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|Products||Model railway products|
Setrack, Streamline and Individualay modular track components
Peco is the collective name for the Pritchard Patent Product Company Ltd, Peco Publications and Publicity Ltd, and Pecorama. Founded in 1946 in a small cottage, Peco now distributes worldwide.
The primary product ranges are its track systems. Other product lines include Peco Trackside – building kits and scenic items in gauges O, OO and N – and a small range of rolling stock and locomotives, both kits and ready-to-run, for gauges N and OO9.
There are two main types of Peco track system: Peco Set-track and Peco Streamline. Set-track consists of a range of rigid curves, straights, crossings and points (turnouts), made to the standard British geometry. It is similar to the track components supplied with train-sets, and is designed for the needs of less-experienced modellers, or those experienced modellers who do not want to spend a lot of time building trackwork. However, where part of a desired layout cannot be built using Set-track parts, Streamline components can be utilised as required.
Peco Streamline is for the more experienced modeller. The range includes a wider variety of points and crossings, at different radii. Most of these are available with 'live' (metal) or insulating (plastic) frogs. The "Electrofrog" points require more complex wiring, to avoid short-circuits, but are designed to give more reliable operation of locomotives. There are no other rigid track components. Plain track is supplied in 3 foot (914 mm) lengths (2 foot for Z gauge), to be cut to length as required. The track flexes allowing the modeller to use it for straight track or any radius curve, to suit the needs of the model. The Streamline range is supplied with different types of rail, identified by code numbers indicating the height of the rail in thousands-of-an-inch. For 00/H0 track, 'Code 100' rail is the original type, and is designed for older ready-to-run models. 'Code 83' is designed to be compatible with North American track systems. 'Code 75' is designed for 'fine-scale' models, with smaller wheel flanges, to give a more-scale appearance. N gauge Streamline track comes in code 80 and code 55.
The 00/H0 track is scaled for H0; this is commercially understandable as the product range is supplied to the smaller UK market (mainly 00) and larger European / US markets (mainly H0). The sleeper length, sleeper spacing and set-track '6 foot way' is not correct for modeling UK track in 00 gauge and this can exaggerate the error in the gauge when running 00 models.
Peco as a company owns several other well-known model companies:
Peco Publications and Publicity Ltd publishes the monthly magazines Railway Modeller and Continental Modeller, as well as a large range of booklets explaining wiring, scenics, baseboard construction, outdoor railways, and similar topics.