What is the most unique building on your layout?

Posted by Bob Keller
on Tuesday, May 28, 2019

The Bulldog Diner might not have been exactly O scale, but it was "close enough" for me.

What is your layout structure you’d call the most unique?

Like most O gauge hobbyists, I buy the buildings I like, and only later think about what I’m going to do with them. I mean my central city is composed of ceramic buildings, but I’ve got several MTH multi-story buildings (my fave is the Menlo Park Tool & Die Co.), a few Lionel structures, a large number of kit-built businesses, and the rise of Woodland Scenics and Menards structures has resulted in a tower of stacked clamshell packages awaiting a re-design of my railroad (to make them all fit).

I’ve only bought one building knowing the exact place I was going to place it: The Bulldog Diner. This was one of a short series of historic diners fielded by a company called Leyton, in the 1990s.  This was a model of (your choice) a 1930s California diner (shown online as either being in L.A. or Big Sur), or the airport diner shown in the movie The Rocketeer

Oh, let me note that the interior of the movie diner was about five or six times the size of the exterior, so I’m thinking there is some Time Lord Tardis technology at work here.

Anyway, the doorway and window looked close enough for O gauge figures, and it has a tight footprint which is very important. Why? My outer mainline has O-72 curves and this created quite a gap on a very visible corner. The space was too tight for a scale-sized (or close) building and I didn’t just want to fill it with more trees.

So I bought this and a Plasticville WPLA-TV station, and plunked them down in the corner. Neither building was powered, so there was nothing needed in the maintenance department. If I was feeling creative, every so often I’d swap out a few figures and vehicles.

Whether store-bought or homemade, what is your favorite – or most unique building on your layout? And yes, rocket launching pads and skyscrapers with King Kong count!

Don't have time for a sit-down meal? The Bulldog has a walk-up window.

The characters in the movie The Rocketeer loved the Bulldog! Hey, any movie with flying men, and good guys fighting Nazis in a zeppelin over Los Angels can't be bad!

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