Model railroading and prototyping is a wonderful hobby that doesn't really require that anyone share in it with you – but the enjoyment of seeing others reactions to your special diorama or the ability to pose questions on specifications and historical references to a group of friends for many causes them to seek out other like-minded enthusiasts.
Fortunately there are many clubs and organizations that have sprung up around model railroading, hundreds in the USA alone – but one of the largest and most prestigious is the NMRA, the National Model Railroad Association, a non-profit educational association designed to promote model railroading, and to influence standards within the industry.
The NMRA sets its focus on its members all across the globe with over 150 divisions or groups of members spread out in 18 regions across the globe. With their yearly convention and the “National Train Show" the NMRA manages to continue building excitement in the industry for model train hobbyists to enjoy. A leading group for the advancement of train hobbyists for over 70 years the NMRA has been there for its members and will continue to be there for many years to come.
Founded in 1935 the NMRA helped to set many of the standards that exist today and still maintains a list of Standards and Recommended Practices available to manufacturers and hobbyists. The NMRA also helps maintain the Kalmbach Memorial Library which is one of the larger railroad reference centers in the world. Holding more then 100,000 prototype photos, more than 50,000 modeling, prototype and historical society magazines and more then 5,000 books the Kalmbach Library is a great resource for hobbyists of prototype railroading.
A few resources that the NMRA makes available to its members include:
- Access to the Kalmbach Memorial Library, perhaps the best resource available on railroads and model railroads
- Fellowship with other modelers and a monthly magazine
- Access to Regional and National conventions
- Access to the Members’ Aid Program forum, where you can discuss tribal knowledge of model trains as well as the Data Sheets for existing train specifications
Are you looking for more information about building and operating a model railroad ? The Model Railroader website offers many helpful tips and ideas for getting started with your model railway, building scenery, landscaping and plenty of other information.
Visit http://www.themodelrailroader.com to get your free copy of our special course “Model Railroad Design Secrets".