HO train layout

Dan’s been in touch again with more pics of his stunning HO train layout:

Followers of my posts: I have just about run out of things of interest on my layout.

I took hundreds of construction photos as well as a very large number of finished works.

I am often rephotographing the HO layout in different lighting conditions as well as angles.

HO coal depot

I like slogans and word play for signs.

model train coal sign

Close up of the coal sign

HO scale coal

The poor guy with a spelling problem

HO train layout freight

What more can you say?

 HO scale painters

Once again the painters at the mill. I did this model in the early 70’s. You can see the obvious reference to a certain plant.

HO train layout:

HO scale coach truck

The HO station at Almost is almost to the summit

HO train layout


model train light

Long after sunset at the train tunnel

HO train layout

Before radios, train orders were picked upon the fly. (When orders were to be signed the train had to stop.) The train man is about to grab the orders. Some time the orders were handed up via a “Y” or similar shaped frame. The station operator would stand near the moving train and “Hoop” them up.

model train hoop key

Here he is about to grab the layout orders. This stand has 3 arms. The head end would get one and a helper loco would get one if needed.

HO train layout trestle bridge

The trestle often needs repair. One of the safety boards has gone missing. The work train has arrived to do the work.

HO train layout trestle bridge

It takes a brave person to step out to the HO platform.

13 HO train layout trestle bridge

Looks like some Ho Bo’s have made camp below the trestle.

 HO train layout santa fe

The phone box. Often the train had to get permission to enter a junction

HO train layout

A large group has gathered to celebrate the 20 anniversary of the layout.

model train sign

A banner has been stretched across the track. (Today it would say 32 years!)

That is enough for now.

I think I can do two or three more of my HO train layout. I have done the scenery on 5 other layouts and designed and done the scenery 3 of them. In the comments let me and Al
know if you want to see them.


A huge big thanks to Dan for sharing his HO train layout again – there is so much happening in all the little scenes, it really does bring the layout to life. Stunning stuff.

You can see more of Dan’s HO layout in the Hall of Fame.

Next, a great big thank you to anyone that has supported the site by taking the plunge with the Beginner’s Guide.

(It’s just $9 at the mo, tomorrow it’ll be back up to £27.)

Long story short: if you enjoy reading the blog with your morning coffee, please help me keep the show on the road. I refuse to get myself into the mess I did a few years ago. And it really is getting quite grim.

I have to say, the thing that really keeps me going is when I receive mails like the below, from Ron:

“Dear Al;

I just read your recent post where you said ‘I have been having a tough time of it at the moment. When you get to my age, the technical side of running, a blog can be a bit mind numbing.’

Alastair, I totally, completely understand where you’re coming from! I’ve been in your shoes.

I need you to know something friend: from this end, from the readers end, I have learned more from you and your blog than I’ve ever learned from any magazines or books!

Your blogs are full of illustrative pictures, descriptions, and better than that, even how to’s!

Alastair, do not forget, do not ever forget the lasting impact you’re having on those of us who are just beginning; those of us who don’t have a clue and are looking to you for guidance.

Keep up the good work, my friend! Believe me when I tell you there are multitudes of us who so appreciate all that you have done, all that you ARE doing and all that you hopefully will continue to do!

Godspeed, my friend!


Ron really put a smile on my face, because I genuinely want the blog, the Beginner’s Guide, the printable buildings, to do one very important thing: getting folk to make a start!

It’s all about that start. One of my fave sayings is “It’s the start that stops most people”. So true.

It doesn’t matter if it’s a HO train layout, N scale, or any scale – just start! Enjoy yourself.

Anyhow, I’m rambling now.

You can grab the Beginner’s Guide here for just $9. I know many of you buy it every year just to support the blog, so thank you so much.

Anhow, let’s see what happens.

That’s all for today folks.

Please do keep ’em coming.



PS Latest ebay cheat sheet is here.

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

model train answers

7 Responses to HO train layout

  1. robert dale tiemann says:

    terrific. i love it.

  2. Rob McCrain says:

    That is one fabulous trestle. Your landscaping looks great too. I do have a sweet spot in my heart for the Santa Fe. Rob

  3. George Zaky says:

    I for one so enjoyed your submission. Guys like you MUST show us your handiwork for both entertainment but most importantly mentorship. We are looking at those little things that you got right and hopefully we may mimic. Copying is the greatest form of flattery. I get excited when Big Al mentions you in the intro- Ohh boy!
    Big Al
    Keep pluggin’ my friend! My hobby & Big Al- they go together. Many thanks

  4. Steve Ruple says:

    Dan, if those guy’s been painting up on the grain mill since the early 70’s, I bet they are sure hungry !!!!!!!—-Nice photo’s.
    Al, I agree with Ron on your blog’s, I have for sure learned more on your blog’s than in any magazine’s or book’s keep up the good work, I will stay on your blog until the end of time !!!!!!! —GOD BLESS YOU !!!!!!!!

  5. Jim AZ says:

    All good stuff. Great modeling and please keep posting. It’s like visiting the Grand Canyon, different daylight, and different colors and shadows.

    Jim AZ

  6. Rob says:

    MORE! MORE! By all means MORE!

  7. TrainMaster Robert says:

    Excellent modeling and excellent photography. So many great layouts I have seen here are not well expressed due to poor photographic technique but you have nailed it.

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