I have a young nephew with Downs Syndrome and his absolute favorite holiday is Halloween. Because he is high risk he spent 2020 in near total isolation - and he is a very social person. With the hope of providing some kind of “escape” for him, I started construction on this little N-Scale train set about this time last year. It was a challenge to find a balance between giving it a Halloween feel without making it too morbid. But I think I was able to find a nice balance. I was able to complete in time for Halloween but wasn’t able to deliver it to him until Christmas.
Although I built this for him, I was a little surprised by how much it helped my mental well being. As I wasn’t able to see him in person last year, I was able to think about him and his mother during the 160 hours (estimate) spent on this project. It is my hope that he thinks of me and other family members he misses while he plays with it.
The structures, roads, tunnel portals, bridges, and the stage were drawn in Illustrator and cut with the “Plus” (all but one conjured up from my imagination). The train, tacks, vehicles, and figurines were store bought. The ground cover and landscaping were made using various model railroading techniques.
I’ve tried to focus the images in this post on the individual models I made. I will add a link to a video of the finished piece here if anyone wants to see it. Click here for video.
Amazing! I love the detail. You have done it again! All your builds are incredible!
I love this for so many reasons!! You and your nephew are lucky to have one another. Thanks very much for sharing this project with your forum family. I will return to look at these photos often and reflect on your effort and what it produced.
Incredible amount of detail. and I agree that you struck the perfect balance!
This is astounding! Your nephew is so very fortunate to have you for his uncle.
at first i saw, “160 hours” and thought wow. and then i saw the amount of engraving and painting and though, “that’s all?” stupendous.
I just bruised my jaw from it hitting the floor! That is amazing work! Showing the steps for that fountain alone is crazy! Awesome work!
You are being awarded the Glowforge Super Hero award
You are truly an amazing artist! This set is museum quality—lucky nephew gets to play with it.
Holy smokes that is awesome! You are one heck of a good uncle.
What a fantastic labor of love. And it’s a wonderful project too!
That is sensationally breathtaking!
And a great video!
This is absolutely magnificent!! Truly staggering amount of creativity and artistry.
WOW! That’s amazing! So much effort and time…what a lucky kid to have such a caring uncle, great job!
WOW! LOL the “Black Day” concert, and the Blood Bank are my favorites, but everything is fabulous!
Wonderful detail everywhere! So much of yourself given with it makes it such a special gift.
This is amazing, you and the Glowforge are made for each other.
First of all, I FREAKING LOVE THIS.
Second of all, My daughter has Down syndrome (and she just finished > 27 months of chemo when COVID hit, so we’ve been isolated for about 3.5 years and I feel like I’m going to lose my mind hahaha).
I would love to hear more about your nephew. What is his name? How old is he? I know a lot of families around the US with children with Ds. I’m guessing I don’t know his mom but that would be pretty amazing if I turned out to know them. Hahaha This is my daughter, Addie (6) with my older son.