Ballasting and wiring – the railway modeller's foes?

28 June 2023
Cables and the 'small granular stuff' are given a rough time by our social media followers, being their least-favourite aspect of model-building.

The hobby of model-building is to be enjoyed, but some aspects of model-building are more enjoyable than others. We asked our social media followers for their least-favourite subject when creating a model railway. The results appeared pretty clear cut....

Ballasting social media comments

Many model railways – an evolution of the 'train set' – are defined by having ballasted track, with smoother operation provided by hands-free electrical point control. Small granular material, purchased from a variety of suppliers is added between sleepers, mimicking the track bed of the real railway, while wiring diagrams are frequently necessary for control panels, requiring that builders have a common understanding of the basic principles of circuitry.

Though enjoyed by some, with groups such as MERG existing to unite circuit board designers with enthusiasts for its customised products, the wiring and ballasting of track on model railways can prove repetitive, particularly on larger models.

Social media comments

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Wiring in particular is more time-consuming than adding grass flock to boards, with less-obvious visible results – perhaps a factor in the result? Do you agree? Let us know in the comments below... the meantime, here's a selection of articles to help make wiring and ballasting your model track easier:

Ballasting model railway track: All you need to know

Wiring your model railway: top tips


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