N Gauge Track Laying – How To

N gauge track laying tipsLay N gauge track flawlessly with this comprehensive collection of hints, tips and guides. 

Cutting, laying track and soldering track scares many beginners but it really needn’t. Here’s a round up of tips and advice from the great video library in sky (YouTube to you and me) that cover everything you need to know along with a collection of tips on ballasting. Have fun!

The Types of N Gauge Track

Before getting into track laying itself, it’s important you pick the right type of N gauge track as shown in this guide that takes you through the important differences.

Basic Track Laying Techniques

In this comprehensive video from David Popp, editor of the American Model Railroader magazine, covers the fundamentals of track work laying derailment-free N scale track, including how to cut track, fixing joiners in place, solder rail joiners and adding feeder wires. The guides start at 30 seconds in just after the promo for the magazine.

Building on David’s video is this video from Missouri Pacific Sedalia Subdivision which recaps on soldering and goes into detail on pinning the track in place, connecting the wires and gluing the track permanently into place. I use these techniques on my N gauge circuit and have had great success with it.

How To Ballast N Gauge Track

With the track in place, the wires attached and glued down ballasting comes next which is covered in this short and sweet tutorial.

There are some really good tips here from David, it’s worth watching all of it. He also uses the same ballast spreader I use and which is available here.

If you’re still unsure about ballasting, take a look these previous articles here on MRE:

If you’ve followed these guides you’ll end up with trouble free track but it doesn’t end there.

Your track will need regular maintenance and cleaning and this video has a great way of doing this without the cost of expensive cleaning materials.

Lastly, while watching these videos and guides you’ll have noticed a variety of tools are in use. Having the right tools is vital to successful track laying so check you’ve got everything you need before you start with 17 Essential Tools For Your Model Railway Tool Box.

> A final, personal, note: I spend a huge amount of time testing, photographing, writing and researching techniques for these articles and pay for all the running costs of MRE out of my own pocket. If you found this article useful you can support me by making a donation on my fund-raising page. Thanks and happy modelling, Andy.
Founder of ModelRailwayEngineer, Andy Leaning

Andy is a lifelong modeler, writer, and founder of modelrailwayengineer.com. He has been building model railways, dioramas, and miniatures for over 20 years. His passion for model making and railways began when he was a child, building his first layout at the age of seven.
Andy’s particular passion is making scenery and structures in 4mm scale, which he sells commercially. He is particularly interested in modelling the railways of South West England during the late Victorian/early Edwardian era, although he also enjoys making sci-fi and fantasy figures and dioramas. His website has won several awards, and he is a member of MERG (Model Railway Electronics Group) and the 009 Society.
When not making models, Andy lives in Surrey with his wife and teenage son. Other interests include history, science fiction, photography, and programming. Read more about Andy.

Afflliate disclosure:The links on this page may take you to carefully selected businesses, such as Hornby, Amazon, eBay and Scale Model Scenery, where you can purchase the product under affiliate programmes. This means I receive a small commission on any orders placed although the price you pay does not change. You can read my full affiliate policy here. I also sell my my own ready to use, pre-made and painted buildings and terrain features. browse the range.

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