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February 2020

Model Railroader has been the leading model train magazine for the past 85 years.  Each month, we bring you step-by-step modeling projects, fascinating photo tours of model train layouts, unbiased product reviews, new product announcements, tips from the experts and much more!

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Issue Preview:



Miracle in Monterey: The restoration of G-D Line no. 10

Rumors of a missing stash of John Allen's HO scale locomotives turn out to be true

For many, especially long-time readers of Model Railroader, the name John Allen doesn't need an introdution. Considered by some as the greatest model railroader of all time and called "The Wizard of Montery," John, through his seminal model railroad the Gorre & Dahphetid, was innovative, inspiring, and ahead of his time.


Building Wingate in O scale

Part 2: Constructing the layout while keeping weight and complexity under control

Wingate is a 1⁄4"-scale railroad. It also happens to have the rails spaced at the prototypically correct 4'-81⁄2". The rails in almost all other scales are also spaced at that distance, but not O scale. I chose to correct this minor error, as I’ll discuss shortly, but please feel free to ignore the slight gauge difference or even build Wingate in another scale or gauge. After all, the rails through the prototype location were originally 3-foot gauge.


Going home on the Piermont Division

This 60 x 70-foot HO scale masterpiece gets a major revision and a new Northeastern focus

My HO scale Piermont Division has continuously evolved over the more than 35 years since I began building it. Virtually every scene has been redone at least once. I’ve xpanded the railroad with two major additions to my home. The original 26 x 26-foot basement layout space (section 1)gained 1,200 square feet (section 2) in 1995 and another 800 square feet (section 3) in 2001. Today, the model railroad fills about 2,850 square feet and features a 1,400-foot mainline run, which is 23 HO scale miles.


Big trains through the Southwest

The 20 x 30-foot Four Corners & Five Lakes features contemporary railroading in N scale

The American Southwest and the Great Lakes are two regions seldom associated with each other. But John Tindall’s freelanced Four Corners & Five Lakes (FCFL) serves as a link between Milwaukee and San Diego. The 20 x 30-foot model railroad depicts modern day railroading with long manifest freights, unit trains, and Amtrak trains rolling through the arid landscape of the Four Corners region.


Video Plus

Issue Item

From the Editor

Delivering the hobby world to your door

Railway Post Office

Letters from our readers

Ask MR

Can I fix a bubble in a cured water feature?

Heritage Fleet

The completely revolutionary new C-D scale and gauge

Step by Step

How to model embedded rails

DCC Corner

More solutions for shorts

On Operation

Make him come get me

Trackside Photos

Photos from your fellow Model Railroaders

Trains of Thought

These are the good new days



Two great beginner layouts.

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