A-Line Bulls Eye Drilling Jig

A-Line sells this awesome Jig to drill a #50 hole in Athearn press fit coupler boxes.

This tool lets the buyer drill holes directly in the center of the coupler pin. This allows the modeler to add a screw down fix for the notoriously loose metal plates on older Athearn coupler boxes.

Storing Those Spare Windows...

Plastic coffee containers make great storage containers.

Recently I noticed my wife had tossed a large plastic coffee container into our recycling can.  I quickly snapped it up, dusted the coffee out and filled it 1/3 of the way with some spare windows!

Fassett Studios Scale Rulers and Drafting Triangles

Available for N, HO, S, & O


Fassett Studios makes some etched acrylic rulers and drafting triangles, with scale measurements.


I discovered these neat products through a post on Model Trains Weathered.  All of the measuring tools are laser cut acrylic.  Tom (Fassett Studios) sent me drafting triangles in two sizes in HO scale, plus N, S, O, 1/72nd and 1/16".  He also sent an HO scale 6" ruler.


The tools are great, and within minutes came in handy.  Along with the tools he sent me a corrugated sheet die (which will be reviewed separately), and the HO ruler allowed me to cut rough 4' x 8' sheets.

Model Materials

If you're just starting out, or if you've been in the hobby for a while, and have never used anything but plastic, I'd suggest you read this article.

When looking for models, you'll begin to notice there's allot of materials that they're made out of.  We'll do our best to describe them here.  This page may become very long, so to simplify things, its all alphabetical by material, and the section titles are in bold, centered.


Tool Tip: Economy Flush Cutters


For $5 you can get yourself a decent set of flush cutters


Recently, during my nightly wandering of Wal*mart, while pulling freight to the floor for the stockers, I noticed a set of flush cutters for $5. If you're not familiar with flush cutters, here's a short description.