HO scale engine yard

Gary’s been back in touch with his HO scale engine yard:

And you all know how much I like an update.

Here’s his last post if you want to get up to speed.

“Hi Alastair…. I am about 95% finished with the HO scale engine yard for my Sunnyside yard layout and thought I would send you an update..

I still have some minor fixes for some scenery that I want to do and also in the video you will see an empty rail outside the fence in the middle of the layout.

I am going to use this rail to display some engines and also create a track crew scene working to link up this rail with the work train rail.

Also, I have to fix or replace two turnouts. I have learned the hard way that the under table switch machines are the best.

The Tortoise switches are very good. With the Tortoise you can throw the switch, change the color of the signal and also control power to or shut off power to a rail.

I am also going to try the Micro Mark Switch Tenders (they are a little cheaper than the Tortoise and are also under table). Even though Micro Mark does not advertise this in their switch machines, I have learned how to throw the turnouts and change the color of signals with one 3PDT toggle.

My next phase will be;

– building of the road coming into the yard for delivery of goods needed for the passenger trains
– building of the commissary buildings, power building, power station and main yard master towers at the north and south end of the yard.

When that is complete, I will start working on passenger cars for the passenger trains and then the main line blocks and signal system.

Much to do and it will be a while, but the journey is enjoyable although sometimes frustrating when things don’t work the way you planned. But then it would be too easy, right?

Again, thank you and all your model railroad followers for blogs, pictures, videos, ideas and information.

Hope you like the pictures and enjoy the videos.


HO scale engine yard

HO scale engine yard

HO scale engine yard

HO platform

HO scale engine yard

HO scale flatbed

HO scale people

HO scale oil tanker

HO scale maintenance crew

HO scale engine yard

HO scale maintenance lorry

HO scale engine yard

Latest ebay cheat sheet is here.

A huge thanks to Gary for sharing his HO scale engine yard. I love what he’s done and the way he’s documented it all.

It’s wonderful to see how it’s grown in to this fab layout. Can’t wait for the next update.

That’s all for today folks.

Please do keep ’em coming, and don’t forget, it you want to make that start – just like Gary did – the Beginner’s Guide is here.



PS More HO scale layouts here if that’s your thing.

20 Responses to HO scale engine yard

  1. RB Bettis says:

    One of the most fantastic, realistic Lay outs I have ever seen, absolutely a peace of art!

  2. A Denietolis says:

    Fantastic job as always. So encouraging.

  3. Phanlon says:

    The detail is unhooked. Great job!

  4. Sid Pratt says:

    Looks good and it really works!

  5. Mike Basher says:

    Great detailing job! I really like the sewing bobbins as spools of wire. They look great just lying around as well as flat car loads. Keep up the GREAT work.
    Mike from NC

  6. Ben says:

    Beautiful Pennsy Yard in NY, really like all those G’s there

  7. Terry Miller says:

    Great layout, I too like under the table switches but I’m using Atlas and the rod that goes into the switch is too short (wooden table + roadbed is too thick to make the connection). Anyone have any ideas on how to correct the problem (and yes I did try sanding the wood down and gave up on that idea).
    Terry/Idaho USA

  8. Robert D. Bouskill says:

    It’s GGreat !

  9. Rob McCrain says:

    Hi Gary, It looks like there is much enjoyment to be had running your layout. It looks great.
    Rob McCrain

  10. Jim AZ says:

    Nicely done. The scenes are interesting and highly detailed. Some great modeling skills going on here. Thanks for sharing.

    Jim AZ

  11. Jonathon V. says:

    Terry, try using a bit of piano wire to make the control rod a bit longer. That should help you get the extra clearance you need.

  12. Dan Hulitt says:

    Wonderful job, Gary. Love the detail of the scenes. My wife works for Brother (sewing side), so bobbins are plentiful and methinks a few will have a new home shhhhh, please. What is said on Al’s site, stays on Al’s site haha

    To Terry ,maybe removing some of the wood underlayment with a Forster bit would work, or small diameter tubing to slide over the rod and act as an extension. But size does matter here.

