Model railroad with a model model railroad inside it?

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Model railroad with a model model railroad inside it?

Postby Arborwayfan » Wed Oct 24, 2018 12:01 am

Does anyone know of a model railroad anywhere that contains an operating model railroad that is small enough to be a model in the scale of the main layout. That is, for example, there's a model railroad, and somewhere on it is a model of a garden with a much smaller model railroad in it that actually runs. My son and I were thinking about this the other day. We thought maybe someone would have built a layout in one of the large scales with an N-scale "model garden" layout inside it, or something like that.
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Re: Model railroad with a model model railroad inside it?

Postby scottychaos » Wed Oct 24, 2018 7:02 am

Its been talked about in the Garden Railroad (G scale) forums over the years..
An N-scale or Z-scale loop inside of a G-scale garden railroad would represent a "ride-on" size train, like an amusement park train.
it's been done a few times..
There isnt anything small enough to depict G-scale inside a G-scale garden railroad. ;)
even T-scale is about 2x too big..

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Re: Model railroad with a model model railroad inside it?

Postby NaugyRR » Wed Oct 24, 2018 2:04 pm

Back when I had an HO-layout I had used N-Scale track to represent a torn up narrow-gauge railroad, but I'm also not a stickler for staying to scale (for example, I prefer to use 1/64 scale vehicles due to them being cheaper and more abundant).
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Re: Model railroad with a model model railroad inside it?

Postby CNJ999 » Sat Nov 10, 2018 9:16 am

This concept has indeed been executed any number of times over the years, as has been illustrated in MR and other publications occasional down through the years. Quality (i.e. not cheap "tin-plate") O and #1 Gauge modelers have used N Scale trains to represent "ride-on" garden railroads on their larger scale layouts quite effectively. HO can be used as a stand-in for amusement park trains as well. Today, Z Scale trains can pass as some "ride-on" trains on on the layouts of HOers, if so desired.

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Re: Model railroad with a model model railroad inside it?

Postby CNJ999 » Mon Dec 17, 2018 1:58 pm

Not sure that this may apply, but I came across an add for a Lionel 0-Gauge accessory that, after a manner, sorta does fit the OP's question. It's Lionel item SKU #6-32998 the Lionel Hobby Shop. An 0-Gauge structure representing a large shop of decades past, behind its show windows are three "operating" layouts! Logically, they are not actually be trains made up of separate freight cars pulled by a self-powered locomotive, but apparently they are driven by a mechanism that gives such an impression. Each train runs on a separate, scenicked, layout. The accessory's description reads, "Features: Detailed molded base and building, Die-cast components, Three working layouts with extraordinary detail and decoration, Interior lights above layouts. Die-cast airplane models which hang from the ceiling, Molded and painted train models displayed on back shelves." I'll have to check YouTube to see if any video of the model is listed, but it may be too soon. Anyway, at $400 a pop it's too rich for my blood!

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Re: Model railroad with a model model railroad inside it?

Postby RichM » Sun Dec 23, 2018 6:41 pm

Slightly off topic, and I apologize... I'm not attempting a thread hijack...

But when you mentioned Lionel, I have a distant memory of an early 60's Lionel catalog that pictured O gauge tracks with train on trestle bents, with an HO line running through the bents concentrically below...same loco and cars...
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Re: Model railroad with a model model railroad inside it?

Postby CNJ999 » Sun Dec 23, 2018 10:38 pm

RichM wrote:Slightly off topic, and I apologize... I'm not attempting a thread hijack...

But when you mentioned Lionel, I have a distant memory of an early 60's Lionel catalog that pictured O gauge tracks with train on trestle bents, with an HO line running through the bents concentrically below...same loco and cars...



During the late 1950's and into the 60's Lionel offer both its traditional O scale, plus HO scale trains. A number of the sets containing virtually identically decorated locos and rolling stock. That is undoubtedly what you recall seeing in their catalog. Their HO trains, however, never approached the level of quality that had been established with Lionel's O scale trains and this was a part of the reason that Lionel's venture into HO was relatively short-lived and their HO trains were usually avoided by more serious hobbyists.

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Re: Model railroad with a model model railroad inside it?

Postby mcgrath618 » Mon Jan 14, 2019 3:44 pm

The Brandywine River Museum Railroad has a small N scale layout in the middle of their carnival to represent a ride-on train for kids. I think that's the closest you can get, as Z scale still isn't even approaching live steam.
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Re: Model railroad with a model model railroad inside it?

Postby CNJ999 » Sat Jan 19, 2019 10:23 am

In reference to my earlier post mentioning the Lionel operating hobby shop model, I found the following YouTube video illustrating it functioning. To say the least, it must a virtually unique structure model and likely the most detailed structure Lionel has ever offered! Even for an O-gauge layout structure the detailing is taken to a rather extraordinary degree. The three "operating" layouts themselves appear to represent Lionel trains perhaps rendered in slightly larger than true O-gauge, running on individual scenicked layouts. The trains are even articulated to give the appearance that they are composed of individual freight and passenger cars. The video in question can be found at:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DI7GESioDKY

In addition, several other videos of this model are also listed on YouTube.

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