I'm starting a new thread based on my introduction: https://www.trainboard.com/highball/index.php?threads/hopping-aboard.123856/ I'm a year away from building the layout but am working a bit on major pieces besides the track and bases so I can drop them in when the time comes. Here's the ferry I plan to build. the first picture is the one from the vendor of a completed card-stock ferry I down loaded and printed the 4 pages and scaled them out to somewhere between N and HO. I did the math by measuring the width of the track and had them blown up 170% to get to HO. As you can see in the last one, the track printed is close enough for the scale. I am going to cut these out and trace on wood before building the paper model. I am going to experiment with planing and sanding walnut in my double drum sander to see it I can get it thin enough for this project. I have some pine too, so i will see if I can make my own flat stock thin enough to bend. Otherwise I'll get some wood veneer. As a carpenter I am trying to not use a lot of plastic or purchased materials when possible. I received this book for my 66th birthday yesterday (!) and also one on bridges that are both chocked full of real descriptions of their subjects. These are both fantastic resources for scratch building. I have my first I beams and punched box beams made These are both just first tries and need some adjustments to shapes and proportions. They are cherry wood painted with automotive primer/surfacer to hide the grain. To use full size cabinet shop tools I am limited to how small i can go but the NMRA charts of bridge members show a double track Warren truss of 150' length is made of pieces similar to the above so I'm going with a streamlined (oval punches instead of laced) box beams. The flanges on girders are a touch thick but so are the plastic shapes available. I can get down to about 3 inch thick scale before losing my wood, but most of these built up pieces in large structure are close to 2 inches after riveting. This project is going to proceed slowly now that the weather is changing, but I will keep updating the progress. I am very thankful for all the other threads I am reading and am really excited about the walk around multi cab system explained in the book above. I am drawing the line for my layout at mechanical, pneumatic and electric controls (when the first two are difficult) and avoiding the electronic (DCC et al ) for now. I'm going to get a bunch of old cars and locos as the build happens and upgrade them and repaint/weather as the layout comes to life. my goal is to concentrate on action, and have a bunch of stations for helpers to run the layout. Kids need to discover this world and have enough electronics already.