Presumably, you are here because of an interest in building a model railroad of your own. Hopefully, you’ve read our article highlighting the benefits of N Scale vs. other sizes of model railroad; perhaps you’ve even taken the time to look through our guide to building an N Scale Layouts and our list of Model Railroad Landscaping Tutorial Videos. Maybe, you are eager to get started building your own model railway, but are you ready?
We can’t say it often enough, so we’ll say it once more: before you get started building you must have a plan. In the case of an N scale model railroad, you’ll need an N scale track plan.
What is a track plan?
According to Steve’s Railway Pages, a track plan is:
“[a] diagram showing the arrangement of tracks on a layout. It can be either a to-scale drawing or a schematic diagram.” – source rail.felgall.com/terms.htm
Where can you get an N Scale track plan?
In our build guide, we mentioned that you could buy one or draw one, and we left it at that. In fact, you can find track plans everywhere. There are numerous books and magazines, available where you buy your model railway supplies, online and at most major booksellers. Additionally, all the popular model railroad enthusiast publications have extensive websites. Fellow modelers also make plans available on their sites. While a lot of these plans are available for a price, just as many of them are available free of charge. You can thank a generous model railroader community for that.
Are all these plans N scale track plans?
No. But with a little bit of work, you can scale the plans down (or up, in the case of z scale) to suit yours needs. For example, to convert from HO scale to N scale, simply divide every length by two.
Now to help get you started thinking about exactly what kind of layout will best suit you, here are some videos of outstanding N Scale Model Railways in action.
N Scale Coffee Table Layout With Custom Powerpack
You may recall that we mentioned you could make an N scale model railroad that fit on or in a coffee table.
“This is my n scale coffee table layout with the new powerpack I built to fit in the drawer. Entire unit including the table was built myself, Debbie and some dubious help from Max. Layout runs two trains with an additional train on the passing siding.” – tmackinator
N-scale DCC Model Railroad Layout “Newbury” built INTO a bookshelf
We also told you about N scale model railroads built into shelves. Here’s one that is activated by ultrasonic sonar. It doesn’t get much cooler than this.
“Fully automatic DCC N-scale model railroad layout with ultrasonic sonar activation built into a bookshelf with fiddle yards behind shelves. Fleishmann and Minitrix locos, Lyddle End buildings, PIC controllers programmed in HiTech C to NMRA standard.” – jbskmr
2012 Great Train Expo – N Scale Marias Pass Model Railroad
“Here is some video footage from the recent 2012 Great Train Expo. This was the first time that the N Scale Marias Pass made a public appearance.” – NscaleAddict
A Busy Day at Sumida Crossing
“A collection of my N-scale Japanese trains running on my partially-completed model railroad, Sumida Crossing.”– SumidaCrossing
Rio Grande Layout N Scale Model Train
I hope you can get some inspiration from these videos and start to build your own N Scale Track Plans. Remember, it all starts with the plan! Good luck with your model train set and I hope to see your video up on YouTube soon!