HO scale coal trucks

John’s been back in touch again – this time he’s added some HO scale coal trucks to his new mine entrance:

Last time we saw him working on a his mine module (you can see that, here).

This time, he’s slots it in to place on his layout.

Stunning stuff as usual:

“Hi Alastair,

The mine module featured on my last email to you is now ‘home’ next to the ‘newer’ mine placed some months ago.

The pictures show it as I blended in the mountains and plaster work. Looks like my measurements for how the mountains would fit worked pretty well.

Next steps are add the guard rail blocks along the coal truck passage, clean-up of the siding rails and general adding of vehicles and stuff to add the look of clutter and life. A machine shed for the mine trucks and parking area for mine employees will go to the right of these modules and complete this side of the layout.

I took heart from a comment on the last post about being able to go back to a picture and pick out more detail, so I got busy on the machinery sheds for the old mine and added more stuff.

I’ll be back in touch when the back-drops are painted and installed.

Thanks to you and the many friends I’ve never met,

John From Baltimor”

HO scale coal trucks

model railroad mine plaster mountain

model railroad mountains

model railroad mountains

model railroad mountain

HO scale coal trucks

A huge thanks to John for sharing his HO scale coal trucks. It’s so wonderful to see this layout come together. I do love it when I see his name pop up in my inbox. Stunning stuff.

You know what else I like these posts? The comments. And as John says, they are read and taken in to consideration. So please do scroll down and let us know what you’re all thinking.

That’s all for today folks.

Please do keep ’em coming.

And if today is the day you start on your model railway journey, save yourself hours of sweat and tears – the Beginner’s Guide is here.



Latest ebay cheat sheet is here.

19 Responses to HO scale coal trucks

  1. Nice job with the mine John ….looks very authentic ..Dangerous dave

  2. Jack Bury says:

    Great work, John. The mountain blend worked perfectly.
    Love the detail on the mine. You should be proud.

    Jack in Pa

  3. Malcolm hodgson says:

    Oh wow John, that is just epic modelling. I am loving the detail level you are producing here. Love the dirt, the rust the activity. All true to life.

    North Wales

  4. Mike Ilkenhons says:

    The finished module is stunning. The detail is so well thought out. It definitely makes me enlarge the screen to see what else is hidden in the big picture. The quality of your work is as good as anyI have seen by some nationally known builders. Encourages me to dig deeper for less quantity and more quality.

  5. Matthew Brooks says:

    I love this

  6. george zaky says:


    Love to see any further great works of art. Please keep us mortals up to date
    George from NY

  7. mark Allen says:

    great job!!!

  8. Malcolm (Buck) Massie says:

    You do good work John. An inspiration to us all. Bucl

  9. Rob McCrain says:

    I like it. You’ve done some fine work on the mine scene. It has a great look to it.
    Rob McCrain – Farland Howe

  10. Dave Gunns says:

    Great job John, looks very real!

  11. Bill says:

    Beautiful addition. You have mad modeling skills John! Quite motivational might add.

  12. Paul V says:

    Hey John, great work. Have a few questions if you can spare the time out from modeling to answer Lol. It looks to me that you had always had the mine incorporated in your original plan, is that right? Also, approximately how much time do you think you spent at the planning stage? The devils in the detail . I’ve had ideas but as of now not implemented.

  13. Paul,
    Thanks for your comment. A number of my friends have asked the same question, and I’ve always struggled to give a concise answer, but here goes. My first several railroads over some 30 years looked like God made railroads then the earth, try as I would they were still flat. As I looked back into Model Railroader Magazine, I saw that the layouts that I really liked were in 3 dimensions, so my first rule for this latest and probably my last layout (I’m 72) was that I would use all the verticle space I could, ceiling to floor. Second was figure a way to be able to do my modeling where it was easy to access the work being done, that led me to the modular approach for all of the complicated areas, the bridges, mines, valleys and mountains. I make them on the floor or on a table in my shop, then bring them into the train room and install them. I find it’s easier to continue to add details if the model is within easy reach, leaning over a meter of secenry to “plant” trees and grasses is hard on the back.
    As for the actual track plan, a few suggestions come to mind. The plan should focus on what you like to do, if running trains, by that I mean having continuous trains going around the layout, then go for loops, with super track that let ’em run without derailments. Dangerous Dave comes to mind here, his tracks and movies are great.
    If switching is your thing go for places where you can easily reach to uncouple cars and access the industries, shelf layouts are great fun, take little space, and good for hours of railroading.
    My goals are to be able to have scenes where visitors are visually drawn to, where they can find all the stuff I’ve added to that section of my little world, the running of trains will only add to those scenes. I have some industry, and will be tearing out the engine house and putting in a better turntable, but that’s down the road. Finally, and maybe most important, as you envision your layout let your mind roam through the memory banks into that life-long area if “gee, that’s really neat” and see if it can fit into your little railroad world. I like industry, my job is to inspect and audit railroad manufacturers, cars, subways, locomotives, and light-rail. I love the industries I visit, world over, and the people who make it all work. My mines are from Pennsylvania and Germany. The bridges are from Switzerland and California. The town is from everywhere, and the mountains are from my childhood when a hill was a mountain, and a mountain touched the sky. Sorry, rambling here, but went back into that memory bank for a minute. Good luck, take that screw-gun in hand and just do it!
    John From Baltimore

  14. Leo Koziols.net says:

    Looking Good

  15. Gary Cooper says:

    John Thank you for your wisdom in your post!!! That really speaks to me. I also love your pictures…

  16. Dan Brown says:

    Great job. Enjoy your layout.

  17. Mark T Pianka says:

    Outstanding job!!! wish I had the room on my Lionel layout!

  18. Cary E Price says:

    Great job John, enjoyed the photos much. The transformer and overhead wires are a great touch for that “industrial” look. Cary in KY

  19. Terry says:

    Alastair, you do a exlent job posting stuff to excite the rest of us. John great job.

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