N scale layouts on a door

Charles has been in touch. He’s adding to the collection of N scale layouts on a door:

“Hi, again Al.

Well, I’ve decided to share some pictures of my N Scale layout.

It’s not that I’m not proud of my accomplishment, I feel it may not measure up to many of the other great layout contributions submitted.

My layout was designed and pretty much built by my son, (with some help from me). We built it on an interior hollow core door with a 3/4 inch styrofoam layer on top. Approximately 7’X4′.

It’s a “Roundie-Rounder” mainline with a passing track that is designed to perform switching duties at the industrial area on the left. We used code 55 track which I’m very pleased with.

The main goes through a “View block” to a back area where a coal mine is located, and further switching duties can be performed. It’s a DC operated layout with control blocks and has minimal turnouts for ease of operation. Owning 120 locomotives (Way too many) I can’t afford to convert to DCC.

In the village, many buildings and businesses are named for family members. Who gets a “Kick” seeing their names on them. I still have much work to do, including lights in all the buildings and hooking up the many street lights, maybe adding more live signals.

Living in a two-bedroom apartment I really don’t have room for expansion, so I have to live with what I have. I’m happy with the layout and continue to fine-tune it.


N scale layouts on a door

N scale layouts on a door

N scale layouts on a door

N scale layouts on a door

N scale layouts on a door

Charles layout reminded me of Michael’s N scale door layout.

And there is Nich’s N scale door layout too.

Now on to Bill – who has recorded a second video for his last update (which you can see here).

“This video shows my thought process and techniques for hiding the seam between the bottom and upper half of the mountain and how I ‘grew’ the forest and ground cover to give a good forested look.

I did a count of trees in a small area by the trestle and above the two portals and based on that I’m between 250-300 trees on the mountain in this relatively small N Scale area.

It’s all fun!!



A big thanks to Charles for adding to the N scale layouts on a door, and to Bill too.

That’s all for today folks.

Please do keep ’em coming.

And if you want to stop dreaming and start doing, just like Charles did, the Beginner’s Guide is here.

Remember, it’s the start that stops most people…



PS Don’t forget the latest ebay cheat sheet is here. Still updated daily.

16 Responses to N scale layouts on a door

  1. Brad says:

    Charles,you did something I am still thinking about,you got STARTED(and much farther).You should be proud.I’m certain it will only improve over time.Carry on!!!

  2. Peter Stilts says:

    Charles, always remember it is not how big the layout is but what you do with it. The main thing is to always enjoy what you have and your layout is a brilliant example of what can be achieved in a restricted space.

  3. Peter Bayley-Bligh says:

    Charles – looking good – a great example to encourage others.

  4. Paul Case says:

    Hi Bill, nice detail on the N layout —It must be challenging working with such small items. Enjoyed seeing the Doodlebug running. I recently converted my Bug to DCC and will send in some photos. It sounds like yours has a cracked gear which is why you hear the thumping sound as it travels the layout. Not too difficult to repair but you have to take measurements regarding placing the new gear back in the correct location on the axle.

  5. Bill in Virginia says:

    Charlie you have a great looking layout. Plenty of mainline running and switching available. Buildings look great as well. I’d like to see video of your layout running 👍🏼

  6. NJ Mark says:

    Charles, you have a wonderful layout! Don’t cut yourself short. You worked with your son and had fun. It doesn’t get better than that. Cheers! NJ Mark

  7. Bill Kennedy says:

    Yes Charles you have a very nice layout that you can be proud of. If you are running out of space and you want a challenge, run some of the tracks under the door. Take care and good luck!

  8. David R says:

    Bill, Love your mountain building video series. One question from a new modeler: How do you attach the trees to your mountain since it is made from Sculptamold and plaster?

  9. Don Stafford says:

    This would be a great opportunity to set this layout up with dual power. A DPDT switch could allow you to switch between DC and DCC. All that you would have to do when running DCC would be to flip all of the block switches closed. This would be a good opportunity to migrate just a few of your locomotives to DCC.

  10. Thomas Gregelevich says:


  11. Gary Manganiello says:

    Charles………….great layout……..great detail……..you and your son did a terrific job. I love the colors.

  12. Johnny Free says:

    Looks really Good. As you observe other’s building their own Model Railroad, you will see things that will enhance your impressions, and develop your Modeling Techniques, but just having Fun is a reward in it’s self. Great Job for both of you.

  13. Alabama Mike says:

    Charles, what is not to be proud of. You and your son have done a great job in such a limited space. Keep up the good work. I enjoyed the pictures very much.

  14. Will in NM says:

    Charles, You and your son should be proud of what you have built. Your N scale layout looks fine to me and I would love to have one like it (though I feel just too clumsy these days to work in N scale.) The only improvement I would suggest is adding a commercial or painted backdrop on the blank walls of your view block to give the layout the feeling of greater space. The fact that you and your son built this layout together should make it that much more special. I wish my sons had been interested in model railroading too but, alas, it was Dungeons and Dragons that captured their imaginations.

    Bill, Another great video of your scenery techniques. I’d still like to know what method you use to cut your pink foam board that leaves the striations along the edges. Thanks once again for sharing.

  15. Chuck Maxim says:

    Thank you all for the very kind and encouraging comments. I guess I should have mentioned to Al that my son who was instrumental in planning and developing this layout is 30 something with a son of his own and a very accomplished model railroader. Yes, he’s still my boy and I’m proud of him and this layout we built together.

  16. Geoff Sparnicht says:

    I like it

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