HO scale train layouts

HO scale train layout are probably the most popular.

There are hundreds on the blog. Here are just some of them:

Ken’s HO scale loop

HO scale loop

“It is basically a freelanced double oval with an added town loop, and an arrival/departure track that leads to and from the yard.

I have 11 turnouts all controlled by Tortoise switch machines and my homemade control panel.


You can see all of Ken’s HO scale loop here.

HO scale layout plans – Henry’s:

“A great part of our hobby is creating illusions. I am creating the illusion of unit coal trains running between a coal mine and a coal fired power station.

I do not have the space to model either industry to scale, so a photo backdrop helps to create the illusion.


You can see all of Henry’s pics of his HO scale train layout here.

HO scale layout plans – Bill’s:

“For the HO layout I have scenery basically finished and now I’m going into detail mode and will be weathering cars and engines and finishing up a variety of small projects. While it’s mostly done it’s never done and Ive been enjoying operating the layout.


HO scale train layout shunting yard

You can see all of Bill’s HO scale train layout here.

HO scale layout plans – Rich’s :

“Here are more pictures of my 4×8 model railroad.

All the locomotives and rolling stock have been saved. Some of the locos and rolling stock are sixty years old.

All rolling stock is either scratchbuilt or built from LaBelle, Central Valley or old Roundhouse kits. All Locomotives are DCC conversions, some of which are old Mantua kits from the 1960’s.

All of the structures were scratchbuilt, the only purchased items being most of the windows and doors.


rich HO scale model railroad

You can see all of Rich’s HO scale pics here.

HO scale layout plans – Frank’s

“This is a 4×8 that has been in the works for 10 or so years, I now have it in a loft that is 16×20 and I am building a new layout and this 4×8 will not work into it well at all so I will be dismanteling it in the next few weeks to get started on the new one so I thought I would share some of it with you.


You can see all of Frank’s HO scale train layout pics here.

Don’s first HO scale:

don HO scale model railroad

You can see all of Don’s pics, and read his narrative, right here.

Steve’s HO scale train layout retirement project

“I started this train project just over three years ago knowing my only grandson was on his way. He’s now an excellent “three year old railroader”.

It’s loosely modeled after Nevada’s Carson City-Virginia City trains during the booming 1800’s Comstock area.

I grew up in that area in the 1960’s. A tourist train still runs between the two communities.


Steve ho scale model railroad

You can see the rest of Steve’s pics here.

Rich’s 4×8 HO scale train layout

“I decided that I would go as far as the budget allowed while using items not in high regard today with some modelers.

The goal was to come up with something that might interest even the more advanced modelers.

The original budget was set at $500 including lumber but will likely total out at around $600 after trees and some misc. items are added in.


4x8 HO scale model railroad

You can see the rest of Rich’s HO scale model railroad here.

David’s HO scale

“I have always enjoyed modeling scenery, but had to relocate 8 times for my job. As a result I crafted scenery from foam board and sculpted it using a “Hot Wire” cutter and a wire brush, depending on the effect I wanted.


You can see all of David’s HO scale train layout here.

James’s HO scale layout:

“This scene shows Angelo is waiting for a local delivery to pass his water tower…there are 4 towers in the area, Angelo has worked in all four the towers for the railway and is the longest employed tower operator.


James ho scale model railroad

You can see all of James’s layout pics here.

John’s HO scale mine layout:

“I now have the left side of my layout started. As you may recall, this is going to be a coal hauling railroad set in the mountains of West Virginia, only my mountains are going to be more like the Rockies, that is more bare rock and steeper sides.

The left side also has a number of storage tracks that will be under the mountains and the coal mine, those are in and I can now run trains completely around the U shaped layout.


You can see all of John’s HO scale mine layout here.

William’s layout

“The Valley Stream Railroad scale is HO.

The time period would be between 1900-1910, it’s late fall and winter is just around the corner in New England.

I have been a train buff for as long back as I can remember and a modeler most of my life.

The layout is in a small bedroom, around the room single track with several sidings and a couple of passing’s.

All the locomotives are steam with sound. A couple of friends helped me with the bench work and the wiring.

The bench work was built 2′ x 4′ sections with 2 x 2 legs, 1/2” plywood on the top, and topped off with a cut up 4 x 8 sheet of 4 inch thick foam.


HO scale layout

You can see all of William’s stunning pics here.

Jeff’s 8×15 HO scale layout:

“My choice was an HO scale layout 8×15 DC layout consisting of a double loop passenger line encompassing a double loop and figure 8 freight line representing the fictitious “Somerfield Valley R.R.” surrounding the main street area of the Village of Somerfield, and some outskirts.


HO scale 8x15 with figure of 8

You can see all of Jeff’s stunning layout here.

Lou makes start on his HO double oval layout

“Whole new table – going ho this time and fortunately I saved all of my old track and what I had of my trains.


HO scale double oval

You can see all of Lou’s layout pics here.

Tom’s U shaped HO scale layout:

“Started out with diesel power circa 1990 to present day. Recently I have decided to build a much larger layout in one of my business buildings when I retire. So I am changing this layout to steam era 1950-1960s. The larger layout will be diesel. I will be able to work on the current U shaped HO scale layout in my basement until then.


