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Creating and Operating a More Realistic Model Railroad

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Duration:   13  mins

Designing and building the most realistic model railroad layout possible requires attention to detail and a huge amount of labor. From the backdrop to the timetable, every aspect of a worthwhile railroad should be meticulously thought through and executed. Some modelers believe a good railroad takes decades to finish, while others say it’s never truly complete. In this lesson, we teach you how to maximize the potential of your railroad and create the most realistic layout possible.

How to achieve realism

To help you design and build your greatest layout, master modelers Dick Sine and David Holl introduce some expert tips and techniques you can utilize to make your layout more realistic and captivating. First, Dick begins by demonstrating the proper way to create a beautiful backdrop complete with clouds, mountains, trees and a lake with a detailed shoreline. Using methods imparted from the late great Bob Ross, Dick turns a blank canvas into an intriguing landscape scene with basics colors and a large paintbrush.

Later in the lesson, David discusses what it means to him to “model reality.” Whereas most modelers begin their layout by building the framework and laying the track, you’ll find out why David prefers to completely construct his scenery before touching any rails. He then closes by describing the methods he uses to schedule the arrival and departure of his trains, including track warrants and a blocking system, and talks about his favorite way to operate a railroad. Take advantage of these expert tips, and you’ll be able to develop a more realistic railroad!

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