Inglenook Siding Layout

Andrew’s been in touch with his Inglenook siding layout:

“Dear Al,

Reading one of your blogs a few weeks ago I discovered that I was building an Inglenook Siding layout, the British shunting puzzle with simplicity in terms of track layout.

Mine uses 4 or 5 trucks, the original using 8 trucks has 6,720 different shunting orders possible and was the brainchild of Alan Wright (1928 – 2005) so no shortage of shunting options.

Plus, one can add a challenge requiring the least number of locomotive movements or the quickest time.

My layout is made from bits from my main layout which is now being dismantled and re-built for the fourth time.

Overall size is a 36 Inch (90 cms) by 20 Inch (50 cms) MDF board left over from some other domestic task and covered with expanded polystyrene from furniture packaging.

The track pinned and ballast stuck with diluted PVA. The ballast and roads are made from grit scooped from the gutter at the side of the road and sieved to different grades. Expanded polystyrene packaging carved, covered with Plaster of Paris, painted and coated with sawdust made the landscape.

Fencing is matchsticks and cotton thread or strips of balsa wood.

Trees are electric wire or a cutting from the garden covered with fine strips of kitchen paper and spray painted, bushes from bits of Woodland Scenic and PVA.

Buildings from printouts, some from your excellent range, scrap and a bespoke balsa wood crane designed after looking at photos on the web. Plenty of pencil sucking and head scratching but at very little cost.

It’s been fun and provides plenty of entertainment while locked-down and subject to strict travel restrictions. A highly recommended layout for people with limited space and/or low budget to have a go at railway modelling.

Best wishes to you and all your followers,


Cooroy, Queensland, Australia”

inglenook siding layout

inglenook siding layout

inglenook shelf layout

inglenook shelf layout

inglenook siding layout

inglenook siding layout

inglenook siding layout

Now on to Jerry:

“I have a layout I’ve been working on or started on in 2010… My wife gave me permission to actually take over a spare bedroom and after a while took down a wall between the bedroom and the living room.

I built a double decker layout and started building a helix but halfway through building I had an accident at work and almost severed my spinal column doing by a dislocated spine misalignment.

Pulling too many pallets of water and windshield washing fluid. Didn’t have it fused but had a rod inserted next to the spine screwed into it. The layout went on hold for at least six to eight months, then I found out I couldn’t finish the helix because my reach and bending were limited.

That’s still where I’m at today. Helix is not finished.. I can’t get help… Only comments that came back is “I’ll buy your rolling stock and track to help you!”

Yeah right! If that was my intention all the time! Idiots!

So it has been left unfinished for years…


“Hi Al,

Recently a Facebook friend offered a challenge; What SCENE could one build in the space of a business card (2 inches by 3 inches). The preference is O scale.

I shared with you a structure that I built for that space. Now I have also done two scenes with more on the way.

For one of the scenes, I used your new brick paper. I am sure you did not intend for that new offering to be used this way but… I do intend to use it for some other more appropriate structures as well.

Hopefully these two little scenes will give you a chuckle or three…



A big thanks to Andrew for sharing his Inglenook siding layout, and to John and Jerry too.

I know I’m biased, but I think Andrew has done a great job with his buildings – particularly his crane.

And poor old Jerry. Sometimes it’s never plain sailing.

Lastly, I always find John’s creativity inspiring. It did make me smile.

I still enjoy seeing what you are all up to, even after all these years.

And if today’s post has inspired you, and you want to make a start on your own layout, don’t forget The Beginner’s Guide is here.

Please do keep ’em coming.



PS Latest ebay cheat sheet is here.

16 Responses to Inglenook Siding Layout

  1. Frank Fleury says:

    Sorry, but the N scale track link is not working on the bay cheat sheet.
    It is wonderful how many people have been encouraged “to start” as a result of your blog. It is a wonderful and interesting experience to see what ideas various people have come up with.
    Please, keep up the good work.
    Frank Fleury
    Vancouver, BC, Canada

  2. Ramsey Arnold says:

    Thank you, Andrew, for a fun idea‼️ I’m very space limited, and your Inglewood Siding has many opportunities to build, learn AND Enjoy 😉 THANKS

  3. Colin Edinburgh says:

    Jerry. Sorry to hear your predicament. Have you tried your local model train club. I’m sure someone would finish you helix for you. Perhaps they could build it remotely and bring it completed for you to install.

