All about the community of model railroading and rail enthusiasm


Surface Transportation Board takes next step toward adopting latest proposed reciprocal switching rule

November 9, 2023

Class 1 Railroads, News

A new reciprocal switching rule proposed by the Surface Transportation Board would entitle shippers to relief for poor service. - Cowcatcher Magazine

By TIM BLACKWELL/Cowcatcher Magazine The Surface Transportation Board has begun weighing comments from shippers and railroads regarding a proposed rule that would give rail customers access to reciprocal switching as a remedy for poor service. STB unanimously voted in September on The Notice of Proposed …

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Stadler unveils first hydrogen passenger train bound for San Bernardino County Transit Authority at APTA EXPO

Stadler presented its first hydrogen passenger train that will deliver to the San Bernardino County Transit Authority for the first time in the U.S. at APTA EXPO in Orlando earlier this month. The Swiss railcar maker followed by announcing an agreement for four hydrogen-powered trains, …

October 23, 2023

Model railroad industry recognizes inventor of Kadee’s ‘whisker’ centering systems, Amherst show director

The Model Railroad Industry Division of the Hobby Manufacturers Association inducted its newest Hall of Fame member and recognized the 2023 Bobbye Hall Award winner in August at the NMRA National Train Show. Michael N. Dunham of Kadee Quality Products Co. is the 52nd member …

September 8, 2023

Amtrak, Texas Central enter into agreement to study feasibility of Dallas-to-Houston high-speed rail line

With the help of Amtrak, Texas’ high-speed rail plan appears to be back on track. Texas Central Partners (“Texas Central”) and Amtrak said earlier this month that they are seeking opportunities to advance planning and analysis work associated with the proposed Dallas-to-Houston 205-mph high-speed rail …

August 18, 2023

Current Issue: November/December 2023


Model railroad manufacturers are intent on bulking up their locomotives, but they aren't sending them to the gym. HO-scale long-haul and switch engines recently released have been upgraded to meet demand for more pulling power. At least two manufacturers have repowered motors and added a few more ounces for dependability to move long cuts of cars.


For the first time in its history, the Arizona Eastern Railway has a classification yard that will augment capacity from a storage loop track in Lordsburg, NM. The new Summit Yard, a joint project between AZER and Freeport-McMoRan, adds 24,000 feet of track to handle more cars for interchange with Union Pacific. 


InterMountain Railway Co. has released an updated version of its N-scale EMD F7A and F7B locomotives that are among the best-detailed "covered wagons" ever produced. See our product review.


A Colorado modeler who picked up modular railroading a few years ago scores big at the 2023 NMRA National Convention. Altoona N-scalers salute the late founder of an annual weekend event by establishing a new award recognizing excellence. And the Nebraska Central Railroad will begin hauling crushed soybeans and soybean oil, to be used in producing renewable energy, next year.

Order Back Issues

Miss the May/June 2023 issue or other Cowcatcher editions? Be sure to check out our Back Issues page for any issues you may have missed. We have expanded descriptions for issues published beginning in 2007. Click here to order.

2024 State of Model Railroading

Since 2019, Cowcatcher Magazine has been taking the pulse of the model railroad industry with its annual survey, and this year is no exception. Readers decide what's good and not so good about the hobby, and we present the results in the 2024 State of Model Railroading survey in the January/February 2024 issue. Make your vote count! Find out how here.

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Product News & Review

Rapido Trains HO NSC Bulkhead Flatcar

The Cowcatcher reviews Rapido Trains' newly released HO-scale 66-foot Bulkhead Flatcar. Check out other Product Reviews as well as Product News.

Railroad in Focus

Cowcatcher Magazine periodically features short lines and regional railroads that roam the U.S. rail network. Features include color photographs and maps, as well as an overview of operations and latest business trends. See here the railroads we've focused.