Create your own Scenery : Making a Coal Load

One of the things that I love about the model railroading community is how they come up with their own little tricks and techniques to make their layouts more realistic.


From using twigs and moss to make trees and bushes, to using kitty litter to create gravel, there are so many ways in which you can make your own realistic scenery for your layout.

In the following 2 videos, kgeorgeson shows us a nice little tutorial on how he makes his own coal loads for his rolling stock.

If you have any interesting tips and tricks, then please leave them in the comments below.

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Dan Morgan

Dan Morgan fell in love with model trains at the age of six when he visited an NMRA Convention in Seattle with his father. Forty two years later, his passion remains just as strong. After achieving a successful career in architecture, Dan’s particular interest is within layouts and buildings. With a wealth of knowledge on the subject, Dan loves nothing more than sharing this with others and is delighted in the forum of members who are brought together over the hobby they have in common. Dan lives with his wife Helen in Washington. As a professional painter, Helen has learnt through Dan about Model Trains and they now enjoy working on projects together. The only member of the family who isn’t allowed to join in is their over-enthusiastic Labrador called William who has been strictly banned from the workshop! You can find Dan on Google here!


Leave A Reply (3 comments So Far)

  1. Bill Alexander
    5 years ago

    Great idea. I was planning something similar but your idea with the balsa base is better than what I was planning. Your mention of ‘aquarium’ with the crushed glass gave me another idea and I think I’ll try using aquarium charcoal for the load. Thanks for the good video! Your finished hoppers looks great.

  2. James Miller
    5 years ago

    Very good techniques for building realistic coal loads. Thanks for the post.

    I use “wet water,” tap water with a few drops of dish washing detergent in it rather that Windex. I have had very good luck with the water on track ballast and things like coal.

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