Brian’s wharf layout

“Hi Al

Have been busy with a lot of things on the layout other than the wharf such as assembling white metal kits (woodland scenics) for the town next to the wharf.

Picture below is of the almost completed wharf.

All the best


“My Rail Road tip is the use of Coffee Grounds Sprayed White to appear like Snow. I use white liquid shoe polish.


“Hi Al,

Shell Hill is nearing completion.

I thought some of your readers that followed my Expansion 2 series would be interested in how it is all turning out.

I meant to include some tips and trick for modeling in this video, but it got too long, so am am preparing a separate video for the the tips and tricks.

I should have it completed by this evening.

Thanks again for your very useful and interesting letters and posts.


Latest ebay cheat sheet is here.

Big thanks to Brian, George and Rob. In fact, a big thanks to anyone who’s ever contributed.

Please keep ’em coming folks.



39 Responses to Brian’s wharf layout

  1. Ralph Berry says:

    Wow Brian and Rob, what splendid examples of what can be achieved with imagination and long evenings. Well I’ll get back to the the modeling work with your pictures and video to keep me at it.

  2. Ray Thomason says:

    It’s good to hear somebody using the term “railway station” instead of the current usage “train station” even though the British accent needs a little brushing up!

  3. Nice opening for Shell Hill Station Rob , all come to-gether now , looking great , and Brians wharfe is first class both have done excellent work

  4. Jim Collins says:

    Superb, great to watch! Many thanks Jim.

  5. vince says:

    Great video. Please show more as you progress.

  6. John M says:

    Was that Tony Blair i saw at the Grand Opening?

  7. Tom says:

    Brian, George, Rob,

    Thanks for the pictures Brian that wharf is great
    George going to try the snow tip.
    Great video Rob, looking good!
    Thanks for sharing.
    Thanks again Al for bringing it all to us.


  8. robert coe says:

    Breathtaking. The planning and quality of built makes me green with envy, but keep up the good work please.

  9. Ian Mc Donald says:

    great pictures of the wharf and layout. nice to see some trains moving around love to see more as you both progress gives lots of ideas.

  10. THOMAS says:


  11. Duwayne D. Virnig says:

    Hi all, Because of an old farm house buning to the ground due to an unexspected
    chimney fire on a 31* below morning in 1951, I have always wondered how
    the many folk document & price their Model rail componets for Insurance
    purposes? My home insurance, AFTER several days of discussions, mentioned no
    premium increase, Just normal deductions, IF most all componets
    properly documented, a few pictures, age, priceed currently, and so on.
    Please advise of Your experiences!

    Duwayne Virnig

  12. Cameron Davies says:

    Two fantastic layouts from Brian and Rob and another useful tip. Keep em coming.

  13. Willie Kerr (Glasgow) says:

    Great layouts, I can get some good ideas from them.

  14. James M. Trendel says:

    A while back you had a train layout and they talked about the small movie camera that would fit on the train where and how can I get one, also there was one that had a small thing that recored sound that you could hide in a small building, I would like to know how to get one of these. I am 76 years old and am starting a layout and I have never done one before. So far all I have seen is layouts by the British don’t the US have any layouts, I would sure like to see some. So far I have built bridges, stone tunnel portals, trees, buildings, what ever I can as I do not have a lot of money, but I have 2 grandsons that I would like to have play with my trains, most are from the 1950 – 1960 and have been packed away for at least 50 years, but all run. Thanks and I love your model railroad stuff I read it every day. JIM

  15. Peter says:

    The wharf looks brilliant, the model buildings are very realistic.

  16. Rod Mackay says:

    Before you ever get to the opening ceremony you usually have the extravagant announcement, the carping from all sides, the dodgy consultant’s report, the Parliamentary committee hearing, and a round of high-level golden handshakes, before anyone puts a shovel in the ground. Modelling is so much easier!

    By the way, we wouldn’t have run fuel tanks (or anything, normally) behind the brake van on a freight train, as many freights only had part or none of the consist with a continuous brake. Lovely terraced houses, keep it up!

  17. James Dee Mehl says:

    Very nicely done, keep up the good work!

  18. Chuck Bartunek says:


  19. Mike J says:

    How big is the total space you are using?
    Where are you building this layout? ex.; basement,garage, spare bedroom?

  20. Mike J says:

    Are your trains standard HO scale?

  21. Cary says:

    Hi Brian,

    I’ve been watching your warf scene come together for sometime now. Love seeing the progress and all the pain staking details, looks great please do keep them coming. Cary in KY

  22. Perrry says:

    You can get small camera car or a camera that can be installed in your own car at MicroMart. They are on the web.

  23. Joe Cavilla says:

    Very nice work. I like all of it, in particular the warf scene.

  24. Jack Bury says:

    Great job, Brian. Your weathering is outstanding.

  25. Susan Cannon says:

    Hello Brian! What a great job. Truly wonderful. I have a question:
    What is the bright green plastic stuff that you have on the side of your layout? It looks durable and solid – just the thing to protect, support, and hide stuff. 🙂
    Thank you!

  26. Bob says:

    Wonderful detail in the buildings. The scale looks perfect. Your whole railroad looks great. Good job!

  27. dangerous daveErmnie has done a nice jhob says:

    Very nice job you have done there Brian , always like to see water scenics added to a layout …Dangerous Dave

  28. DJ from NJ says:

    Nice work by both guys. I’m more atuned to Brian’s wharf layout, and would like to suggest an added touch. Add some sea-weathering for realism to the wharf piers/posts/woodwork, showing the effects of tidal waters over time, such as barnacle clusters and salt water stains/wear.

  29. george zaky says:

    Wow! Masterful job. Please show us more.
    Many thanks for the video. You & Brian are really great!
    Big Al
    I love this
    George from NY

  30. Erik says:

    well done

  31. Two superb layouts. James M you are never too old to enjoy this hobby. Just do what makes you happy and learn as you go along. You can always go back and redo a part that you are not happy with.

  32. Brilliant! There’s something about waterfront layouts isn’t it? They always look special. Great job, this looks awesome.

  33. Gary Mitchell says:

    Hi Rob – glad the opening went off well, was morning tea supplied?? Great looking layout.
    Regards Gary (NZ)

  34. Daniel Lambert says:

    Need a low relief industry building with a loading platform that tracks can be next to. The low relief building should be general enough that it can be signed as a brewery, cannery, furniture manufacturer or other industry. A lot of people only have room for shelf layouts where low relief buildings are really helpful. There are few low relief kits available so there is a marketing niche here you could exploit. Many of your buildings could be redone for low relief.

  35. Will in NM says:

    Brian, Your wharf layout is coming along nicely. I can’t quite figure out where Red Hook Harbor is located relative to the overall photo of your layout, but it’s all very impressive. You’ve done an excellent job of capturing the flavor of seaside fishing support structures and activities. I’ve never lived near the ocean so I don’t have an inate sense of what wharves should look like. The closest I can come is to watch reruns of “Cannery Row”. Thanks for sharing your progress. Keep ’em coming.

    Daniel Lambert, Walthers makes quite a few low relief background structure kits that shoulkd work well for shelf layouts. If those don’t suit your needs, you can always take a full structure kit and cut it down to make a background low relief structure. I’ve even seen one recently in NMRA magazine that just used a photo of the structure with a small scatch-built loading dock in front of it.

  36. Beautiful! Great details!

  37. I see they don’t use cabooses over sea’s. Is this just something that was used in the U.S.A.?

  38. Dwight Powrie says:

    Glenn – I do believe that the brake van is the British equivalent of the North American caboose.

  39. matiSon says:

    Great post. Lots of interesting things to see.

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