thanks for sending all of the tips and photos – they have been great help to someone like me who at the age of 66 is just starting out. I have been a scale R/C aeromodeller for over 50 years so I thought I would make a change. I am also learning the “lingo” which is very interesting.
I have also included a shot of my layout so far. I only have a small area (3.5 mtrs X 2.4 mfrs “L” shaped) It will be two early 19th/20th century coal mine layouts with a river running through both.. I will be using On30 size Porter Spectrum locos pulling coal trucks around two separate tracks. These are perfect for tight curves.There is a siding and other areas of interest. Because of the shallow depth of the layout I have digitally printed a background and 50mm in front of that a plaster cliff face with LED’s on the base between the two to give a more 3D effect (looks great at low light) The waterfall has bee “roughed in” and the river has to have the rapids enhanced before I can go any further.
You can see the four bridges stacked on the left wired up and set to go.. Before I can install them the track on the bridges will have to be have ballast added and then the wooden girders and the bridges glued in place, and after that the rest of the track will be laid with ballast.
Now, speaking of ballast I purchased a Proses Track Ballast Spreader. I have tried it out on a test piece of track and it works just fine but the leading edge of the spreader being 90 degrees catches on the “spikes” or whatever you call them, so what I did was lightly sand a 45 degree angle on the leading and trailing edges (there goes my aviation talk again) so they would ride over the lumps and bumps. I hope you can see it in the photo.
I was told when I started this hobby that you never finish a layout and I can see why. I have been going to model railway exhibitions for years and finally decided to bite the bullet. I have built a few scale buildings and trees but the installation will come much later. I am more interested in running the two tracks for some time to make sure all is ok. As some parts of the tracks will be hidden behind trees and buildings they will be difficult to get to – so no tunnels on this layout. By the way I tried laying the track on a foam base with thin Super Glue and it works great. Just pin the track in place and a few minutes later ….. voila !!! All fixed down.
Going by my photo of the layout, if anyone has any comments please let me know – I am new to this.
“Here’s how I solved the limited space issue in my workshop. The mechanism is made mostly of bits & pieces from junk box and scrap pile. The layout is just starting, but closed cell foamboard and 1/8” plywood will keep the weight down. The “picture frame on the ceiling makes the layout dust proof. All 4 “backdrop” sides fold down for easier access. The table is 8′ x 8′. It takes about 4 seconds to raise or lower. The light for the workbench automatically connects when the layout is up.To overcome reach issues to active track (N gauge), there will be a removable center section with no active components, just structures and scenery.
Jon in Texas”
“Dear Mr. Lee,
I have two tips to offer, maybe three…
Model railroading is the perfect hobby from my point of view…
From my point of view, model railroading offers more opportunities for creative self expression than any other hobby I am aware of.
Here are my tips… They apply to model railroading and to life..
1. It is more fun to be a participant than a spectator… build something!
2. Start small, failure is less painful and success comes more quickly.
3. Have fun… Play with new ideas and materials.
And now my friends, I’ve decided to put some of the questions I get time and time again to bed. So let’s start with this one:
How do you decide what scale to model in?