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Written by Paul D. Race for Family Garden Trains

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This section is new for 2007. It is intended to help people with indoor railroads, especially shelf railroads, to get a little more character into their scenery. In years past, it's been possible for HO scalers to buy printed "background" scenes to use behind their trains. But our trains are bigger, and nobody has "stepped up to the plate" with poster-sized backgrounds yet. And buying buildings just for the store fronts could get real expensive real quick. So we're attempting to give you the next best thing - high-resolution building photos that you can cut out and put behind your trains on shelf and other indoor layouts. (Note: If you want to use these images with a Christmas Village display or with On30 or O Gauge (Lionel) trains, please visit the "Big Indoor Trains" version of this page, which has O and S Scale versions of all of the buildings on this page.)

In 2006, I started taking photographs of buildings that I thought would make good candidates for this project. Most of the buildings I photographed are over a hundred years old, so you should be able to use them on just about any railroad. Unfortunately, it's almost impossible to get a photo of a suitable building without power lines hanging off of it, cars and streetlamps in front of it and so on. Some buildings are impossible to get period, since you need to get a "dead on" shot if possible, and sometimes you just can't get far enough away to do the building justice. In addition the "aspect" is always a little off; no matter where you stand or what kind of lense you use there will always be at least a little distortion.

Still, getting a good photo to start with is relatively easy compared to what has to be done on the computer. The "short version" of what happens next is listed below:

  • After the 6 or 12-meg photograph is on my computer, I stretch the photo until the building looks rectangular.
  • Then I use "cloning tools" and other tricks to paint the power lines, parking meters, modern automobiles, and so on out of the picture as much as I can without damaging the underlying detail.
  • I crop the photo down to the building itself so we don't waste toner and printer "real estate" on non-essentials.
  • Finally, I have created many different versions of most of the photos to help you get the maximum size out of any computer printer you are likely to have access to. This step alone takes as much time as all of the other steps put together.

To the right are "before" and "after" versions of the same photo. Notice that the tree branches, light pole, road sign, construction barrel, and reflections of modern automobiles have all been digitally edited out. Every photo on this page received similar treatment. In other words, the "after" versions on this page represent a great deal of craft and a certain amount of art, so I will ask you to please respect our copyrights and hard work.

You are encouraged to:

  • Download these photos, print them on your own printer or take them to a print shop for printing, glue them onto card stock or foam board, and use them on your indoor railroad or holiday village scene or on any public display where no admission is charged (in fact the first use of this will probably be in a children's hospital wing, if that gives you some ideas).
  • Click to see Howard Lamey's Log Cabin Flat project Idea.Print multiple copies, glue them to card stock or foam board, cut them apart and glue them back together to add a sense of three dimensions. Our designer friend Howard Lamey has already done this with the log cabin photo below - the possibilities are endless. To see Howard's project, click here.

  • Print multiple copies and splice them together to make bigger buildings.

  • Make your own signs or adapt signs from our Business and Station Signs page.

  • Cut out the windows and doors and glue them onto other buildings or other brick paper to make your own creations. (We even supply downloadable brick paper and other textures on our Building Textures page.
  • Paint a strip of wood gray to use as a sidewalk in front of the buildings. Add lampposts and fire hydrants to give a greater sense of depth to the scene. Again, our friend designer Howard Lamey as used cutouts of several of these buildings for a street "background" scene that cost pennies. (He built this one in HO, but we have the images for many scales.) Click on the image below to see how he did it.

    Click to see Howard's How-To article on this project.

  • Send us photos of any unusual or particularly creative use you find for these.

  • You may even use these images in gifts you give to your friends.

If you think of another noncommercial use for these that you'd like to try, contact me me and I may make this list longer:

However, you are not allowed to:

  • Publish these images or any image that uses any element of these images.
  • Sell anything you've made using these images.

That said, I have other building photos I hope to incorporate in time, so I hope that this section of the site continues to grow, so please check back every so often. Now for a few technical notes about printing these:

Note: When I started this page, I included only very high resolution graphics that took a very long time for many people to download, and were costing me "real money" to keep available on my web site. Since then, I've replaced many of the graphics with "optimized," but smaller, versions version that will print just as well on most color printers. If for some reason, you need a higher resolution graphic, please contact me and I'll e-mail it to you.

