Model Train Layout Software

This post was written by Scott
Posted Under: Model Train Layouts
Share This

Model railroading is a creative hobby involving creating or recreating railways lines including scenery, terrain, artifacts, sometimes people or animals, and the track and train themselves. The first model trains were simply engine that ran without tracks. Starting in the early twentieth century, the hobby grew and models become increasingly smaller and more realistic.

Modern railway hobbyists create miniature, authentic worlds sometimes mimicking real time periods or places. Before creating a model railroad display, the model designer needs to decide on the track layout. There are a few different ways to go about doing this. The first is to take actual track pieces and move them about until you are happy with the design. This is a very hands on approach, but it can take awhile to find the precise layout that seems right for your intention.

A second method is to draw your layout on paper. This can work well, but when you start piecing the actual track together, it may not work or look properly if your drawing wasn’t scaled correctly or wasn’t completely precise.

A third method is to use model train layout software.


Model train layout software allows any model train builder to create complex layouts that will work and fit properly. This type of software is available with different levels of features at different price ranges. There are several versions made by different companies. Some simple programs are even available for free.

When deciding on a program, look at user reviews and try to select a product that is easy to use, especially if you are not experienced in design. Look for a program that is compatible with your train system, and that offers features that are important to you. If your goal is simply to create model train track layouts that are workable and more complicated than what you could create easily without software, you may not need all the extras.

If you want to create an entire layout with terrain, buildings, and characters, you may want a fully featured graphic layout program. Sometimes beginning modelers forget to invest for the long term. Maybe your needs today are simple, but if you imagine yourself becoming a long time model builder, it may be wise to invest in the future.

If you see yourself creating many railroad displays with different sized models, it could be worth it to get a layout software package that is compatible with all types of train. Some software even allows you to design 3D models and actually simulate driving a train through your layout. What could be more fun than entering your own miniature world and driving an engine over the rails?

Whether you are looking to create your first simple layout or to create a massive historical recreation train track layout, modelling software may be a good investment for you. After you have your layout decided, the fun of adding terrain, scenery, and embellishments begins. Railroad modelling is a multi-layered hobby that is sure to bring out your creativity as you grow and explore along with your displays.

Add a Comment

You must be logged in to post a comment.