I've been working on building my model RR for some months now and thought I'd share some progress photos from time to time. The layout is based loosely on operations at various points along the ATSF Trans-con during the mid 1990's. This is a grain loading facility I'm currently building, similar to one's found throughout Kansas and Eastern Colorado. I've only constructed about 20% of bench work thus far so I have a long way to go. Hope you enjoy.



Siding east entrance to grain facility.


5/10 - Cutting in turnout for storage track.


5/17/2019 - Next 8' module built/installed and mainline track down. Continuing to build turnout to storage track and on to west siding entrance.




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Fantastic! What are your grain silos made out of? I was toying with using heavy construction paper shaped around round large ice cream buckets but haven't given the idea up,but am having trouble with forming the tops of the bins. These would be metal grain bins,not concrete silos.

Al Hummel

A good source for concrete silos is 4" schedule 80 PVC pipe. It's sold in 10-foot lengths at big box home improvement stores. Spray them with some primer and concrete textured paint and you're on your way. We were working on one as a view block but abandoned the project. However, we cut some of them down for a small silo set for the brewery.


Matt Jackson
"The best service you can provide for the hobby is to pass on what you have learned."

 Angels Gate Hi-Railers San Pedro, California

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Thanks Alan! I’m using 8” Sonotube for the silos, 1/4 foam board for the roofs, both sealed with clear polyurethane from rattle cans. I’m also applying a couple thin coats of drywall mud to simulate concrete and will score lines in them to replicate jump form seams, and then apply details. Matt’s recommendation of using PVC tube sounds great too.


Hi Mark! I installed the 3mm LEDs, and a NCE d408 decoder, in the loco when I bought it back in 2010. I'm going to replace the LEDs soon though, with 0805 warm white light SMD SMT LEDs, as I think they best replicate incandescent lighting. I'm also going to upgrade the loco with a Tsunami TSU-4400 at that time so it will have sound.


Nice work guys!  A few pictures of a prototype or just plain imagination, they all work.   I was posed with a problem of filling a corner and still make it productive. The answer was a grain terminal.  Just a styrene and wood frame main 'box' building and carpet/rolled flooring tubing for the silos.  The rest is just a few different size dowels,  some spare detail parts and windows, and let's not forget  a little artistic license. That's the fun in this hobby.IMG_20190515_185701IMG_20190515_185836IMG_20190515_185910  Keep up the great work!


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If you want to see huge facilities, you need to go to, Kansas, Hutchinson. Not only lots of trains, but the area has the largest underground salt mine in the US. They use systems just like grain.


Dick Donaway

VietNam Veteran

Thanks Alan!

will try to post a video of switching cars at the silos after I finish their track work and wrap up more of their details and surrounding scenery.

I finished installing this #7 storage track turnout a couple days ago, it is also the first turnout I've ever used a self guarded frog on and I am exceptionally pleased by how well it operates.





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