HO scale scrap yard

Tom’s been in touch with his HO scale scrap yard layout:

“My Two Tier HO Scale Model Train Layout – Baltimore & York Railroad (B & Y)

The B&Y Railroad is a two level model train layout which wraps around the perimeter of an 8 by 22 foot room.

A hinged swing gate opens to a 38” center aisle. A single track helix measuring 4 by 4 feet is adjacent to the layout which connects the two levels.

Each level has north and south bound main rail lines and numerous service sidings.

The layout supports up to 10 rail operations simultaneously, along with trucking services for several industries and retail stores.

The lower level encompasses a retail district and the Catons industrial park. The retail district features a dozen or so shops plus the J. S. Wilson lumber yard, suppliers of lumber to the growing community.

An Amtrak passenger/commuter train station lies adjacent to the retail district along with a small freight depot, a parking garage and two apartment buildings.

The industrial park is home to Nick’s Scrap Metal Yard, Clearwater Freight Company, CSX Intermodal Container Yard, Allegany Power & Light (APL) and Wonder Baking Company.

The East Side CSX rail repair facility is also situated on the first level.

The upper level is home to several key businesses that supply goods and services to the retail district and industrial park customers.

Rail and trucking services deliver coal and coke from the Davis Coal & Coke Mining Company which supplies coal to APL for the generation of electricity. Catons, a fuel oil distributor, supplies fuel oil, gasoline, and other petroleum products to customers throughout the community.

Petroleum products are delivered to Catons by rail and distributed to its customers by tanker and delivery trucks.

Wilkins Flour & Milling company supplier of baking products to Wonder Baking Company and other customers.

The Heritage Furniture Company manufactures wood furniture with a retail store in the business district.

Mission Electric Engine Company manufactures small, medium and large industrial electric engines as well as parts; like Heritage they have a small retail store in the business district.

Layout Specifications

Name: Baltimore & York Railroad (B & Y)
Scale: HO (1:87.1)
Room Size: 8’ x 22’
Helix: 4’ x 4’ single tack
Prototype: Freelance
Location: Mid-Atlantic
Era: 1980s to mid-2000’s
Style: Double deck on all four sides of room with center isle
Mainline run: 60’ to 230’
Minimum turnout: #6
Minimum radius: 24”
Maximum grade: 2 percent
Benchwork: Open grid with ½” foam board on top of ½” plywood
Height& Width: lower level 42” H – 30”W, upper level 65” H – 16” W
Track: Code 83
Scenery: Cardboard lattice covered with Hydrocal plaster towels. Fall season is depicted on the layout
Backdrop: Wallpaper with clouds and mountains
Control: Bachmann E-Z Command controller
Access to Train Room: Duck under lower level or engage swing gate

Nick’s Scrap Metal Yard

HO scale scrap yard

HO scale scrap yard

HO scale scrap yard

Clearwater Freight Company

HO scale freight loading

HO scale trucks

HO scale freight yard

HO scale freight truck

HO scale turnouts

CSX Intermodal Container Yard

HO scale container yard

HO scale container yard

HO scale container yard

HO scale container yard

J. S. Wilson lumber yard

HO scale lumber yard

HO scale lumber yard

Status of layout:

Lower level 90% completed
Upper Level 20% completed


A huge big thank you to Tom for sharing his HO scale scrap yard layout.

It’s funny how just naming the businesses and places really bring a layout to life.

I really like what Tom has done – hope you enjoyed it as much as me.

That’s all for today folks.

Please do keep ’em coming.

And if today is the day you stop dreaming and start doing, the Beginner’s Guide is here.

Remember, it’s the start that stops most folks…



PS Latest ebay cheat sheet is here.

PPS If HO scale train layouts is your thing, there are more here.

21 Responses to HO scale scrap yard

  1. Brian Olson says:

    Very, very nice!

