Revisiting the Layout in a Box

Six years ago I toyed with the idea of building a layout that would fit into a large plastic box.

It’s a long time ago but the idea has been running around in my head ever since.

Finally, I’ve taken a step forward and built a baseboard.

It’s nothing fancy. Essentially it’s four rectangles of 5.5mm ply wood: the base, the backscene and two sides. The base is strengthened with 20mm pine around the edges.

You can buy baseboards to fit into these 77 litre Really useful boxes. The commercial baseboards use the width of the box for the baseboard track area and the depth of the box for the depth of the base plinth and the backscenes. This gives an area of roughly 110 x 22 cm for the model.

I’ve done it slightly differently, I’ve used the depth of the box for the track area and the width of the box for the backscenes.

This has given me an area of 111.5 x 32 cm for the model and backscenes that are 20 cm high above the baseboard.

There’s a little extra space inside the lid that allowed me to do this.

It’s all down to personal preferences of course, but I felt I wanted a slightly larger scenic area.


  1. Really interested in this. I have in the past made a micro that fits into a box but to completely fill it. That micro was using Ho gauge. I am hamstrung at the moment as we are in the process (a long one) of moving house so there is no point in starting anything.


    • Hi Jeremy
      HO is compact and still detailed. It must be a nice scale to model in. Would I be stirring up trouble if I said ‘Make another layout in a box, it will only be one more box to move when you move house’ 🙂
      (Just joking!)


      • Having had the first quotation for a removal service…I am looking to take boxes out of the equation…lol


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.