Make. Paint. Build: Tips and tutorials for model train enthusiasts, modellers and miniature painters.

On-A-Budget

Tips, tricks, and money saving ideas to build a model railway or model railroad on a budget.

How to make your own common modelling materials

how to make your own model making supplies
Locked down due to Coronavirus? Can't get out to get model making supplies? Here's how you can make your own. [...]

Make your own ground foam

Ground foam made in a blender
Making your own ground foam for scenery is fun, much cheaper than buying the commercial stuff and gives your more flexibility in your scenery. But [...]

15 recycling ideas for model making

cotton buds can be recycled and reused for a model buildings
15 of things from around your house you can recycle and use for model making, wargaming and model railways to save money and environment. [...]

Boot fair bargains – How I picked up a locomotive and controller for under £10

model trains cheap from boot fair
Who says model trains are expensive?  [...]

How to make scenic cement: my foolproof 3 part recipe for the best ground cover

There's a lot of misunderstanding around scenic glue but it's surprisingly simple once you know how to make it. [...]

The best paper mache (papier-mâché) recipe for model hills and mountains

Here's my trusted recipe for papier-mâché, sometimes spelt paper mache, that I use for landscape building on my model train layouts, railways and wargaming [...]

How to make your own scatter & why I’ll never buy scatter material again

How to make your own scatter
I'll never buy scatter for my model railway again. [...]

How to work with Styrofoam and Polystyrene

Styrofoam and Polystyrene are amongst my favourite landscape construction materials. [...]

Recycle for your railway — money saving ideas

using a old drinks straw for pipes on a model railway
I'm always on the prowl looking for ways to save money when building my model railways.  [...]

Making Your Own Engine Shed Ash

Hot on the heals of the previous post on making your own model railway grass, comes another tip from Stephen Fay, this time a low cost technique to making [...]

The best price on Hornby trains – model railway money saving buying tips

Looking for the best price on a Hornby train set or trying to find the the biggest discount for that model train you’ve been saving for? These tricks will [...]

Short and Sweet Sunday Scribblings: Free Brick Paper

Looking for quick, free, way to create brick and stone walls surfaces for your buildings? [...]

Build Fences For The Price Of A Box Of Matches

Fences are everywhere and if you want your model railway to look realistic you'll want them on your layout. Here's a how to make fences yourself for little [...]

What I Wish I’d Known Before Starting A Model Railway

Building a model railway is fun, challenging and rewarding but it's easy to make mistakes and overlook things when starting. Here's what I've learned after [...]

How To Get A Hornby Train Set Without Breaking The Bank

Let's be honest, model trains and railways aren't a cheap hobby. It can cost a LOT but it can be done on a budget. [...]

Making Glass Windows

If you create buildings for your model railway, at some point you'll want to simulate glass for the windows. Here's what did and didn't work on my models. [...]

Adding Lights to Your Model Railway – The Low Cost Option

When adding lights to your railway you can either buy expensive off-the-shelf lights or use this low cost technique for building and street illumination. [...]

Model Railway Baseboards – A Low Cost Alternative

Looking for an easy, quick, alternative to setting up your model railway on the dinner table or floor? Here's a low cost alternative that won't break the [...]

How to make mountains and hills – 5 steps from model making gurus

Does your model railway hill building feel like mountain climbing? In the rain... If you want beautiful hills and valleys but are struggling with ugly [...]

DIY Budget Hedges – Thrifty Thursday Model Building Tip #3

How to make your own model railway hedges, picture of finished hedge
Using the pre-made commercial hedges on your model railway can be expensive what if there was a way to get hedgerows for a few pounds. Here's how you can make [...]
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