Model Train Layouts and Track Tips

Size of your  Model Train Layouts

Model train layouts can be simple, or they can be quite elaborate. It is possible to style, build, and operate your model train layouts in one room. Most often, it depends upon how large the room in which you need to arrange it is. Some Model Train Layouts could be very small shelf-top designs that can be accommodated in an exceedingly small room. Others can fill a section of a room, or perhaps a whole area, a basement, or run throughout an entire house.

For a little, simple model train layout, a table will usually be adequate. However, most model railroaders aim to establish larger, permanent model train layouts. These model train layouts will usually require the construction of suitable benches, often fixed to the walls of the room to provide a high degree of stability. If you have the room to work with, you can add all sorts of buildings and scenery to your layout.

How to Make Hills in Scenic Model Train Layouts

One of many ways to make hillsides in your model train configuration is by using pink or blue foam. This is a building insulation material. It is possible to stack the foam up in various ways, or it could be carved with a hot knife. Then, you can cover the hills with sculptor mold plaster or plaster cloth. From there, you can then paint your own dirt color. On top of this, it is possible to sprinkle real fine sand, or use dirt from right outside your house and sprinkle on the design.

Once the hill is constructed, then you place your shrubbery and the different scenery material to depict the colors that you intend to represent the area you’re trying to show. Using crumpled newspapers is an option. No matter the way you do it, once you lay over the plaster cloth, you get a very good mixture of shapes that will display hills and valleys and little cliffs maybe. You then paint it after the plaster cloth has dried. Then again, you sprinkle your materials, right on top of the paint. You can buy different colors of green for different colors of grass. There’s fine and there are coarse grasses.

Course Style and Design Concepts for the Toy Railroad

For the model train collector, investing in the rolling stock is the beginning of exactly what will become an extensive, and perhaps, a life-changing task that may be too costly, certainly very frustrating, but thoroughly enjoyable.

Model railroad or Model Train Layouts

The main section of developing a model railway project may be the planning and implementation of the Model Train Layouts, the diorama with scenery, mode railroad structures, and appropriate scale track for operating the trains.


Model Train Layouts
Lionel Pennsylvania Flyer Battery-powered Model Train Set Ready to Play w/ Remote

Model Train Layouts and Track Patterns

An important aspect of any model train setup is the arrangement of the model train track itself. There are at least four basic model train layout patterns for setting out the track, and countless variations of both track configuration and subsequent station placement. Four of the more common basic patterns are:

Point to Point Track Pattern

Point to point refers merely to a straight line of a train track with a station at each end. In this type of layout, trains are heading from the station in one end to the other station;


model train layouts

Continuous Loop Train Layout

In its simplest form, a continuous loop is either a circle or an oval and the trains move around it continuously. However, in continuous loop model train layouts,  the pattern could be modified into a “dogbone” shape model train layoutsby pulling two reverse sides of the circle or oval together, giving a double-track appearance in the middle with a smaller circular shape at either end;
out and back where the train leaves the solitary station, travels around a pear-shaped layout and returns to the original station;

Station Yard Only Model Railway Layout

The Station Yard Only Model Railway Layout is where a solitary station is surrounded by a number of short, interconnected train tracks, providing great opportunities for shunting.
From these four basic model railway layout patterns, there are countless variations. Some possibilities are:

  • Combining two or more of the four basic model railway layout patterns, for example adding an “out and back” at one or both ends of a “point to point” layout;
  • Adding double track to any of the first three basic layouts to allow two or more trains to operate at the same time;
  • Adding branch lines, allowing an increase in the number of stations;
  • Arranging a continuous loop as a figure-of-eight, even elevating one train track over the other rather than getting the crossing at exactly the same level;
  • Using multiple ranges, allowing the usage of more track, and therefore more activity, in little areas;
  • Adding station back yards, with adequate position tracks, to the configurations.
    The amount of possible variations you incorporate into your track layout is only going to be restricted by the area you possess available, your time and effort [and your patience] and, needless to say, how big is your wallet