How to make a model train platform

How to make a train platform – the talented Dave has been in touch again.

But this time he’s pointed me in the direction of one of his pals.

If you want to know how to build a train platform from scratch – you have to watch this video. It looks great.

Big thank you to Jim.

Jim’s post reminded me of Gary’s post – who just models on platforms.

Don’t forget to have a look at John’s superb scenery too.

“I am new to model railroading and it took me awhile to decide on a layout plan. When I decided I found that I needed some material to raise the track. I found the ready made material but it cost to much. I bought some styrafoam, ripped it to the proper width on a table saw and cut notches in it to make it flexible for curves. I made about 50 feet of it for only a few dollars. By the way I used a layout plan from one of your contributers.

Thanks, Larry”

“my tip would be to make sure that there is access to all of your wiring and the inside’s of any tunnels in case of any type of issue, such as a derailment or exposed freight falling off a car..


“Jeff (with his motorized crane) has a great idea I would like to suggest may be adding more weight to his hook would make it operate easier..

Just add a brass weight may be 1/16th ounce or more above the hook,Real cranes have them .
They make the movement up and done better. We use to call them headache balls.
I Got the knots on my head to prove it. Lol

Thanks Al. Best to Jeff, keep it going.”

That’s all this time folks. Please keep ’em coming.

Beginner’s Guide is here if you’re feeling inspired.



PS Heading off to ebay? Don’t forget to squeeze the most out of it with the very latest ebay cheat sheet.

16 Responses to How to make a model train platform

  1. john says:

    great tip
    good thing my mom was born in england, i grew up listining to an englsh accent,, i understood everything he said
    thanks for the tip
    my ” mum” wa s a war bride,

  2. ronnie says:

    great dvd can you tell me how to do a curved platform in oo

    best wishes

  3. Len Lainsbury says:

    Great video – beautifully explained – very impressed with your layout and workplace. Thanks for sharing.

  4. alan says:

    Hi can you tell me how up load vidio and photos to the web site regards Alan

  5. Don Wick says:

    It was a great demonstration video. Loved the parakeet who checked on the progress of the construction. I will check out the website of the card kits. Thanks,
    Don Wick, West Bend WI USA

  6. Austin Wilson says:

    Beautiful. Very nice tips.

  7. Ralph Redding says:

    I appreciate all of the information I have been receiving. However, I am new to model railroading. I know NOTHING about it, NOTHING. I need the VERY BASICS like how coupling and uncoupling work, I am saying I need a start from SCRATCH (like how and why)

    I am going to start with a locomotive, a KIGITRAX dcc controller and one piece of flex track and begin learning and making mistakes. And somewhere down the line the info you are supplying will be very useful.

    Thanks anyway.

    Ralph Redding

  8. gerald says:

    thank for all help

  9. David Hannan says:

    Brilliant tip for creating concrete walls and roadways – just waht I was looking for!

    Thanks very much!


    D. Dave

  10. Paul Lester says:

    The greatest thing about the folks who visit this site is that everyone-ESP. AND IN PARTICULAR the VETERAN MODEL RAILROADERS……..are so happy to share their hard-learned tricks and knowledge with us amateurs. CLASS ACT, ALL OF YOU!!!!

  11. Gene Pinson says:

    I am not sure if this is the correct place to ask questions, but the “how to” seems to be the closest location.
    I am modeling HO on a 30″ x 72″ platform. I have read 18″ radius is the standard but 15″ is possible with limited size of loco & cars. I have recently read someone has done a 14.2″ radius and then a suggestion was made just try it out to make sure if it works. Comments please.
    Al, if this is the incorrect forum for general questions pls advise . Maybe u could create a category for this type of Q&A ?

  12. Gene Pinson says:

    # 15″-14.2″ radius.. sorry I forgot to sign my name.

  13. John Floyd says:

    I enjoyed your pictures and information about train layouts and tips , I am trying to find a track plan to follow to build a ho platform in my bedroom but I have limited space for a 4ft by 8ft with over and under trestles and a turntable can u help me?

  14. Jerry P. Cram says:

    I have never heard of any radius smaller than 15″, but I certainly would not recommend it, even if it exists. I realize that you are working in a very small space, but, even so, you will find that you will be very unhappy with the appearance of your railroad as well as the operation of your trains if the turns are not as large a radius as possible. A 30″ wide layout is simply not enough space to accommodate an HO layout of this type.. I would suggest that, if you cannot somehow enlarge your space to at least 48″ wide, that you consider N gauge instead. If you do not wish to do that your other alternative would be a “yard switching” theme as opposed to a “continuous run” theme.
    Just my thoughts,
    Jerry Cram
    Raleigh, NC

  15. Hi, .On the subject of PLATFORMS. I’m an old time O -guager but I was invited
    to visit a FRIEND-of a FRIEND’s HO N.CAROLINA This fellow was a retired Automobile engineer with many patents , a brilliant innovator. He had an HO Layout in his garage that spanned the whole one side of a 2-car attached garage.
    What he did to conserve space was to hinge one side of the platform from the WALL. It was Mechanized somehow so with a push of a button. the entire display surface swung down and came into view. A FABULOUS LAYOUT of self made turntable, houses, , stores with SCENERY, etc When folded out-of-the way and against the wall, It extended into the garage area by about 18 inches. BEAUTIFUL! and wonderful to see.
    He must have had his whole staff at FORD working on his IDEA. The prob. was that everything had To be nailed down and firmly fastened into place and his rolling stock had to be removed each time. . LIFE has it’s PROBLEMS.

  16. James Harris, California says:

    This may be picky but in Dave’s friend’s video he has double luminaire light in the center of the roadway. In reality such lights are almost always installed in median islands to minimize their being struck by vehicles. At the very least use a striped median but raised medians are best.

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