Note: Due to some folks having trouble properly scaling these photos for their printer, we have begun adding .pdf versions of these files that are already properly scaled to print on home color printers (when possible) or on commercial wide-format laser or inkjet printers (when necessary). Because of the size of some of these buildings, not all of them are available in the largest scales - the paper sizes available in most print shops just won't allow it. But we're doing Click to see some ways you can help us build the hobby.what we can, even making "skinny" versions of buildings when it will help squeeze a larger scale building out of a home printer. We are starting with the smallest buildings first, but if you need a particular scale of a particular building, please let me know and we'll prioritize it. Thanks - Paul




 

Buildings

Three-Story Red Building This building and the next one stand next to each other on south Main Street in Dayton, Ohio (just north of route 35). I liked them because they represent the classic "storefront" buildings that dominated many American "downtown" districts between 1850 and 1920. The shape of the window trim on this one is unique, too. Unfortunately, the first story was so shaded that it didn't stay in focus as well as the rest of the building, but that doesn't destroy the overall effect. On my computer, I "squared up" the shot and removed an anachronistic street lamp and countless phone lines. I actually "cleaned" this up a second time, after a reader complained that he could see a McDonald's clearly reflected in the left windows once it was blown up. Then I sliced and diced it a little to make "skinny" and "short" versions that will fit on printers that the "full" version wouldn't fit on. All told, I probably have about 15 hours into this building and its variations alone, I hope you find it/them useful, and consider supporting our efforts if you find it so.

If you want to resize the cleaned-up graphic yourself, contact me and request a high-resolution .jpg version. The building is about 37' tall, if that helps.

That said, to make your life as easy as possible, we have provided several pre-sized versions of this image for you. They are in .pdf format, so they should download and print in the correct size.Note: When you print these, your printer driver may want to "shrink to page" to fit. Uncheck that feature before you print to get the appropriate scale for these images.

  • 1:43 version - The biggest version you can print on letter sized (8.5"x11")(268k) or A4 (268k) paper, provided as a convenience for folks who don't mind buildings in the background being a little small. Note If you're actually working in smaller scales, like O or S please visit the "Big Indoor Trains" version of this page, which has O and S Scale versions of all of the buildings on this page. .
  • A 1:32 version for tabloid (11"x17" paper)(342KB). I had to compress the building horizontally by about 3% to get it to fit; hope this doesn't inconvenience you. We have an uncompressed version that fits on A3 (350KB) paper, so if your printer has both, the A3 will give you a slightly better proportion.
  • A special "skinny" 1:33 version that has had part of the building removed so it will fit on legal paper (11"x14")(1.7meg). In fact if you want to restore this building image to its original width (or even wider), there's no reason you can't print this out twice, trim the outside edge off of one and overlap the printouts. Legal size (314K). (A version for A3 printers is here (314K).)
  • A special "skinny" 1:27 version that has had part of the building removed so it will fit on tabloid paper (11"x17")(352K) or on A3 (352K). We've provided this so folks with Narrow Gauge trains such as LGB and Bachmann Big Hauler but no access to a printer larger than tabloid size can still get a printout big enough look very good in the background. In fact, at 13.5" high, this building will work with most buildings made for Large Scale. And if you want to restore the building to its original width (or wider), you can always print out two copies and splice them together.
  • A special "skinny and short" 1:34 version that has had even more of the building removed so it will fit on letter paper (8.5"x11")(235K) or on A3 (235K). This size is best with AristoCraft, USA, and MTH Large Scale trains. If you want to restore the building to its original size (or larger), you can always print out several copies and splice them together. You wouldn't have the wierd round windows, but nobody else would know that. (By the way, the short version of this building would be about 26' tall if that helps you figure anything out.)
  • A bigger "skinny and short" 1:22.5 version has been scaled to fit on had even more of the building removed so it will fit on tabloid paper (11"x17")(315K) or on A3 (329K). This is the most appropriate size for LGB and Bachmann Big Hauler trains. I had to squish the tabloid version about 5% horizontally to get it to fit, so if you have access to A3 paper, the A3 will give you a "truer" proportion. And if you want to restore the building to its original size (or larger), you can always print out several copies and splice them together. Note: One disadvantage of having a true 1:22.5 building printout is you get to see how "scaled-down" many of our so-called 1:22.5 models are.






































































