Single Status Update
Tell me about your trains. I'm busy designing an O-27 layout based on a 1952 Marx 999 set and a lot of Plasticville.
Tom "Forty Tod" Taylor
I've been model railroading, off and on for 65 years, with some 20 year breaks for college and the Air Force. I started when I was about 8 years old in American Flyer S-scale, but changed to HO when I was 12. My current layout is a folded-dogbone in a 14' x 14' room. So, I don't have much to tell you about O-scale, except the general techniques for doing scenery. You might want to go to ModelRailroadForums.com . I have used several techniques for making mountains. In some cases I have made general forms from plywood, to which I stapled steel or aluminum window screen. This was followed by plaster-of-Paris. In other instances, I laid brown paper soaked in plaster over the screen, followed by more plaster when the paper dried. Some places I use plaster impregnated cloth. You can usually buy that at model hobby shops or from Wm. K. Walthers. One tip I have found useful is to add powdered Tempra paint to the plaster before adding water. (Do NOT use RIT dye or the plaster won't harden.) You can also use acrylic paint mixed with the plaster. Various brown colors will prevent the white showing if you should chip the dried plaster. I also will paint over the dried plaster with the acrylic paints, and then sprinkle various shades of model grass on the wet paint. For just the flat "ground" of the plywood sub layout, just apply the paint fairly thickly and sprinkle on the grass or various model foliage.
These techniques will work regardless of scale. I'd suggest looking for various model railroad books and magazines. You can make those Plasticville buildings look a lot more realistic by "weathering" using pastel chalks, acrylic paints, etc. I need to figure out how to post photos of my layout, and I'd love to see yours when you "finish" (layouts are never really finished)!