G scale track test

“It’s been 20 yrs in the making, just never had the “gumption” to do it. I always thought that because of the seasons we have that the maintenance would be a real pain. Now that I’m retired what else do I have to do but put the effort in. Really, my adult son’s doings, I think they want to keep me busy !

I’ve shared what you have sent me on all the projects under way and that got them psyched. So my wife and I went away for a brief vacation and the boys went to work.( I’m still trying to figure out what they did that I haven’t found out about ! lol lol ) I will send you progress pictures and videos as we go. Awaiting for some what will be nice additions, Bridges and more rolling stock. Waiting till it all gets balanced and secured before we break out the real expensive toys.

Really a big work in progress every time I speak with the boys there always either a slight change here, siding there, new track coming for extension areas, I never know. This I do know it will be a triple bridge extending over the pond stream, a tunnel which was planned years ago when doing the pond, a small rail yard and long runs with limited switches although there are a few manual/ powered. So I guess you can call it an “Over under 8″. Hope to have track laid in beds this weekend ? Lot of rain is to be coming for the next three days as well as a holiday so I’m not sure why that does to the schedule.

Keep the ideas coming !


Latest ebay cheat sheet is here.

Did you find the video as mesmerizing as me? I think it’ll be a cracking layout in time. Can’t wait to see the progress pictures.



27 Responses to G scale track test

  1. jim says:

    that’s a real cool layout, but did they get the engine with a weed whacker to keep the grass from interfering in the future. Sorry I hate to be negative.

  2. builder Kim says:

    That’s really cool. think I would have added a grass mate under the track. going to pickup a lot of fine dirt.After awhile its going to destroy your locomotives.But a really cool idea. John are you in quebec Canada or Ontario. love to see more once you added more.thanks

  3. Pete Morrish says:

    Great railway , hope to see more as you add to it Thanks for letting me see

  4. That is some Railway you have built John and now retired you can complete and enjoy the fruits of your labour

  5. Tom says:

    John, the boys and of course you too are doing a fine job on your “G” road.
    Good concept, good start. Can’t wait to see progress. So, keep us posted.
    The video was great … got a little dizzy going around the road … almost fell off the tracks but the tunnel kept me up … scraped an elbow going through the tunnel “LOL” in jest only, enjoyed it lots!

    I have a “G” Bachmann BIG Hauler steam passenger train … only thing I have done with it is put it up and run it around the Christmas tree for the holidays. My wife bought it for me Christmas ‘ 2003. I really like the train. This just might inspire me to do something with it after I finish my “N” road. What a contrast



    PS: I also have an O27 American Flyer steam freight … circa 1949. Set up at Christmas.

  6. Chris says:

    Will you have to pick up all the track when Winter comes? I’ve always loved the idea of a garden railroad, but I live in Minnesota and I don’t think the track would last long if left out for the winter!

  7. Skip says:

    Was made into a outdoor rail roader after seeing the set up in Pomona Ca at the LA County Fair Grounds. Living in Ohio now and the same as John, retired and the kids are looking for something for dad to do. Keep up the labor of love John! As for me, well 30 years of collecting my trains and am finally getting to play with them. Al, your Golden Key has been a GOD SEND! Thank you

  8. Roland Burch says:

    John, that was great. I enjoy the run.
    Roland – Nashville

  9. what a great start to a garden railway hope to see progression it will give you a lot of work and a lot of pleasure dont stop.

  10. Toni O. says:


  11. To all who RESPONDED ! says:

    Thanks for all your views and comments, we will forward all REAL progress videos shortly. The boys already have almost doubled the size when they encountered some grading issues, so they needed more room to encounter the rise over the water fall. They also have found the aspect of a raised track via trestles so I will be busy with my contribution of making bents.To answer some question: We live in the states New York Long Island about 75mi. from NYC. We too started around the Christmas Tree. As for the winter this track (LGB mainly) is made of brass and made to withstand the winter season (my concern as well initially) but like any real train experience come the spring I imagine will need some track maintenance. Don’t know about Minn. I hear your winters are epic. My only concern will come the fall with all my leaves,but I think I will finally have enough HELP come clean-up time lol lol. Once again Thanks to all fell free to contact me via e-mail at any time. John

  12. To all who RESPONDED ! says:

    Oh I forgot Thanks Al keep all coming I can’t wait to create scenery around the track and have seen soooooooo many GREAT ideas. Cheers John.

