You Are Here.
Jump to other pages.
On30 Display Trains and Villages Large Scale Christmas Trains
O Gauge Christmas TrainsOn30 Christmas Trains
O Scale Accessories

Written by Paul D. Race for and


Click to sign up for the 'Trains-N-Towns™' newsletter, with articles about display villages, indoor railroading, and much moreThis page features collectible trains and towns that are not season-specific - that is you can leave them out all year long if you have the room and will. They are limited-edition collector's items, and most of them are available through subscriptions, which means that you buy each collection an "issue" at a time. We also include links to many other pages that may be helpful.

Choose from Many Trains and Towns

One of the best parts about building a display village or On30 railroad today is that you can use materials both from collectible manufacturers (such as Hawthorne Village®) and from model railroad manufacturers (such as Bachmann). You can always start out with a "display" featuring mostly collectable pieces and pick up some modeling and railroading skills as your miniature world expands. Or if you have been a model railroader all your life and now you want your railroad to look like it belongs to a more specific place and time, you may take advantage of all that the "collectible" pieces manufacturers have to offer - in many cases they're more reasonable in price than you might think. This page provides a guide to collectible trains and towns, as well as links to other trains and towns you may find useful.

A Note about the Trains

The "O" in On30 means that the trains are in O scale, that is they are 1/48th the size of the "real thing." Most display villages are about the same scale, too, which is why they go so well together. The "n30" means that the trains are models of real-world trains that ran on tracks that were relatively narrow, as train tracks go. These "narrow gauge" trains were generally owned by relatively small railroads, and they could go places where it would have been too expensive to build a "standard gauge" railroad. In hobby terms, that means that they:
  • Fit in places where other model trains would not, and
  • Have lots of charm and potential.
Also, all of the buildings and accessories on this page are chosen because they should look "right" with these trains.

Most On30 trains featured on our pages fall into one of two categories:
  • Collectible Trains - These include the "subscription" trains from Hawthorne Village®. These are generally based on a chassis built by a major model railroad manufacturer, but they include extra detailing and special artwork from artists such as Thomas Kinkade. You pay a certain amount for each "issue," starting with the locomotive. The next two issues usually include a car and some track, until you have enough to make an oval. Additional issues include other cars and accessories. You can cancel at any time at no obligation, though. These trains are physically interchangeable with the Bachmann On30 model trains discussed below. So having an heirloom-quality collectable train to run for special occasions and a Bachmann On30 train for the kids or grandkids to run at other times is also a plan.
  • On30 Model Trains - These are O-scale model trains, such as those by Bachmann, that run on two rail (HO-gauge) track. Though they look good with collectible display villages, a wide assortment of non-Christmas trains is now available. Each piece is an accurate, realistic model of a real train that ran somewhere in North America between 1870 and 1940. They are reliable and reasonably priced. For descriptions of Bachmann On30 trains that are available today, please refer to the Big Train Store™ On30 Model Trains page.
Click to be taken to the Big Train Store™ On30 Model Trains page

Update for April, 2012 - Due to a post-recession shortage of products, nearly every product that was on this page in 2011 has gone out of stock. In the meantime, our main supplier for these trains has changed all of their links, so that even the products that are in stock need to be relinked. On top of all that, we are rebuilding the BigChristmasTrains.com site on a new server, so there are some glitches there. In other words, we apologize if you click on a product and nothing happens, or you're taken to a generic supplier page. The good news is that several trains and towns that belong on this page are still available, and we'll link to them as soon as we can. Because some of these collections have been coming and going so quickly, we will be including the original advertising verbage for now. If a product sticks around a while, we'll try to add a review in our own words. So stay tuned, and please contact us if you have any questions about Hawthorne Village or On30 trains that you can't easily find the answer to on our pages.

Note about Availability and Pricing: Although I try to keep an eye on things and to recommend products that are reasonably available, the trains and towns featured on this page are mostly limited edition collector's items. This means that any product on this page may suddenly become unavailable without prior notice. If you "click through" to see details on a product, and nothing happens at all, or you are routed to a supplier's home page, please let me know and I will correct the page and make any recommendations I can. For an explanation of how subscriptions work, please see the article "About Subscription Trains" For more detailed information about why products seem to come and go and why I have stopped listing prices for certain products, please see my article "About Pricing and Availability."

Note about Product Descriptions - One "side effect" of these products' tendancy to "come and go" is that several trains that I spent a half a day reviewing and writing about have gone "extinct" the next week. So I have gone to using the supplier's descriptions and photographs for most products and adding my own observations where applicable. That said, if you have specific questions about any product we list, please contact me. If I don't know the answer I almost always know how to get the answer.