Three-Story Yellow Building - - This Dayton building is another painted brick edifice. Again, I squared up the building and removed an anachronistic street lamp and many phone lines. However, in some cases the lines crossed details on the building that would be difficult to reconstruct if I edited them out altogether, so if you look closely at the the blowup you can still see them, although I doubt most people would notice. In the thumbnail at the right, you can also see the McDonald's I was standing in front of when I took this photo. I've taken it out of the larger versions.

One wierd aspect of this building I just noticed when I was trying to calculate the scale of the building - this building actually doesn't have any doors facing the street. I have put a sort of door on the "skinny" version, though.

If you want to resize the cleaned-up graphic yourself, please contact me to get a high-resolution .jpg version. The building is about 33' tall, so that should help you with the calculations.

To make using these images as easy as possible, we have provided the following pre-sized pdf images for you. Note: When you print these, your printer driver may want to "shrink to page" to fit. Uncheck that feature before you print to get the appropriate scale for these images.

  • 1:38 version - The biggest version you can print on letter sized (8.5"x11")(330K) or A4 (330K) paper, provided as a convenience for folks who don't mind buildings in the background being a little small. Note For even smaller buildings, please visit the "Big Indoor Trains" version of this page, which has O and S Scale versions of all of the buildings on this page. .
  • A 1:32 version to go with Aristocraft and other standard gauge trains. This can be printed on Tabloid (11"x17") (310K) or A3 (310K) paper.
  • A 1:27 version that is as large as the full image can be printed on Tabloid (11"x17") (428K) paper. Though it's a little small in scale, it's probably large enough overall to work with HLW, LGB and Bachmann Big Hauler trains.
  • A 1:25.5 version that is as large as the full image can be printed on A3 (484K) paper. For use with HLW, LGB and Bachmann Big Hauler trains. Though it's a little small in scale, it's probably large enough overall to work with HLW, LGB and Bachmann Big Hauler trains.
  • A special "skinny" 1:32 version that has had part of the building removed so it will fit on legal paper (11"x14")(339K). In fact if you want to restore this building image to its original width (or even wider), there's no reason you can't print this out twice and splice the printouts together. (For an A3 version click here.)
  • A special "skinny" 1:28 version that is as big as it can get and still fit on legal paper (8.5"x14")(2.5meg). Again, it's a little small in scale for use with LGB and Bachmann Big Hauler trains, but should visually hold its own because of its overall size.
  • A special "skinny" and "short" 1:32 version will print on letter (8.5"x11")(320K) or A4 (320K) paper.
  • A special "skinny" and "short" 1:28 version that is as large as this image can get on Letter (342K) or A4 (paper (353K). For use with LGB and Bachmann trains, though it's a little small in scale.
  • A "skinny" and "short" 1:22.5 version that is the correct scale for using with LGB and Bachmann Big Hauler trains. This image requires Tabloid (367) or A3 (paper (367K). You can print out several of these and spice them together to get a poster-sized, scale building front, if you wish.
  • A "skinny" and "short" 1:20.3 version that is the correct scale for using the best quality Narrow Gauge trains, including Accucraft Narrow Gauge trains and the Bachmann Shay. This image requires Tabloid (367) or A3 (paper (367K). You can print out several of these and spice them together to get a poster-sized, scale building front, if you wish.




























































South Park Methodist Episcopal - This church is on a quiet street near the border of Oakwood and Dayton, Ohio. Too quiet, really - the decendants of the generations that built and once filled this building have migrated farther into the suburbs, leaving an impressive heritage and an equally impressive heating bill. By digitally removing tree branches, most of the phone lines, and other clutter, I have attempted to present this structure more as it would have appeared in its prime.

If you want to resize the cleaned-up graphic yourself, please contact me to get a high-resolution .jpg version. The building is about 39' tall, so that should help you with the calculations. But the real challenge is its width - about 74'.

To make using these images as easy as possible, we have provided the following pre-sized pdf images for you. Note: When you print these, your printer driver may want to "shrink to page" to fit. Uncheck that feature before you print to get the appropriate scale for these images.






























