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Quick Look: The TrainMaster HO scale yard bunkhouse kit

Read this review from the January 2018 Model Railroader
The Trainmaster HO scale yard bunkhouse kit
The Trainmaster HO scale yard bunkhouse kit
The kit includes wood parts that fit together well with minimal sanding.

Price: $25

The TrainMaster LLC
2830 Fort Island Dr.
Fairlawn, OH 44333

Era: 1900 to 1960

Comments: A yard bunkhouse is the latest addition to The TrainMaster HO scale QuicKit line. The kit features laser-cut wood clapboard walls; a one-piece porch railing and roof support assembly; three sizes of stripwood; cardstock roof panels, doors, and windows; paper roofing material; and clear window glazing.

Bunkhouses were often found in or close to yards. The rooms in the railroad-owned structures were small and sparse, but they provided a place for train crews to rest between assignments. Today, train crews are either driven back to their home terminal or put up at a nearby hotel.

The TrainMaster yard bunkhouse has a footprint of 21⁄2" x 5". The parts fit together well and required minimal sanding. Per the instructions, I assembled the kit with wood glue, though you could also use cyanoacrylate adhesive. I secured the window glazing with clear parts cement.

Once the building was assembled, I primed the model with Rust-Oleum Painter’s Touch 2X gray primer, inside and out, to seal the wood. This reduces the chances of the wood warping from changes in humidity. I stained the scribed wood for the porch with an India ink wash. I airbrushed the building and brush-painted the paper roofing material with acrylic craft paint.

Even though the building is sold as a yard bunkhouse, it could be used for other purposes. The structure would look at home as part of a lakeside resort or housing for farm laborers.

If you’ve never built a wood kit before, The TrainMaster yard bunkhouse is a good entry-level model. The detailed, well-illustrated instructions are easy to follow, and there are more than 40 process photos on the manufacturers website. In an evening or two you’ll be rewarded with a good-looking structure.

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Plan and design an around the room track plan.

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