HO scale Lincoln Memorial layout

Peter’s been in touch with his HO scale Lincoln Memorial layout:

“Hope you like my layout is 10ft x 24ft not a RR club, my own.

The building is a puzzle of the Lincoln memorial which was close to HO scale.

The 2 soldier figure monuments on left and right were pieces I had in glass display domes that I cleaned up to stand free.

The helicopters and the F-17 are 1/72 scale model kits, all the vehicles are HO scale as well as figures in the scene .

It is built over the top of a mountain which the trees and the shaped styrofoam gives the region effect, I’m glad you like it and I’m sure others will too, I’m very proud of it and it’s a great conversational display.

You being in the magazine business is there any way to get this to Washington DC in the VFW magazine, I am a veteran from the Vietnam era, I was a volunteer and went over 1967 – 1968 in Siagon , I was in the USAF and most proudly a Bronze star recipient, very proud to have served.

Love my hobby and have been doing it for more than 55 years, just love it and how it relaxes me, always coming up with things to make or do.

Thank you again, hope it can go further.


HO scale Lincoln Memorial layout

HO scale Lincoln Memorial layout tunnel

HO scale Lincoln Memorial layout road

HO scale Lincoln Memorial layout rocks

model railroad football field

model railroad

Fantastic – a HO scale Lincoln Memorial layout, made from a puzzle! I do love seeing the things you lot come up with.

“I am sending you some photos of some of the details that we have come up with at the TVMR.

This is a new layout after our move from an old location that was sold causing us to have to relocate.

We have a COMPLETE NEW HO layout going in and are going to be adding our N Scale layout on the right hand wall from front to rear of the facility.

These photos are of the details of the buss installation for the track power and accessory power.

There are also details of the leg design I came up with to replace the 2×2 square legs that are so incredibly unsteady.

These legs are so strong that it is hard to believe the benches are not anchored to a wall.

I will be sending more photos of the members working like santa elves making the legs and assisting in the manufacture of the bench work.

We are a small club but since our move we have had people join the club in anticipation of our great new layout.

It is an exciting time for us at the TVMR Club.


model train bench

model train bench

model train tables

model train bench

“Hi Al

Enjoy you’re emails and info. Like you, I’m restarting the trains a bit later in life.

Just read the soldering tips email (good stuff) and I would suggest two other tip.

It’s a good thing to have a wet sponge around to clean the soldering tips especially when you’re doing a lot of soldering.

For de-soldering w/o destroying small parts, I suggest copper braid, 0.050 inch & 0.100 inch.

The braid wicks up the solder really good.

Sometimes, you may need to add solder to make the wicking process work better.

Personally, I have 2 soldering means; 1- a soldering gun (150Watt) for those larger jobs, and 2 – a temperature controlled soldering station (Weller WESD51) with a 0.039 inch tip.

This lets me solder parts as small as 0806 onto PC boards.



A huge thanks to everyone, especially Peter for sharing his HO scale Lincoln Memorial layout. I would love to see more pics of your layout – be great to see all of it too.

That’s all this time folks.

Thanks for all the comments on the Beginner’s Guide. Course, I’m biased, but if you want to get going on your layout after a few decades off, it’s a great place to start.

Keep ’em coming.

Latest ebay cheat sheet is here



24 Responses to HO scale Lincoln Memorial layout

  1. Jerry Birkbeck says:

    I enjoy many of the layouts, designs and solutions that folk come up which are to be commended. However my one criticsm is that many are far too busy and all the space taken over with little apparent thought to the character and setting of the model. Perhaps avoiding cramming everything in order to fill the space available is a maxim to be considered. Were all the roads depicted on some models always full and with spotless trucks and cars? Anyhow at the end of the day it does come down to personal choice. However, if someone chooses to post an item for general view are they seeking applause or comment? Is it a model railway or a train set that one is modelling is maybe a question one might reasonably ask!

  2. Rod Mackay says:

    Good looking legs (I would tell that to all the girls but my wife would object) but I’m surprised they are more rigid than two inch square, what is it makes the difference? Could you give some dimensions please? Mine are just 2×1 with angle braces and I rather wish now that I’d made them more robust.

  3. Douglas Humphrey says:

    I like the lag detail pics, they look good and strong – much lighter too!? On the first piece; who or what is the TVMR and where are they based? I’m thinking “Tamar Valley Model Railway” Cornwall/west Devon borders. Looking forward to seeing more from both sources.

  4. Bruce says:

    Appears legs are made with 4 pieces of 1/4 inch plywood of 2 shapes. Two different shapes butt glued and then glued to an opposite pair. The slots at the top allow table height adjustments to keep level.
    Please send pics or drawing of the actual construction. I have only made assumptions about the leg design and there are likely many who would appreciate more precise details.
    Thank you for sharing and awaiting more as project progresses.
    Thank you Al, as your site is a benefit to all.
    Bruce from SC USA

  5. Bruce says:

    Two different legs entirely. One made with one solid front and other of two like 90 degree pieces on either side of table cross brace.
    I should have looked closer first.
    Bruce from SC USA

  6. Terry says:

    I was interested in the connectors used for the under baseboard wiring and wondered where they can be o trained from?

