Building Model Houses Has Never Been Easier or More Fun.
The Scale Models Have Never Looked More Real!



Download Plans For Building Realistic Model Houses

If you are a rail modeler, or some who is interested in constructing models as a hobby, or craft project,
then give these scale model houses a go. The house plans are easy to download, print, and very enjoyable to build. The finished buildings look like they belong in a real street setting with full-sized real houses,
yet they are actually scaled replicas in HO scale, OO gauge size, or N scale size. You can select the
scale you want when downloading and building model houses that are for sale on this site

plans for building model houses for scale railroads

Building model houses is an excellent hobby / craft project for adults, or a school project for children. These miniature scale buildings can be used as a prop, or as a feature masterpiece in wargaming and for quality railroad displays. The printable plans for sale here are miniature replicas of architectural structures that are made by gluing the highly detailed photographic images to cardboard ready for assembly. Ordinary cereal box card can be used, and can easily be reinforced inside with additional strips of cardboard. Corflute is an excellent material to use when constructing background structures for a model railroad display. The printable paper plans (in PDF) are recommended for any railroader building model houses in HO scale, N scale, or to N scale for their model train layout. Model making can be a fun hobby project, or a detailed undertaking for the serious rail modeler. That is precisely why we have put particular emphasis into the quality of the designs and realism when it comes to the photographic images used.

building ho scale model houses for railroads

Building Model Houses With Brick, Timber, or Stucco Exterior Walls

The basic structure of each scale model house comprises four supporting walls and roof, all of which are made by gluing the full color paper images onto cardboard, corflute, or foam board. The edges are gently scored with a craft knife and parts are folded glued together to create a 3D structure. The walls all intersect at perfect 90 degree angles so as to create the strongest degree of support, unless a different style of architecture is required. Scrap pieces of cardboard can be stuck to the inside of each model for additional strength.
Exterior decoration and materials for the external walls will depend largely on the style of home or apartment your want. The beauty of using highly detailed photographic images glued to the cardboard constructions is that many of the designs resemble painted woodwork, brickwork, and stucco surfaces.
If you look carefully at the designs shown above, you’ll notice how real the external surfaces look on these scale models. Some of the brickwork and concrete has cracks, paintwork is flaking, and stucco has indications of water damage. It’s this attention to detail in the designs that make building model houses like these so much fun, not to mention the satisfaction in knowing you have created a high quality miniature scale model that others will admire.
Looking at the designs you’ll appreciate that many of these house models are based around the style of accommodation and residences found in countries around the world including: the USA, Canada, Australia, UK, New Zealand, Germany, Netherlands, France, Italy, South Africa, Belgium, and other countries.
The roofs on these scale model houses are generally designed to match and complement the designs used on the wall surfaces. So many of the printable paper plans for brick houses include matching roof tiles or photographic images of iron roofing materials. The traditional roof design is a two piece construction that will angle to a point in the center, however some of the scale model houses for sale here have different roof configurations to add variation to the designs. This is really good for rail modelers who want to create scenery and structures that is truly unique, and that will stand proud of other layouts. Some of the paper plans feature bungalows that have an attic or crawlspace that connects the walls to the exterior roof. So, there is plenty of variations to choose from in the range.

model railroad background buildings and houses

Techniques For Building Model Houses For Railroad Backdrops

The above video demonstrates how to construct background buildings from the plans downloaded at this website. There is a series of terrace houses (common in the UK) which can be set against a sky backdrop, as well as a series of shops with apartment residences above. Another series is for building house models against the background and features printable plans for six one and two level properties. These backdrop apartments and homes are best constructed using corflute which is a cheap (but strong) material purchased in large sheets from Hardware suppliers, art stores, and Discount shops in most countries. The downloaded paper plans can be made into OO gauge, N scale, or HO scale buildings. Unlike with the construction of a real life-sized property, construction of these scaled model houses is not impacted by the employing an architect or the cost of materials. You just download the color plans from the internet to your computer, and then construct then yourself using low cost materials from around the home. When constructed these miniature homes can be occasionally wiped down to remove any dust particles, but that’s nothing when compared to building a real full size home with considerations needed for ongoing maintenance requirements and the home’s energy efficiency.

