N scale mountains

Dean’s been back in touch – he’s been busy with his N scale mountains.

“Hi Al,

Greetings from Dean in New Mexico.

Here is the sixth video in an 8-part series discussing my construction of the N-Scale Scenic Ridge layout.

In this session, I show how I created the terrain of the layout using plaster cloth and Hydrocal plaster placed over glued 1/4” foam strips.

I also talk about making and using paper mache (recipe included) or joint compound to smooth out ridges and valleys.

And I talk about making and installing Hydrocal rock formations on the mountains.

Finally, I include a video that discussed the construction and which begins with shots of a train running on my layout.

N scale mountains

Layout after painting with Earth Undercoat

N scale mountains

Constructing a foam support for a stream and pond.

N scale mountains

Adding foam strips to support the plaster cloth

plaster cloth

Adding More Cloth

model train plaster cloth

Layout Before Smoothing

model railroad plaster cloth

Smoothing with Joint Compound

model train paper mache

Smoothing with paper mache – Recipe:

Grind up strips of newspaper with water in a blender
Add some binder such as white glue or flour (3-5% by volume)
Drain off excess water through a colander
Place on layout where needed and allow to dry

model railroad papermache

model railroad papermache

Dean’s N scale mountains post is his 6th post for his his Scenic Ridge railroad layout:

1. He gets going with his first post and makes that all important start to his N scale.

2. His second post covered the table/bench work.

3. His third post deals with the turnouts (it’s at the bottom).

4. Dean does his wiring and control panel

5. Tunnels and bridges. for Dean’s N scale.

A big thanks to Dean for his latest N scale layout update.

That’s all for today folks.

Please do keep ’em coming.

And if today is the day you pick the hobby back up, the model train Beginner’s Guide is here.



PS Latest ebay cheat sheet is here.

8 Responses to N scale mountains

  1. Sheldon Wotring says:

    I used flour once when I was a kid and mice ate my hills.

  2. val says:

    hi Dean great job on the scenery . I love the cool color it’s fantastic. wish I were as along in the scenery like you, but I suppose we have to take it one step at a time. I’m looking forward to seeing how you finish up the scenery. I’m just getting started on laying down the foam to make my hills and mountains. good luck. val in Utah. !!

  3. Rob McCrain says:

    Good terrain work. It is lightweight and interesting. It will serve you well.

  4. Erick says:

    Looks pretty kool.!!!!!!! Would like to see more.

  5. Greg Marples says:

    Nice looking landscape work! Very similar to the old methods I use, only I use cardboard strips instead of stryrofoam (the only places I used foam board was for a stream bed and lake where I used scenic water), blue “shop” paper towels torn into strips and dipped in lightweight hydrocal instead of most of the plaster cloth(I used plaster cloth to wrap a piece of cardboard that I made a removable access panel disguised as a field of crops). Rock ledges pretty much the same only smaller as I am modeling the flint hills of North Central Kansas, so the hills are gentler, more rolling, and no tunnels!

  6. ScenicsRme says:

    wallpaper paste makes better paper mache than flour. add some lysol and or peppermint oil to keep mold and mice away.

  7. Ben Dickmann says:

    Hopefully, this pandemic we are experiencing has not affected any of this audience. But, for anyone so affected, give model railroading some thought. Frankly, I cannot think of a much better way to spend COVID quarantine time than investing oneself in the construction of a model railroad of any scale. Once a person gets “bitten” by the model railroading “bug”,he or she will find that while COVID can be harnessed if we all get our shots and pay due diligence to precautionary measures, the model railroad bug never lets go of its bite. Even without one’s own layout, there’s a lifelong interest for the “victim”. It will not go away.

  8. Cary Price says:

    Sorry, been away from the site for a while, so glad Al is keeping it going! Planning an n scale layout for the new year. Loved watching how Dean did his terrain, hope to be doing some of that later this year. Mice! yikes- good tips here. Thanks everyone and stay well. Cary in KY

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