Steam HO scale

Lawrence has been back in touch with his steam HO scale.

(If you missed his first post, it’s here: Lawrence’s HO layout.)


An update to my layout.

I started last summer a complete novice. And now I am paying for that lack of knowledge. I did not know to solder all the track joints. So now I am going back and soldering them, and in most cases, means repositioning the track itself a little bit.

Slowly as I can afford it I am getting autos, people, and animals. I have made all the trees, about 400 of them.

If a lot of the buildings look familiar, yup they are from Al’s gallery. I used 0.04 styrene sheet for all of them. Including dividing the inside of the buildings for future lighting.

In my previous set of pictures, I had put the track down and then redid a lot of the track to work with steam engines. Well until two weeks ago I only had one steam engine. It was a passenger engine and coal car. I had both tracks working 100% both ways.

Two weeks ago, I got my second steam, freight engine and coal car. The new one is four inches longer, so guess what! Sixty percent of the curves are marginal off for the new engine. As you can see with one of the pictures I lifted one full curve and realigned it to allow my new engine to run.

Most of the scenery is pretty much done (ya sure thing?). The farm layout has wheat, and corn fields, cattle and horse grazing.

The mountain pass has a motorcycle club riding in. The group fits the time era of this layout as the are the Boozefighters MC which is the first motorcycle club established, in 1946.

Have included an area for camping and hunting. Unhappy the hunters I could get only used guns as I hunt with a longbow.

The lake is two layers of about five eight inches deep of deep water. I did it that way so I could use a trick I learned on here. After the first layer of deep water had hardened I added the rice for the fish, glued in. then added the second layer of deep water.

The fish are inside the water and with the light they have a shadow on the bottom. The boat also has its shadow. And for those that watch Doctor Who you will find a Tardis.

I added the basic drawing of the layout. A couple of future plans to add this coming summer.

I did not add the electrical design for the lights. I have a long way to go before I get there. But the power supply has been build from a computer power supply. From left to right is 12V at 32 Amps, 12 V at 0.5 Amps, 5V at 18 Amps, 3.3 V at 18 Amps and ground. Then there is the power on switch, and power light. The three-position switch if for front of buildings, sides or back of buildings, and street lights respectively.

I learned a LOT both by doing and reading all the stuff sent out by Al. I want to thank Al and all the rest of you for passing on the great layouts and knowledge.


HO scale blacksmith

model train motorcycle

model railroad campsite

HO scale town

model train farm

steam HO scale

model railrod scenery

model railroad town

HO scale town

steam HO scale

model railroad wiring

model railroad HO scale

model railroad track plan

A huge thank you to Lawrence for sharing his steam HO scale layout.

It’s wonderful to see a layout come to life, and even better when we all get to learn from the odd mistake too.

It’s also nice to see the printable buildings on a layout too. Lawrence has done a particularly good job on the barn.

That’s all for today folks.

Please do keep ’em coming.

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.

22 Responses to Steam HO scale

  1. robert dale tiemann says:

    i like the air stream. very nice layout.

  2. Jim Donovan says:

    I like your details. I have dirt roads with ruts but none are wet, yet. The storm is coming.

  3. Stephen Hill not the Stephen from yesterday says:

    Very nicely done , the scenery and buildings look welcoming , just a nice layout . Glad you worked out the track .

  4. Jeff in MI says:

    Very impressed by all you’ve done in a years’ time. It’s looking really good. I’m still working on the room and finishing mudding the drywall seams so I can paint soon but I’ll get there. Keep up the great work.

  5. Terry says:

    Your layout is outstanding! Wonderful buildings and scenery. I am all American flyer s gauge. No scenery but lots of action accessories. Granddaughters love running it and making things happen.

  6. Jim Sterling says:

    An awful lot of very hard work — and love — is evident here! Well done!

  7. Rob McCrain says:

    I like the crops. They are very convincing. The electrical is laid out very well. When I start a layout, I always have the best intentions, but by the time I get to a 1000 wires, it always starts to to look like a plate of spaghetti. I have not had any wire problems, though. My connection and insulation practices are sound, apparently. Rob McCrain

  8. Mike Langford says:

    Very nice, like the idea of dividing into a town, mountain & farm layout.

  9. JOHN BULLOCK says:

    Love the fields of crops. What’s your secret to make them look realistic?

  10. Ron Kehl says:

    Nice scenery!

  11. Carmen Heitczman says:

    it’s its a great era to do

  12. Bill in Virginia says:

    Your farm fields are some of the best I’ve seen! Looks great

  13. Gary M from Long Island says:

    Lawrence…….great layout… your detail and the motorcycles and farmland and the steam locomotives look great. In the fourth picture, did you leave something in the layout next to the Red auto? Looks like a roll of tape.

  14. BRIAN A says:

    I am a vet from the gulf era, but any how your layout shows love and care in detail and accuracy the features and the realism is great. I just finished my outside train shed for my solo layout a dream as two years ago thought maybe wouldn’t be able as i had encephalitis, then total liver failure, then heart failure, lastly tumor on my spine around a nerve. with all this I never thought I would live dream then now reality. So yours is a great testament determination and you show this well in your write up as well it shows in your layout so kudos keep it up and never give up can’t wait to see the finished product.

  15. Larry Ripplinger says:

    For a novice, that looks pretty darned good! A tip of my hat to you sir! Nice!

  16. David Howarth says:

    Well done Lawrence , thats a very nice layout you have built

  17. DJfromNJ says:

    Nicely done, Lawrence! Thanks for the guided tour of the efforts and lessons you encountered.

  18. Joseph M Evans says:

    I appreciate the track layout diagram not everyone adds one to their pictures.

  19. Paul says:

    I have heard recommendations to not solder all the track together as it will not allow for expansion and contraction.
    I opted to solder droppers onto the bottom of every piece of track to avoid that.

  20. Steve Ruple says:

    A very nice layout and scenery. I like the way you did your power supply for your lights and possibly other things.

  21. Fred (skull ) Anderson Melbourne Australia says:

    I have also used ideas from your posts on my Railroad. not quite fionished as yet. When ready I will video it ready to post

  22. John V says:

    Great job with the scenery, just enough.

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