3 Tips for Building Model Trains and Railroads

Who says that you have to outgrow model trains? You might even enjoy the hobby more as an adult! You’ll be able to collect pieces, modify designs and build elaborate railroads in ways that you never could as a little kid.

If you’re just getting back into the game, however, or if you were never into the hobby as a child at all, you might need a few pointers for getting started. Here are just three tips for making the most out of your model train obsession.

  1. Pick a Time, Place or Genre

Maybe you love the railroads of 19th century France. Maybe you’ve always dreamed of creating a steampunk railroad version of <i>Alice in Wonderland</i> The best train layouts are ones that have been inspired by a particular theme or vision, so don’t be afraid to play around with different concepts. Planning your model train is half of the fun! Pull out a notebook and start making lists and sketches.

  1. Gather Your Pieces

Once you’ve settled on a theme, it’s time to collect everything you need to bring that theme to life. For example, you might require tiny luggage compartments to fit into your old-fashioned train carriage, or you might want a NCE DCC command station to make your train really move around the track. There’s no right or wrong answer here; it all depends on what you want your finished product to look like.

  1. Build Slowly and Carefully

You don’t want to rush the creation of your model train. For one thing, if you have a lot of delicate, complicated electronics making things move and light up, you won’t want to cause any power problems. You also won’t want to break anything by misapplying a piece or trying to force it where it doesn’t fit correctly. Take your time and do things right the first time.

These are just a few tips for building model trains, railroads and railways. The fun doesn’t have to stop just because you’re older! You can still make amazing lifelike models of your favorite transportation method.