Model railroad scenes

Brian’s been back in touch with some great tips on creating some model railroad scenes.

You may want to refresh your memory about his 6×12 N scale.

This time he shows us how many ‘small scenes’ there are in his layout – it’s a wonderful video:

“Hi again, first of all have to say your site is powerful, that last video I sent you up around 2K views already!

So… at the risk of wearing out my welcome, here’s another.

Goals with this one are two-fold.

1. To show the importance of small scenes on a model railroad. Viewers will note the trains are simply for background. It’s what’s in front of the trains that are the stars. The small scenes.

2. This video was shot on my iPhone and edited with iMovie. Something we can all do, no need to be hesitant, this technology is designed to empower us. So let’s do it.

Viewers will note the footage is shot with the phone horizontally instead of vertically and I also used “rail fan” views for everything.

Thanks again my friend,

Gainesville GA”

N scale model railroad

model railroad scenes freight

model railroad scenes freight

model railroad scenes turntable

model railroad scenes diner

model railroad scenes airport

model railroad scenes

model railroad scenes loco

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…



track laying loco

water tower

tunnel entrance

trestle bridge

model railroad curves

A big thanks to Brian and Jerry.

I love they way Brian has created his ‘small scenes’ – please do leave a comment below if you’d like to share your thoughts on this one.

That’s all for today folks.

But please do keep ’em coming – you lot seem to have gone to sleep, it’s all very quiet this end…

And if today is the day you get started on your layout, the Beginner’s Guide is here.



PS Latest ebay cheat sheet is here.

PPS More HO scale train layouts here if that’s your thing.

20 Responses to Model railroad scenes

  1. John Birch says:

    Well done Brian and Jerry.
    Some modellers crowd their layouts with track, which is their style, what they enjoy and that is a valid aspect of railway modelling. For me, personally, capturing real life scenes is what model railways are all about.

  2. Peter Bayley-Bligh says:

    Great layout cameos make this layout very interesting.

  3. Colin Edinburgh says:

    Hi Jerry have you thought of approaching your local model railway club toget some assistance with the helix? I’m sure you’ll find them very friendly and willing to help. I doubt you’ll even have to join them.

  4. daid howarth says:

    Brian you have shown how much detail can be aded with all the scenics in a smallN gauge layout ..well done …Jerry you also have done a great job with a double layer layout for aproblems with a Helix ..think most get these …never easy running from one height to another even on a straight stretch never mind a helix …Dave

  5. Russ says:

    Wonderful layout, keep up the good work!

  6. Adam Stein says:

    Where does Jerry live?

  7. Stephen Hill Woodstock GA says:

    Brian , truly amazing detail , especially considering it is N scale . I struggle with this small print when texting don’t know how y’all manage the small size most impressive!

    Jerry , if you are in the Georgia region of the USA I’d be honored to help you complete your layout .

  8. Colin says:

    Am sure if someone that reads this a lives close to you would help with the helix but that will have to be via al

  9. George Zaky says:

    Your work & artistry are to be commended and in N scale no less. I so enjoyed the pics & video & advice about preparing a video.
    So sorry about your back. Those of us who suffer with back pain know how brutal it is to do the simplest things. My adage in life is: If you cant solve a problem- change the problem. Maybe build the helix off the site where it’s easier to do for you then get anyones help just to place it one time. The remainder of your life will be to figure out how to do what you didnt have to think about and now how to do it with a bum back. Best of luck.

  10. Gary M from Long Island says:

    Brian…….great scenes…….great detail……I am amazed on how you work with N scale…… I went from O gauge to HO and still have trouble handling the size. Great job.

    Jerry…… I understand and sympathize with your problem. I have degenerative disc disease and have had 4 spinal fusion operations. The last being this past June. Working on my layout has taken many stops and stalls due to my back and spinal problems. The hardest is getting under the layout for routing the wiring. But you sound like a person who doesn’t give up and won’t quit doing the things you love like model railroading. Like some of the guys above mentioned……figure out what you can and cannot do. These kind of physical ailments change our loves forever……BUT…..we can adjust and change. For example, instead of wiring under the layout, I plan to try using copper tape that can be laid on top of the layout and then covered with scenery. This was an idea from one of the modelers who submitted a blog to Al’s site. That’s what makes this site so great. You have a family of model railroaders out there…….and as you can see, they will help. My prayers are with you, stay in touch and let us all know how you progress.

  11. Old Taz says:

    All i can say is weeeeell done. Love the setup scenics. Would like to hear the storys behind them. Agin WEEEEELLL DONE!!!!


  12. Bob from Avon Indiana says:

    Jerry, Love your scenery, so realistic. I hope you are able to get back to working on it.

  13. Gary Mitchell says:

    Loved the video Brian Regards Gary

  14. Mark T. Pianka says:

    Brain and Jerry very nice layouts I like my O scale. I don’t know how you guys can see those little figures, But Great Job Well Done!

  15. George says:

    No idea where you live but if it’s anywhere near me I’d love to help you finish your layout in anyway I can.

  16. Alan R Manzer says:

    Jerry, I feel your pain! Having a three level cervical fusion and lower back discectomy I am left with disabling pain. What I see is a layout waiting to be finished. Looks great from the photos. Where are you located? If anywhere in central NY give a shout. be more than glad to help if I can.

  17. Steve Ruple says:

    Brian, what a awesome layout you have. Your right , you can get a lot of different scenes with a “N” gauge layout. I used to have a “N” gauge layout many years ago but it was too small for me, so I sold it. The only thing I miss is that you can get a lot of different scenes with that gauge.
    Jerry, what a beautiful layout you have and I’m so sorry that you had a bad accident that caused you not to be able to finish your layout. My heart goes out to you, GOD BLESS !!!!

  18. robert dale tiemann says:

    i really like the terrain work, nice job.

  19. wayne russell irwin says:

    nice layout. i got to have h.o. even that’s small. but i’ve lived with it for over 30 years.

  20. Ralph in Australia says:

    Thank you Brian.
    The small scenes are what makes the layout.
    Everyone zeros in on what my “little people” are doing.
    It is refreshing to see somebody using their phone in horizontal mode , it shows the layout scenes in a much better perspective.

    Jerry, don’t despair about finishing your layout, mine is still not finished and I started it in 2011.

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