Realistic Railway Modelling: Layout Design – Iain Rice

Realistic Railway Modelling; Layout Design by Iain Rice is the first in a new series of books from Haynes and is a follow up to his previous work for the same publisher ‘Railway Modelling: The Realistic Way’. Model railway layout planning has come a long way from the days whan the objective was to try to cram Euston to Carlisle on a ping-pong table. The cutting edge of contemporary layout design is all about realism, authenticity, careful presentation and that elusive ingredient – atmosphere. How you go about achieving this elusive blend of layout design attributes forms the subject of this book.

Iain Rice has produced an absolute classic work on layout design. This is an essential book for every layout builder’s bookshelf. Iain demonstrates design concepts that he has developed over a lifetime of railway modelling. He sets out his underlying philosophy and explains the techniques he uses to design convincing but achievable layouts. Iain’s approach is all about natural viewpoints and visual harmony.

The contents of Realistic Railway Modelling; Layout Design include:

  • Preliminaries: philosophy, scales and standards, terminology
  • Site, height and light
  • Baseboards and other boring bits
  • Things you cant ignore
  • Prototype matters: inspiration and sources
  • Rationales, lists and logistics
  • Operational design
  • Visual design and presentation
  • The plan
  • Some layout design examples

The book is filled with layout design examples from layouts that Iain has been involved with.These include ‘Hepton Wharf’, ‘Fen Drove’, ‘Goodman’s Wharf’ and Don Leeper’s ‘Boduan Junction’. Each are used to illustrate the various concepts introduced in the book. and

Iain Rice deserves his reputation as a leading light of the railway modelling hobby. He has extensive experience to share and does this in a clear, concise and extremely informative way. His use of the English language is excellent which enables him to easily communicate with the reader so one never has to sit and ponder what a sentence really means. All of this helps to make this book a source of great knowledge and easily understandable information and above all an enjoyable read. I found it very difficult to put it down once started. An absolute must for anyone contemplating the start of a layout or wishing to improve on an existing one.

Iain Rice is a retired fireman and one of Britain’s best-known model railway authors. Iain has over 20 books and 400 magazine articles to his credit. He is a regular contributor to British and American model railway magazines, and lives in Devon and Ontario.

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