Dave’s N scale layout

Got this in from Dave which I rather liked:

“Really enjoy your daily emails.

I’m 77 and decided to build my first model layout since I was in HS.

Chose N-scale on a hollow core door using Kato track at the recommendation of my local train hobby store.

Started in May and am nearly finished.

Wanted to model early 1950’s in a NM/SW Colorado type free style landscape.

The depot is a model of the Glorieta, NM station using Red River Models of Tyler, TX kit.

The passenger train is the “starter kit” from Kato which is the first diesel passenger train.

The freight train is pulled by a Bachman 4-8-4 which was the last steam engine for Santa Fe.

I love Santa Fe because my Dad worked for them from age 17-65 as a telegrapher and Agent in E. Texas.

The hollow core door is topped with 1″ insulation foam and a second layer is used for the middle section.

The mountains are made from the left over insulation. There is a camping area on the back of the layout behind the mountain and next to the RR bridge that is not very visible in my pictures. Bought most of the building on E-Bay except for the depot kit.

Three of the buildings have the names of my grandsons on them-Bryce Wheels and Deals (Loves cars), Blake Broadcasting Company (BBC), and Jacob Cauley Texas Music Conservatory (will be a music major in college). May add a backdrop later.

Dave & Carol
Houston, TX”

A huge thanks to Dave – a do love reading about your layouts and how folk add their own little twists.

That’s all this time.

Don’t forget the Beginner’s Guide if you want to get going on your own layout, just like Dave.

Keep ’em coming.



PS Latest ebay cheat sheet is here

27 Responses to Dave’s N scale layout

  1. Sonny Eppes says:

    Would like to have that for my grandson to see. Had a 9-5 HO ft my son and I built long ago. Always wanted an n scale.

  2. Roy Forbes says:

    It looks very good and in really a very short time. You have included plenty of detail and obviously a lot of thought went into it. Well done

  3. Tom Durham says:

    Absolutely first class modeling. Like especially incorporating his grandsons interests into the scheme. Thank you Dave for a great result.

  4. Bill Austin says:

    Thanks for the affirmation. I started my own N-scale layout in my garage at age 69 (I’m now 71). I keep thinking I’m too old for this scale but continue to slowly work on it.

    Your layout is magnificent. Now that I see what can be accomplished by someone in my age bracket I have renewed inspiration to keep at it.

  5. Ralph in Eureka, MO USA says:

    Nice job Dave. I’m nearly 72 and you have given me hope that someday there still will be a small n-scale layout in my home!

  6. Jim says:

    Amazing how much one can model in so small a space. Very nice work. Novel town square.

    Jim AZ

  7. Cary Price says:

    Great job Dave! Really like the way you gave some thought to the time period mixing both steam and diesel. Also using family names for your store fronts, I’m doing same for my garden RR project. Your layout is very well thought out, hope you enjoy running for years to come. Thanks for sharing!
    Cary in KY

  8. John Reynolds says:

    Very well done!
    Fantastic little layout!!!
    A little about the Santa Fe Northerns…. While I am surprised to hear they were the last steam on the Santa Fe, there is more to the story….
    For those unfamiliar the Northern has a wheel arrangement of 4-8-4 or if you count axles European style 2-4-2…
    Right now there is one Santa Fe Northern that has been restored and runs in the United States… It is a big engine and resides in Southern California. Big as it is, it is roughly on par with some other famous Northerns running in the United States… That is very likely to change next year! In 2018 another Santa Fe Northern is scheduled to be brought back to steam, this time in Albuquerque, New Mexico. The Albuquerque Northern is from Santa Fe’s last class of Northerns and is one of the heaviest/largest Northerns built for use in America (and possibly the world). I believe this is the prototype for Bachmann’s N Scale Santa Fe Northern and the one running on the layout…
    Again, excellent work! Excellent for any modeler but especially so given the age of the builder and that this is a first layout!

  9. Warren Ferguson says:

    Great work! I’m particularly impressed with using your grandsons’ names in the business district. I’m seventy six, and still accumulating things for a layout. Hope to get going soon. Congratulations on a beautiful job! Warren in Alabama

  10. Mike Pettruzzelli says:

    Dave….You have done yourself proud….I am 75 and still building custom layouts by “Word of Mouth” only…Keep up the excellent work….Mike

  11. Kevin McArdle says:

    Beautifully done, and just the right amount of visual interest, buildings, scenery and track plan. Wishing you many hours of enjoyment with your railroad.

  12. Rich B. says:

    Gorgeous layout, not too complex and like the Plasticville village (may not be actual Plasticville). As a model railway should look.


  13. Bob Miller says:

    Great job Dave. I started my first layout when I was 65 in HO scale and was not even close to the excellent layout you have completed. I am now on my fifth one at 75 and you have given me new enthusiasm. Once again,you are a very talented individual …nicely done.
    Bob from beautiful downtown Pelahatchie Mississippi

  14. Thomas Murphy says:

    Grand work Dave, your pride and enthusiasm shows well in your accomplishment.

  15. Dan Ogle says:

    Just wonderful.Makes me want to build

  16. Ed Anderson says:

    Good job, you inspire me!

    I’m 73, and like you am starting my first layout since a kid at home.

  17. Tom Sallee says:

    Dave. You did better than good. You did real good! Tom

  18. Jim Kreamer says:

    That is totally awesome!! Great effort!!

  19. Jim Sulkosky says:

    Looks great Happy rail roading.

  20. JAMES K STEVER says:

    Excellent workmanship

    After looking at the N scale layout you have completed, It has inspired me to starting my N and HO scale layout.

  21. Ian McDonald says:

    a great layout plenty of scenery very nice detail, lots of track . thanks for sharing.and looks like a lot of fun with the grandkids

  22. Rob McCrain says:

    You’ve done a spot on job of this layout. Well done, Rob McCrain Farland Howe

  23. Dr. Bob says:

    Great start Dave! I love the way KATO engineers their track but it needs to not look like a surgical implant. I’m speaking of the symmetrical lines made by the engineered ballast on the layout. Ballast is poured then spread over track ties. The results are smooth and somewhat uneven symmetry along the tracks. KATO track is by no means a bad track to use, it’s just a personal preference on my way it looks. Please do not be offended, I meant no harm. Although the layout looks great! I can tell you put your heart into the scenery and preservation of a lot of details for the grandson.

  24. Ross Johnston says:

    Great job Dave! I really enjoyed your photos of your layout. Thanks for sharing. Cheers Rossco, Adelaide, South Australia

  25. Steve I says:

    What a great job! I like what you have done with such a small space.
    I also use Kato track, I am still building my HO layout. I have been absent
    to post anything as of late, but will soon. Getting to my point, not sure of the
    person name? But I agree, not to be hurtful,but helpful. Kato makes their
    own ballast for that track. I believe if you ballast your track you will be alot
    happier with the end result and the look.
    Steve I S. Cal

  26. Bill Imperatore says:

    WOW Dave!!!…what a great looking layout! I love it!


  27. Len says:

    Really inspiring for us super seniors who are just starting out in N guage. Nothing to be afraid of with the approach and advice you got. Well Done and Thanks for Sharing.


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