Scale Modeling Dimensions FAQ's
Question: I have Department 56 Dickens Village Houses and want to look at scale modeling and model railroad train accessories to add to my scene. The people are from 2.5 to 2.75 tall and houses are up to 9.25 tall. Is there a train or hobby scale that will fit this scale so that I can interchange the two? I did not know where to get the information so thought I would try you. Thank you so much for your help!
Answer: Trying to scale model with Dept 56 is very difficult as, even within the line, nothing matches!
The houses are approximately HO or S scale......
The people are approximately G scale......
The Dept 56 train is approximately O scale......
The Dept 56 autos are slightly larger than O scale......
The best way for us to help you is with this bit of info.
In real life, a door is about 7 ft tall.
In real life, a man is about 6 ft tall.
In HO scale, a man is about .75" tall. (1/8"=1')
In HO scale, a door is about .875" tall. (1/8"=1')
In O scale, a man is about 1.5" tall. (1/4"=1')
In O scale, a door is about 1.75" tall. (1/4"=1')
In G scale, a man is about 3" tall. (1/2"=1')
In G scale, a door is about 3.5" tall. (1/2"=1')
Thus ... Dept. 56's Dickens Village is all over the place as far as scale goes! You need to make a decision as to whether you want to continue to mix and match as Department 56 does, or if you want to be more consistant in scale and go for matching the scale, to the scale of the bulk of the Dept. 56 Dickens Village houses and buildings. If you choose the later, you'll either want HO or O Scale, depending on the scale of most of your houses and buildings.
Question: I have a dollhouse that I have been working on for awhile. I am not sure what scale furniture to use in my dollhouse. Is there a simple way to figure this out? Please help.
Answer: A six foot tall person will be 11-12" tall in a PLAYSCALE "Barbie Size", Fashion Doll Scale dollhouse.
The dollhouse doors will be approximately 12-14" high
A six foot tall person will be 6" tall in a 1" Scale dollhouse. The dollhouse doors will be approximately 7" high
A six foot tall person will be 3" tall in a 1/2" Scale dollhouse. The dollhouse doors will be approximately 3.5" high
Question: I collect model diecast cars in the 1/24 scale from Franklin and Danbury Mint. I would like to build some scale period garages for display, but am confused about scales. What scale would "1/24 scale" translate into for ordering miniature and railroad components and supplies? Would that be "G" scale otherwise known as "1/2" scale?
Answer: Yes..."G" scale.
G scale is a broad scale. In model railroading, there are a number of train and model railroading manufacturers that make trains and accessories in what they call "G" Scale, but they actually vary is scale between manufacturers, from 1:20, 1:22, 1:24 & 1:25 (1/2" scale). Because 1/2 Scale or (G) Scale or 1:24 Scale items are hard to find, most hobbiest and scale modelers will mix and match the use of items across the spectrum of the scale.
Question: Do you have any windows and doors to fit 1/6 scale houses? I am building a Barbie house and I am having a hard time finding the right size items, especially doors?
Answer: A Barbie Doll or Fashion Doll will be 11-12" tall, which is considered a PLAYSCALE "Barbie Size", Fashion Doll (2"=1') Scale dollhouse. The dollhouse doors will be approximately 12-14" high.
Refer to our PLAYSCALE Doll House Supplies pages.
The scale numbers mean nothing if I don’t have the dimensions of the original item. I am looking at the scale items at your website from 121 Scale to 1:160 Scale and have no idea how to relate to these numbers. Please provide guidance.
Here is the best way for us to help you to easily understand "scale" with this bit of information below.
In real life, a door is about 7 ft tall.
In real life, a man is about 6 ft tall.
In N scale, (1:160) a man is about .375" (3/8") tall. (1/16"=1 foot)
In N scale, (1:160) a door is about .44" (7/16") tall. (1/16"=1 foot)
In HO scale, (1:87), a man is about .75" (3/4") tall. (1/8"=1 foot)
In HO scale, (1:87), a door is about .875" (7/8") tall. (1/8"=1 foot)
In S scale, a man is about 1.125" (1-1/8") tall. (3/16"=1 foot)
In O scale, (1:48), (1/4" Scale), a man is about 1.5" tall. (1/4"=1 foot)
In O scale, (1:48), (1/4" Scale),a door is about 1.75" tall. (1/4"=1 foot)
In G scale, (1:22), a man is about 2.75" tall. (approx. 3/8"=1 foot)
In G scale, (1:22), a door is about 3.25" tall. (approx. 3/8"=1 foot)
In 1/25 scale, (1/2" Scale), a man is about 3" tall. (1/2"=1 foot)
In 1/25 scale, (1/2" Scale), a door is about 3.5" tall. (1/2"=1 foot)
In 121 scale, (1" Scale), a man is about 6" tall. (1"=1 foot)
In 121 scale, (1" Scale), a door is about 7" tall. (1"=1 foot)
So ... if you are looking at a miniature building which has a standard front door of a height of approximately 1" high, then that miniature building will be approximately "HO" scale.