You can see all of Tom’s layout pics here.

Joe’s 12×8 HO scale train layout

“The railroad is freelanced, late steam prior to 1950 set roughly in NW New Mexico. The town is San Juan Creek (named for the San Juan mountains of that area).

The local shortline is the San Juan & Central. Major industries include San Juan Coal and San Juan Lumber; both own and operate their own branchlines.

There is a saw mill, a planing mill, oil distribution center, a small cattle ranch and beef processing plant. Various other normal businesses are also included.


12x8 HO scale

You can see of Joe’s layout here.

Paul’s HO scale project

“By removing this barrier and softening the edge the two worlds can come together.

I started making the change about 3 weeks ago and like the way it looks. It’s a simple HO scale project too.

In the photos I show how I did this and what the outcome looks like.


You can see all of Paul’s HO scale project here.

Paul’s HO scale train layouts

“These pics show my newly named existing railroad and the addition I have been working on since last September.

The first photo shows the sign my wife painted that I hung over the RR.


HO scale train layouts

You can see Paul’s complete HO scale update here.

Dave’s HO scale train layout

“I love the realism of the HO scale and the building and scenery options are far more extensive Than O-gauge.

What I have found is that I am spending more time and detail in creating the scenery for my layout.

I hope your readers enjoy the pictures.


HO scale train layout model railroad

You can see all of Dave’s amazing HO scale here.

There are hundreds and hundreds more HO scale train layouts on the blog – here is another page of HO scale layouts.

But the only way you can see them all is jump on the newsletter for the daily posts.

You can do that right here.

It’s not just folk sharing their HO train layouts – there’s also hundreds and hundreds of tips and ‘how to’ tutorials.

Here’s one on inclines.

You get the idea.

I’m not one for social media – so please do jump on the newsletter if you don’t want to miss out.



printable building

17 Responses to HO scale train layouts

  1. Ryan johnson says:

    I want a new ho scale train set I want a ho scale Norfolk Southern from wathers with sound.

  2. C.H. Specht says:

    I have worked on many layouts for/with friends, but never had one of my own.
    I enjoy designing layouts (I use ANYRail) and would be happy to help anyone that wants something special.
    The monster I have designed for my first layout project has over 600 feet of track on three layers and can handle four long trains on separate loops with only two grade crossings to worry about collisions.
    I will adfmit my layout is mostly track, with little scenery designed in, but there are three mountains, eight tunnels, one three foot long double track bridge, and a large yard.
    I have several smaller designs for a modular layout if anyone is interested.
    I have discovered that most HO layouts work fine for N scale, you just divide the dimensions by two for a start.

  3. Tom Hanaway says:

    I’m thinking about beginning this hobby. Been following the posts and read multiple how-to books. My area of skill is electronics. My biggest weakness is no artistic sense.
    I have room, time and finances are not a major factor.

    I’ve always lived and worked around the water and boatyards.
    I’d love to work on a project that involves shipyards and the waterfront.
    Any suggestions on where to get ideas for such a layout?

    Tom Hanaway
    Murphy, NC USA

  4. Santanu Banerjee says:

    Can you suggest some folding base board design say 4X8 feet

  5. Charles Green says:

    I enjoyed the layouts and style and like to learn more.

  6. Charles Green says:

    I enjoyed the Ho layouts

  7. Dave says:

    I’m a minimalist when it comes to scenery, but I’m always ready to investigate interesting track plans. HO and O gauge.

  8. George Francis says:

    I am having to complete rebuild and am having a very hard time coming up with a plan I have several buildings I want on the layout have track running am using digatrack dcc , room is 16×24 any ideas will be accepted .
    Thanks George

  9. Prinz says:

    Would like many 9x 5 track plans, And 5’6x 9’6 layouts. HO scale.

  10. Ern says:

    I just want to see track plans foe 5x 9. And 4x 8 and 6×10 layouts, thank you..ern

  11. John W Farr says:

    I would like layouts for 5′ 9′ and 6′ X 10′.


  12. John says:

    I am caught is a space that is only 4 x6 . I need help with ideas and measures to start and explan

  13. hyne says:

    have new room in house 14 by 14 and thinking of running a railroad in the ceiling about 8 feet up would use 12 inch wide boards for track base one question is how tight a radius do i use in the corners

  14. stanley e ries says:

    does anyone know the power output of an early 40s desal was?

  15. Jerry Treich says:

    Hey Al! This HO layout page is a cool idea! You’re going to make the Lionel and N scale folks jealous, though! Not to mention all the other gauges! Being an HO guy, I can’t comp!ain! 😉

  16. Bob Riding says:

    Will be moving a small 44″ by 74″ HO layout (currently on a dining table that my wife is anxious to get back!) to a 4′ by 8′ starting from the ground up – will need to build a table and have electricity run to my shed. The HO train has become secondary to all my little buildings!! Where to begin?

  17. Bob Foster says:

    I look forward to reading your daily post and looking at the pics. I’m currently a newbie and working on a 9×5 layout but struggling to find the right track plan. Wanting a set up for industry supply chain. Have put 3 together and not satisfied. Any suggestions would be appreciated.

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