  2. Tom Cornwell says:

    Thank you for sharing your Layout you have inspired me to do a better job

  3. Steve Barret says:

    Very good – althogh the “mid-Atlantic” location had me wondering 😆

  4. Raymond Peterson says:

    I am in the scrap business so I am always fascinated when a modeler depicts their version of a scrap yard, There are scrap yards in just about every town in the U.S. but it seems that very few people have any idea what the business is all about.

    Thanks for your work!

  5. Bruno Barnes says:

    Now, that’s something I can relate to. I’ve “trucked” into many places such as this. Very realistic!

  6. Stephen Hill says:

    Tom , great theme throughout , really nice job .very clean and uncluttered , well thought out execution and design . Great job so far , are they ever really done ? Have fun and build on .. keep us posted .

  7. Bill in Virginia says:

    Excellent railroad! I always have a fondness for layouts with lots of switching opportunities.

  8. george zaky says:

    Boy did you ever lighten & brighten my morning. I cannot thank you enough for your time & effort to present a masterpiece of narrative and awesome model train display. Your inclusion of all the techy stuff I I crave, that others are so reluctant to include, meant so much to me. I want to know code 83, #6 turnouts, Bachman controls etc. Bravo! Others dont even say what scale they’re in and frankly I find that annoying and many times I wont comment at all even though I had some constructive point.
    I truly hope you continue to enlighten us with your talents and keep us up to date with perhaps a video of those beauties pulling a line of cars.
    Of course I am jealous of the space you have. 😊
    Big Al
    Great blog, coffee, beautiful AM- It dont get better’n this! Muchos Gracias.

  9. Don says:

    extremely well done, wow impressive

  10. Mike B. says:

    Great layout. I have a suspicion that the Central Maryland area, especially Catonsville, where Wilson Lumber is located, is part of the theme.

  11. Dave Karper says:

    Aah,yes, J.S.Wilson in the 700 block of Frederick Road in the middle of beautiful downtown Catonsviille.

  12. Will in NM says:

    Nice modern-looking layout Tom. Doesn’t the track get wet in the “Mid-Atlantic” location? 🙂

  13. Thomas Nichols says:

    Yes, I grew up in Catonsville. The Mid-Atlantic is referring to several states along the eastern coast of the USA. i.e., Maryland, Delaware, PA

    Thanks everyone for your comments.

  14. Philz Landiscaping says:

    Tom’s HO scale scrap yard layout is a cool model train setup! It’s two levels, 8×22 ft – pretty big. There’s a retail district, an industrial park, and even an Amtrak station on the lower level. Nick’s Scrap Metal Yard, Clearwater Freight, and other spots are doing their thing. The upper-level deals with coal, coke, fuel oil, and furniture manufacturing. Tom nailed it with this layout – awesome job!

  15. Sam H. / Baltimore, Maryland says:

    NIce layout. Not far away from me, just on the other side of town. It would be nice to get together to share some ideas. Essex area.

  16. Steve Ruple says:

    Awesome layout, lots of switching yards, well done.

  17. TJK says:

    Nicely done! Plenty of freight on your layout.

  18. robert dale tiemann says:

    i like a lot. very busy, really good.

  19. Jim AZ says:

    Nice layout. Oh to have so much space to work with. Envious.

    Jim AZ

  20. Robert W. says:

    I enjoy watching the many layouts by Alastair Lee. There are many different Ideas
    to teach Model Railroading.

  21. Brian Messenger says:

    Tom, I remember when I started my first HO scale 14ft X 10ft narrow gauge double deck layout more than seven years ago, built both levels at the same time – top level 12 inches wide and bottom level 24 inches wide. I then started on the top level first and got as far as I could – up to 95% complete and then carry on with the lower level. My reasoning behind this was – if I dropped anything from the top level while working on it, it would not damage anything on the lower level as there would be nothing on that level to get broken.
    Good foresight on that as I did drop a few things – screwdrivers, pliers, rail cutters and other stuff.
    I liked your scrapyards as I also have two on my upper level although small ones in comparison to yours.
    Brian – the HOn3 guy in Knysna RSA

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