Dick’s model railroad layout

“I do a lot of kit bashing and detailing, I especially enjoy taking an Athearn blue box car or locomotive (or something similar) and making it into a quality model. This is not an earthshaking revelation, but I find 91% alcohol usually works well for stripping most paint. Just soak the body shell, scrub with a tooth brush and then scrub with soap and water.

Sometimes I have let it soak for several days, but it usually works. The alcohol can be bought at CVS or Walgreens at a reasonable price.

Jack Monette”

“Hi Al:

I really like your site and the contributions.

I am an old traincrazy kid. I have trains in all gauges from 1.5″ riding scale down to Z including N, TT, HO, S, On30. O, and G.

I was smitten by the G scale bug big time in the very early 80’s but it wasn’t until the mid 90’s I could afford to buy anything in Garden scale.

I have some pictures here of my G scale layout in the basement.

The layout is shaped like the letter g or the number 9 with a tail added at the bottom. The main part of the layout is 22′ wide by 17′ deep and the leg extends another 24′. then the tail off the leg is another 6′.

4 separate mainlines, all ovals which can all interchange and can access a 4 track yard. The whole layout can be operated point to point or just let 4 trains run and yak and watch with friends and visitors.

Hope there’s something here to like.
























“Dear Al,

Firstly just wanted to thank you for hosting this fabulous site and service you provide to the model railroad community. I look forward to each and every post that is sent in. It is great to see others enjoying this hobby and there is something to be learned from all contributers.

I was thrilled with the feedback from your site on my last video about Buster and the Black Lamb so I have created yet another short clip following the same theme. The idea for this story line came from my wife who who knows I enjoy fixing and restoring things. This one took some time to make as it features a Schools Class Locomotive in various states of repair. Each verson required a different model, all made from Dapol kits. I won’t say any more as I don’t want to spoil what there is of a plot. Please enjoy the movie.

That’s all for this time peeps.

Please do keep ’em coming.

And if today is the day you get started on your layout, the Beginner’s Guide is here.



PS Latest ebay cheat sheet is here.

46 Responses to Dick’s model railroad layout

  1. Frederick says:

    Nicely done video, the various added sound effects blend in perfectly. The scenery background is simple but very effective. Overall very inspiring.

  2. Sundaram says:

    As usual a fantastic video provided by AL. A very good thematic layout. Thanks AL.


  3. Ed Taylor says:

    Cameron, The story line is brilliant and the video moved through the sequences leaving no doubt as to what the story is about. Fantastic and congratulations to your wife for coming up with the theme and to you for pulling it off. I was stunned to see all this was done on an 8 x 4 layout, which by the way, looks really good.

  4. Colin says:

    Just love Cameron’s video! Great layout and great sound track, I’m looking forward to “Buster 3”!

  5. Rod Mackay says:

    What’s that you’re tryin’ to say Skippy? The pony truck of the N class derails on the curved points? Strewth!

    Lovely job mate. Mind you, could have got the Schools back on the line with a pair of big slewing jacks and some timbering, but you’ve waiting for something to do with that crane for ages haven’t you? Great fun!

    Rod 🙂

  6. Roland Burch says:

    Great film and layout, Cameron.
    I have enjoy both Buster films.

  7. Andrew says:

    You hope there’s something there to like? What’s not to like, brilliant layout, well done!

  8. Andrew says:

    Great video, where do you get the ideas from?

  9. Mike Wilson says:

    Stone the crows mate that was a blo*dy beauty. Enjoyed it immensly. Like Ed, I was very surprised to find that all that was on an 8 x 4. Great work.

  10. Jim Moe says:

    Awesome layout, Dick, your lighthouse model reminds me of the split rock
    lighthouse at Duluth, Minnesota U.S. I also am amazed with the details, and quality of the layout. I like the use of the 1/24 scale die cast model vehicles. Jim

  11. mike luhouse says:


    If they award a railroad academy award, this film is worth one! The depth of the background, the awesome realism, the attention to detail makes me quite envious of a master modeler and movie maker such as yourself. The final accolade is for pulling it off in such a small space!

    Praise for your very brilliant work,

    Mike Luhouse

  12. A winning video again Cameron , well edited

  13. Jim Richards says:

    What a great video…… well done. Great views of your layout. NICE!
    Thanks for sharing.


  14. Patrick HANLON says:

    That video was awesome. Unbelievable detail. The different phases was done perfectly. I’m impressed. Thx for sharing.

  15. Bill Bernard says:

    Beautiful work!

