On a warm and sunny day in California, I’ve opened up the doors and set up my model trains to run in and out of the house. I had to buy additional track just to be able to create this layout… it’s that large!
We start with a quick look at my Amtrak passenger train as it makes its way from the back yard and in to my living room.
Then we follow the White Pass & Yukon Railroad train as it makes its way around the outside of my house, through the garage, and then inside through the kitchen and living room and back out to the back yard again. This gives you a good look at the overall layout.
Next we follow my favorite locomotive, the Santa Fe diesel F7 with the classic warbonnet color scheme, as it does the reverse route through the house. This locomotive is sometimes known as the Super Chief.
Finally, there’s the AT&SF steam train chugging through the house hauling freight cars.
Notice that the elevated section of track running through my side yard has been upgraded considerably since the previous video:
I really like to create a new and different layout each time I set up my trains… thus no permanent layout for me. The new wooden elevated section on the side yard is the closest I’m planning on getting to a permanent layout for the near future. Notice that the side yard is littered with blossoms falling from the fruit trees overhead!
My favorite part of the video is actually the Doppler effect you can hear at the :36 mark as the Amtrak passenger train whizzes by in the opposite direction.
If you look real carefully at the 1:11 mark and compare it to the 1:14 mark, you’ll notice that at 1:14 I was using the steam locomotive as the camera train.
Most of the locomotives, rail cars, and accessories seen in the video are LGB brand… with the exception of the steam locomotive (Piko) and the Amtrak set (MTH). Everything is G-scale.
The trains are operated using a DCC (Digital Command Control) system, which allows multiple trains to run at the same time and controlled individually. I control the entire layout from an app on my smart phone or tablet. My favorite part is tooting the horn on the Amtrak train. I hope it doesn’t annoy the neighbors!
This collection of trains was acquired over a period of years and at a total cost exceeding $10,000. This is not a hobby recommended for people on a limited budget!
Most of the camera work was done with a DJI Osmo motion-stabilized video camera, in order to reduce shakiness. A few segments were done with my cell phone attached to a SkyLab stabilizing gimbal.
Music credit for the brief introductory background music:
“Country Cue 1” by Audionautix is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution license (