply tape 2 marker pens on to both sides of a piece of wood.
With the pen tip sticking out further than the end of the wood.
Aprox. 75 cm X 1 cm.

Can anyone please tell me, how I insert pictures, to my post ?

· Administrator
10,744 Posts
QUOTE how I insert pictures, to my post ?

Follow the link in my signature to find the instructions.


· Registered
733 Posts
I think you are confusing cm with mm. 75cm is almost 30 inches. 75mm is close to 3 inches which is probably about right but maybe a bit narrow for a Uk main road. Try putting a couple of model double decker buses side by side and see how much space there is between them and the pavement on the side.

· C55
2,694 Posts
QUOTE (simon kilvington @ 15 Apr 2020, 16:15) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>I have only got a BP tanker at 35MM ! wide.
So 90mm or 3.5" for a main road.
That sounds very reasonable. The width has to include space for 2 vehicles to pass, at a reasonable speed. If you think about driving, cars check in at around 6'- 6' 6" ish, with busses and lorries at around 8'. If you think about driving past any of these vehicles, with comfortable space to pass a couple of feet between the vehicles starts to feel very uncomfortable and the same applies to less than 1' 6" on the nearside. Adding that up gives minimum comfort roads to drive on at 21' - 22'. Twenty two x 4mm = 88mm for a decent country road and quite a lot more for decent main roads, with high-end passing speeds.


· Premium Member
430 Posts
Remember also that road width varies a lot depending on the period being depicted.

Back in the 1950's I remember the branches of the Elm trees meeting over the main London Road and brushing the roof of the double decker bus on trips to visit my Grandfather. Also those buses were timetabled to meet at the top of a local hill because their route took them down a side road that was not wide enough for two buses to pass. If one bus was late we just sat there and waited until it turned up.

The Elms are now long gone and that bit of main road is now wide enough for at least four buses abreast.

And the traffic is still nose to tail, I think they call it "progress".

· Registered
181 Posts
QUOTE (simon kilvington @ 4 May 2020, 09:47) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>this adding photos is easy lol

Looks like you used a proper technical tape for the fastening?

And of course did a bit of weight saving in the wood as well.....proper engineering there.....

· Just another modeller
9,967 Posts
*** Simple tools like that are always a great help for initial layout.

Perhaps the better description of those widths may be "Driveway and B road" in the real world though.

In Roman times, 18 feet or so was the norm - 72mm, close to Simons figure

In Tudor times as land became enclosed for the first time, roads built at land boundaries were perhaps 70~100mm wide in 4mm scale, and we often much wider.

In the 1700's a similar width was used for miliraty roads.

Once traffic increased, significantly more width was used to allow regular two-way traffic.

This link is a start for researching the subject.

However.... Model railways do not have too much space. Sometimes a wee bit of conpression may be helpful, and we should remember that the road width can include shoulders and other space betwen boundaries too.

Simons road width will therefore be a useful compromise in many cases as long as its used as the hard surface width, not the "between fences" spacing.

regards, Richard
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