Lionel train layouts post war

It’s not very often I get sent Lionel train layouts post war, but when I do see them in my inbox, it’s always a delight:

“This layout is a downsized after moving its 10 x 18 the old layout was 20 x 18.

You will see a brewery that I made its from Utica, NY started in 1888 and still going strong.

I been in this hobby since my father had 027 lionel and HO Lionel as a child since I can remember.

I have over 60 Post War lionel and MTH , Williams, K-Line and MPC Lionel.

Have over 300 pieces of rolling stock and 8 Passenger Sets.

I use Tubular 027 Track and have Lionel, K-line and Gargrave switchs.

I use a few blocks to park engine and to bring on line. The best part of being a operator is Having a cold beer and watching Trains..



Lionel train layouts post war027 lionel

Lionel train layouts post war

Lionel train layouts post war

Lionel train layouts post war

Lionel train layouts post war

027 lionel

027 lionel

027 lionel

027 lionel

027 lionel

Heinrich has been back in touch.

You may remember his last post (it’s here).

He’s kindly answered your questions:

“Hello Alastair,

Thank you for all the responses to my layout.

I have feedback regarding the responses received. Also, as requested by Andrew (Andy), I have attached photos of the locomotives I will be running on my layout. Alas, the rolling stock is secured in crates and will be removed from their storage once my layout is finally assembled. Watch this space!

@ Glyn Jones: My Garrett is a DJH model and can be bought directly from them in the UK, or via a supplier in South Africa (Precision Miniatures).

@ John Russell: No sorry I don’t know of anyone that builds/supplies the Garrett in N gauge.

@ Will in NM: The things on the roof are pumpkins indeed (ripening in the sun)! They serve the same purpose as your tires in Mexico (albeit it short term, until they are ready to be eaten).

@ Bill in Virginia: The modules are secured together by 8mm bolts (and nuts). I have attached photos for you.


bench work wiring

bench work wiring

bench work wiring

bench work wiring

electric train

model steam train

model steam train

model steam train

model steam train

model steam train

model steam train

model steam train

model steam train

model steam train

model steam train

diesel model train

A bigh thanks to Heinrich and to Mark for adding to the Lionel train layouts post war.

It’s wonderful to see all your layouts – I do love the variety.

That’s all for today folks.

Please do keep ’em coming.

And if today is the day you want to start your layout, the The Beginner’s Guide is here.



PS Latest ebay cheat sheet is here.

24 Responses to Lionel train layouts post war

  1. george zaky says:

    Now that’s a layout. 99 bottles of beer on the wall with tons of rolling stack. It doesnt get better than that.
    Thanks-beautiful machinery
    All be well & safe
    George from NY

  2. Gentlemen
    Great layout and,great locomotives thanks
    For sharing

  3. David Schaffner says:

    Nice to see that rail track and them huge Lionel transformers and so many items that Lionel did so well in the forty’s for another thirty years, until competition caught up with them…
    Forty years ago I had a huge layout of stock O27 stuff on my 8x 16 memory of when they had such top of the line stuff, I had a pre- war Big Boy that I let go for a song after I got married, then I started having kids and it was for sure sooner or later, my model railroading days were numbered, since it is a very expensive hobby. I let my whole layout go for a song, since my growing family took priority. I wish I could have kept some of it, especially some of my cool locomotives and passenger cars….If I had it now, it be worth a small fortune to the right buyer…..But that was that…Enjoy you layout as long as you can….

  4. Kevin McArdle says:

    One helluva train room.

  5. Nice layouts

  6. Bob Amling says:

    Nice layout Mark! You’ve got me by 2′ in both directions; and using 027 as opposed to 072 and 042 gives you much more room for scenery!
    Keep on trainin’ .

    Thanks for running this blog. My friend Vinnie sends me copies when he sees something he thinks that I will like.

  7. emp1953 says:

    I had that same search light on my American Flyer layout way back when. That bulb had a dimple in it that the lens rotated on. The bulbs were VERY difficult to get, way back then.

  8. Ray Mainer says:

    I used to drink Utica Club. I haven’t seen it in years

  9. Gary M from Long Island says:

    Mark…….I am drooling over that train room… is all I can say…….great layout..

  10. Mark T. Pianka says:

    Thanks Al for putting my photos out. Camera a little outdated. Thanks for the reply’s, Old layout was bigger, I have track, switch’s and buildings packed away under the layout, I have mostly PW Lionel enjoy buying a engine or car cheap and making them run again. Thanks Again All!!


  11. Gary M from Long Island says:

    Heinrich……those engines are gorgeous. And the addition you built in your last post was ingenious……..

  12. Lorne Hope says:

    Beautiful layout Mark. I like your train room and your passenger station. Well done and thanks for sharing.

  13. Dave Fife says:

    Is that Sasquatch ( Bigfoot) I see in the background of the log cabin scenery?

  14. Joe Gennari says:

    fantastic layout! he should do some videos! would love to see more!!!

  15. John Birch says:

    Great locos, Heinrich. I remember travelling through the Free State behind one of those monsters and hearing the steady blur of a beat as I tried to sleep – but couldn’t because of the excitement!
    Pity the Red Devil never really got a chance.

