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Recommendations for an HO Display Case

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Recommendations for an HO Display Case
Posted by WilmJunc on Saturday, January 21, 2023 7:46 AM

I have been looking around online for a display case for HO rolling stock and locomotives, but it's  tough to tell the quality online.  I'm looking for something with shelves that hangs on the wall and has a glass front.  I'd like sliding glass doors, but most online have hinged front doors.

Recommendations appreciated.

Modeling the B&M Railroad during the transition era in Lowell, MA

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Posted by nealknows on Saturday, January 21, 2023 8:45 AM

Greenway Products has what you may be looking for..

I have a couple of them that I bought decades ago. They're now back in business.

Disclaimer: I have no affiliation with them, just a happy customer from years past...


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Posted by DrW on Saturday, January 21, 2023 10:39 AM

I second the Greenway suggestion. I bought one from them just a few years ago. I had some older ones (15 years or so; forgot the brand) which had superficially the same look: light brown wood, white background, sliding doors. Those old ones were pretty lightweight and had acrylic doors. Then the Greenway arrived, two heavy boxes ($70 FedEx charges). The wood frame is built like a tank, and it has glass doors. We needed two people to put it up on the wall, and we made sure to screw it to the studs - I did not trust drywall anchors.

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Posted by PennCentral99 on Sunday, January 22, 2023 10:10 PM

There is a vendor at the St Louis RPM who has what you describe. I do not have their name or contact info. But if you contact the organizers (Lonnie Bathurst,, 217-556-0314) he might be able to provide the info.




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Posted by BigDaddy on Monday, January 23, 2023 9:36 AM

In the distant past I have seen display cases for sale at Timonium.

We have a wood worker that could build something like that and I'll bet for far less than $500.  Of course he is here and you are there. 

I suggest you look at the app Nextdoor-a neighborhood social media where people ask questions like "Does anyone know a woodworker or cabinet maker?


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Posted by kasskaboose on Monday, January 23, 2023 3:31 PM

Found some on e-b*y worth checking for $150.  That's cheaper than the other site.  I think making them yourself is pretty easy even without power tools.  Mine reside on a shelf, which avoids poking holes in walls.

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Posted by Morpar on Monday, January 23, 2023 8:54 PM

I haven't run the numbers, but $500 doesn't sound incredibly out of line for custom woodworking. I charge $35 an hour in my woodworking business and I am on the low side. By the time you do all of the figuring to make a working drawing and cut list you would have about 2 hours in it. Figure another 2 hours for getting your materials. You are already at $140 in labor and have never made the first bit of sawdust. The customer then needs to decide about the glass. Will it be a plastic (which I don't recommend because they bend and don't look good), window glass which if it gets broken can make dangerous shards, or tempered glass? I haven't priced thos size of glass lately so I don't have any idea of cost.

Next would be actual building the case labor. If the lumber was purchased rough there will be time to joint, plane, and cut to working size. Easily an hour, likely more. Add in the setup time for the different joinery, the dadoes for the sliding glass, the dadoes for the equipment (unless you want to stick track in there), sanding, finishing, and assembly. And the actual material cost still hasn't been added in. If the local woodworker is building more than one then the setup costs can be spread out more, but how many are going to buy more than one at a time? And in my own personal case I still have a flag case I made in 2021 sitting on a shelf because I wanted to conserve my setup time.

We all want to think we can do things cheaper (or they should be cheaper) but to be fair to someone who likely has a large investment in their equipment and skills the prices for these cases is not out of line.

Good Luck, Morpar

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Posted by dstarr on Tuesday, January 24, 2023 1:00 PM

I made this one.  Doors are plexiglas.  Corners are dove tail joints.  It only took a  couple of days to build it.  Something has gone wrong with "Post".  The photo does not seem to print at all



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Posted by WilmJunc on Wednesday, January 25, 2023 5:27 PM

The Greenway product is real nice but you are looking at about $500 with deliver.  I may try one of the cheaper $180 versions first and see how it works.  I have to think about it.

Modeling the B&M Railroad during the transition era in Lowell, MA

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Posted by doctorwayne on Thursday, January 26, 2023 1:12 AM

It should be easy (and affordable) if you have some consignment shops or second-hand stores, where older folks who have moved or passed away, and their families have offered such cabinets. 

We have a couple in our small town , and there are more of them not too far down the road.
If you have a good lumber dealer, you can often buy some really good quality wood that's ideal for furniture-building.

I have what's called a lawyers cabinet, which was likely used originally for books and important papers, but it has lift-up glass doors, and a shallow drawer at the bottom.  My wife bought it at a very reasonable price, to use as a china cabinet, but later ceded it to me for storing a few locomotives.
I've built a coffee table and two matching end tables, using doubled sheets of 3/4" plywood, with an oak veneer applied to the top, and solid oak bordering the tops.  The legs were made from a 20' length of 4"x4"solid oak, found in a older house that we purchased some years ago.  I wanted to get the legs turned, but I didn't have a suitable lathe, but my son, in high school at that time, approached his shop teacher and made a deal to provide the material if the teacher could get the shop class busy on wood-turning...I supplied the dimensions I needed and it turned out to be a win-win for everybody. 

I've also built a couple of larg-ish desks for my youngest daughter, who creates cloth "Shanimals" for small children.

Here's the first one, which can be taken apart into three sections as otherwise, it's too big  (and too heavy, even for a couple of big guys to move)

...the top can be raised when she needs an easel for painting...

Here's the latest one, done a couple of years ago...

...and this view shows a roll-out cabinet from the corner, with more large drawers...

This latest one has had some good usage when Covid appeared, as she was able to home-school her kids via computer.

If you know the kind of cabinet you want, make a dimensioned drawing of it and then go looking for the kind of material that you want to use.
If you don't have the required tools, there are outlets from where you can rent pretty-well whatever you need.


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Posted by richhotrain on Thursday, January 26, 2023 6:03 AM


The Greenway product is real nice but you are looking at about $500 with deliver.  I may try one of the cheaper $180 versions first and see how it works.  I have to think about it. 

I had a display case that I bought for $150 from my LHS and later sold for $150 on eBay. It had sliding acrylic doors and did the job quite well. If you look around a bit, I am sure that you can find one for under $200.


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