Harry Potter model train

Mike’s been in touch with his Harry Potter model train layout.

It’s another fine example of your layout can be whatever you want it to be:

“Hello Al,

Been inspired by your emails to build a train layout inspired by my grandkids’ interest in Harry Potter.

We acquired the train while on vacation in Orlando, FL while visiting Universal Studios Harry Potter exhibit.

I’ve spent the last three months putting this together only to realize a 10 foot by 14 foot room is just too small.

Will be reassembling and expanding into a 17 foot by 17 foot space in the basement. Wish me luck.

Kind regards,

Mike Bifulco
Grand Rapids, Michigan, USA”

Harry Potter model train

Harry Potter model train

Harry Potter model train

Harry Potter model train

Harry Potter model train

model railroad

model railway

Harry Potter model railway

Harry Potter model train

Harry Potter model railway

Harry Potter model railway

Harry Potter model railway

Now on to Rob.

“Hi Al,

My latest video seems to be generating considerable interest.

I thought your readers might enjoy a little frivolity on a model train layout, or what I consider good old fashioned fun.

I did a series on how I built the road these vehicles follow a few months back and if enough would be interested, I can send that link too.

But this one is about running my Faller vehicle and how I added headlights and tail lights to it. It was quite a trick. If I was an electronics whiz it would all be easier, but alas I am not. I am a mechanical guy.

Rob McCrain – Farland Howe”

Latest ebay cheat sheet is here.

A huge thanks to Michael and Rob.

I can’t wait to see Michael’s Harry Potter model train update – he’s got off to a smashing start.

And Rob has hit the nail on the head – his video really is good old fashioned fun.

That’s all for today folks, please do keep ’em coming.

And don’t forget the Beginner’s Guide is here if today is the day you take your first step to making your very own layout.



30 Responses to Harry Potter model train

  1. Jim Aspin says:

    Michael, love your fantasy themed layout! You have inspired me. Though I’m just getting to soon I hope starting to build the table my mind has gone to a fanciful theme.

  2. Derek Wray says:

    If you connect your headlights to the rear lights (observing polarity) they will come on when you operate the existing switch. LEDs draw a very small current so the switch should handle 4 of them no problem.

  3. Eric Rayner says:

    Nice work Mike, but you can’t have Harry Potter without Hogwarts castle and a few broomsticks in the air, good luck with your expansion plans. Leave plenty of room for the castle. 🙂
    Rob, love your roundabout and the headlights on the first vehicle that actually looks as if it’s driving round as a proper truck would, now all you need is a traffic jam.
    Happy Modelling.

  4. Sidney Pratt says:

    Looks great! Doing a lot in a small space.

  5. Kevin McArdle says:

    Way cool!

  6. Chris says:

    Great little layout with an excellent track plan, especially with 3 rail track! Can’t wait to see the expanded version and nice long trains gliding around!

  7. george zaky says:

    Fabulous theme & buildings. Good luck with the expansion.
    I am a Faller fan and love to watch the vehicles & trains together. I have completely disassembled an S scale 5×12 layout that at one point had trains, people and trucks moving. I am starting from scratch, back to HO and hope to have the same busy layout. Keep us a posted on all you do. Are you going to add signals and traffic? Be well
    George from NY

  8. Old Prospector says:

    Great Layout. When will you have the Hogwarts Castle built and installed?

  9. Bill OH says:

    Finally somebody using faller’s car system.
    How do you charge the second battery is wired in parallel or series.
    As usual Dave comes up with a solution thanks

  10. Kaustav says:

    Mike – that is an awesome layout! I personally feel that it is way more difficult to recreate fantasy then recreate reality and there is obviously more scrutiny from the fans! You’ve done a super job bringing an authentic feel to your layout and it definitely belongs to the HP Universe.

    Rob – what a great project! I will have to do this sooner or later for my Faller vehicles whenever I get to build my next layout, so this will be a good reference. By the way, I got my first Carson Radio Control VW van this week, and I really think I will start choosing radio control over Faller for smaller set-ups. It’s so much fun running that little thing!

  11. George W Boeckling says:

    For a first timer ithis layout is better than most all guys do

  12. Marshall Roath says:

    Give the truck driver a speeding ticket! Cleaver layout.

  13. Ken Goldenberg says:

    Mike, what a great Harry Potter layout and a wonderful way to play with the grandkids! I could almost walk into Honeydukes or get a pint of Butterbeer!
    I’ve been to Potter at Universal Hollywood (I live in Orange County) but I’ve never been to the larger version in Orlando, but next time we do a Disney World trip we’ll have to spend a couple days at Universal there as well.

