Brian talks us through his layout

Brian’s been back in touch.

I really enjoy watching the ‘walk throughs’:

“Hi Al

This layout was started about four years ago on a wood framework covered with two inch thick Styrofoam and painted an earth colour.

Using this thickness foam allows me to cut down to water level as well as ditches, rivers and culverts without having to cut into the bench work.

The harbour areas water was painted with a green colour for effect until the whole area is complete and then will pour Woodland Scenics realistic water product into it.

As can be seen from the photos / videos, the layout is far from finished. The detailed buildings take up a lot of time BUT the layout is operational using DCC controls.

I have three controllers with access points around the layout and I am using the Lenz DCC system with full sound.

There are 2 Shays (3 truck), 2 Heislers, a C 16, a C 19, 2 Galloping Geese, a K 37, a 2-8-8-2 logging locomotive, all brass and painted and weathered by myself.

I also have 2 Blackstone K 27 locomotives painted but not weathered yet.

I have a lot of scratch built rolling stock, kit built stock and some coaches bought as is (Blackstone and PFM). A lot of the stock has self-made and self-designed decals for my logging road name (Cascade Creek)

Not all of it is on the layout at the moment as it is still under construction for scenery and buildings.

I will send more photos of the layout as it progresses.

At the time of writing this, I have written an article with construction photos (pdf format) on building the 2 stall engine house kit (Fine Scale Miniatures kit – 1974 era) from start to where it is at present.

All that has to be done to it, is wire up the lights under the layout, add the dirt around it and then put the final details on the outside of it. Then the article will be complete.

Btw, D & RGW (Denver & Rio Grande Western) on my layout stands for Dangerous & Rapidly Growing Worse.

I hope that the above information will help with what my layout is all about.

Al, use whatever what you want/can of the info sent for your website.

As always, keep up the excellent work so far.


New and updated ‘ebay cheat sheet’ is here.

A big thanks to Brian.

That’s your lot for today.

Please do keep ’em coming.

And if today is the day you leap out of your arm chair, the Beginner’s Guide is here.



PS Latest ebay cheat sheet is here.

26 Responses to Brian talks us through his layout

  1. Simon Zeoli says:

    Good work Brian, keep it coming.

  2. Roland, in Nashville says:


    The structures are terrific; the detail.
    I can’t wait for more photos and film.

    Thank you

  3. Ian says:

    nice layout i like how every thing is do with working and the trains are doing there job
    keep up the great work there seems to be a lot to do and many more years of enjoyment.

  4. THOMAS says:


  5. Glenn Roach says:

    The layout looks good, now. When it gets more scenery & buildings get done the layout will look outstanding to show to your family & friends. Keep up the great work.

  6. Len Adler says:

    Really enjoyed seeing it, Brian!
    Hope you continue to develop your ideas.

  7. Bill Collins says:

    Great work! Where did you get the old cars in the scrap yard?

  8. Don says:

    I have an o gauge layout and I am about to start an HO. I was also planning to lay 2″ styrofoam onto my base before starting. Glad to see it is working for you. Thanks for posting you have a great layout in progress.

  9. Bob Bouskill says:

    Well thought out and excellent attention to detail. Makes me want to start over, but life is not like that.

  10. Curtis says:

    Very nice Brian! You are obviously very talented. I look forward to more vids as you progress. Peace

  11. Richard McClellan says:

    I see that you are doing the Denver and Rio Grande. I am planning to do the Denver and Rio Grande, circa 1900. Hard to find engines and cars from that time period. Where do you buy cars for the Denver and Rio Grande and how do you know that the cars are from that time period?

  12. David V. Corbin says:

    What type of paint did you use on the Styrofoam?

    My (just started) almost 4×8 N scale is being built on top of 2.25 inch (3 layers of 3/4 – easiest to transport and work with for me, and nearly the same cost. Plus in Florida it is hard to find 2″ insulation

  13. Bob Shipley says:

    Looks great Brian. Can’t wait to see it completed.

  14. Jim says:

    Very nice. Great weathering detail with the building structures and accessories. Keep up the great work.


  15. Robert Shuman says:

    Awesome work! I remember a recent post of yours showing the inside of the round house. Amazing detail. And especially funny the D&RGW interpretation.

  16. Warren Ferguson says:

    Outstanding work, Brian! Like other comments, I’m fascinated with your details. The scrap yard is amazing. Where did you find the old cars you’re using? Thank you for sending the D&RGW in and, Al, thank you for posting it!

  17. Ray Suckling says:

    Hi Brian, layout is looking good but like a lot of others I would like to know where the vintage cars are from. I have hunted everywhere here in Australia to no avail so any help would be appreciated.

  18. Dave Russo says:

    Great layout. You gave me some very good ideas
    Can’t wait to see more photos of your progress

  19. Hemi says:

    NICE Layout Brian! GREAT to see others work. its GREAT now and as mentioned will be even better with the scenery as you add it!!!!!

    I’d LOVE to see thee ole 2-8-8-2 HUFF along……….. Speaking of a Big, MEAN & Nasty steam loco, what radius you running to accommodate that thing?

  20. Old Ben says:

    looks like hand laid track. Am I correct?

  21. Perry Dean Rissler says:

    Great job. Love your complete details. The molds for the old Model As is great.
    Could you provide the information of where you found the cars and etc.
    Thank you

  22. Robert Brady says:

    Just from experience press board doesn’t hold up to moisture and when you ballast you are gonna spray with water and alcohol for the glue to saturate and where ever else you spray the press board will act like a sponge crack and separate when it dries,If it dries.Just say n .

  23. Peter Bayley-Bligh says:

    Superb craftsmanship especially on cameos.

  24. Will in NM says:

    Brian, You’re a man after my own heart. I too like all things D&RGW and have collected a number of HO and HOn3 locomotives. Shays, Heislers, Climaxes and Mudhens have always been my favorites. Your layout looks fantastic. I gather that you enjoy building structures with lots of details. You’re doing a great job so far. I am curious: I didn’t see any roadbed on your layout — are you laying your track directly on the painted foam board? I’m doing that on the test layout that I’m building but the Atlas True Track that I’m using for all by my HOn3 oval has build-in roadbed. I had planned to use gray RV putty tape to simulate the roadbed for my HOn3 tracks.

    Was the “Dangerous and Rapidly Getting Worse” idea inspired by John Allen’s Gorre & Daphetid (pronounced Gory and Defeated) railroad?

  25. CLAY CLATUR says:

    Love the railroad name and especially the waterfront area. Great work!

  26. william j plmer says:

    nice work looking forward to see scenery and such installed

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