... If you are wanting to build a scale model of your house, which is approximately 50 feet wide, and you want the model to only be approximately 12 inches wide, then you would need to model the house in "O" Scale.
O Scale equals 1/4" = 1'.
50(feet) x 1/4" = 12.5".
Hope this bit of information makes working in scale a little easier for you to understand.
Check out all of Oakridge's Scale Modeling Conversion Charts below and then go to the areas of our website to find the scale items that you are modeling in. Happy modeling!!
MODEL BUILDING - By Scale
|1” = 100’||1:1200 Scale|
|1” = 75’||1:900 Scale|
|1” = 60’||1:700 Scale|
|1” = 50’||1:600 Scale|
|1” = 40’||1:500 Scale|
|1” = 30’||1:400 Scale|
|1” = 20’||1:250 Scale|
|1” = 10’||1:125 Scale|
|1/32” = 1’||1:400 Scale|
|1/16” = 1’||1:200 Scale|
|3/32” = 1’||1:125 Scale|
|1/8” = 1’||1:100 Scale|
|3/16” = 1’||1:75 Scale|
|1/4” = 1’||1:50 Scale|
|3/8” = 1’||1:32 Scale|
|1/2” = 1’||1:24 Scale|
|3/4” = 1’||1:16 Scale|
|1” = 1’||1:12 Scale
MODEL RAILROADING | ELECTRIC TOY TRAINS - by scale
MODEL RAILROAD Scales Chart
|Gauge||Ratio||Scale (feet)||Scale (metric)|
|Z||1:220||1/18” =1’||1.38mm = 305mm|
|N||1:160||1/13” =1’||1.90mm = 305mm|
|HO||1:87||1/7” =1’||3.50mm = 305mm|
|S||1:64||3/16” =1’||4.80mm = 305mm|
|O, 1/4||1:48||1/4” =1’||6.30mm = 305mm|
|#1||1:32||3/8” =1’||9.50mm = 305mm|
|G, 1/2||1:24||1/2” =1’||12.7mm = 305mm
MODEL RAILROADING explained...
- Z SCALE - (Proportion Ratio 1:220. Looking at the front of a typical Z Scale train engine or boxcar, the dimensions are an average 0.75" High x 0.5" Wide.) Z scale was developed in by Märklin in the early 1970's, and is the smallest of all the working models -- so tiny that a little layout will even fit in a briefcase. Most Z trains and equipment are based on European railways.
- N SCALE - (Proportion Ratio 1:160. Looking at the front of a typical N Scale train engine or boxcar, the dimensions are an average 1" High x 0.625" Wide.) This scale is an ideal choice for apartments or anyone with limited space. N-scale trains are easy to store when not in use and are ruggedly built for trouble-free operation. The small size is fine for teenagers and adults; younger children will need an adult to help to set up or take down a set.
- HO SCALE - (Proportion Ratio 1:87. Looking at the front of a typical HO Scale train engine or boxcar, the dimensions are an average 2" High x 1.5" Wide.) "HO" means "half - o;" models are half the size of O Scale. HO is the most popular scale with the greatest selection of sets and accessories, as it allows lots of railroad action in a small area. Children may need adult help to set up or take down the set.
- S SCALE - (Proportion Ratio 1:64. Looking at the front of a typical S Scale train engine or boxcar, the dimensions are an average 2.75" High x 2" Wide.) (American Flyer) S Scale trains appeared in the 1950s (American Flyer was one of several popular brands) as houses grew smaller. Its chief advantage was size; larger than HO for more detail and improved reliability, but smaller than O Scale so less room was needed for a layout. Today, the selection of kits and assembled items is small, but this has made S Scale popular with modelers who enjoy the challenges of scratchbuilding and kitbashing.
- O SCALE - (Proportion Ratio 1:48. Looking at the front of a typical O Scale train engine or boxcar, the dimensions are an average 4" High x 2.5" Wide.) (also On30, 027, O-31) (Lionel, MTH, Williams, K-Line, Weaver) O Scale trains also include "On30" Sets, which are O Scale models that run on a narrower track -- just 30 scale inches wide. They're ideal for use with Christmas Villages. "O27" gauge sets will take tighter curves -- which makes these O Scale sets a good choice when space for bigger trains is limited. (The number 27 refers to the 27" diameter of a full circle of track.) If you grew up with Lionel trains, you'll remember that they were O Scale models. Ruggedly built, they're a good choice for youngsters or permanent layouts. Many sets feature animated accessories.
