How to Create Model Railroad Buildings

Building model railroads can be challenging and rewarding at the same time. The railroad has many parts to create the train and its scenery. One part of the scene is the model building. There are several methods and materials in creating the buildings of your town. Let’s look at the types of materials used for scale model buildings.


  1. Plywood– The plywood is usually made from Baltic birch and can be easily taken apart. It is a light material and needs to be finished. The wood finish prevents gases from being released. You can buy a kit that comes with the materials.
  2. Craft Stripwood– The main strip wood used is basswood or Tilia, for their strength and grain. This wood is especially good for room boxes, and components for buildings, like doors and windows.
  3. Sheet Styrene– This plastic material is great for buildings since it can be bent and shaped. Glue can be used to attach the pieces. This is the most used for railroad model buildings.
  4. Medium Density Fiberboard– This is like plywood, where it comes in a kit, prefabricated. You must also prime it before painting it. It can also be taken apart and used again.
  5. Coroplast– This material is a combination of plastic with cardboard channeled through it. It can be bent to build to create straight folds.
  6. Book board or Paperboard– This material is great as a foundation for miniature buildings, made of paper. It’s an inexpensive, acid-neutral material mainly used for book covers.
  7. Paper– A new approach to creating model buildings is printing out structures on cardstock paper from your computer. You can build from scratch from the sample buildings provided in the software. You can print out windows and doors as well.


In the early days of building model railroad buildings, people used to go out and carve wood. Then came the arduous task of shaping the wood into a certain structure. With the list of materials mentioned, you can buy kits for most of the materials that decrease your building time.

Technology has allowed people to enjoy creating model railroad buildings with kits of laser-cut pieces. Children today, who spend endless hours with video games, could have more interest in building model railroad with kits.

Many of these kits, mainly ones made with wood, still require patience in completing the buildings. There are lots of small parts in the wood kits, which is still time-consuming.

Using paper model railroad buildings saves time, bringing joy to a new generation of model builders. The paper allows you to print out all types of buildings and shapes to your liking as well as windows and doors. You get to choose from over 500 images for buildings, roofs, windows, doors, and accessories.

If you still want to create model railroad buildings from scratch and with less time, try a new approach with paper model railroad buildings. Not only do you cut down your time in building with your computer printer, but also have a wide variety of buildings to create.

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