HO Module
revised 02-11-09  d. bodnar

The South Hills Model Railroad Club (SHMRRC) recently decided to embark on a project to create a modular HO layout.  Many of the members have begun to build modules.  This web page is being used to document the construction of one (well, really two!) of these modules.


The Plan
I originally build a 6' x 2' module.  It was designed to have a main line in its center and a self-contained working line that would include a number of switch backs that would take the train up a mountain.

Here the foam forms the mountains that will be climbed via switch backs.  The track bed is made from 1/8" hard board (Masonite)

After the foam was glued in place white masking tape was added to protect the track base.

The mountains were given additional mass with spray foam (Great Stuff)

Here is the back of the mountain.

... and the front.


The Modification

When the SHMRRC discussed some standards and objectives for the club modular layout I decided that a 6' module might be an odd size as the other modules were to be 4' long.

Rather than start from scratch I decided to cut the 6' module down to 4' and to build a 2nd 4' module that would always hook up with the first one.

I removed the 6' long foam insert and cut it into two pieces.  The cork track bed and the hard board under it were cut with a hack saw.


The foam was cut with a hot wire.  The unit used to make that cut is the wooden frame just behind the foam mountain.  Click here for more information on this cutter.

The foam cutter did a nice job of cutting the 6' foam insert into two 3' sections.




Two 1' extensions were added to the 3' foam sections to make two 4' inserts for the two new modules

Automating the Switch Backs

Click here for detailed information on how the operation of the work train has been automated.




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