Ben makes a new start with a 4×2 layout

Let’s start today with the answer to Daniel’s little quiz.

If you missed it, it’s at the bottom of here.

Here’s Daniel’s answer if you missed it in the comments:

“The car was indeed part of an eastern railroad, as John indicated. The Delaware and Hudson was the railroad, and was used for one location; Tunnel, NY where the D & H had a tunnel. This is northeast of Binghamton, NY.

Above is a photo by Bill Mischler (D&H Color Guide to Freight and Passenger Equipment – a GREAT book btw) of the prototypical car as seen in Oneonta, NY. Its usual home was in Binghamton, NY.

Below is the truck the D & H used to clear ice at the Ticonderoga tunnel. This photo is by Jeff Martin (D & H Color Guide to Freight and Passenger Equipment) and was taken in July of 1968.


Now a small correction.

Yesterday I said Peter’s layout was HO – it’s not, this part of his layout is HOn3.

Here’s his video again:

Latest ebay cheat sheet is here.

Peter’s video got me thinking too. I wondered how many posts of his there are. I started going through them all and that killed a very pleasant half hour. So I thought why not?

Peter’s update

Another update from Peter

Peter nearly finishes

Peter starts his O scale

Peter’s update

Peter starts on his scenery

Peter adds a video

Even more from Pete and his O scale

Peter adds a roundhouse

Peter adds a vid of his roundhouse

Pete gives his engine a paint job

Peter finishes his tunnel

And now on to Ben:

“Hi Al!

I’ve been a member of your email club for a few years. I’ve sent in pics of stuff I’ve made before.

I had an 8×4 L-shaped switching layout, but divorce happened and I no longer have it. I did keep all the buildings, trees, cars, etc.

I started a new layout, but it’s a lot smaller. It’s about 4×2.

Going to be switching again since it’s small and it’s the kind of layout I prefer.

So far the track is laid and I made a background. I’ll send more pics as I progress.

Ben from So Cal”

Not too much Ben’s layout yet – but that’s the whole point, and it’s why I post them: it’s all about making a start!

Right now, it’s an ideal time too, because we have a hobby that is perfectly suited to the circumstances.

Of course, a layout is a big step. So why not start with a diaroma?

Here’s one that Ben did, which I think is just fab.

Or you could join in the fun and have a go a the scratch building competition (which is at the bottom of this one).

Speaking of which, I heard from Ron yesterday. Here’s what he said:


Glad to hear that the “Silly Sale” was such a big hit that it carried the day.

Still glad that I was able to put a bit of cushion under you anxiousness.

Now as far as the donation goes, your contest sounds great and I cannot wait to see the results.

I trust that Rich most likely feels as I do in this regard.

I will not be competing, too busy wiring my O-gauge 13” x 25’ layout (lower level). This coronavirus “stay at home” routine has given me a bit of time to put the diagrams and wiring schematics together for the track – structures and signals are yet to come. Now when Amazon delivers, I will be crawling under the table.

Though you have announced the contest, did you consider a possible 1st and 2nd and Honorable Mention recognition.

Especially, if you get a number of entries. Don’t you just like it when the peanut gallery chimes in with suggestions after the fact!! Ha, Ha.

Stay safe and well.


Well, I think it’s only fair that Ron (and Rich) get some say in this.

So now there’s a second and third prize too. I have no idea what those prizes will be yet, but I’m sure I’ll think of something.

Are you going to join in the fun? May as well, we’re all in this for the long haul. Here’s a recap:

Scratch build a building from the Print-out scenery bundles, take a pic and send it in.

(So that’s a scratch build – use your imagination – make a new building, not an existing one.)

I promise to post everyone I’m sent, and the winner? That will be chosen by you lot – I’ll run a survey so everyone can vote.

The winner gets $140, and the winning building will be put on the site, totally free, for everybody to download.

Here’s the Silly discount print out bundle’ if you missed it last time. I’ll keep it open for a few days.

Entries to be in by the 16th April, then the voting begins.

Winner gets $140.

Winning building will be available on the site, completely free for all and everybody, forever.

Right, I think that’s about all for today folks. Please do keep ’em coming.

Don’t forget the The Beginner’s Guide is here if today is the day you stop dreaming and start doing.

Stay safe. Stay sane. Keep busy.



4 Responses to Ben makes a new start with a 4×2 layout

  1. Darrel says:

    Have to ask (being a complete novice), will just one transformer power your switching layout? Or can can you run extra wires from siad controller to different sections of track?

  2. to Darrel
    You can lay a buss line under the table and then run power to different parts of the layout . Just keep the wires running to the same side through out the layout


  3. Andrew Aves says:

    Hi Darrel,
    I run on DC so only one connection from the controller to the rail network would mean that only one locomotive could be on the layout. I isolate each siding and give it its own power supply. This means I need a panel with a series of switches to make live the individual sections of track along which I want the loco to travel. Other locomotives may be parked in isolated sidings ready to bring into use when required. Being an amateur electrician I have spaghetti junction wiring under the base board so important to label each wire in case you need to trace a fault. Others will be able to give you more guidance if you are on DCC. Good luck and enjoy Andrew in Oz

  4. David Schaffner says:

    Like that little engine running all by itself…Looks like a work engine…What is it?

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