A very general/specific question

Discussion in 'N / Z Scale Model Trains' started by vilefileman, Feb 3, 2006.

  1. vilefileman

    vilefileman Member

    Actually 2, since my buddy and I have this discussion/argument all the time.
    First, how many of you plot, plan, design, and then piece by piece build your layouts, and how many of you start with a blank 4x8, or 2x10 sheet , just start building and laying track?
    Second, and I think this forum will lean toward the latter, how many of you collect trains, but do no or very limited modeling (For example, you buy a small predone layout to test your engines) and how many of you are buy what you need, but mini modelers and layout designers?

    I will start.
    I have no set path, I just start laying out track, and away I go. I buy a lot of trains, but I am a modeler at heart , designing is my passion. As for my buddy, no matter what he says, he is a COLLECTOR! Ya hear that ROMAN?

    Rick aka vilefileman
  2. Voice2

    Voice2 Member

    I'm on my 3rd layout. For the first (HO), I followed a track plan from a book - and I looked for months before I chose the one I did.

    For this one and the last one (N), I designed them on the compter first. I'm one of those who needs a plan to keep motivated.

    I buy the trains I need to suit the layout, unless I see one I can't resist in my LHS or online. My problem there is that my LHS is in the same shopping plaza as my local Home Depot. Way too much temptation!!!
  3. davidstrains

    davidstrains Active Member

    I am on layout 3. I just put track down in a somewhat organized manner the first time and then went to a MR plan for #2. The one that I am in now in my own design implementing a few elements from a couple of nice plans that I have found in MR and others. I have been "buying" locomotives and stock for 30 years but now only purchase n-scale for the layout. My ho stuff is still in boxes waiting disposition :)
  4. HPRL

    HPRL Member

    I am on my second layout. The first was HO and this one is N Scale. I have bought an aweful lot of stuff for this layout. You name it I bought it. I have a good size L shape table builts and the tables have casters. I insist that I have going to make a plan before I lay track. It's been two years and no track laid and no plan in mind (I struggling overhere). But, I have a lot of Track -- a lot of track. I also have locos, trollies, trams, freight cars and passenger stuff. I am consist with Amtrak, CSX, & HPRL. Building up the yeah-hoo and enough automobiles and trucks to start my own traffic jams. It is going to be DCC and I have all that stuff, too. I have my railpass (check it out in Gallary). Just struggling on the layout. Any suggestions??????:confused:
  5. RailRon

    RailRon Active Member

    I'm constructing layout #4 - mixed H0 and H0n3.
    My first layout was in N scale, then H0n30 (called H0e in Europe), then came a first try in H0n3 - in 1976. This layout never really got off the ground. After that a hiatus of some 25 years followed.

    Every layout was meticulously planned in advance, always keeping realistic operation in mind. I always tried to have matching industries and sufficient loco service facilities in my trackplans. However, during construction always minor changes sneaked into the original plans, but for the most part I stayed with my plans - and still do.

    I do not really collect trains. When I buy rolling stock, then it is mostly quite common freight train stuff: Boxcars, reefers, tanks cars... Passenger cars are a minority. And since I have tight curves on my layout, big stuff like Challengers or Big Boys are no option. The longest thing I run on my layout is a Budd RDC.

    The only "collector's items" I own are some models of European/Swiss prototype rolling stock. Then I bought some NMRA 'Heritage series' freight cars. Ah yes, and I have a Monogram Big Boy styrene kit, which I found at a flea market. (But I haven't built it it yet!)

  6. glenn railey

    glenn railey Member

    I have built 4 layouts [0-27 and 1 N scale]. I start with a theme or a idea, then take a blank sheet or sheets of foam, decide how to incorporate tack into my idea, then draw it out on the foam, and then build the layout around the track drawing. I don't lay the track until everything else is finished.

  7. Will_annand

    Will_annand Active Member

    I am on my second, if you count one my dad and I built way back in 1972.