  16. Jim says:

    A very nice and entertaining story. And professionally done. Old trains brought back to life. Well done.

    Jim AZ

  17. David M. Andrews says:

    Absolutely excellent. The “plot”, filming and layout scenery and trains are very well done. Thank you for thi video. I will be looking forward to your next video.

  18. Mike Richardson says:

    Great video and great talent Enjoyed it

  19. David Howarth says:

    Love the Buster and backstop ..

  20. Ray Suckling says:

    Love the video, any chance of some stills of the layout and maybe a track plan.

  21. Wes Eakn says:

    You hope there’s something there to like? What’s not to like!
    You don’t often see a G gauge layout inside. Well done!
    Noticed the Lionel 200 & 500 series Standard Gauge collection. Do you have any pics of those in operation? Thank you for sharing!

  22. george zaky says:

    Love the plan! You have all the toys. What a great place to visit.
    Wow. Talent abounds. Thank you for sharing this video that is the epitome of both modeling and creativity.
    George from NY

  23. Guy Boyling says:

    Beutifull tale, well told and put together

  24. Ian Gordon-Jones says:

    I was so impressed with this video that I saw a number of years ago that I replicated the layout in my garage. On an 8×4 board hung from the garage ceiling with a boats winch at one end to winch the whole layout up to put a car below.

  25. Tim Turner says:


  26. Graham Smith says:

    Fantastic video Dick. Nice to see a story being told along with the trains running and road traffic as well.

  27. That was a fantastic video…
    The model work on the layout was inspiring….

  28. Mike Balog says:

    Great Video, Very Well Made… Though I didn’t get the reference to “Buster” being a Locomotive. Thought the Dog’s name was Buster as he was in every scene. Then what was the Black Lamb, if Buster was the Locomotive that was rebuilt? Great Overall Video effects.. ALSO Liked the G Scale indoor basement layout. Guess that took a lot of doing.. since G Scale is So Large… ~ Mike in N.H., USA.

  29. Jack Stables says:

    “Buster and the Back Shop” ABSOLUTELY OUTSTANDING VIDEO. Time to pick up the track from the living room floor ( Lionel O gage) and buy some plywood. You’ve inspired me. Thanks— Jack

  30. Rob Schweitzer says:

    Al, we just loved your thoughtful, fun video. My Wire Fox Terrier Chaucer, also seemed to enjoy it as well!
    Rob, St. Goar & Murren Scenic Railway, Ann Arbor, Michigan, USA

  31. Marklin ed says:

    Well what can one say, GREAT love your layout the video is outstanding. Hollywood is missing your talent,

  32. A delightfully unique approach to our mutual hobby! I work at the opposite end of the spectrum (N scale); but I’ll adapt a sound byte from Oklahoma’s favorite son, Will Rogers: “I never met a layout I didn’t like.”

  33. Mark T. Pianka says:

    Jack I used Brake fluid the next day it was ready to come off, Nice layout Dick and Cool video!

  34. I loved this video. Especially the dog. The story of the reserection of an old steamer. Great sound effects and on a 4×8 layouy Bravo. Keep them comming.

  35. George says:

    Mr. Robertson if I had a camera that the internet would accept the size of pictures
    mine puts out, i would would send in some pictures of the village i just finished
    for my GrandSon and his Dad for you and the others on Alisons site fore a critic
    and help fore an old guys work.
    Be well all and stay safe

  36. Ruben Simon says:

    Dick, what a trip! Thanks for all the photos!

  37. Steve Ruple says:

    Dick, great “G” scale layout and awesome video Cameron.

  38. Berniedoc says:

    Just an amazing video of the most amazing layout. It looks more real than real. Reminds me of some of dangerous Daves excursions.berniedoc.

  39. Gary Mitchell says:

    Loved the video

  40. Andrew in Oz says:

    Great model railway Al with a wonderful story.

  41. What a great video, brilliant!!
    Well done Cameron

  42. Fred Anderson says:

    Very well done video of Restoration of an Engine.Kept me enthralled as t o what the dog was seeing .It all came to a very good conclusion when the bright green engine emerged.

  43. Bruce says:

    I loved the video. I especially liked the dog. He kept showing up throughout the video, checking on the progress. He should have been listed in the credits.

  44. Gerald Edgar says:

    Good flatcar loads & nice Burlington power!

  45. Fred says:

    🐶woof 👍

  46. John Philip Ruetz says:

    LOVE the video . G R E A T job .

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