South Park Methodist Episcopal Parsonage - The parsonage of the church above is equally imposing. I frankly don't know if the minister lives there now, although there'd be a lot of room if he or she does. Again, I removed branches and telephone lines, but I didn't remove the low shrubs in front. If you use this photo, you can probably give things a little more depth by adding a shrubbery of your choice.

If you want to resize the cleaned-up graphic yourself, please contact me to get a high-resolution .jpg version. The building is about 26' tall, so that should help you with the calculations.

To make using these images as easy as possible, we have provided the following pre-sized pdf images for you. Note: When you print these, your printer driver may want to "shrink to page" to fit. Uncheck that feature before you print to get the appropriate scale for these images.

  • 1:40 version - The biggest version you can print on letter-sized (8.5"x11")(420K) or A3 (423K) paper.
  • 1:32 version - The correct scale for trains from AristoCraft, USA, and MTH Large Scale, requires legal-sized (8.5"x14")(459K) paper. An A3 (459K) version is also available.
  • 1:28 version - The biggest version you can print on tabloid-sized (11"x17") (714K) or A3 (788K) paper. Though it is a little small in scale, it should look similar in size to buildings made to go with LGB and Bachmann Big Hauler.
Goody's Bar (2.5meg) - A few blocks north of the South Park church is another Dayton landmark - Goody's Bar. In the original shot, almost a quarter of the building is blocked by a huge traffic light on a post. Editing that out caused some of the tiles left of the doorway to look a little strange, but I doubt most folks would notice. The building is about 30' tall if you want to scale it yourself. We have provided the following pre-scaled pdf files in case you're not that ambitious:
  • 1:34 - The biggest this image can be printed on Letter (8.5"x11")(456Kb) or A4 (455Kb) paper. This won't look bad with AristoCraft or other standard gauge trains, though.
  • 1:32 - This scale is accurate for MTH Large Scale trains and will look good with AristoCraft. It has to be printed on an oversize printer, though, which will "waste" some paper and probably force a trip to a print/copy shop. We've provided PDF files for printing on Tabloid (11"x17") (401KB) or A3 48kKB) printers.
  • 1:26 - The largest scale that can be printed on Tabloid (11"x17") (458K) or A3 (545K) printers. Suitable for use with HLW, LGB, and most Bachmann Big Hauler trains.
Virtual "Goody's" - Train Simulator Fan Tim Muir, with my express permission, of course, has enshrined Goody's (renamed the Trolley Inn) as a 3D building that Tim has made available to Train Simulator fans everywhere. A preview is posted to the right. If you're a Train Simulator fan, you can find the building file itself at this link.Click for bigger photo.
Gray 2-Story - Not far from Goody's, also on Brown street, this curious relic stands by itself, probably the last remnant of a small commercial district that was mostly ripped out when a road widened or some such. I've been driving past this building for something close to thirty years, but it wasn't until I started digitally editing the clutter out of the photo that I noticed that the "front" of the building does not actually have any doors. So the "business" side of this structure originally faced ninety degrees from the side the building is "facing" today. Still, the peeling blue-gray paint is a remarkable study in itself. If you really need to see the side with the door on it, let me know, and I'll see if it's possible to get a shot.

If you want to resize the cleaned-up graphic yourself, contact me and request a high-resolution .jpg version. The building is about 24' tall, if that helps.

We have provided the following pre-scaled pdf files:

  • 1:32 - The most appropriate scale for MTH Large Scale trains, will also look nice with AristoCraft and other standard gauge trains. Best of all, this image can be printed to scale on Letter (8.5"x11")(196KB) or A4 (261KB) paper.
  • 1:28 - The biggest this image can be printed on Letter (8.5"x11")(261KB) paper. This may a little small for HLW, LGB, and Bachmann Big Haulers, but should look okay in the background.
  • 1:25 - The biggest this image can be printed on A4 (8.5"x11")(261KB) paper. This may a little small for LGB and Bachmann Big Haulers, but should look okay in the background.
  • 1:22.5 - This is the appropriate scale for LGB and Bachmann Big Hauler trains. Because the original building is so small, it can be printed on Legal (8.5"x14") (336K) paper. (We've provided an A3 (336K) file as well.
  • 1:20.9 - The biggest this image can be printed on Legal (8.5"x14")(2.meg) paper. This is very close to the right size for high-end 1:20.3 Narrow Gauge trains, including AMS, Berwin, and the Bachmann Shay.
  • 1:20.3 - Because the original building is so small, we can also offer this image in the correct scale to go with high-end Narrow Gauge trains, including AMS, Berwin, and the Bachmann Shay. You will have to use oversize paper, though, so if your printer prints Legal (8.5x14") sheets, you may decide that 1:20.9 is close enough. We have provided files that should work with Tabloid (11"x17") (1.8meg) and A3 (370K) paper.
Armory - If you continue north on Brown street, eventually you bump into Patterson road. Merge right and look straight ahead - you'll see one of the most unusual structures in Dayton. The Armory is not used to store weapons and ammunition today - it contains office space used by lawyers and architects. This building's most notorious use may have been about 1904 when the great women's rights advocate Carry Nation addressed a crowd of about 3800 people here. (The "National Auditorium" in town had made a last-minute decision not to allow her to speak there).

The Armory is not square - it was built to fit between a canal and various roads and railroads at the time. As a result, the building swells outward from both sides. In the original photo, you can actually see the left and right sides of the building at the same time. But that image would be too confusing to include as a "building front," so I've clipped those parts out of the photo. I also edited out numerous tree branches, telephone lines, light poles, traffic signs, and trash cans, as well as a 1990s-looking guard rail.

If you want to resize the cleaned-up graphic yourself, contact me and request a high-resolution .jpg version. The building is about 60' tall from ground to tip of the tower, or about 52' high from the lower edge of the trim around the foundation to the tip, if that helps.

We have provided the following pre-scaled pdf files:

  • 1:56 The largest this image can print on legal (8.5""x14")(247K) paper.
  • 1:56 If you don't need the steps and things at the bottom, you can print the same image on letter (141K) paper. A version that has been compressed about 5% horizontally to print on A4 (133K) has also been provided.
  • 1:43 The largest this image can print on tabloid (11"x17")(247K) or A3 (346K)
Canal Street Four Story - When you go north on Patterson past the Armory, you are retracing the route that a major canal formerly took through Dayton. This nineteenth-century beauty was once was nearly on the bank of that canal. Today, the buildings on this stretch have been converted to less industrial uses, including loft apartments. A half-block further north is Canal Street Tavern, which has great music acts from all over the world, but which is in an ugly building, so it didn't make the "cut" for this page.

If you want to resize the cleaned-up graphic yourself, contact me and request a high-resolution .jpg version. The building is about 51' tall if that helps.

We have provided the following pre-scaled pdf files:

  • 1:64 The largest this building will print on letter (8.5"x11") (255K) paper. An A4 (247K) is also available, although it was compressed horizontally by about 4% to fit on the page.
  • 1:49 The largest this building will print on tabloid (11"x17") (308K) or A3 (308K) paper.
  • "Skinny"1:55 - This is a special "skinny" version that fits some printers better than the original. This is the largest that this building will print on letter (8.5"x11") (197K) or A3 (197K) paper.
  • "Skinny"1:44 - This is the largest that this building will print on legal (8.5"x11") (197K) paper.
  • "Skinny"1:36 - This is the largest that the "skinny" version of this building will print on tabloid (11"x17") (345K) or A3 (344K) paper.
  • "Skinny and Short"1:40 - This is a special "skinny, shortened" version that will allow people with smaller printers to print in larger scales. If THIS version really existed, it would be about 35' tall. 1:40 is the largest that the "skinny, short" version will print on letter (8.5"x11") (197K) or A4 (197K) paper.
  • "Skinny and Short"1:34 - 1:34 is the largest that the "skinny, short" version will print on legal (8.5"x14") (267K) paper. This should look fine behind MTH large scale trains, and will work fine as a background with AristoCraft and USA trains.
  • "Skinny and Short"1:26 - 1:26 is the largest that the "skinny, short" version will print on tabloid (11"x17") (330K) or A3 (330K) paper. This should work as a background with LGB and Bachmann Big Hauler trains. Once again, when you print this building off on tabloid or A3 paper, then compare it to the buildings you bought to go with your trains, you'll realize just how "scaled down" the three-dimensional buildings really have to be to fit in your garden.




