  13. Mike Street says:

    Hi, enjoyed the run round, but it could be ‘N’ gauge as we don’t get to see the train! So lets see some pics of the engine. Mike S

  14. dave says:

    Nice start !! I have been building the elevated sections for mine a long time out of 1x1x 1/8 welded angle steel the curves are bent top track radius the straight sections are cut in 6 foot sections to match my track it will be set on 1×1 x1/8 box steel in concrete filled holes 24 inches above ground so I can mow under it with a small push mower the sections are bolted together I will post some pics as I get to installing it .

  15. Cary Price says:

    Hi John, great to see someone else venturing into a garden railroad. Looks like you have a great site to build on with endless potential. Hope your having fun and look forward to seeing your future posts. Cary in KY

  16. Gerry says:

    So, are you running on battery power or what? I noticed the remote control as well. Which system are you using there?

  17. Hello Mr. John:
    Loved your setup, until seeing a couple other setups on here I love the idea of a railroad in the yard only I rent a the landlord want let me do one, but yours looks great, you and your sons keep up the good work sent some more videos and pictures of the engine (s) also and if you can some pic or video of the area the train is in,
    Happy railroading
    From central Florida on the Gulf Coast

  18. Robert Brady says:

    i’ll bet it”s a job bringing the train in and out each time you want to run? Would make a great Christmas scene.
    Bob / South Florida

  19. Bob Martin says:

    Enjoyed what you’ve done so far , you was really moving that engine & it tracked really well . You’ll have quite a layout when you’re done .
    I have some g scale 3 old time passenger sets , the only time I ran them was the Xmas when I got them . they all smoke .
    I have a nice diesel , a slope back switcher , a caboose , I don’t know at this moment whether I have any more g scale , oh it just dawned on me , I have a large silver diesel , none of these have been run .
    I have an American flyer freight set loco. needs motor brushes & smoke unit .
    I have a lot of ho stuff – had a small layout took it down because of my age & health .

  20. Thurman Wood says:

    Building a g scale garden railway myself. I’m also semi retired. Great way to stay active and keep the mind sharp. A lot of thought process goes into any layout. Hope to see further updates.

  21. William B. Swenberg says:

    Where is the ballast? I have 5 acres and would like a train I can ride on like my cousin. Something really large.

  22. Colin Edinburgh says:

    Layout looks a lot of fun. I think if you do not put some form of weed deterrent ballast or track underlay that you will have continued problems with running your trains. Apart from the obvious weed/vegetation problems the amount of dust and small derbies that you will pick up from the forest area will soon start to have an effect on your trains.Raising the track on some form of ballast will allow the track to drain and should assist in allowing you to cut the grass close to the track.
    You have the making of a very nice outdoor track. The site looks great it would be a pity to spoil you pleasure of it by constant and perhaps avoidable maintenance.

  23. Love this this setup, how do you keep the track from getting rusty when it rains?

  24. John

    GREAT JOB. I too ran on grass for awhile and it killed 2 of my engines

    To Chris
    I live in the suburbs of Chicago and run all year long outside. I have 2 Diesels with plows for the winter time. I learned the hard way as all my track was stolen in my back yard. I now have placed treated lumber spiked into the ground around my deck to run my trains. I am also constructing a layout in my basement.

  25. paul leung says:

    It is a nice start, I belong to Minnesota Garden Railroad Society and we have about 140 family members. Probably 30-40% of the members own an outdoor railroad garden. it takes 7 or 8 years to make the garden railways to mature.

  26. Ted says:

    I have similar issues in Massachusetts. I started off with a ground level layout on 2X6 lumber, but have since raised in to about 3′ above ground to allow winter operations and eliminate nosy dog issues (and reduce the effort on my old knees).
    Keep up the good work and keep your sons happy…you need all the help you can get building an outdoor G scales layout!

  27. You’ve been bitten. This is how it starts. That last turnout needs a little work but great job. What scale are you using? Looking forward to progress pics.

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