    I took almost a year to plan it, I compared the prototype with the space I had and came up with a layout that spans 6 stations of a branchline of a shortline that was merged into the CP way back in 1890.
  8. eightyeightfan1

    eightyeightfan1 Now I'm AMP'd

    I'm on number five. I was doing both HO and N at once, now I'm straight HO(or as Tyson says..."misguided").With all the great stuff coming out in N, sometimes I'm sorry I switched.......Then I wake up.
    All five I just layed track and went from there. Sometimes you confined to the real estate you have to work with.
  9. 60103

    60103 Pooh Bah

    I usually start with a plan, but change it.
    I had a couple of layouts where I ended up with a mere sketch or the baseboard outline from a published plan.
    My current layout has stations taken from published books, but the rest was just shaped around it, as I had a very strictly defined shape to work in.
  10. brakie

    brakie Active Member

    Plan? What plan? I design my track work as I go..I lay the track out and then move around till I like what I see and then mark the the board and then lay the road bed..I prefer to have my industrial builders built or at least the foot print to insure the location and track work..
  11. Drew1125

    Drew1125 Active Member

    I don't really know how many layouts I've built...er...I mean started...I've built three to some degree of "completeness"...(is that even a word?)

    As far as design...I always start with at least a scetchy plan, at least in my head...I might even scetch it out on paper...But it ALWAYS changes to at least some degree when I start actually putting track down...
    I'm strictly a modeler, not a collector...I'm a collectors worst nightmare...not only do I get 'em out of the box, a lot of times I end up taking knives & saws & drills to 'em! :D
  12. 2-8-2

    2-8-2 Member

    I'm working on layout #1, unless you count the Figure 8 train set I got for Christmas when I was about 7 years old or so. I have put countless hours into track planning, research, and not a single track yet laid. Hopefully, my patience will pay off once I do start laying track.

    Well of course I buy what I need for my layout, but I do collect a little when I can. I'm always keeping my eye open for stuff on eBay.
  13. vilefileman

    vilefileman Member


    Thanks for a ll the great replies.
    I got another one. You ever have that one friend that he does is talk talk talk?
    So far, my collector buddy who shall remain nameless (ROMAN) has started buying the a very special series that we model or like NJ and NJ Transit. He "thinks" he is going to paint one of them in NJT tri color paint sceme. I think these ugly red things will sit in a tub of plastic for the next 5 years gathering dust until they are ebay fodder when he starts collecting pez dispensers.

  14. YakkoWarner

    YakkoWarner Member

    Always start with a plan. I've built two small layouts and am in planning for my third. I always start with a plan. Painstakingly laid and thought out, designed to death with every contingency accounted for and a raft of solutions for all of the possible stumbling blocks. I've never actually followed one of my plans but I've always started with one.

    I find that I need a plan to know my destination, but that the path between beginning and end is infinitely variable.
  15. johnny b

    johnny b Member

    Lik e some I started with just a general idea of what I wanted to do. I layed the track and now I'm just building as I go . The addition I'm gonna do however is being more planned in advance.
  16. Clerk

    Clerk Active Member

    I am on my second layout in about 10 years. Haven't come anywhere to completing the latest one.
    The last one I started out by drawing a track plan on the computer to fit the room. Then built the bench and as I started laying track, modified the plan according to the layed track. This also went for buildings. :wave: :wave: :thumb: :thumb:

    Forgot. I am in N scale sign1
  17. who_dat73

    who_dat73 Member

    I started out with HO manly because that was what I had in the sets I bought and had a idea of what I was looking for in my layout 90% of it didnt pan out big ideas then find out you have a small space:oops: Then I looked and got hooked up with the local club and found out about N scale now after looking in MRR book about beging model RRing I have a basic plan that I will build with a off layout spur that will eventuly lead into the rest of the L got to get first things done first tho:). I will say starting out in the bigger HO gave me a better understanding of how cork and and track laying and the like work so when I have a heads up when I start moving my chubby lil fingers all over this smaller layout

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