Note about Suppliers: While our readers have reported excellent experiences with the vendors referred to on this page, all transactions between you and the supplier you chose to provide your trains or other purchases are governed by the published policies on the supplier's web site. So please print off any order confirmation screens and save copies of invoices, etc., so you can contact the appropriate supplier should any problems occur. (They almost never do, but you want to be on the safe side.)


On30 Collectible Trains for Year-Round Use

The trains and cars shown in this section are designed to look right with any display village (such as those made by Dept. 56(R) or Hawthorne Village(R). Because they are not decorated specifically for Christmas, you can use them year-round.

Because Hawthorne Village trains are subscription trains, each piece is actually considered a separate purchase. (The price advertised on the Hawthorne Village web site is the cost of each collectible piece.) In the first shipment, you receive the locomotive, which is an exceptional value. Then about a month later, or when the next piece is available (whichever comes first), your order for the next piece is automatically processed. On the other hand, if you want enough of the train to run by any particular time (say by Thanksgiving), you should consider getting your order in early. There is also a good possibility that some of these trains will sell out in 2007. (One popular train on this page did sell out in 2006). If there's one you really want, don't assume that it's "safe" to wait until later - I have not heard from one reader who was disappointed with his or her train, but I have heard from many readers who were disappointed because they put off ordering a subscription until it was too late. These are delightful trains and a great value, so order your favorite soon if you don't want to miss out! For details about how a subscription train works, please click here.


Thomas Kinkade End Of A Perfect Day Express Electric Train Collection

Thomas Kinkade End Of A Perfect Day Express Electric Train Collection

Somewhere in the great outdoors is a special place, a retreat just for you - and you can only get there aboard this heirloom quality Thomas Kinkade collectible express train collection! Start your trip with Issue One, featuring the impressive steam locomotive and coal tender. Soon you'll be relaxing aboard Issue Two, a classic train car, which includes the FREE 16-piece HO gauge track. Then your Thomas Kinkade train collection continues with Issue Three, another train car, which includes your FREE power pack. Additional Thomas Kinkade train cars, each a separate issue, will follow.‡Available only from Hawthorne Village, this Thomas Kinkade collectible electric train collection is crafted with extraordinary attention to detail, right down to the working headlamp on the steam locomotive and the warm light that glows from the passenger car windows. Heartwarming fishing slogans and Thomas Kinkade artwork of warmly lit wilderness cabins adorn every car. This classic Thomas Kinkade train set is the perfect way to haul your every care far, far away, but don't wait! Strong demand is expected, so order now!



The Duke Express: John Wayne Electric Train Collection

The Duke Express: John Wayne Electric Train Collection

Okay, this isn't the kind of train I usually have on this page, but since Hawthorne Village just added two great Western Town collections (below), I thought I'd add this here and give you an great, unusual option for your den or "man cave." We now return you to the advertiser's verbage.

The Duke's 50-year movie career thrilled a nation, and now you can pay tribute to this legend of the silver screen with an heirloom-quality illuminated collectible John Wayne electric train set collection! It is adorned with dramatic scenes from some of the Duke's most beloved films, beginning with Issue One featuring the impressive steam locomotive and coal tender. Soon after you will receive Issue Two, a classic train car, which includes the FREE HO gauge track. Then your John Wayne train collection continues with Issue Three, another train car, which includes your FREE power pack. Additional John Wayne-inspired train cars, each a separate issue, will follow.‡From storming the beaches of Iwo Jima to heroically defending the Alamo to brawling as a bare-knuckled boxer, John Wayne showed the world what a true American should be. Now, this first-ever collectible John Wayne electric train set collection perfectly captures the true grit and spirit of the Duke, brilliantly illuminated by the engine's headlight and the glowing passenger car windows. Don't wait - this premiere John Wayne the Duke movie collectible is available only from Hawthorne Village, and strong demand is expected! Order now!





Other Train Resources

The following links will bring you to other kinds of collectible and On30 trains.
  • If you're interested in collectible trains, but would rather have them decorated for Christmas, check out the Hawthorne Village™ Trains page.
Click to go to the Hawthorne Village™ Trains page.
Click to go to the Thomas Kinkade™ Trains page.
  • If you want to see "non-subscription" On30 train sets that are decorated for Christmas, check out the On30 Christmas Train page.
Click to go to On30 Christmas Trains
  • If you're interested in collectible trains that celebrate seasons of the year besides Christmas (such as St. Paddy's Day, 4th of July, and Halloween), check out the All Seasons Train page.
Click to go to the All Seasons Train page.
  • If you'd like to see On30 model trains decorated for real railroads, check out the BIG Train Store™ On30 Model Trains page.
    (Note: this will take you to another site.)
Click here to visit the BIG Train Store™ On30 Model Train page.


