Narrow Gauge Models

Narrow Gauge Models

Muscrat Ramblers

ANGC Bobcat County

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Narrow Gauge on YouTube

You'll receive hundreds of results for a "narrow gauge railway model" search on Youtube. Australian, North American, European, United Kingdon, Japan, etc., and everything from Garden to micro scales with every possible scale/gauge combination. What follows is an almost random selection during the Covid-19 crisis, April 2020.

  • Australian NG Convention 2019: Laurie McLean MMR video and photos showing parts of the 14th Australian Narrow Gauge Convention April 2019 (10:28.
  • Model RR animations by Laurie McLean MMR: this is one of 75 videos by Laurie, many of them on his animation techniques (1:41).
  • Westgate SWR Container Traffic: QR (3' 6" gauge) Branch Line operations in HOn42 (5:53), and blog back to 2017.
  • Laurent Vandermotte from Belgium Forest Model Railway and Sawmill: NG HO scale (4:06).
  • Dave Clune's proto-freelanced layout: On3 based on the Nevada County Narrow Gauge but set in Oregon from 1925-1932 (6:08).
  • York Model Railway Show 2018 part 4 Narrow Gauge Layouts: (009, 7mm on 14.5mm gauge, 1/50th on 9mm gauge and 7mm on 16.5mm gauge) (8:27).
  • Mine micro layout: 1/48 On30, 16.5mm NG and On18 on 9mm gauge (5:50).
  • John Armstrong Memorial Layout: (fictitious line based on the D&RGW and RGS in Colorado) - On3 Trainbuffs Open House 2017 in Rikon, Switzerland (17:03).
  • Hearns Hobbies (Australia): with Kyle & BJ talking about the in's and out's of Narrow Gauge/HOe/OO9 and the latest TGW from Japan (17:56).
  • Model Railways - European Narrow Gauge: HOe and HOm Gauge in Switzerland, Sweden, Austria, Germany and Spain (14:44).
  • 16mm NG Modellers: National Garden Railway Show 2019, Peterborough (17:39).
  • Modular Railroads at the 2019 National NG Convention: logging railroads in On30 as well as Nn3; Japanese trains and European railways in HOe and HOm gauge; visit to an HOn3 version of the D&RG railroad (20:07).
  • Herbert River: HO scale Queensland sugar cane (1:44).
  • D&REW in G scale: indoor line that is modeled around the 1940's NG Silverton Branch (7:43).
  • Jim Vail's HOn3 "All encompassing NG" layout: (9:01).
  • WWI Narrow Gauge Trench Railway: OO9 in a wine gift box, also useful as a YouTube search term for prototype videos (2:49).
  • Where to Start?

    You'll probably have looked at some of the YouTube and other online examples of narrow gauge model railways AND some of the modelling advertisements. While there are a lot of ready-to-run models and accessories available one of the hallmarks of NG modellers is that they often kitbash or scratchbuild many of their models. So you need to be looking at modelling techniques as well as looking for a potential prototype to model.

    Three of the best places to start for NG modelling information are the major American, English and Australian narrow gauge modelling magazines: Narrow Gauge and Short Line Gazette, Narrow Gauge & Industrial and Narrow Gauge Downunder.

    An Australian Narrow Gauge Convention is held every second year, rotating around the eastern seaboard, and there are comparable conventions and exhibitions in many other countries.

    Gerry Hopkins of the NMRA's Australasian Region maintains a web page with tours of member's NG layouts, including such classics as the Franklin, Somerset & Kennebec Railroad; Denver & Rio Grande Western; Smuggler's Cove; Muskrat Rambles; Red Stag; Charging Moose; and Toad Croak Flume & Lumber Company. [Some layouts are also featured on DVD.]

    Even 20 years ago your local library, model railway club or individual modeller might also be a good resource, but the reality is that most libraries have abandoned books and magazines, and both club and individual collections have gone for recycling as people die and/or interests (and space availability) change... leaving us to the Internet. And there is a lot of information freely available on the Internet, provided you are patient and creative with your search terms.

    Three cautions about Internet resources -- first, there is a lot of misinformation (and sometimes deliberate falsehood) online, second, different searches using the same search term and search engine may give you quite different results, and third, information that you find today may be gone tomorrow.

    I've several times assembled a number of links on a topic, only to go back a few weeks later to discover that at least some of the sites have disappeared or particular materials have disappeared. This is particularly so when documents/sites are revised, updated or replaced due to organisational changes, new information, copyright problems, or simply providing a new look and feel to the web site. As a result I now download documents and save web pages to my hard drive (print as pdf typically)... knowing that I'll sometimes need to spend considerable time locating a piece of information that I know I saved, somewhere!

    And don't forget historical societies and their publications, both online and print. For Australasia prototype modellers the Light Railway Research Society of Australia is a primary resource (also Facebook page).

    Likewise, don't forget personal contacts and modelling Special Interest Groups...

    Roy Link's Rugga + Link

    I visited Roy Link, O14 modeller, manufacturer and editor in the UK many years ago and saw both his O14 layout with its Hudson Ruga wagons and how his kits were designed and injection molded. Fortunately he provided an On30 modification for the wagons so that I was able to use a number of them for my Capricorn Sugar Rail Museum (one of which is shown below).


    The loco has a scratchbuilt body, the cane bin is a RJ Models kit, the Victoria Mill meat wagon is built on a RJ MOdels wholestick truck, the next two were commercial kits, then a Rugga tipper and finally a RJ Models Innisfail brake van.

    Jack Work

    It's hard to decide what's standard gauge when dealing with pole railways but Jack Work (modeller, author and museum diorama builder) was an inspiration for both narrow and standard gauge modellers in the 1960s and beyond as a Model Railroader author.

    Modelling a NG Loco Shed from the NMRA Bulletin June 1992.

    Modelling Queensland's Railways/Tramlines

    Modelling the Railways of Queensland Convention: The major source of QLD modelling information since the late 1990s... notes and presentations from previous conventions free for download.

    CaneSIG, the Sugar Cane Railway (Tramway) Modelling Special Interest Group web site has detailed information on modelling the generally narrow gauge sugar cane railways in both Australia and overseas.

    Random Online Examples

    Laurie Green: "My passions in the hobby of model railroading are the ‘Rio Grande Southern’ narrow gauge railroad that once existed in south western Colorado, which I model in 'On3'. As well, model logging' which I model in On30, with it's Shays and Climax's struggling on steep grades with their loads of logs destined for the saw mill, and especially building model structure dioramas.

    Dutton Bay Tramway: A freelanced HO scale 2'6" gauge exhibition layout (1988-2001) set in South Australia's Eyre Peninsula (now part of owner's permanent layout).

    Koala Creek: Wordpress blog 2010-2012 describes HOn30 Koala Creek (with kit-built Shay) and OO9 WWI layouts.

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