  7. Diana mangold says:

    I really happy to see veteran.s add service relate to their train layouts they are very proud of their country and the service with pride to see that pride developed in their hobbies remember why they did what they did. Keep those train plans going. Can’t wait to see more

  8. Fred Pohl says:

    looks real tough

  9. Salute to my USAF Airman Brother….!!!
    Wowww great layout….
    SOOO much detail….
    keep em runnin fellas
    stjohn in long beach calif

  10. George says:

    I like the lighter weight legs for support if they can support the weight of a 220lb. person along with the village at the same time if you need to get up on it to fix or retrieve things !
    I have always used the open frame system for my large villages since I hade problems with the all table type support long ago ! It is easer to make structure under the R.R. with the open frame system and I use firing strips or 1″x4″ to support the entire system depending the amount of weight I expect it to carry .
    but if it works for you then I say more power to you sir !
    the idea is to have fun so please don’t take offence to my prattle

  11. John M McLaughlin Jr says:

    The monument on the layout is the Jefferson Memorial, not the Lincoln Memorial.

  12. Mr. Al
    I noticed you were dropped off the email list and that my email address was incorrect. I’ve since entered in my correct email address below.
    I do appreciate the emails on the different ideas. There great and really set the bar high.
    I do have a question however.
    When running just regular DC do you or anyone recommend the train yard be under a separate power for individual track or for the entire yard from the main line and it’s secondary lines.? I’m in the development stage for an HO layout and the engines and locomotives as well as the rolling stock are from the era of my youth .1950-1960. They were found in storage boxes recently after my mother passed away. Need input please
    Blessings to all

  13. Ian Mc Donald says:

    layout pictures look great. great design on the table legs.

  14. Bob Miller says:

    Nice layout Peter. You sure put a lot of detail into the space.
    I to am an USAF Vietnam vet but no medals just a collection of matchbooks from the clubs.

  15. Carl Halgren says:

    I believe the legs are 3/8″ plywood. Experience tells me that 1/4″ is to flimsy, even structured this way. One feature which adds strength is that it is wider at the top which adds support like using angle braces. I like the way it is notched to fit around the cross brace. On my first layout, I used 1/2″ plywood triangles attached to 2 x 4s for legs. It was overbuilt, but then, I had 3 kids playing around it.

    I first got into model railroading in my teens. My father superdetailed a 0-4-0 Camelback to look like the one which pulled his train to NYC every day. I accidentally dropped it down the cellar stairs and totally destroyed it. (sad day!) College came, I lost interest in trains.

    Like some of those above, I was in the USAF during Vietnam. While stationed at SAC HQ in Omaha, I got back into model railroading. My kids lost interest, and so did I, until a few years ago. Now in my 70’s, I am building a 5′ x 8′ portable layout.

    Still In Training,
    Carl in Kansas

  16. Rod Mackay says:

    Regards the wiring query above, a lot depends on the track layout, you don’t need a second controller if the train in each storage siding is isolated when the entry turnout is set against it, but one thing you do have to watch is that if your sidings are double-ended (loops) then you need to guard against short circuits which would occur when the turnout one end is not set the same way as the one at the other end, you need some insulated rail joiners in both rails somewhere between the turnouts on each storage road.

  17. John says:

    Wonderful. I would love to see a layout plan.

  18. Matt Schulze says:

    Tell us more about TVMR? Where is this located?

  19. Steve says:

    Following on from Jerry Birbeck’s comment, it is true to say that there is no right or wrong approach since “Rule 1” (i.e. it’s my layout so I’ll do whatever I want, or words to that effect) always applies!

    I have always been rather intrigued by the different styles between US/European and UK layouts. It seems that layouts in the UK are generally more “sparse” whilst US and European ones are often more involved. I only have any experience of full-sized railways in the UK, so I don’t know whether the “busier” approach for non-UK layouts reflects what the full-size ones actually look like?

    The approach one prefers may just depend on what you get used to as you are introduced to the hobby -in which case the two differing approaches will tend to be self-perpetuating.

    Anyway, as I said before, rule 1 applies 🙂

  20. Gary M from Long Island says:

    Leo……thanks for the tip on the Wesd51

    Peter….thanks for your service and layout looks great

  21. Robert Brady says:

    Love the ball field Rid the football field looks outa place. Put it in it’s own area.
    Other then that great layout. Show us a video.
    My Buddy was in nam recently passed from agent orange (cancer) . Thanks for serving Sir .
    The Critic.

  22. John Frye says:

    Comment to Chris Leseberg: If the layout is a DC system with “power blocks” then yes, many of us use a different DC throttle for yards, switching areas, and in a few cases I’ve seen, even stations. Vendors make plastic rail joiners that insulate the blocks. In some cases a “transition block” of a foot or so is needed with a double-throw-double-pole switch to help assure the polarity and voltage is somewhat consistent – IE the locomotive doesn’t run into the next block, then reverse back out of it, and/or go out of the block and race away or slow down.
    I guess the biggest advantage is trains can run the main line unattended and switching can be done at the same time.
    John from Baltimore

  23. Erick says:

    Pretty kool. But would like to see more.

  24. Harper Goldwire says:

    First, thank you Al for this blog…it’s the best. I sent in pics of my N scale layout
    before I removed everything to clean it. i will be converting to DCC. It had been left uncovered in an unfinished basement for 10 years, natural weathering (dust).

    I had to chime in as another USAF Vietnam veteran exposed to Agent Orange (prostate cancer, hypertension, hearing loss) that the VA just awarded some compensation. Veterans have until Aug 9th 2023 to file a claim under the PACT act.
    I ordered some F4-C in N scale fighter/bombers, and Jeeps from Shapeways. The plan is to include part of an AirForce base on one corner. My existing trackwork is ok, but I’m going incorporate some KATO switches/turnouts.

    It’s summer now so mostly out doors stuff. What a great community, always learn something.

    Semper Lupus


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *