Considering returning to the hobby....ideas?

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Hey I'm a south Jersey native and I had a dream of a small ho layout when I was young. Although I tried, it never really worked out and all of my stuff has sat in storage ever since. I decided to sell my decent power and rolling stock and I realized my desire to get back into the hobby is still there. I want to start with a small ho switching layout. The layout will have to be only about 10' long and maybe only 3' wide. I would like ideas for a prototype switching operation of a few industries. I would like to model around 2010 to present day, and preferably have the prototype be in the northeast so I can photograph it and take aerial shots with my drone for reference. I'm open to any suggestions and help! Thanks for taking the time to read my post. Also I really like mp15ac or dc switchers and 4 axle geeps for power so that would be awesome for proto typical accuracy.


Active Member
Looks good to me..Since the b&w magazine photo of your dream is within a larger layout, it has no problem. But you're going to need a drill track a few feet extending off both G and K. The main line in the b&w photo serves as this...But you're having no main line is going to be a headache sometimes.
These 2 extensions could be hidden and used as staging tracks (swapping out cars in scene with new ones). Adding a rerailing sectional piece on each would make adding cars a sinch..

Burlington Bob

Well-Known Member
Jump in with both feet! There are a lot of plans on the internet and videos on Youtube that you can get ideas from and some take up a lot less space than you have to use. You may find, like most of us, that this hobby is an addiction, albeit a good one! If you later decide that it's not for you................well, you tried and then you'll know. But then you'll know that you didn't give up on something very rewarding. If you still have your equipment, then you can give it a try without spending much money. I think there's a good chance you'll become a train junkie like the rest of us! is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to - An online railroad bookstore featuring a curated selection of new and used railroad books. Railroad pictorials, railroad history, steam locomotives, passenger trains, modern railroading. Hundreds of titles available, most at discount prices! We also have a video and children's book section. - An online model railroad bookstore featuring a curated selection of new and used books. Layout design, track plans, scenery and structure building, wiring, DCC, Tinplate, Toy Trains, Price Guides and more.