Moraine Log Cabin - About ten miles south of the Armory, there is a tiny historical preserve in Moraine, Ohio. This log cabin is an excellent representative of the kind of log cabins the pioneers built in this region. 10x10" or larger beams were chinked enough to link together. Then after the beams were stacked and the roof was in place, the huge cracks between the logs were stuffed with a mixture of clay and horsehair or whatever materials were available (today they use a kind of concrete). The front step was probably a big limestone block that was already "repurposed" by the time this building was moved. But the missing step gives you the chance to add a little depth to the scene.

Click to see Howard Lamey's 'flat' building project with this photo.Our designer friend Howard Lamey has used this photo (well actually, three printouts of this photo) to build a "flat" that would spruce up any shelf railroad or diorama. To see Howard's project, click here.

Once you figure what size to print this image (see below), there's no reason you couldn't print this four times, cut it apart, and use the old cedar shake roof from the Building Textures page to make a 3-dimensional structure.

If you want to resize the cleaned-up graphic yourself, contact me and request a high-resolution .jpg version. The building is about 21' tall to the chimney, about 19.5' tall to the top of the roor. Yes the door is a little small, not quite six feet.

We have provided the following pre-scaled pdf files:

  • 1:32 - The right size for Aristocraft, USA, and MTH Large Scale trains. It also fits on letter (8.5"x11") (320K) or A4 (320K) paper. We also have a very slightly larger 1:30.5 version, which is the largest version of this building you can print on letter-sized paper (344K)
  • 1:23.4 - This is the the largest that this building can be printed on tabloid paper (536K). It's also about the right size for LGB and Bachmann Big Hauler trains. A 23:1 version for A3 paper (553K) is also included.
"Dillinger's" Store Front - We have now left Dayton for the relatively quiet environs of New Carlisle, Ohio, another old community with some history. This former bank is on the corner of the busiest intersection in town. Interestsingly, it was once robbed by John Dillinger. After standing in line like any other customer, and chatting with the local folks, Dillinger told a farmer, "You picked a bad day to go to the bank," drew a firearm and went to the head of the line. In my first memory of the place, the downstairs of this building housed an old-fashioned ice cream parlor called "Dillingers." In recent memory, the downstairs has also housed a Mexican restaurant (run by real Mexicans) and a candle shop. Knowing all of that you can understand why I couldn't possibly leave it out of this collection, can't you?

If you want to resize the cleaned-up graphic yourself, contact me and request a high-resolution .jpg version. The building is about 31.5" tall if that's any help. Otherwise, we have the following pre-sized pdf images for you:

  • 1:32, suitable for use with AristoCraft, USA Trains, and MTH Large Scale trains. This requires Legal (8.5"x14") or A4(metric) paper. Legal Size (8.x"x14", 359K) A4 Size (Metric, 3 meg)
  • 1:36, the largest this file will print on ordinary 8.5"x11" "letter" paper. Useful for background with MTH and AristoCraft trains Letter Size (North American, 279KB)
  • 1:34, the largest this file will print on A4 paper. Useful for background with MTH and AristoCraft trains A4 size (359KB)
  • 1:22.5, suitable for use with most Bachmann and LGB trains. I tried a procedure for printing it in three passes, but couldn't get it to work in such a way as to make it useful for most people. So I gave up and put the building on oversized paper that you'll have to get printed at a copy/print center. The "Tabloid" size is 11"x17", the A3 size is a metric poster size about 11.7"x16.5". Tabloid Size (North American, 453K) A3 Size (Metric, 3 meg)

By the way, because this is a corner building, the door actually faces at a forty-five-degree angle to the right, straight toward the traffic light in the middle of the intersection. Still, it doesn't look bad in the photo. My friend Wil Davis has asked me to add the right wall to this collection so he could model how the building looks on the corner. I have cleaned up a version of the "side" photo photo. Looks to me like you could snag the middle out of this and use it for the basis of a whole "nudder" building if you wanted.

