From the category archives:

Track Layout

The signal systems used on the real railroads have grown so elaborate and complicated that it is really impossible for the average miniature railroader to keep up with them. Some of the big metropolitan model-railroad clubs, and a few exhibition layouts built by the railroads themselves do actually reproduce these complex features, but the individual [...]

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Why did the frog cross the rail? Because it was there!  In railroading and railroad modeling a ‘frog’ refers to the part of the system where the curved rail from a diverging line crosses the line of the main rail.  It is technically and more usually referred to as a ‘crossing’ in fact, and got [...]


Any good model railroad started from an idea for a layout and worked up from there.  Let’s face it – when you are building a world from scratch to display and run a train through, you need to have an idea of what type of runs you want the trains to make before you get [...]


Okay, you’ve planned a great model railway layout and have constructed a table to neat the band, laid out the basics of your scenery and have come to the point where you’ve simply got to cross that bridge!
Building a model railroad bridge isn’t as hard as other tasks you might have to do, but it’s [...]


Making up one’s mind on just how to theme your model railroad layout is a process that takes in many different thoughts. You have to coordinate thoughts on just what you’d like to portray, (your theme) as well as integral aspects such as era, geographic locations and seasons (and possibly weather).
The first step in all [...]

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There comes a time in every good man’s life when they simply must have more. No getting around it, no sugar-coating, no skirting the issue. Your model train layout simply needs to expand, and there is no time like the present!
While this is a fun thing to think about, expanding your model train layout [...]


The art of scale modeling is recreating life-like objects in a smaller scale, or size. As such most modeling efforts, including railroad modeling are based on a ’scale’ model such as 1:10 in which every 10 inches equals 1 foot for example. In additional a ‘gauge’ or distance between tracks needs to be specified, and [...]


Everything has to start somewhere, and when it comes to Model Trains the base upon which our worlds are built is normally a table of some kind. But standard tables often have some serious drawbacks – you can’t access the center of your layout, there are no holes for feeding through power cables and [...]


One of the more annoying but common frustrations that model railroaders have to put up with is train derailments. It is common to have to troubleshoot layout issues during design and construction and the occasional derailment due to excessive speed or external causes such as wind, vibration or changes in car placement or order [...]

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It’s easy to get wrapped up in your model railroad and basically put on blinders to other hobbies – I know I’m guilty of this. I usually think something along the lines of “I don’t have enough time for my railroad, how can I possibly consider a new hobby?”
Well, every once in a while something [...]

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