CUSTOMER FEATURE #2: Crafting the Heart of Mexico City by Alfonso L.

Posted by John Brady on

Imagine the bustling streets of Mexico City, with its vibrant markets, historical landmarks, and dynamic culture. Now, picture this lively metropolis meticulously recreated in miniature, complete with intricately detailed trains, tiny figurines, and accurately scaled buildings. This is the passion project of Alfonso L. a dedicated model railroader who is bringing the spirit of Mexico City to life through his custom, scratch-built train layout.

Our customer Alfonso L. decided to use his eye for detail to depict his hometown of México City in O scale. Alfonso shared: "I live in México City and I am working on a layout trying to portrait México City Area. I've been working on this layout for about 2 years. I have scratch-built or custom painted almost everything but it has been fun!"

What sets Alfonso's project apart is his attention to detail and his ability to tell a story through his layout. Each engine and train car is carefully painted to match the real-life counterparts that traverse Mexico City's railways. The buildings and  scenery are painstakingly constructed, using materials that mimic the textures and colors of the city's architecture and natural landscape

Alfonso highlighted one piece he was particularly proud of: 

"On the picture, you have a Lionel Legacy Mikado custom painted on Nacionales de México scheme and with weathering pulling a freight N de M boxcar consist. The building is the , the radio cathedral in Mexico City that can be considered the mother of Spanish media, giant Televisa (One of the owners of Univision in the States)."

When we looked up the real thing, we think Alfonso did a great job! 

Every element on Alfonso's layout is crafted with precision. He doesn't shy away from incorporating contemporary scenes, like bustling Metro stations, creating a rich, photorealistic layout that spans both past and present. 

Alfonso shared:  "Here you have a kit-bash of a former Lionel Legacy R27 Subway set in to Mexico City Metro. A model unique in the world." 


Alfonso's layout traverses a wide variety of scenes, including a rail yard: "Here you have some Mexican Ladies waiting on the yard (N of  M engines)."


Alfonso recreated freight and passenger scenes: "This one is also unique in O gauge. A  Japanese Kinki Sharyo car. Originally licenced by the manufacturer to be produced here in México, this cars were first N de M ones. Ferromex refurbished some of them for the Chepe Express, the most luxurious passenger train in México. That's the one on that picture. Hope you enjoy them, as I enjoy your trains"


Alfonso's journey is a source of inspiration for anyone interested in model railroading. His work shows that with a bit of creativity and passion, anyone can turn their surroundings into a captivating model train layout. It’s a hobby that not only fosters creativity but also provides a deeper appreciation for one's environment and history.

Creating a model train layout based on your own surroundings is more than just a fun pastime—it's an educational journey. You learn about the history, architecture, and culture of your locale. You develop skills in planning, engineering, and artistry. Most importantly, you cultivate patience and attention to detail.

So why not take a page from Alfonso's book? Look around your neighborhood, your city, or even your favorite vacation spot. Imagine the stories you can tell and the scenes you can recreate. Dive into the world of model railroading and discover the joy of building something uniquely yours. It's more than a hobby—it's a way to celebrate the places you love and share them with others, one tiny train at a time.


Leave a comment

Please note, comments must be approved before they are published