The Ins and Outs Of Constructing
Your Own Model Railroad Bridges

By Guest Contributor: Randal Thompson

If you have been having a little trouble building your own model railroad scenery, there are a lot of things you can try. The first and easiest option is to buy readymade items from the store. If you don’t want to do that, there are many do-it-yourself kits you can try. Not only are they inexpensive, they are also very simple and you are bound to find them fun. But if you are one of those who like to do everything on their own, you can build your very own scenery. Not only is this a lot more interesting, it is also something that you can do with your friends and family. It can make an excellent holiday project or a way to spend time with your wife, kids or other loved ones. So try it once, and you will certainly become hooked.

model railroad scenery tips

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If you have been having trouble making model railroad bridges, here is some basic information and some techniques to make them yourself. Just remember, getting the perfect thing takes time and practice. Therefore, don’t be too disappointed and give up if the first bridge you make does not come out exactly the way you imagined. The more bridges you construct, the better the will start looking. Here is what you need to do:


The easiest and most inexpensive way to build a bridge would be to use wood. Just make sure you use balsa wood as it is easier to handle. First take out a design from the internet, there are many available, and draw it on paper. For your first time, try choosing a simple design. This way there would be lesser chances of getting it wrong. Once you have drawn it on paper, draw it on the wood and cut out the parts. Stick all the individual parts together with wood. Leave it overnight to dry. Paint it the color you think will make it look most realistic.  You can also print out designs from the internet and stick them on, to make your wooden bridge look more lifelike.

Styrene and Poster board

Another way to make easy bridges is to use styrene, CA glue and poster boards. First make outer structure using by using CA glue and poster board. Since you would have a particular bridge in mind, you can then cut little pieces of the styrene to make the other bridge structures and then stick them together with glue. Just make sure you paint the structure in such a way that it looks as close to life as possible.

Another thing to keep in mind when building bridges, is to make the surrounding scenery look like a part of the bridge. For example, if there is a grassy knoll next to your bridge, it should not be such that it seems like a total separate entity. Rather, design it to look like a natural setting.

Some Tips

•   If you want to deck your bridge with lights, you can simply use either miniature bulbs or LEDs. They are available in many sizes and colors and can be arranged in any way you like. 
•   If you want to make a draw bridge, you can use cut out match sticks to show the rickety steps. Don’t forget to paint rust on it though, to give it a life like look.
The more creativity you use, the better your bridges will look. Have fun building model railroad bridges.

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