Model railway trains – Laying the rails, electricity, decor and structures

The laying of the rails also requires meticulous work because the model railway trains are not running out of power and derailed during operations. In addition, the rails are laid on a background of cork or foam rubber to reduce noise and vibration.

When the rails are installed, they are painted and they are surrounded by an imitation of ballast (gravel or small rocks which are placed on the rails) to accentuate realism.

Electricity for your model railroading

The next step is the delivery of electric current used to power the system. Naturally, this serves to drive the trains, but do not forget that electricity can also make function remotely operated switches, lights in the network, as well as some accessories (eg level crossings).

Model railroad decor

The model railroad decor consists of the relief as mountains, plains and water bodies that are to be integrated into our network. It includes trees, plants, rocks, sandy grounds of nature. It also includes streets, parks and other city infrastructures. Finally, we must consider the background of scenes, like the color of walls and trompe l’oeil decors.

The preparation of the decor is a very long and detailed task for model railroader, but it brings great satisfaction. Indeed, to operate model trains in sections consisting of trees is so much nicer to see them pass in front of wooden beams…


The model trains structures are all major components built by humans in a network, such as houses, buildings or industrial railway, bridges, fences, etc…

The structures are generally made from templates to stick that are sold commercially. However, the model railroader paints structures to their liking and a lot of them modify buildings they assemble to better serve their needs.

Some model railroaders even build their model trains (or model railroad) structures with wood, cardboard or plastic. They often supplement the original models with accessories and details bought on the market.

Structures should look realistic in color and texture. The model makers use several techniques to create a patina or even make it look dilapidated structures deployed on a model railway trains network.

Don’t get frustrated not to know where to begin!

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