    Just a note to all. Be sure to check out the historical society for your modeled road. You will find lots of wonderful information there.

    Mn Dan

  13. Peter Evangel says:

    Love the “wire spools” you have there. They look just like the “bobbins” from my wife’s sewing machine!!! If that’s what you used, genius!!!

  14. Gary Manganiello says:

    Terry….. I use a heavier gauge wire for my under table switch machines. Try using Suspend-It 8851 18 Gauge Hanging Wire.
    You can cut it to any length. That should solve your problem.

    Gary M

  15. john thorogood says:

    Hello Gary:
    Just a bit of history for you. All GG1’s were repaired and maintained at the Wilmington Delaware shops. Really Edgemoor Delaware. Since I am from Delaware My dad would take me to the bridge that crossed over the tracks so we could get a really good view of the GG1’s that were parked. You may want to upload some of the historic pictures of the Wilmington shops for you GG1’s.
    John T

  16. Al Letting says:

    I love all the GG-1s – my favorite also being from Philly. Love all those small details in the yards. Your video came at the exact right moment since I was wondering about ideas and you provided so many good ones. Thanks!

  17. Gary Manganiello says:

    To Peter Evangel…. that is exactly what they are, “bobbins” from a sewing machine . The lamps on the light towers are “thimbles”. The pipes are plastic straws from a deli shop. I am going to use those thin wooden stirrers from the coffee shop to make the guardrails for the main road coming into the center of the layout. You can use all kinds of stuff for scenery.

    Gary M

  18. Bill in Virginia says:

    Really nice layout! Love all the detailing! Keep up the great work

  19. DJ fromNJ says:

    Very ambitious, Gary, and very well done!

  20. Wayne 'Dutch' Leydsman says:

    I grew up in NJ during the 1950’s. As a kid I was in awe watching the GG1’s racing through the areas between New Brunswick to Trenton and on to Philly. I am a ‘O’ gauge, Lionel and alike buff. I now live out west in the mountains of Utah. I has a large shed built. It is still not large enough, but that is all the city would would permit me. The theme of my layout is Christmas time 1956, the end of the steam era. So, I will run from NJ with a mural of NYC across the Hudson to Philly, with some stops in between. The center of the layout is a ‘make believe’ town located in the hills of NE PA. That was a modular basic 8 foot by 12 foot multilevel display built in 1999. It did have some extensions. In any case I have spent several years drawing up my layout, as I spent two years out of the country on a special assignment. Doing the drawings was a great diversion. So, now back home in Utah, I will continue with finishing the large shed, with insulation, wiring, AC and heating. I received a area old caboose stove, but it will be a display only item, because my small city will not permit burning in it, so it will be a center piece in the social area. I will probably do all the painting of the late autumn early winter backdrops and perhaps even NYC from Weehawken to Philly, with the hills of Pennsy on the west side.It will be a fun retirement project. On my large shed I already have the PRR logo. I also will have other Eastern RR’s that ran in that region that I have ‘over collected’ for this space. They include the NYC, B&O, Lehi Valley, Delaware and Hudson, Central of NJ and more. While true scale will not be possible I have a collection of over 300 ceramic buildings as well as plastic structure. The shed/small barn has an attic storage space where perhaps most of the stuff will be stored or rotated. At the entrance the sign will state, “Pennsylvania Rail Road, FAR West Division, Happy Valley Depot.” It is all fun. I received my first Lionel train in 1954 for Christmas. It became a family tradition to have it as a Christmas display in our living room, but that growing display was also in our basement. That first engine still runs! Along with my GG1 collection and many others. I am a member of the Utah Train Collectors Association (UTCA) and we have several club members from the East Coast, one also a Pennsy fan! FUN, FUN, FUN! Out here the UP is really big for our members. So, for me I loved seeing pictures of the UP traveling back east on special assignments. Up till recently several wealthier club members owned real refurbished S/S dome cars that they would take on ‘cruises,’ but primarily on the trains that carried the Space Shuttle boosters from Utah to Florida. Since that program is now over they sold the old Burlington Dome car. It was beautiful and the suites were totally updated. Those private cars were attached to AMTRK trains and trips were pricey!

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