Although we’re still several years away from ever becoming a grandparent, we hope that when the time comes, we are half as awesome as Imgur user “rwreagan.” That’s because the grandfather decided to construct a quarter-scale backyard railroad for his granddaughter out of readily available parts.
Inspiration for the build came after searching for train options, and finally coming across a 1965 issue of Popular Mechanics. He used this old, yet quite timeless article as a guide to bringing his own locomotive to life.
The design is a masterpiece of large-scale woodworking, including the engine itself, a 275-foot-long wooden track, and an engine house, as well as quite a bit of landscaping for installation.
The little engine is powered by a pair of 24V 350W DC motors, which are controlled by an onboard potentiometer or remote signal, via an Arduino. But that’s not all. He even created a designated crossing area for his lawnmower, complete with a crossbuck equipped with ultrasonic sensor and Arduino-based lights, positioned to warn roaming pedestrians or tractors of danger.
This Grandpa Built a Backyard Railroad for His Granddaughter was originally published in Hackster’s Blog on Medium, where people are continuing the conversation by highlighting and responding to this story.