Scale model houses are relatively problem free, whereas with construction of a real home careful consideration is needed when selecting construction techniques and materials to balance the long-term sustainability with the lifetime and up-front costs to ascertain the most efficient home design for your needs. Constructing miniature models is so much easier.

Planning N scale, OO Gauge and HO scale Railroad Layout Space Allocations for
Scenery and Building Model Houses, Bridges, Tunnels, and other Structures

Most modelers begin doodling track plans long before they figure out where to put them. In fact, nearly everyone will create a fabulous track plan and THEN try to find a place to put it. Unfortunately, reality then strikes and the plans are scaled back to a more manageable level. Certain types of scenery such as mountains and artificial lakes can take up a lot of valuable layout space, as can large 3d warehouses, bridges, and model house buildings.

In any case, there are a number of ways to go about layout planning and design. Most common is to search the internet or acquire one or more e-books of sample track plans. There are literally hundreds of designs that have appeared over the years and it should be easy to find one of interest that can serve as a starting point for your own variation.

Before buying any track it is important to take a close look at your proposed layout space. It always seems to be that the space is never big enough for what you have in mind. It’s a matter of focus. Your story is the focus of the railroad, and how much of what goes on around the subject of the story depends on how much space you have and how you use it.

Telling the story in your layout isn’t the only consideration. Not all of the space you have will be usable for track and scenery. You have to also consider human factors. How high off the floor will the layout be? Does it require aisles to get around and work on it? Will it include topography modeling that will rise high above or dive below grade? Will you be the sole operator, or will there be several people running trains? Do you plan to have many visitors?

There are also several different styles of layouts to consider. An island or peninsula layout will allow access on several or all sides. On the other hand, a shelf style layout can fit comfortably in a rather narrow space along one or more walls. Some styles of layouts lend themselves to certain track arrangements. Shelf layouts in particular are suitable for end-to-end operation without reversing loops of track for continuous running. If a reversing loop is required, a shelf layout will have to have a dog bone section at one or both ends to accommodate the curve radius. Island and peninsula layouts are more suitable for reversing loops and continuous running, but they protrude into the available space.

Building Model Houses and Structures when Constructing a Railroad in Modules

Another interesting arrangement for portability is the modular layout. Modules are created in small standard size units that can be linked together to form huge track runs. Many clubs are oriented around this modeling technique. For a modeler who has severely limited space, this is also a means to enjoy the hobby without a permanent layout.

The thing to be aware of with a modular railroad is the requirement to easily relocate trackside structures, scenery, and the rail line itself. Building model houses, bridges, industries etc., out of cardboard, or corflute makes relocating these objects much easier. Afterall, the beauty of a modular train layout is that it can be dismantled and moved, if you are relocating house… and that can be a big advantage. It can save you from having to build a new layout over again. This is especially helpful if you rent a home, or move locations frequently…which a lot of people do.

A modular layout has other advantages over a fixed model train layout. The layout can be easily dismantled for displays at train shows, shopping malls and hobby conventions. A modular railroad system can exhibited to the public, for people who would otherwise never see model trains operating. Most fixed layouts are generally only seen by a few invited guests, who get to visit the home, or an open day at the local model train club. It is usually a good idea to complete the construction of one module before starting on the next. So, if you are building model houses, bridges, farm structures, or warehouses, it is sometimes best just construct the number needed for each module at a time, rather than trying to complete the entire train layout. Now some more things to consider…

Aisles around the model train layout are important. Visitors appreciate a wide aisle that will let them get comfortably close to the trains and scenery (except for toddlers’ hands!). If you have to work on something on the back of the layout, you will appreciate wide aisles even more. On multiple operator layouts wide aisles are an absolute necessity. 36” is a minimum. 42” is even better.

The railroad layout height is every bit as important as aisle space. This is always a trade-off between the perspective from which you want to view the trains, and the amount of reach you need to be able to conveniently work on the farthest spaces of the model train layout. There is really no ‘ideal’ height, but 40” to 52” is common. Most people have a reach of about two feet with the layout between waist and chest height. Placing scenery that needs attention or track that might require re-railing a train beyond that reach is bound to be frustrating. If you can visit a train show, take a tape measure with you and check the height of the display railroads.