  4. J S Friedman says:

    Hope you are well, back surgery is a “bear”.
    Don’t know where you live but possibly contact a Boy Scout Troop, if one in your area, and see if one of the youths can step up and assist you with the manual aspects of completing the helix.
    From an old old Eagle Scout.

  5. Robert Brady says:

    YO Andrew that’s kool .It’s like watching a tennis match 🙂

  6. Robert Brady says:

    Now Jerry’s on the other hand ….
    Completely incomplete. 🙁

  7. Jerry Kramer says:

    There are no local clubs within 20 miles or less. There is one rp miles away but not in Nscale. Left messages for help at several clubs in NH, but all they are interested in is rolling stock and track only.
    I wanted to put my double track layout in a building that other nscalers would in. But rents are extremely high here about 1700.00 month.

  8. Erick says:

    Look pretty Kool.!!!! Keep up the good work.

  9. Winston says:

    Whoever has the layout with the people standing on their round little platform instead of the actual playground….let me say this .. Your layout is excellent and totally realistic…but when I saw the people on that little platform instead of the deck it distracted from the realism… now I am sure I am not the only person to notice this but if you take a small Dremel and file off that stupid ram thing that is of people are standing on and glue those feet to the platform then you will have total realism

  10. Several comments…
    Andrew, that is an awesome Inglenook. I love the scenery. Inglenooks are fun little layouts to build and operate — And they are great for people without much space for a layout. One of the best things about yours is the angle you have it on. “Building on the Bias” has given you more scenery room. Very clever and very well done.
    Jerry, I feel your pain in more ways than one. The selfishness of some opportunists is truly appalling. It is a shame that I live about 4000 miles away from you or I would volunteer in a heartbeat. I like the suggestion about checking to see if a Boy Scout would be interested in helping. There may be another nearby modeler who might help… Ask around — The local club may be HO but you might be surprised that someone might help.
    On a side note, you may want to consider a little rethinking and a smaller layout that is more accessible given your new limitations. — For myself: My wife’s back failed catastrophically after a fall. Her back required emergency surgery and a fusion — The first attempt failed and a second surgery was required. Her belief in life failed at that point and I lost her four years later — She passed in January of 2020.
    As a recommendation, find things you enjoy doing. Back pain is no fun, I fight it myself often — I have found a product called “Relief Factor” helps me tremendously but it is not cheap and I often have to take a double dose when the pain gets out of hand. My experience is that with a triple dose (it is nothing more than things like tumeric and similar herbs and oils) I went through significant oral surgery including 13 implants with no discernable pain/
    Hope this helps,

  11. Eugene Shaffer says:

    Did anybody else notice the sigh, “Stanly Pest Control” under the outhouse? Ha.

  12. Ruben Simon says:

    Jerry, sorry to hear about your back troubles. Mine’s bad, too, but not so bad that I can’t do what’s needed – I’ve just learned not to “need” too much, which makes me think about your problem: if you can’t get anyone to do what you’re needing done, consider destroying that area of your layout, as if a tornado came through, and rebuilding it with remnants of the helix showing, as proof of what man is capable of when “mother nature” does her thing.

  13. Robert Brady says:

    Ah, Stanly pest control hay so it’s a crab house 🙂

  14. Kevin says:

    Thats an original hornby set if I’m not mistaken I had exactly the same one when I was a young boy I’m 65 now I recognise the loco and the wagons

  15. Bob Grant says:

    Jerry, I don’t know where you are but if you are near Eastern Iowa I would be willing to help you with the helix if you can share some of your knowledge/lessons learned with me. Interested?

  16. TJK says:

    Best of luck on your recovery Jerry

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