This is what you want to look for in the toy
sections of these stores. Blister packaging on hanging cards, or in bins.
Above is another example of a dollar store
find, die cast with working doors.
This car is a little larger than O scale
at 1:35, but still can look great on the layout
when placed near similar scale objects
and buildings. Just don't place it directly near a 1:48 scale item.
Forced perspective techniques can be used
so that smaller scale items can be used in the background,
and larger items in the foreground, or any
combination that looks right to you.
A wall type transformer is a great way to
deliver fixed voltage on a budget.
Many electronics surplus sources offer these
for about $4, on average.
Be sure it is UL approved and have
an extra in-line fuse in place.
Use caution and have a working knowledge
of basic electricity before using any power supply.
Refer to hobby reference materials for safe
and correct use information
regarding fuses, maximum loads, etc.
See the "Safety First" page for other
These craft acrylic paints clean up with
soap and water, and are permanent. The smaller pots are good for
smaller projects. Wait until they are on sale, then buy the colors
you need. They usually finish on the flat side, but semi gloss or
gloss clear coats can be used on top, and some types are available in glossy
finishes. Check the craft departments of the discount stores for
these paints and quality, inexpensive paint brushes. Clean plastic surfaces with
rubbing alcohol before painting, and lightly sand surfaces for good adhesion.
The dollar stores often have all types of
tools and supplies, like this 20 gauge speaker wire, 50 feet for a buck.
These four signs were packaged with very toy-like automobiles, 2 autos and 4 signs on a card, $1. So the autos
were given away as stocking stuffers, but the signs will work well on the layout after a little realignment. The signs were also
scanned, edited, and printed to make more signs. (see link above)
These magnifying/reading glasses (+3.25 magnification) are a necessity for detail work on scale objects. Yes, they were just a dollar, too.
For those who like the porcelain buildings, these were also found for
a buck, but they are closer to S scale.
This close up of the O scale figures shows the variety of poses and themes
available. But shop early for the best selections. The bases of the musicians can be repainted
for use in non-snowy areas. Imagine, it works out to just 25 cents each!
What a deal! This dollar store lamppost has 5 LEDs and a battery holder. Since it is designed to work
with 2 AA batteries, an approximately 2.5 - 3 volt DC power supply could be substituted provided the correct polarity is maintained and proper safety precautions are followed.
The wreath is easily removed if preferred.