Model Train Forum banner

1 - 20 of 22 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
436 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
I been slowly collecting items over last 6 months. Put it together last weekend. Not finished landscaping, but the layouts is not close to great or even good. (I will take a night picture tonight as street lights & lighted buildings looks better). Advice?
 

Attachments

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,141 Posts
Building a railroad doesn't happen overnight, over a weekend, or even after a month.

Painting a 4x8, laying some track and a few buildings is just that, and can be done in a weekend. An oval of track on plywood.

To turn that into a model railroad I would have started with roadbed and then laid the track. Maybe put in a couple of opposing turnouts leading to some industry along the inner main line and maybe a cross-over so the outer main line could access the sidings too.

My best suggestion would be to watch some HO scale Youtube videos of other model railroads until you find something you like about one or more and either duplicate one, or incorporate ideas from several into your own railroad empire.

Really look at the scenery. How roads are built, where structures are placed, why they are placed where they are. What ground cover is used, where is it used and why?

I was laying roadbed and track for almost two months before I even owed a locomotive or a coach. It was more than another month after that before anything ever ran on the rails. I've been working on structures and scenery for over a year and just started laying ground cover a few weeks ago.

It doesn't happen overnight. That much is sure.

You have a start. Now, take it up to the next level.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
648 Posts
Do what you want and enjoy your train, that is the only requirement. As Michael has stated you have a start, just keep messing with it until you are happy with it. May take a day, might take years. Normally this stuff really never ends. But most important is that you have fun doing it.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,210 Posts
Any start is a good start. I would devise a way to get the power control up onto the platform, perhaps in one of the front corners.

Or on a slide out shelf or drawer, center front.

Are you planning on having the two loops conected with a crossover?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
397 Posts
Ask yourself the question, am I having more fun with my model railroad, or would I rather clean out the gutters?....😃

I sometimes would use a small scrap 8 inch square of foam to practice scenery techniques...eventually you get better...
F0586DA2-2A9A-412E-9D47-AF293EA5FA86_1554945205759.jpg
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
5,039 Posts
Baby steps. My layout started simple and over the years it grew.

100_2955.JPG

IMG_20190121_165857.jpg
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
648 Posts
I jumped in the deep end. My first layout in my life, and went with a 20 by 20 foot N scale layout. A little larger now and growing soon with another 25 foot of length soon.

You could be running on the floor. You have made headway, you have an idea of what you want, now all you have to do is work towards it.

Watch you tube and Fifer Hobby. DJ's trains has some excellent video. It will come to you.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
436 Posts
Discussion Starter #8
Any start is a good start. I would devise a way to get the power control up onto the platform, perhaps in one of the front corners.

Or on a slide out shelf or drawer, center front.

Are you planning on having the two loops conected with a crossover?
No track crossover. One is a train, other is a trolley car.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
4,112 Posts
Not bad at all for a first layout. The buildings caught my eye as I have four of them and I rarely see them. I picked them up at a train meet. Do you happen to know the maker? The gazebo looks interesting.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
436 Posts
Discussion Starter #10
Not bad at all for a first layout. The buildings caught my eye as I have four of them and I rarely see them. I picked them up at a train meet. Do you happen to know the maker? The gazebo looks interesting.
I think landscaping will make the layout look better- more real. I bought eight buildings for $45. I am using seven. The other building is a City Hall and a little too large for my layout and I have no room left. I do not know the manufacture and the buildings are vintage. Nice detail on these realistic looking buildings.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
436 Posts
Discussion Starter #12
I bought more deciduous type trees. more vintage cars, signs, stop lights, gas pump, etc and it may make the layout look more realistic. I will post new pictures when new items arrive.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,174 Posts
You seem to be disappointed with your first try, but I don't think you really said why? Of course you can't expect to have a masterpiece on your first try, but as others have mentioned you will learn as you go. So the question is, what do you want to learn about first? What specific detail sticks out and bothers you the most?

If it's the track plan, what more do you want? Are you looking for more routes for the train to take? Industrial sidings to move cargo? Hills, tunnels, bridges?

If it's the buildings, what aspect is missing? Do you want the whole area to be a large city or do you want definition between urban and rural space? What is the reason for the buildings to be in the location they are in, and would they serve a more logical purpose being placed somewhere else or grouped together in a different way?

And finally, landscaping. This is the category that really brings out the definition of the different areas of your layout, but it's also the part that takes the longest to get 'just right'. Your landscape may include hills and mountains, forests and plains, food crops and abandoned lots. You've started out with basic green plywood, now what will make it better? If you're willing to take everything up again, a layer of even 1" thick foam gives you the option to dig down, such as giving depth to a river, or you can just paint one on the board and have bridges laying flat. Trees can be bought or made yourself and quickly add that third dimension. You also want to break up the green base, maybe using dirt or sand to create other areas around the layout. A big thing to remember about landscaping is to try and work from the ground up -- it's easy to paint another color on your plywood while it's bare, but after you add a forest of trees it becomes very difficult to change the ground color.

So yeah, most everyone starts out with a pretty simple layout. Just think about where you want to go next and how it will get you closer to what you are imagining.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
9,562 Posts
Track layout and buildings are great. I will focus on landscaping.
Think about adding some relief to your terrain. NOTHING in nature is flat, and even a lot of man-made features really aren't either. Our world has hills, mountains, valleys, gullies, cliffs, gentle slopes, and just about everything else.

Lots of ways to do this. Pick one and give it a try (we're happy to recommend some if none come to mind, too).
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
436 Posts
Discussion Starter #16
Think about adding some relief to your terrain. NOTHING in nature is flat, and even a lot of man-made features really aren't either. Our world has hills, mountains, valleys, gullies, cliffs, gentle slopes, and just about everything else.

Lots of ways to do this. Pick one and give it a try (we're happy to recommend some if none come to mind, too).
Good idea.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,078 Posts
Now's the time to try out some new ideas. Try revising how you lay track, try making rocks, expand your electrical knowledge. The more you learn what you like to do makes the next time easier. I took my old layout and removed all the flex track and used CV ties and plain rail, then started making my own turnouts, something I had never thought about, but turn out to be a great idea.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
647 Posts
looks great to me. great start an time to move tracks around in different lines . ive changed my mind 1000 times before i got settled , heck eeven now im still not settled on it. i want more hahahahahahahahahahah have fun and experiment a lot. yeppers
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
436 Posts
Discussion Starter #20
looks great to me. great start an time to move tracks around in different lines . ive changed my mind 1000 times before i got settled , heck eeven now im still not settled on it. i want more hahahahahahahahahahah have fun and experiment a lot. yeppers
Only item I like is the track layout. Got a lot of landscape items, some more signs and traffic lights on its way plus two more 1/43 scale cars.
 
1 - 20 of 22 Posts
Top