- G SCALE - (Proportion Ratio 1:22.5. Looking at the front of a typical G Scale train engine or boxcar, the dimensions are an average 8" High x 5" Wide.) (LGB, Aristo, Bachmann G) Big models, sometimes called "Large Scale" trains. Sizes range from 1/22.5 to 1/25 and also includes #1 gauge (1/32 Scale) equipment. The largest electrically powered models, starter sets set up in small areas. Some brands can be used outdoors, in garden layouts. The large size of G-scale trains allows for rugged handling by younger children. Many models have working parts that enhance play valu
MODEL CAR BUILDING - by scale
SLOT CAR RACING - by scale
- "HO Scale" - A generalized size in the slot car world. Originally 1:76-1:87, in the 1960's, now usually closer to 1:64 scale. HO Slot Cars vary in size, running from 1:87 (generally the older cars) to 1:64 in scale; but they all run on HO track of approximately the same width, and are generically referred to as "HO" slot cars. A typical HO slot car's length is from 2.5 to 3.5 inches (5.5–8 cm). As with HO scale trains, one can create a very large race course, in scale, in much less space than the larger scale slot car sizes. The HO race cars are not typically advised for younger children as the cars are smaller, more delicate with operating parts that can easily be broken, if not handled appropriately. Many manufacturers advise for ages 12 years and older. Though there is HO racing on commercial and shop-tracks, most HO racing occurs on home racetracks.
- "1:43 Scale" - This scale of slot cars and race sets, introduced around 2005, are generally marketed as children's toys. An average 1:43 slot car's length would be 4.3" (10.9 cm). More recently, this scale has had an increased following, and at least one manufacturer has come out with "digital" version two-lane race sets, allowing for individual controlling of multiple cars in the same lane (slot), that can merge, switch lanes and pass, running up to 6 slot cars on a two lane track with 6 separate hand controllers.
- "1:32 Scale or 1/32" - This scale of slot cars are approximately twice the size of "HO" scale; and larger than the "toy" 1:43 scale. Very popular with both children and adults, the 1:32 Scale slot cars are more durable than HO Scale. The 1:32 Scale slot cars generally have a lot of detail and are truer to the scale and detail to design of the "real thing". Because of the detail, many enthusiasts will just collect the cars, similar to diecast model collectors. Because the 1:32 Scale slot cars are twice the size of HO scale, it would require twice the space to do the same race course layout that would be accomplished in the HO scale. However, most slot car manufacturers offer a large variety of very challenging and fast race course layout designs, with plenty of straight aways and curves, right out of the box, that will easily fit in a 4' x 8' area. Though this scale slot car racing is more suited to home-sized race courses, these scale cars are also widely raced on commercial tracks, in hobby shops or in clubs. A 1:32 car averages 5 to 6 inches (13–15 cm). Scalextric, SCX and Carrera have designed straights and curved track pieces to accomplish race track layouts with straight tracks and curves that are 8 lanes wide. Many slot car racing enthusiasts do this to replicate commercial raceway layouts, and to allow more family and friend racers to participate at the same time. More recently, with the popularity and growth of interest in this scale, at least three manufacturers, including Scalextric, SCX and Carrera, have come out with "digital" version two-lane race sets, allowing for individual controlling of multiple cars in the same lane (slot), that can merge, switch lanes and pass, running up to 6 slot cars on a two lane track with 6 separate hand controllers.
- "1:24 Scale or 1/24" - This scale of slot cars are the largest slot cars commonly raced. A typical 1:24 slot car might be 7 to 8 inches long (18–20 cm). Unless you have a lot of room, or a big basement, 1:24 cars require a course so relatively large, that it is impractical for many home enthusiasts. So most serious 1:24 racing is done at commercial or club tracks.
Oakridge's Landscaping in Scale Conversion Chart (tree height chart)
Oakridge's Architectural Conversion Chart
Oakridge's Scale Modeling Decimal to Fractions Conversion Chart
Oakridge's Proportion | Ratio - "In Scale" Modeling Conversion Chart
"In Scale" is the relationship between the size of two items. In model railroading, it is generally expressed as a ratio.
For example: HO scale is 1:87, that is one inch on the model to 87 inches in the real world.
This chart shows the average man in common scale in model railroading.