Storage tank – HO scale

Gus has been in touch with his HO scale storage tank step by step:


Gus again with some easy build storage tanks and water tanks.

The tanks are made from metal and cardboard cookie containers sprayed with red or white satin spray paint.

The bell end of the tank is made from a Styrofoam ball found at many craft stores, cut to fit the diameter of the container and shaped with a rasp to for the bell end of the tank.

To give it the smooth bell shape the Styrofoam was coated with a thin coat of drywall mud and sanded smooth.

The man way, pipe, valves and fittings are from Plastruct. Plastruct manufactures architectural details in various scales such as structural shapes, pipe, valves , fittings, pumps and motors.

The tanks also sit in a rupture basin built from square wood stock with a foam board, then filled with ballast. The Oil Company logos are from a computer search, scaled and printed the glued to the tanks.

The Nitro Gro anhydrous ammonia fertilizer and propane tanks are made similarly to the large tanks. The tank bodies are from thick cardboard tubes from a printing machine.

The bell ends are made from smaller Styrofoam balls cut in half and glued to the end of the tubes. The cradle is made from a 1” x 2” x 9” cut with a hole saw to cradle the four tanks. The fill and relief vents are made from small diameter dowel rods drilled and glued into the tanks. The signage are purchased decals from my local hobby store.

Last but not least is the water tank. Every time guests come over to look at the layout, they ask about the water tank. I always ask them what they think it is made from. I get a lot of different answers. It is nothing more than a toilet tank float ball glued to a 8” piece of ¾ PVC.

The base is made from a small kitchen funnel turned upside down and glued inside the PVC pipe. I added a red LED light from Evan’s Design to the top of the tank. The water tank is always a topic of conversation.

Have fun folks. Just look around the house and find endless items that you can use to build just about anything. Thanks for a great site. Ideas are endless.


water tank HO scale

storage tank HO scale

water tank HO scale

You can see Gus’s last post here.

Now on to Cassio.

He’s a man of very words, but I think that’s becasuse of a language barrier. His pics usually speak for him – and now he’s sent in a vid that does the same:

Thanks to Gus and Cassio.

That’s all for today folks.

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.

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

22 Responses to Storage tank – HO scale

  1. James Marek says:

    Nice tanks! Tank you for the information and photos.

  2. Great job with those tanks Gus ..Dangerous Dave

  3. Robert Brady says:

    Love the tanks Gus. That Dude stuck in that ladder well ? Lol

  4. Robert Brady says:

    Wow Cassio those car carriers are quite expensive. It’s nice to see the new cars being delivered. right on time After Sept /Oct is new car time.
    The Critic

  5. Brian Messenger says:

    Excellent job on the tanks Gus. Brian – the HOn3 guy – Knysna RSA

  6. Erick says:

    That’s neat.

  7. Terry Bird says:

    Love the layout. How much time invested and capitol spent on this setup?

  8. Steve Joyce says:

    Excellent info on building storage tanks.

    Cassio you need graffiti on those auto carrier cars. I cant say I have ever seen one without some kind of graffiti on it. Lots of folks make graffiti decals

  9. Ingenius !

  10. Dan Hulitt says:

    Nice tanks Gus, well done. Fun to find logos online, then make your own signage. Good directions.

    Nice cars, Casio. There is a youtube over car carriers getting low bridged and peeled back, couple million in damage.

    MN Dan

  11. John Schaeffer says:

    Very Nice detail

  12. Chris Warr says:

    lovely job ,great looking tanks

  13. Doug says:

    For small tanks, I’ve use the tops off aerosol containers.

  14. Guy J Clericy says:

    Gus Casio, thank you, Your layout gives me ideas for the one I am starting, so far I have to plan the tracks set up (2) for now, and dismantle all to installed the styrofoam. I am a real beginner and was lost a few times as to what I like and how to do it.


    Stone Mountain Ga. USA.

  15. Cary Price says:

    Hey Gus, those tanks look great! Especially the man ways, you even have the bracket to swing the hatch out of the way- really excellent Gus!

  16. THOMAS says:

    Tanks a Lot !

    Thanks for letting the TRAINS RUN !

  17. Great Layout and detail!

  18. Will in NM says:

    Cassio, Very nice video. Those are some nice looking auto racks behind the UP EMD GP50 and GP60. I’m a big fan of Union Pacific too since I can see one of their mainlines from my property and watch the trains go by all day (and night) long. Some day soon when the weather is nicer I plan to spend a day train watching at the RR overpass 1/2 mile north of my house where I can get a closer view of the passing trains.

  19. DJfromNJ says:

    Love the tanks. Very clever. Thanks for including your construction details. Good luck with your layout.

  20. David Schaffner says:

    Love the background scenes…

  21. Peter Bayley-Bligh says:

    Some simple things converted very well to be unrecognisable as a result of skilled modelling.

  22. robert dale tiemann says:

    nice weathering of the tanks. i like them. thanks a lot. im not doing the obvious joke on that one.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *