Switching Layout

Searching Thingiverse for stuff to print (it’s that or pack up the printer and put it away, just not finding much use for it these days) and I thought to myself, I wonder what’s out there for model trian stuff? Apparently lots of stuff, in many different scales – mostly HO, O and Garden scales. And like most things for free, most of it isn’t that awe inspiring. I did find one dude, kabrumble, who has some really nice looking stuff, but all HO-scale.

Undeterred, I calculated that to get from 1:87.5 to 1:160 I would need to reduce his models down from 100% to 54%. I found his “HO Scale Signal Tower” model and figured that would be a good test subject for a switching yard. My first attempt was printing along very nicely, and since I was using a very fine setting, I left it to print overnight. Sadly in the morning I found that the top floor (or the third story in real life) had a catistropic failure due to the thinness of the window frames. I added some “tree” support and put the g.code back on the machine. Huzzah! A tiny little building (1-inch square by 2-inches tall!).

First print on the left, supported print on the right

I had trouble un-zipping the other files, but found someone else had taken the design and pared it down into bits for printing in different color filament – so I moved on to the roof, windows and doors. The staircase on the outside of the building was way too tiny and fragile to successfully print, I’ll scratch build something or just purchase stairs and railings in the proper scale. Below is the all the bits printed.


After some tidying up and some super glue:


The painted structure, not pretty, but then its only 2.5″ inches tall with the roof and base added. It may find a home on the switching puzzle, just to add to height, but I think I’ll stick with polystyrene kits for the big layout.


6 thoughts on “Switching Layout

  1. Eric, it may not look pretty but that is how things look in reality. One of my big bug bears is how rail modellers have things looking pristine, I think this looks prissy and has a “little boxes on the hillside” feel! My post tomorrow is worth a look at as well.

    Liked by 3 people

    1. I 100% agree on the pristine look. At the moment all my rolling stock is at that point. Once I get the layout down, running and sneery started, I defiantly want to start “grudging” up the cars.
      I’m not to bothered by the paint job, I intentionally tried to make it look a little weather worn, it’s just the filament 3D Printer isn’t fine enough for this small model. When I get the kits for the buildings (If I can find what I want I prefer to build them myself as apposed to the pre-built and pre-painted buildings), they will definitely not be “factory fresh”!
      Lastly, since you’re teasing an interesting post, I’ll be looking forward to a Monday for once!


      Liked by 2 people

    1. Yes it does look like it been there for a while! I just don’t think I have the skills to build stairs that small, and Photo-etch parts and me have a history, and it’s not always good, lol! Hey, you gotta start somewhere or you’ll never learn what you’re capable of, just more fun to practice on a couple of pennies-worth of PLA than a $50 N-scale model kit!

      Liked by 1 person

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