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New Member
Hi everyone,
My name is JP, im 25 and From England. I've decided to build a model train set with my step son. He really likes trains and i have always wanted a train set myself.

At the moment were trying to decide what we want to design / what era / what kind of trains. I have read some of the help guides linked into profiles which have helped.

The tracks will have to be built on plywood as the weather isnt good enough here and i dont have the inside space to keep it set up. Not sure if any of you have your set ups outside? If you do, what do you do when it rains ? I have a very large back garden, but dont want anything ruined by the weather.

My stepson was VERY impressed by mtrpls' Modern-day New York Central hauls the Tropicana Juice Train. He says he definatley wants one of them, but he says that about all the trains.

If anyone could suggest some places i can get ideas on the different things avalible i would be greatfull. I know hobby shops and eBay are a start, but its hard trying to keep a 6yr old interested in a computer screen while your surfing for places.

Great website by the way. Am looking forward to starting this project once i have thought everything through :)




Drum Driver
One thing you might consider is "G" scale for outside....It's a little more pricey but won't give you the trouble outdoors that other scales will. If you decide this is a plan, spend a little more on the better track...solid not hollow, It will conduct electricity much better and will only tarnish, not rust. You can also use battery powered R/C engines that don't depend on a clean rail to get power from. If smaller scale is a must you will have to cover the track in rainy weather...There is one guy on here that has an outdoor set-up in HO I believe...He uses plastic trees from like limbs on a X-mas tree...(It's very impressive!!)..Or you can make a fold away board that will help. For a 6 year old...G scale or O would be best for small hands....If you plan on a lot of details, keep the weather in mind when thinking of the materials to use. Most of the things we use inside wouldn't last a week in the rain.


Fun Lover
I would go the other direction. Go with N scale and keep it indoors. You can get about 3.5 times the layout for the space of HO or OO. In other words, instead of a sheet of plywood you would use in HO or OO, you can use 30" x 48" and get a pretty decent layout. A lot easier to find a spot for than a sheet of plywood.


New Member
Am tempted to go with the 00 gauge to be honest. Being in the UK, there seems to be alot of choice within that range.

Am thinking of running a track round the fence around my garden using brackets on the fence posts. Its quite a big garden for what you get in the UK. Then have boards that i can fix onto the brackets and put into the garage when not in use.

Is it possible to have buildings i could remove from the boards when they are not in use ? Im thinking storage would be an issue, dont want them getting damaged. Say fixing them on velcro pads so when they are on there, they will stay put.

I really apreciate the advise people, keep it coming. These are just thoughts that are coming to mind while i try to keep a 9 month old german sheperd entertained (he has quite a low attention span), oh and a 6yr old and a 4yr old too lol


Lazy Daydreamer
Welcome, JP! I know of two members on this forum who could help you quite a bit: johntealon30 and Steve B, they both live in the UK like you do and they've done some pretty cool modeling. I believe John has [or had?] an outdoors-based OO layout.

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