Display Villages and Accessories for Year-Round Use

Thomas Kinkade Lamplight Village Collection

Thomas Kinkade Lamplight Village Collection

The romantic vision of Thomas Kinkade transports you to a radiant place where enchanting lamplights glow like luminous pearls on flower-lined paths. Warm lights stream from every cozy cottage, church and shop in the Thomas Kinkade Lamplight Village collection, starting with Issue One featuring Falbrooke Florist and FREE florist and her flower cart figurine. Soon, you'll enjoy a stroll across Issue Two, Lamplight Bridge, which includes a FREE set of six lamplights and artist figurine. Additional village buildings, each a separate issue and some with select free figurines and accessories, will follow.‡This landmark village collection is a Hawthorne Village exclusive, inspired by the original works of acclaimed artist Thomas Kinkade and approved by the Painter of Light™ himself. You'll be amazed by the extraordinary handcrafted details - each tiny flower, each individual leaf is meticulously painted by hand. Don't wait! Strong demand is anticipated and you don't want to miss the radiant experience of owning the Thomas Kinkade Lamplight Village collection! Order now!



Summer Crossing Gate Train Accessory Set

Summer Crossing Gate Train Accessory Set

Just as a railroad crossing gate adds drama to a life-sized train, a miniature-scale crossing gate and block signals will really enhance your collectible electric train set. Meticulously handcrafted by master artisans, each detail is flawlessly re-created, from the red-and-white striped train crossing gate arms to the white crossing signs. The crossing gate's arms even lower automatically when the train passes over the track!Every magnificent detail adds a special note of realism to make this appealing electric train crossing gate and block signal accessory set a "must-have" for any prized train collection. Perfect for any Hawthorne Village train. You won't find a finer value anywhere than this Hawthorne exclusive! Order now!



HO Scale Train Set Accessories

HO Scale Train Set Accessories

These are the collectible train accessories you've been looking for! Exciting additions to your train display, each is expertly crafted in lifelike detail and perfectly to scale.Choose from covered bridges, tunnels, signs, signals, Christmas train set accessories and more! Your cherished train display deserves the finest collectible train accessories, so don't wait! You won't find a finer value anywhere. Shop now!


The following display villages were chosen, first, because they can be used year-round, and second, because they represent excellent quality and value. Like the subscription trains above, you buy these collections a piece at a time. In addition, they are limited editions; experience tells me that at least one of these collections may sell out this year. So if you want to get started on a particular collection, or if you want to have enough of a particular collection, say, to set up at a given time (say Thanksgiving), this is a good time to get started.

John Wayne Illuminated Western Village Collection

John Wayne Illuminated Western Village Collection

In over 50 years of motion pictures, Hollywood icon John Wayne defined the role of Western hero perhaps better than any other actor. Now you can relive all the memories made by this legendary star with a first-ever John Wayne village collection. This action-packed trip to the Old West begins with Issue One, the Duke's Saloon, with FREE John Wayne figurine. Soon, you'll be ready to round up Issue Two, the Stagecoach Inn, with FREE gunslinger and damsel figurines. Then you can look forward to Issue Three, the Sagebrush Depot, and additional John Wayne collectible village buildings, each a separate issue, and some with select free figurines, to follow.‡Available from The Bradford Exchange, each exclusive John Wayne village building in this limited-edition collection is meticulously handcrafted with remarkable detail and illuminates with the authentic glow of the Old West. And with remarkable figurines of classic Western movie characters, including Duke himself, roaming the streets of your John Wayne collectible village, your ride into the sunset is assured. This collectible first is a must-have for any John Wayne fan and a great way to salute the time-honored virtues and rugged masculinity of a definitive Western hero. Order now!


Old West Track Town Village Collection

Old West Track Town Village Collection

This Western Town collection is a brand new item that is an excellent match for the John Wayne products above or for any of our Hawthorne Village or On30 trains. Strong demand is expected for this item, so don't miss this unique opportunity to reserve yours in advance. Add this item to your cart and check out now. Your credit card will not be billed until your item is shipped. Order now!



Thomas Kinkade Hometown Village Subscription Plan

Thomas Kinkade Hometown Village Subscription Plan

This is the perfect display village series to go with the Spirit of America train above. In fact, some of the accessories allow you to make the town look like the people are waiting for a Fourth of July parade. This village is also my personal favorite among the all the collectible villages, period. It evokes the Heartland of America like no other. This village includes frame country houses with big front porches, just like those you see in almost every small town in America. Accessories include a gazebo and many figures.

