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Old 6th March 2012, 00:52   #1
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Default O Scale building kits

Hi. I'm not exactly a beginner to modeling, railroading, or model railroading, but I'd like advice on manufacturers and kits to get me started on a new On30 layout I'd love to build. I have a fascination with logging so that's where I'm headed - diversions may be allowed in the future

My wife seems terrified that I'll start a layout and it'll be a bare-lumber disaster-zone eye-sore the entire time (she's probably right), so I'd like to have several buildings ready before I even cut the first piece of lumber. Hopefully that'll motivate me to finish scenery more quickly once the trains are running.

So what suggestions can you guys offer me? I was looking at OZSteam's products, among others. I don't want to get ripped off, but I'm also willing to spend more money for higher quality kits. Even simple blueprints that I can use to create buildings from scale lumber could work.
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Old 6th March 2012, 04:05   #2
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Default Re: O Scale building kits

Mr Music:
I found the same problem. I couldn't find much in O gauge kits. Our LHS carries a lot of RTP (ready-to-plant) buildings from Lionel and their competitors. Most of them are urban or suburban. They do have a series of building kits that are mostly fronts, and fronts for a small city downtown (row shops & walkups).

Do you have an idea of where you want to log?

Shamus may have posted a few ideas on building construction but my impression of his layouts is "mostly trees".
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Old 6th March 2012, 08:05   #3
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Default Re: O Scale building kits

Sarissa's wooden "Wild West" kits are about the right size for On30, easy to put together and look good with a little work. They're also very reasonably priced. Take a look at Brian Mosby's thread on the link below.

I have a couple of the kits on hand for use with an O9 project that I'm working on, but have not assembled them yet. Sarissa's website is on this link (no connection other than as a satisfied customer).
Bob Hughes
Playing Trains
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Old 6th March 2012, 23:34   #4
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Default Re: O Scale building kits

The Sarissa models look like they'd be way too small, at roughly 1:64 to 1:76 scale. Though that might be good for a background town scene, to force perspective.

I guess what I'm looking for are specifically 1:48 logging oriented structures.
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Old 7th March 2012, 21:59   #5
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Default Re: O Scale building kits

Hi, Can I suggest you get a copy of the "Narrow Gauge and Shortline Gazette" and feast your eyes on the wealth of 0 (1:4 scale building kits advertised, a number of which relate to Logging.

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Old 8th March 2012, 01:37   #6
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Cool Re: O Scale building kits

It really isn't that difficult to scratch build in O scale. There are hundreds of free plans available and if you cut your own stripwood it can be done on the cheap. You didn't say what your layout location is or style of buildings so that would help us point you in the right direction.
More scratchbuilding help is available and once you do a simple shed or machine shop, the rest comes easy.

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Old 8th March 2012, 05:07   #7
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Default Re: O Scale building kits

Well I live in Washington, so I guess my region could be Pacific Northwest. But I'm really not picky - New England style or even Australian or South African would interest me.

I'll give the Gazette a look - the website looks promising
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Old 10th March 2012, 13:00   #8
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Default Re: O Scale building kits

There are many of us kit manufacturers dedicated to On30! You need to look on line, you won't be finding us in your your local hobby store
Far too many to list here but heres a few to get you going on google:-
RS laserkits (Rich has some great logging stuff in O Scale), Sidetrack laser, Banta modelworks, Stoney Creek Designs, BTS, American Model Builders...
"Builders in Scale" do a line of kits and a substantial line in scatchbuilding items.
These are all USA manufacturers so your shipping costs are low (though it isn't much to get stuff from UK to you either!)
OzSteams, are good too and shipping costs from Australia are not that bad either.

Another resource is
This is fairly new (about a year and half old) but Jon Ceasar has been contacting many manufacturers to create a kind of free news place for On30ers. He also independantly reviews the kits. He is running Morgan Hill Models as well - but I give him due credit for being helpful for all of us in the hobby
Several forums have lists of manufacturers - but keeping those up to date is near impossible (which is why I haven't done it!)

The advantage of kits is that it will get you going, but for sure scatchbuilding is also fun and straightforward in O scale. This comes to how much time you have. I like a mixture. Shamus had a great eye for backwoods building design and many of his buildings were sold on all over the world. (I have a couple myself).

Get stuck in and prove your wife wrong....better yet....get her to make a kit or 2 with you!
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