Skilled workmen work best from plans. Once you have finished analyzing your space and deciding which style of model train layout works best for you, sit down with a sheet of paper and a pencil and make a rough sketch of the plan view of your railroad layout. Sketch in a rough track plan and the industry you are using as your focal point. If you plan on simulating actual train operations, keep the industry easily accessible so you can couple and uncouple cars and throw manual turnouts conveniently.

Railway layout design is so absorbing that many potential modelers find themselves stuck in the design phase for months or years as they try to develop some plan that offers the best compromise of track length, physical space, accommodation of modeled industries, scenery, operation, practicality, and investment of time and money to construct it. Think carefully when building model houses and where you will locate them on your railroad. The paper models sold on this website are very adaptable and can be made to HO scale or the smaller N scale.

Some help is available now that pre-computer age modelers were not fortunate enough to have. There are a number of track layout design programs on the market now that make it relatively easy to do a preliminary design, and then modify it to exactly fit your particular situation and space.

Some companies offer sophisticated products that not only place track on the layout, but also provide utilities for creating virtual scenery and rolling stock, and some even allow movement of virtual trains over the virtual layout design. These typically cost in the $50-$100 range and have a rather steep learning curve. For the beginner, a simpler computer program and some actual layout build experience show whether an investment in more sophisticated software would be the way to go.

If computer literacy isn’t among your skills, pencil and paper designs can still be made with the use of commercially available templates for curves, turnouts, special track configurations and other layout features. Individually, they cost less than the more sophisticated software, but it is possible to spend as much as a full featured design program would cost for a complete set of templates for an advanced design.

Consider Track Design Options When Allocating Room For Scenery or Building Model Houses That Could Require Quite A Lot Of Space

When planning construction of a model railroad there are all sorts of possible track configurations and plans to consider. It really depends on the space you have at your disposal and what type of train operation you would most enjoy.

Real railroads (prototype) run from one destination to another rather than go around in a circle. In reality, real railroads usually have hundreds, if not thousands, of miles of track to work with. Even in a scaled down form, most model railroads lack the space to fully replicate this, so a degree of adaptation and compromise is usually required. It doesn’t matter whether your model railroad is HO scale or N scale, the same principles apply. Structures in 3D such as HO scale factories, model houses, walls, silos, grain elevators etc., all require space and will use more space than the same structures positioned as 3-sided low relief buildings against the background.

Full size trains often run for long stretches over monotonous landscape, which if reconstructed on a model layout, would be rather boring. To give you an example, the Ghan Train in Australia, runs 1,880 miles across mostly barren desert. Imagine replicating that on a scaled down model railroad – it would probably stretch from one end of town to the other!

The main line begins at one point, and travels to another point, and stops, hence the term – a point to point railroad. Although a point-to-point layout is necessary on real railroads, the format is not generally practical for the average home (or club) model train layout. Replicating the scale mileage of a true point-to-point railroad does not generally work that well.

To make things a little more practical (and interesting), prototype railroads have branch lines, sidings and other subsidiary systems. Adding these to a model layout can be a good idea.

Before departure, the trains are turned around at terminals using yards, loops, wyes, and turntables. A single or double-track main line usually stretches from point to point.

When planning your point-to-point layout, you might want to include switches and yards at one end of the layout, and a turnaround at the other.

Most small layouts would not have enough space for two terminals, so use an “out-and-home” track configuration. An out-and-home layout accommodates only one terminal and is like a point-to-point layout double backing. The train journey would start at the terminal and it would pass through various landscapes, possibly a small town, and eventually arrive back at the same terminal.

Some might say it is cheating, but unless you have unlimited space (and money) for your layout, a little compromise is usually required.

Constructing an out-and-home layout usually enables a little more mileage between terminals. The train will still arrive back at the terminal in a reasonably short space of time.

You could add more realism and interest by combining an out-and-home, and point-to-point, format with continuous pikes. You would need a fair amount of space though.

Many model railroaders prefer a continuous layout because it allows for varied train movements which make operation more interesting.

I hope you found this information of use, and I hope you have a go at building model houses to HO scale or N scale, or making your own scale model silos, farm buildings, bridges, and rail yard warehouses from the downloaded plans on this site. You’ll be impressed with the quality of these miniature replica structures, regardless of whether you are making them for your scale model railroad, school or craft project, or making them for a diorama, or for wargaming. Have fun!

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