  14. Mike, that’s a lovely layout. I loved Hogsmead. When you do your expansion, how about Diagon Alley at the London end?
    I’m planning on a north of Scotland 009 8ft x 8ft walk-in. I hope it will be as well done as yours once I’ve finished it.

  15. Corrie says:

    Rob When I did my signals, I had the same problem with the ultra bright LED’s. It draw to much current and then my green LED’s would not work. I then replaced the ultra bright red LED’s with normal red LED’s and it worked perfectly. Try not to use ultra bright LED’s with normal LED’s

  16. Ben Shay says:

    Great job!

  17. Rob, I must have missed an episode, what are you using to keep the truck on track, can you have several vehicles moving, can you adjust the speed.
    Looks great, I will now have to rethink some of my layout plans, will need plans for the train and vehicles, Brilliant job.

    Mike Foster – mfoster@dli-inc.com

  18. Peter MacGregor says:

    Once again I love hearing your tutorial on what you do to make things even better on your layout. I have seen your video on the making of the road system with the hidden “guide wires” under the pavement. Great stuff!!!!
    What can I say…..you’re a genius. I have fingers and hands similar to yours, and find it difficult working with such fine components and wires……frustrating.
    Keep up the great work….Peter on the fabulous Gold Coast in sunny Queensland, Australia.

  19. Ak Jim says:

    Nice work!

  20. Mike Childs says:

    Rob, Your layout is great. Is “Faller” a type of truck or a brand name? Also, how do you get the truck to follow the roadway? Thanks. Mike from Minnesota.

  21. James Mahaffey says:

    Rob, we would like more information on how you created your truck layout
    and how you keep your truck on the track.

  22. don kadunc says:

    I bought a package of 500 Red, green, yellow, blue and white off Ebay. No voltage info was given. I found out the hard way that the colored lights were 2 volts and the white lights were 3 volts. I burned out several colored lights thinking all were 3 volts. I don’t know if this is a standard or just what I bought.

  23. Jim Vragel says:

    Love this type of layout. Mine was HO and built around three trains. I bought “Murder On the Orient Express” set after the movie was released. My next was a Hudson J-3 after seeing the original Broadway show “On the 20th Century.” Next was a PRR GG1 with working pantographs, Finally I bought a “Harry Potter” set. I know purists are throwing a fit because none of these are consistent in period or location. But they give me pleasure and isn’t that what the hobby’s all about?

  24. Richard Chapple Sr says:

    Both really nice layouts. Mike I had to look several times, my minds eye thought it could see a castle up there in the mountains. Very nice work, anxious to see your expanded layout too. And Rob, that is so cool. I am saving up for one of Fallers systems. Reynauds has them here in the states for about $160.
    Folks the truck uses magnets that follow a wire buried in the road. You can seek out you tube videos of these systems. Really cool stuff. They have a transit bus as well, and actually one can use the power drive system to install under lots of different vehicles. Go to the Faller site also to find info on these systems.

  25. To Mike, Diagon Alley, build it and EVERYONE you know on this planet will come to see and relive those AWWWW moments, they got walking thru that brick wall seeing that dragon head poking out. My amazement at the shops and period streets. Yes you will need a lot more room. But it will be a “Stand alone” RR. nice.
    To the Fallers builder, word of advice. Electricity is just a jolting type pf mechanics, if you can use a volt meter, which I know you can, you can do basic electronics. You have done a bang up job. I could watch your set up for hours and hours just to take it all in it must be quite a RR. GREAT VID.

  26. Peter Briggs says:

    Rob, you are trail blazing a new level of authenticity in model railways. I just wonder how long it wil be before we see guards waving flags, travellers moving along platforms and pavements? We oldies might laugh but look at the advancements in Model Railways these last few years? My personal wish list would be for smoke generators for steam engines. What enjoyment you bring to us all!

  27. Arthur Joseph Romano says:

    Very slick track plan too. Looks like lots of fun.

  28. welder dave says:

    The HP is nice you must recreate the long concrete curving viaduct in there too !! the Faller cars are interesting do they have G scale ones ??

  29. robert dale tiemann says:

    cool layout.

  30. Brian Rockey says:

    Rob, thinking the truck driver is pushing his luck speeding, LOL. Would be great to see a police car chasing him. I’ve just the one Faller lorry on my system as the vehicles are so expensive.
    Also, after a hot summer and very wet and cold winter, I’ve decided to abandon the OO gauge layout, including the Faller road system in the loft, due to huge problems with the track and points. Disappointing, and now in the process of boxing up all the engines, rolling stock, buildings, vehicles etc. to sell up. Will stick with the N gauge layout in the shed.
    Best to all.
    Brian, Wokingham, UK

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