You can't control much in your life. But damn it, Devin Altman and I think you can control a model train.


Building a model train world is fun... but it has its natural limitations. In the pursuit of ultimate control, we abolished those limitations by bringing model trains into the digital age.

The Lionel OpenBuilder program allows users to build upon their model worlds with virtual and 3D-printed assets. It is an open-source design platform, marketplace and community. Lionel partners with Google Cardboard and Makerbot allowing users to view, design, shop, print and share resources with other Lionel OpenBuilder enthusiasts.


Existing Lionel owners can convert their real train world to a virtual world. Others can design a virtual train world from scratch or design templates. The tool can be used to virtually preview how items would look prior to purchase.


Users will be able to upload and share their virtual train worlds and 3D design schematics. Templates, user generated designs and existing Lionel designs can be purchased here. Source code, design suites, tutorials and technical knowledge are shared with the OpenBuilder community.


Anything designed on OpenBuilder, purchased at the marketplace, or any existing Lionel products can be instantly fabricated with Makerbot 3D Replicators. Lionel enthusiasts can design anything they want and have it instantly. The only limitation is imagination.