Cart 0

[News] Our new public layout at MrMuffin'sTrains

Posted by Stephen Nelson on

Now that we have moved our retail and mail order operation to our new building at 177 W Main Street in Atlanta, Indiana, we have been focusing on expanding and completing our layout at 165 E Main Street, also in Atlanta.

The layout is approximately 56' wide and nearly 40' deep. People ask me what letter shape is it, and it's sort of a big E with a backward L tagged onto it. Or maybe a big U with some warts attached. You'll have to see for yourself.

The bench work is basically all 2 by 4 framing with 1 by 4's supporting the various levels of track roadbed. Generally we are using 3/4" plywood for our roadbed with some places utilizing various 1 by lumber, like 1 by 4's and 1 by 8's. We are utilizing Atlas O track and turnouts, mounted on top of Woodland Scenics' foam roadbed. 

When finished, we are planning to have four levels of train operation.

There's a lower level, single track, that is mostly hidden with several places where it pops out.

Next up, is the main level with three mainline tracks and lots of large, gradual curves. On this level is also the freight yard and the engine servicing facility, with a turntable and roundhouse. There is also an independent loop of single track on this level for some additional train action and it can be used as a test and programming track.

The third level is a double track mainline and it uses a lot of our spectacular bridges. This is configured as a folded dog bone and runs everywhere.  Also on this level is our passenger yard and leads for passenger trains to head west or east. This level has a lot of industry switching and includes our coal mine and grain elevators. There are also a couple of out and back trolley lines on this level. 

The fourth level, which hasn't been started, is another double track mainline. It completely circles the room, and utilizes the 7' bridge made for us by TWTrainWorx. My intent is for this level to be almost completely operated on bridges and will require a little bit of a duck under on one end of the layout. Like the layout in Carmel, this will be built last.

As I write this, the second level is almost complete and I expect to start powering the track up for testing shortly. The first and third levels are started. Mrs Muffin is really looking forward to starting on the scenery. I expect we will be adding lots of new scenes and structures, including those from Korber Models.  

Here are a few pictures of the room and the current progress. Thanks  for reading all of this - I will be providing additional updates as we go.

Steve   aka - Mr Muffin.  

Share this post

Newer Post →


  • Sounds like everything is progressing nicely but I have a suggestion which may help other hobbiyists like me prepare better for our next permanent layout;
    Can you take weekly progress photos with notes on some detail photos that describe:
    1) Framing type; wood and connections
    2) Wiring and power design, perhaps even drawn schematics? This would especially help those of us wanting to invest in the Mth DCS system and use of smart phones etc?
    3) Type of track and switches used and why? Method of laying track (underlayment, fasteners)?
    Blocks? Signals?
    4) How do you calculate how many transformers needed for the trains and accessories required in a huge layout? Anyone’s layout?
    5) Scenery type, materials, methods etc? Lighting buildings and cars etc?

    I could think of other helpful tips but you guys get the picture? I apologize for such a long and detailed comment/s! Lol

    Brett Thrasher on
  • You had a nice show today! Great to see the new location for the store. Exciting to see the progress of the new layout, utilizing the building space, your track, buildings etc to make the huge layout. We look forward to visit this summer to visit again.

    Diana and Paul on
  • Looking good so far. For sure you need to have your Monon trains running for the show on the 25th. Try to stay with local railroad names and may be think about giving a brief talk about what railroads were in Indiana and what city they were located.

  • Looks like it is progressing at a super fast rate. When I was there on the 15th of February it looked more like a stack of lumber on some basic frames. Thanks for keeping us informed on the progress.

    Mark Olson on
  • Steve, thanks for the update, I can’t wait to see it finished. Wished I lived in the area so I could visit and see it in person. If this one is anything like the last one, it will be TOTALLY AWESOME!! Looking forward to more updates.

    J. Motts on

Leave a comment