The Hometown village is unique, limited, and only available from Hawthorne Village. For more information, click the "Buy" button - you are under no obligation to purchase until you make your final decision on the next page. In the meantime, if you'd feel more at home in New England or on the coast, you may find the Lamplight or Seaside villages below attractive.


Thomas Kinkade Lamplight Village Figurine Accessory

Thomas Kinkade Lamplight Village Figurine Accessory

These figurines are made to go with the Thomas Kinkade's Lamplight Village series below, but will also look great with any of the villages on this page. Like all of the Thomas Kinkade figures, these people are the right size for On30 trains and your display village buildings (most Christmas village figures are actually half again as large as they "should be"). For more information, click on the "Buy" button - there is no obligation to purchase until you make your decision on the next screen.


Thomas Kinkade Lamplight Village Subscription Plan

Thomas Kinkade Lamplight Village Subscription Plan

Many a village in New England still exudes Old World charm. This Thomas Kinkade village series captures the best of both worlds. It includes a bay-windowed flower shop that seems to be nearly awash in flowers, a stone salt-box home that would be at home in any northern clime, and a stone church with a beautifully lit steeple. All are lit inside and outside, with the help of the lamps that give this village its name.

For more information, click on the "Buy" button. You are under no obligation to purchase until you make your final decision on the next page.


Thomas Kinkade Seaside Village Subscription Plan

Thomas Kinkade Seaside Village Subscription Plan

If you feel more at home on the seashore than in some landlocked city or town, you may especially like this series. Like the other Thomas Kinkade villages on this page, this village and its accessories are scaled to look right with the Thomas Kinkade Christmas train and all On30 accessories. This series includes lamps, a lighthouse, and a stone mill with a working water-wheel, all handpainted in careful detail inspired by the art of Thomas Kinkade. This is a limited edition.

For more information, please click on the "Buy" Button--you don't have to purchase anything until you make your decision on the next page.


Thomas Kinkade Seaside Village Figurine Accessory

Thomas Kinkade Seaside Village Figurine Accessory

Whether your village is experiencing winter or summer, there's always room for a few sportsmen near the edge. These figurines are made to go with the Seaside Village series shown above, but they will look great with any village on this page.

For more details, click the "Buy" button. There is no obligation to buy until you make your decision on the next page.



In addition, the O-Scale Accessories page includes many relatively inexpensive details such as bridges, fencing, and stations, that will bring life to any O-Scale or O-Gauge railroad.


About Extra Track - The train sets on this page come with an oval of track that is about 38" x 56", although if you order a subscription train, you don't receive all of the track and power supply right away. To get a jump start on your railroad, or to make your railroad a little larger, you may easily add additional track.
  • The Bachmann EZ Track #44501 is an exact replacement for the curves that come with the train sets.

  • Bachmann #44411 matches the straight pieces.
    Bridgeport Train Display Wood Cabinet

    Bridgeport Train Display Wood Cabinet

    Provide an elegant home for your beloved model train collection in this heirloom-quality model train set display case, exclusively from Van Hygan & Smythe. Custom-designed in the tradition of fine European craftsmanship, its classic style is enhanced by solid hardwood construction with a rich walnut-finish. What a focal point in your home decor!Hinged glass front doors open to reveal three 3-1/4" deep hardwood shelves, perfectly sized for your limited-edition train collections. Magnetic door closures minimize dust, and gleaming brass-finished hardware adds an elegant touch. There's no doubt, this collectible train display cabinet is simply the perfect train accessory for your collection! Order now!



Home Pages
Reading Index Pages
Buyer's Guide Pages
Return to Big Indoor Trains Home page Return to Family Garden Trains Home page Big Indoor Trains Primer Articles: All about setting up and displaying indoor display trains and towns. Garden Railroading Primer Articles: All about getting a Garden Railroad up and running well Garden Train Store: Index to train, track, and other products for Garden RailroadingBig Christmas Trains: Directory of Large Scale and O Scale trains with holiday themes
On30 and O Gauge trains to go with indoor display villages and railroads


Note: Family Garden Trains™, Garden Train Store™, Big Christmas Trains™, BIG Indoor Trains™, BIG Train Store™, and Trains and Towns™ are trademarks of Breakthrough Communications (www.btcomm.com). All information, data, text, and illustrations on this web site are Copyright (c) 1999, 2000, 2001, 2002, 2003, 2004, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013 by Paul D. Race. Reuse or republication without prior written permission is specifically forbidden.


For more information, please contact us