Stress-Free Model Railroad Layout Design with Mockups

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Some of our favorite techniques for improving model railroad layout design are the ones that save time and energy after the railroad has been completed. There are few things more frustrating in this hobby than gluing down a structure or trackage and realizing days, weeks or months later that it just doesn’t look right.

Once our model railroad layout design is done, the scenery has been laid and the trains have started running, it can be very difficult and painstaking to rip up a building and recreate the scene, so we try to avoid having to do this at all costs. Luckily, master modeler Bob Hayden has a few simple tips that can be used in the beginning stages of your model railroad layout design to guarantee you like the way things look before pulling out the glue. In this lesson, we teach you how to create mockups for your structures prior to building from scratch or assembling a kit.

Smarter model railroad layout design for less stress

It makes sense that the best way to ensure a component of your model railroad layout design will fit the scene properly is to imagine how it will look once it’s complete. To do this, Bob Hayden teaches you an expert trick he used when preparing his HO scale model of Maine’s Carrabasset and Dead River Railway, as well as on every other model railroad layout design that he’s finished.

Bob’s simple technique for smarter model railroad layout design involves using mockups in place the scratch- or kit-built structures he plans to include in his scenery. He demonstrates this concept by showing you the cardboard mockups he utilized on the C&DR in creating his remarkable model railroad layout design, and talks about the benefits of letting a mockup sit for a while until you decide if you’re comfortable with the shape, size and location of your structure. The best part: no ripping up glue or redoing the landscape in surrounding areas! With this important tip, you can save yourself a number of headaches in the planning and execution of your next model railroad layout design!