If you want to resize the cleaned-up graphic yourself, please click on the graphic to the right. Otherwise, we have the following pre-sized pdf images for you:

  • 1:32, suitable for use with AristoCraft, USA Trains, and MTH Large Scale trains. This graphic is too big to print on one sheet, so you need to download it in two separate files, print them on letter-sized paper, and assemble the images together by hand. Each file is about 350K. File A FileB
  • 1:22.5, suitable for use with most Bachmann Big Hauler and LGB trains. This graphic is too big to print on one sheet, so you need to download it in two separate files, print them on letter-sized paper, and assemble the images together by hand. The files total about 1.1 meg. File A FileB File C

Medway Farm House - Southeast of New Carlisle on the banks of the Little Miami River (and sometimes under them) is the sleepy town of Medway, Ohio. I photographed this early nineteenth-century farmhouse because I liked its clean lines. I also cut out some foilage and a whole bunch of bicycles and benches and stuff on the front porch. (That process left some discoloration on the porch, but it allows you to put your own clutter there instead.) This photograph was taken in early morning, so the upper windows reflect the just-past-dawn eastern sky as seen through tree branches from the other side of the street.

This photo would make an interesting study in faux-three dimensions. You could print two copies, glue them both on foam board, then cut out the front row of porch posts along with the gingerbread and the fachia with an Xacto knife, then and glue it over the "background" photo. You could paint a strip of foam board brownish-gray to use for the new front edge of the porch, or disguise the foilage in the photo with a shrubbery of your choice. Of course, if you go this far, you could also consider replacing the tin roof with the old cedar shake roof from the Building Textures page. Also, you can see that the upstairs windows once had shutters, another opportunity to add a bit of depth. Sorry, I don't have any shutter images to use for that, but I'll keep an eye out.

If you want to resize the cleaned-up graphic yourself, please contact me to get a high-resolution .jpg version. The building is about 28' tall, if that helps.

To make using these images as easy as possible, we have provided the following pre-sized pdf images for you. Note: When you print these, your printer driver may want to "shrink to page" to fit. Uncheck that feature before you pres for you. Note: When you print these, your printer driver may want to "shrink to page" to fit. Uncheck that feature before you print to get the appropriate scale for these images.

  • 1:40 This is the largest that this image will print on letter (8.5"x11")(265K) paper. Though it's a little small, it would work as a background with AristoCraft, USA. or MTH Large Scale trains. A slightly smaller 1:42 version for A4 paper (230K) is also available.
  • 1:32 - The right size for Aristocraft, USA, and MTH Large Scale trains. It requires tabloid (11"x17") (354K) or A3 (354K) paper. We also have a very slightly larger 1:30 version, which is the largest version of this building you can print on A3 paper (344K)

Old Fire House - On Old West Main Street, in Springfield, Ohio, there is a great old firehouse building. It has not been used to store fire engines for close to a century. But the basic shape of the building has remained the same.

Unfortunately, windows have been boarded over, painted, and or bricked in, so we drew in a "reflection" to make it look like the windows still have glass in them.

If you want to resize the cleaned-up graphic yourself, please contact me to get a high-resolution .jpg version.

To make using these images as easy as possible, we have provided the following pre-sized pdf images for you. Note: When you print these, your printer driver may want to "shrink to page" to fit. Uncheck that feature before you pres for you. Note: When you print these, your printer driver may want to "shrink to page" to fit. Uncheck that feature before you print to get the appropriate scale for these images.

  • Large Scale version This is the largest size I can print this image on 8.5"-wide paper. It should work as a background with AristoCraft, USA. or MTH Large Scale trains.
  • O Scale version - This version should work with O scale trains. You might want to print it at 75-80% for tinplate or S trains. Printing at 50% should give you a good version for HO.

Return to the Family Garden Trains Free Large Scale Signs and Graphics page.


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Note: Family Garden Trains™, Garden Train Store™, Big Christmas Trains™, BIG Indoor Trains™, and BIG Train Store™ are trademarks of Breakthrough Communications (www.btcomm.com). All information, data, text, and illustrations on this web site are Copyright (c) 1999, 2000, 2001, 2002, 2003, 2004, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013 by Paul D. Race. Reuse or republication without prior written permission is specifically forbidden.


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