  16. Jim Logue says:

    Awesome, a lot of history and memories. Great job and thanks!

  17. WOW is all I can say seeing that great layout of Lionel equipment

  18. Mark T. Pianka says:

    Utica Club you say! Still made father retired from the Brewery, Yes Big has a rabbit in his hand, Have to work on a video, Thanks again!

  19. NJ Mark says:

    Utica Club is the first beer in my memory that my dad drank. I loved everything submitted. Beautiful stuff!

    Kevin McArdle: Are you on NJ 101.5? Cheers! NJ Mark

  20. Gus says:

    Great layout. You are a foot bigger on both dimensions. The only problem I have is when I have to crawl on the layout to get to the middle. You have to love Lionel. It is great tradition for us Boomers

  21. Bill Luxford says:

    I have been the Communications Director for an On30 modular Club since 2014. We just dissolved after the loss of 4 of our lead members. One of the leading things we experimented with was the use of “Super Magnets” to join modules together eliminating the need for bolts and wingnuts. I picked that up on Ken Patterson’s “What’s New in Model Railroading” this week on ‘You-Tube’.

    We found that just two magnets were all we needed to hold our modules together. We built a light wood frame around the module we decided to build with 1″x 4″ lumber for the ends and light spruce plywood for the sides to 4″ deep while some of us shaped the top higher than 4 inches to match the contour of the scenery. Our main body was then constructed of 4″ thick pink or blue Insulation foam cut to fill the shape and glued in with Liquid Nails for Hobbyist. Most of us just used 2″ foam on top and added 2 inches of foam blocks under to support the top foam. We could then run any wires needed under the top layer of foam and easily poke a hole through the top layer any wires needed for track power of lighting. Two main Bus wires were run connecting all modules together. One for track power and one foe Accessory power. Track power was DCC while accessory power was 12v DC. We did not have to use pins or rail joiners between track as it went over gaps created by the different modules as the bus line had jumpers to the above tracks at least one per module or more depending on switches. Power leads were fed in near the tips of switches. and then we were able to add “Frog Juicers” if needed for any switch. All DCC power was ‘umped’ using small RC plugs used by the Auto “RCers” to make quick power pack units for their RC cars and trucks. Using shrink tubing for all wire coverings. The straight DC line used similar, but with a different plug arrangement so lines couldn’t be crossed were used. We found that only 2 inch and a half round magnets was enough to hold any module to another. All modules had one magnet and one washer on each end at a set distance apart for the smallest module which was two feet. As the width of a module increased we set the standard at the same distance we used for the 2′ modules. All magnets were counter sunk giving us a smooth flat face to work with. If track was laid across two modules and then cut with a Drumel brand cut-off disc, no rail joiner was needed and the tracks could be lined up very easy be using shims under the module frames to match rail height. Our Club did not use legs as we just set up on folding tables that we furnished or the hall did. Most tables folding tables have the same leg system so we would also cut PVC water line tubing that fit around the feet of these tables to bring the while table up to any viewing height that might be desired or the halls needed. A box full of pre-cut legs was all we had to carry. A few pieces of uncut tubing carries under the roof of one of our two trailers and a hack saw took care of the “odd-ball” situation we might encounter. and a box of “Door Shims” helped level legs and modules if tables were sway-backed. Tables legs could be adjusted to even complicate for ramps or stairs of a show hall. The tubes just slid on to the tubular table leg up to where it bent to narrow to fit under the table.

    Some of us just made Balsa frames around buildings foundations. We then built our scenery up to or the top of the Balsa. Trees either had pins or nails stuck in the bottom or the modeler stuck a short piece of brass tubing into the foam so the tree or bush can be stuck into it. The trees are carried in a box and the spots and trunks are color coded for different types or sizes of tree. Buildings were carried in other boxes protected by whatever method the builder wanted. Some lit buildings, most didn’t. Hills were modeled either on the module or made separate and set on top.

    All of this was current or in line for our Club for our future, but has not been completed because of the folding. I’m sorry this has e-mail has taken so much space.

  22. Robert Brady says:

    Genny cream ale,Not a fan of 3 rail trains.Seems a tad crowded. That’s like comparing Sailboat people to powerboat people.HO or no go.
    the critic

  23. steen a. lunde says:

    Very nice layout . I am anticipating a new layout in the house my wife & I will be building in PA . Would you happen to have a track diagram that I could study for ideas ? If you do , could you send it to me ?

  24. Louis Frederick Caputo says:

    Let’s be frank: there are 2 basic RR modelers and BOTH deserve our respectful acknowledgement and due credit! Today we saw a classic example of O scale, a formidable Lionel collection and the traditional tube rail. We also see sometimes on this site the HO layout (and its variations). The latter modeler is more of a “rivet counter” as they strive mightily for realism and I find this approach much to my liking. The 3-railers seem more bombastic, colorful and action-oriented. They harken back to fond childhood memories as well. Whatever one’s (preference (you can admire both even!) it’s fun and hard work combined with a true love for the hobby!!

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