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N Gauge Train Layouts

N Gauge Train layouts are a popular choose for those with limited space and want a model railroad layouts. The scale of the track is 1:148 to 1:160, depending on the manufacturer. The distance between the tracks, or gauge, is always 9 mm. N scale models were developed commercially by the Arnold company in 1962.

The N gauge trains are nearly half the size of the popular HO scale train layouts, which allows for apartment dwellers and or people with limited space the luxury of having a beautiful layout. Some use N scale in order to build more complex model layouts or use in combination with larger scales such as HO and 009 gauge for modeling narrow gauge railways. Some use N scale for Christmas table top decorations or scenery around the home during the holiday season.

A very popular way to go these days is with a layout kit and the N Scenic Ridge Layout Kit by Woodland Scenics is my #1 choice. This all in one requires no expensive power tools or complicated calculations. Just follow the step by step directions and you will have a professional looking layout (which is east to customise to your taste).

If you are in need of just ideas, then N Scale Model Railroad That Grows: Step-By-Step Instructions for Building Your First N Scale Layout (Model Railroader) is for you. With simple instructions, layouts and tips this book will guide you to success.

One of the largest N gauge trains layouts is the Pacific Desert Lines located in the San Diego Railroad Museum. It is a 1200 square foot layout which represents 33 scale miles. The layout contains replicas of local San Diego structures and surrounding landmarks. If you are ever in San Diego this is must see.

N scales popularity in densely populated cities in Japan and Australia has increased dramatically over the last several years. Again, you can get a lot more layout in a smaller space and not loose the authenticity or realism of your design. The possibilities are virtually endless and the designs can be very simple to very dramatic.


There are many manufactures of the N scale trains; Athearn, Atlas, Bachmann, to name a few. Sets and accessories can be found online at very competitive prices. Many retailers will ship free or have frequent sales to attract loyal customers. Sign up for newsletters and sales information at individual sites. This will save you a lot of money. Be careful, N gauge train layouts can be addictive.