Rick’s started a 4×8 HO layout for the grandkids – looks great too:
Thank you for your always engaging posts and emails which have been a great support in getting back into model railroading once again.
I set up an HO set when the boys were very young while we were in the military. But with a lot of moving around and kids getting older, the trains sat in storage for over 30 years until this past Christmas.
Having grown up with a Lionel O Scale train set around the Christmas tree every year, we finally purchased a Polar Express set for our tree this past Christmas.
Seeing the reaction of our young grandkids finally got the fire going again to set up our own set that the kids of all ages could enjoy.
Unfortunately, the only space we have left for year round use is in the crawl space that only has a 40” clearance from floor to ceiling. After spending last winter clearing out the space, I took a corner and began building.
The entire setup is literally assembled on my hands and knees! I first built a 4×8 HO layout’ table on 6 sets of casters so I could move it around while building and for maintenance.
I used foam board for nearly all the foundation and hills which I find is easy to work with and mold. I forwarded a few pictures of the progress leading up to the finished (for now) setting. The left wall behind the tunnel is temporary so I can expand beyond the tunnel.
The train yard represents the rich train history here in the Chicago, Illinois area here in the states.
The two engines in the middle are both over 35 years old and do not work so I set up an homage to the Illinois Train Museum in nearby Union, Illinois that has quite a collection of engines and cars from many different eras.
You can see I made good use of your print-outs for the residential area including the sound wall between it and the park to the right of the table.
The park represents several areas where I run and bike to stay in shape to keep up with active grandkids!
You tips and ideas along with the downloaded printouts made it easy to stay motivated based on what others have shared with your community.
I am now working on the landscaping, ballasting the tracks and expanding the yard to include container cranes and additional construction as well as an overhead walkway to get from the residential area to the park. As many have said, it is really never finished.
Thanks again for what you do for this community of enthusiasts!
And now on to a question that keep popping up im my inbox – so I thought it a good idea to publish. Please post your answers in the form at the bottom of the page:
“Hi Alastair. I have problem which one of your contributers may be able to help with.
My layout is not digital but has three separate tracks each one having its own power supply, all goes well apart from one track which will run for about half it’s distance then it runs out of power, switch it off for a few minutes and off it will run, again for a short time, very annoying.
I have checked all connections, all flitch plates, made sure all track is clean and that my locomotive wheels are clean.
The other two tracks continue to run fine no problems at all and yes they are all fed from the same supply. I have also changed the transformer to no avail.
A huge thanks to Rick. It’s great to see a 4×8 HO layout – it takes a lot of determination to make a layout like that in a 40″ space too. Good to see he’s using the print out scenery for his tunnel too.
And who can help Ray?
That’s all for this time, folks.
Please do keep ’em coming.
Don’t forget the Beginner’s Guide is here if you want to join in rather just lurk.