Instructions, Suggestions, Helpful Hints and Tips

Blogging is about connecting with model railroad people. For me, blogging is essentially a relationship with model train hobbyist and collectors. Two important elements of any relationship are purpose and connection. Information, expertise, and opinions are readily available from an endless variety of sites, that produce amazing model railroad content for the hobbyist to the collector.
Glossaries of model railroading, a complete list of terms. You will find that model railroaders talk in their own language. Here's a glossary list of model railroad culture related definitions so you can really master this hobby, and talk their jargon.
Train Standards 
Standards apply to all toy train and related accessory items as guidance to encourage usage of common terminology when describing the category of grading condition. All grading standards pertain to condition of finish. 
Original trains are rated from C-10 to C-1:
  •  C-10 Mint-Brand New 
  •  C-9 Factory New    
  •  C-8 Like New-complete-all original 
  •  C-7 Excellent-all original 
  •  C-6 Very Good-may have minor parts replaced 
  •  C-5 Good-signs of wear 
  •  C-4 Fair 
  •  C-3 Poor 
  •  C-2 Restoration Required 
  •  C-1 Junk 
Restored Refinished Trains:
  •  R-5 Professional Grade-exact match of color, gloss, wiring, parts 
  •  R-4 Very Good-noticeable color or finish differences 
  •  R-3 Good-can show wear 
  •  R-2 Fair-Non-professional, non-authentic wiring or color 
  •  R-1 Poor
The complete Grading Standards follows:
Train Scales
Scalesare standardized worldwide by any hobbyist and organizations. A model train's scale (1:64) is the relationship between its size (ratio between the real world and the model train) Gauge is the distance between a track's rails. In model railroading, beginners sometimes interchange the term scale and gauge. Most serious modelers are careful to use the terms correctly.
1:12 Large Scale
1:13.7 7/8 inch scale
1:20.3 G, Three-Foot Gauge on Gauge 1 Track
1:22.5 LGB and Bachman
1:24 Half scale
1:29 Aristo-Craft, USA Trains, standard gauge on #1 gauge
1:32 I scale
1:48 O scale
1:64 S scale
1:87.1 HO scale
1:120 TT scale
1:160 N scale
1:220 Z scale
Train Displays
Displays is largely a matter of personal preference and the amount of space you have available. There are many types of model train displays to consider from freelance, prototypical, switching, or small module. Model train displays is in the emagination of the display builder, but the layout design should always define some sense of realism.
Software is a written model railroad layout program of procedures or rules and associated documentation pertaining to the operation of a computer system. 
More Model Railroad Software
MiTrains is an inventory program specifically for model railroaders and rail fans.   Download – USD: $50.  OS: Windows.
RRTrains 2000 is a small program used to create a detailed inventory of your model railroad collection.  USD: FREE.  OS: Win95 to Vista.  Win7 unstated. 
SofTrak is the easiest to use and most complete solution for managing your collection of railroad equipment. It is designed for use on Macintosh or Windows computers. USD: $60, OS: Mac OSX and WinXP... requires Filemaker Pro database.
TrackMyTrains is a comprehensive database system designed especially for model railroading enthusiasts and collectors. USD: $30/year, Web Application.
TrainMinder has optional paid modules adding Lionel and American Flyer images, data and prices.  USD: $40-85, OS: Win98 to Win7.  
TrainTracker offers very extensive optional  modules including, MTH, K-Line, Pre, Post and Modern Lionel and American Flyer data.  USD: $29-130, OS: Win 98 to WinXP. 
YardOffice tracks motive and rolling stock with custom notes, photos and DCC codes. Free limited version or registerd USD: $27 w/ 1 year updates.  OS: Win98 and up.  Also works in iMac Windows partition.
Easy Model Railroad Inventory is designed to inventory all of your model railroad rolling stock, locomotives and cars, the structures, electronic equipment, book collection.  Download USD: FREE, OS: Windows. 
Model Railroading Track Planning
Model Railroading Layout Lighting
Model Railroading /Train Bench-work
Model Railroading / Train Backdrops
Model Railroading / Laying and Cleaning Track
Model Railroad Wiring
Model Railroad Scenery, People & Models
Model Railroad Structures
Model Railroad Equipment
Model Railroad Train Weathering 
Weathering refers to making a model trains and accessories look exposed to elements by simulating wear on real trains, equipment and structures. Trains and rail cars in desert areas may be subjected to sandstorms which give an etching affect. Model trains and  cars may have fuel stains on them, an also along roadbed areas. In some cases, evidence of repairs to dents,  such as freshly painted areas, or replace parts on the cars.
Model Railroad Train Operations
Model Railroad Resources
Model Railroad Supplies
Model Railroad Wiring Diagrams