How To Create Playground Equipment for a Model Train Layout

Setting up the area in your basement or attic for a model train layout has given your kids a reason to express their thanks for creating another area where they can relax and play. But wait… apparently your layout is incomplete. Yes, you may have the different buildings and houses laid out. You will probably have the tracks circling around the community. The roads, trees, and lakes may be in place as well. But it is still incomplete. It still needs a playground. Not to worry though. You can easily create the playground equipment using various things you can find around the house. Here are a few ideas on how to go about it.

  • Gather all the different items you can use. Setting up the model train layout will have probably left you with tons of materials that you can still use such as moss for the landscape, cardboard, glue, and thread. Aside from these, you can make use of other items such as old tires from toy cars and wooden toy blocks and logs that are lying around in your house. Other unconventional materials like plastic tubing and minute pieces of wood would help as well.
  • Design your playground. Visit your local park or playground and examine it. Get inspiration from it in order to determine the design of your playground. Pay close attention to the various playground equipment there such as the swings, seesaw, merry go round, and slides. These are all of the typical equipments you will need in your miniature playground. At this point, you will want to compare the materials you have to the real equipment to see if you have the right stuff to make each playground piece.
  • Create the slide with a ladder and tube. You may have noticed that most playgrounds will have some type of slide preceded by a ladder and concrete or metal tube. To create this for your miniature playground, you can use the cardboard box to fashion the slide. For the ladder, you can make it out of small pieces of wood or toothpicks. The tube can be fashioned by old plastic tubing that come with vacuum cleaners. Assemble the pieces and use adhesive and thumbtacks to put them all together.
  • Create the merry go round. To make this, cut a cardboard to emulate the base of the merry go round. At the bottom, place a small block and attached the cardboard with a thumbtack. Make sure the cardboard can go around easily. Add the bars to the merry go round with either pieces of wood or toothpicks.
  • Create the swings. Assemble the base of the swing using small pieces of wood. Use the old toy car tires and tie them with a thread or string. The other end of the thread should be tied around the top bar of the base. Make sure the string is measured just right so that the tires will be off of the ground.

To create the full effect of the playground, add a sandbox and seesaw. Also, don’t forget to paint the equipment so that it emulates the real playground pieces. Set all the pieces onto the layout and add a little more realism by adding miniature figurines of children and people.


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