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Adding Telephone Poles To A Layout

Glenn who models in N scale asks:

“My layout is set before the days of mobile phones or underground electrical wiring to houses, so I thought that adding some telephone phones and wires would help authenticate the scene. But then I started to think about the practicality of stringing wires along roads and how they could become a problem if they get snagged. What should I use to replicate the wires? Also, I wondered how far apart to position the poles? Has anyone else worked through these issues? Any guidance in advance would be appreciated. Thank you guys!”

Please add any suggestions to assist Glenn below.

11 Responses to Adding Telephone Poles To A Layout

  • Dale says:

    In urban areas, telephone poles (in the USA) are typically 70-125 feet apart. Taller poles in rural areas can be as much as 300 feet apart. A lot depends on the terrain and whether they are in a straight line or following a curving path.

    As for wires, unless you are planning to actually run power through them, I would see if I could fine a thin elastic thread. A bit of elasticity can help avoid disasters if a line gets lightly snagged. I can’t recommend a particular product since I’ve never bothered to install wires between utility poles.

  • jacques says:

    i used cotton thread for wires but i had to use a bath of thinned white glue that i soaked them in and let them dry this stiffens the thread so it doesn’t sag

  • Bruce Woods says:

    I wouldn’t install any wiring unless it was to be electricaly functional. At HO scale you wouldn’t see them anyway. And certainly at N scale they would be totally invisible.

  • ED says:

    I’ll look into the dental floss, but in the past I have used thin thread coated lightly with wax (HO). Now I am in ‘N’ scale and will be experiencing products soon.

  • Ray says:

    I agree with above, because in N scale they would not visable at all, just plant the right size poles in a basic row and they look better without bits of cotton etc hanging on them

  • Stephen Duncan says:

    I leave mine blank, imagination works for me. There was a company at one time that offered an elastic thread which super glue attached very well. I’m not sure if it is still available.

  • Mitch Zinger says:

    Has anyone tryed EZ line suppose to be nice and streachy
    25.00 for 100 ft cad

  • Frank B says:

    You can obtain fine black elastic thread at shops that sell sewing stuff. It is ideal.

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