Construction Roadmap

The page describes the high-level model railroad construction roadmap.



Buy tools and a workbench with vice, a miter box as I’ll need to accurately cut wood. Complete initial blueprints for track plan and benchwork. The track plan will likely be modified during construction, this is to be expected.

Base Construction

Return Track

Complete benchwork, sub-roadbed and lay track on 1×10 boards for the return track. This can be built prior to anything happening in the basement. Wiring can be added below with drops to the track with connectors left available at each end.

Staging Yard

Create the staging track as a table, again with connectors available.

Remaining Benchwork

Complete the benchwork in the basement. Using L-brackets, open benchwork, and flat surfaces as per the plan.

Complete risers for track in the open-benchwork areas.


Add backdrop.

Track Work

Add sub-roadbed.

Install bridges.

Install turntable.

Add power bus wiring. Lay track to include track drops as well as switch control installation and wiring. I will need to purchase a DCC controller, one or more boosters, DCC control boards, wiring and switch controllers at this point. Add a DCC programming track.

Make sure that all switches work whether manual or automatic.

Run locomotives and trains to ensure we have sold trackwork on all routes.

Railroad Structures

Add signals and their supporting control structures and wiring.

Other Structures

Add structures such as buildings, streets, highways.


Add Canyon, rivers, boulders, grass, trees, etc.


Add lighting to buildings (if not done earlier). this will require a separate DC bus and DCC devices.

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