RMD Boy Scout Programs
The Rocky Mountain Division of the Train Collectors Association offers the opportunity for Boy Scouts to work on and complete the requirements for the Railroading Merit Badge at our Spring and Winter holiday shows.


  • You can complete the following requirements for Railroading Merit Badge at RMD train shows.
    Requirement No. 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, and 8a(3).
    [ RR Merit Badge Requirements ]

  • If you have completed any of these or other requirements prior to the show, please bring your completed work or a written explanation to satisfy the requirement for review by a counselor.

  • There will be several displays throughout the show to help you complete the requirements.

  • Counselors will be on hand to review your work.

  • Current and retired railroad workers will be on hand to discuss the requirements and what you can do to be safe around railroads.

  • Wear your Scout uniform for free admission to the show. Parents and Scout families will be admitted for a discount by showing current Scout identification. Admission is good for both days. This offer is also extended to Cub Scouts, Girl Scouts, Explorer, Venture, Sea, or Air Scouts.

  • Come prepared to have fun and learn about Railroading and the fascinating world of trains toy and prototype.

  • Bring paper and pencil to prepare your work or bring your previously completed written work to be reviewed by a counselor.

  • All gauges of toy trains will be represented from a variety of manufacturers.

  • Multiple operating displays and hand-on opportunities abound.

  • Come spend the day learning about Railroading, safety, and the fascinating hobby of model railroading.

  • Scouts: Go to the merit badge table next to Operation Lifesaver and Kids Korner areas to get your information package. Your last stop will be back at the Merit Badge table to finish the paperwork

  • The program may also satisfy some of the requirements for Cub Scouts and Girl Scout skill awards for hobbies and travel.

Have fun in Scouting!

For questions or more information, please contact the RMD BSA Coordinator via the 'Contact RMD' page.

Railroading Merit Badge Requirements

1. Do THREE of the following: 
   a. Name three types of modern freight trains. Explain why unit trains are more efficient than mixed freight trains. 
   b. Name one class I or regional railroad. Explain what major cities it serves, the location of major terminals, service 
       facilities and crew change points, and the major commodities it carries. 
   c. Using models or pictures, identify 10 types of railroad freight or passenger cars. Explain the purpose of each type of car. 
   d. Explain how a modern diesel or electric locomotive develops power. Explain the terms dynamic braking and radial steering trucks. 

2. Do the following: 
    a. Explain the purpose of Amtrak. Explain, by the use of a timetable, a plan for making a trip between two cities at least 500 miles 
        apart. List the times of departure and arrival at your destination, the train number, and name, and the type of service you want. 
    b. List and explain the various forms of public/mass transit using rail. 

3. Do ONE of the following: 
    a. Name four departments of a railroad company. Describe what each department does. 
    b. Tell about the opportunities in railroading that interest you most and why. 
    c. Name four rail support industries. Describe the function of each one. 
    d. With your parent's and counselor's approval, interview someone employed in the rail industry. Learn what that person does and 
        how this person became interested in railroading. Find out what type of schooling and training are required for this position. 

4. Explain the purpose of Operation Lifesaver and its mission. 

5. Do THREE of the following: 
    a. List five safety precautions that help make trains safer for workers and passengers. 
    b. Explain to your merit badge counselor why railroad rights-of-way are important for safety. 
    c. List 10 safety tips to remember when you are near a railroad track (either on the ground or on a station platform) or aboard a train. 
    d. Tell your counselor about the guidelines for conduct that should be followed when you are near or on railroad property. Explain the
        dangers of trespassing on railroad property. 
    e. Tell what an automobile driver can do to safely operate at car at grade crossings, and list three things an automobile driver should 
        never do at a grade crossing. 
    f. Tell how to report a malfunction of grade crossing warning devices. 
    g. List safety precautions a pedestrian should follow at a public crossing. 

6. Explain the appearance and meaning of the following warning signs and devices: 
    advance warning sign, pavement markings, crossbucks, flashing red lights, crossing gates. 

7. Do EACH of the following: 
    a. Explain how railroad signals operate and show two basic signal types using color or configuration. 
    b. Explain the meaning of three horn signals. 
    c. Describe a way to signal a train for an emergency stop. 
    d. Explain the use and function of the EOTD (end-of-train device) or FRED (flashing rear end device), used on the last car of most trains. 

8. Select ONE of the following special-interest areas and complete the requirements. 
    a. Model Railroading 
       With your parent's consent and counselor's approval, do TWO of the following: 
          (1) Draw a layout of your own model railroad or one that could be built in your home. Design a point-to-point track or loop with different 
               routings.  Include one of the following: turnaround or terminal or yard or siding. 
          (2) Build one model railroad car kit or one locomotive kit. 
          (3) Name the scale of four popular model railroad gauges. Identify the scale of four model cars or locomotives. 
          (4) Locate the Web site of four model railroad-related manufacturers or magazine publishers. Print information on their products and 
               services and discuss the information with your counselor. 
          (5) Build one railroad structure (from scratch or using a kit), paint and weather the structure, mount it on you layout or diorama, and 
               make the surrounding area on the diorama scenic. 
          (6) Alone or with others, build a model railroad or modular layout including ballast and scenery. Make electrical connections and 
                operate a train. Describe what you enjoyed most. 
          (7) Participate in a National Model Railroad Association switching contest on a timesaver layout and record your time. 

    b. Railfanning
       With your parent's and counselor's approval, do TWO of the following: 
          (1) Visit a railroad museum, historical display, or a prototype railroad-sponsored public event. With permission, photograph, 
               videotape, or sketch items of interest. Explain what you saw and describe your photos, sketches, or videotape. 
          (2) Purchase tickets and ride a scenic or historic railroad. Under supervision, photograph the equipment and discuss with your 
               counselor the historical significance of the operation. 
          (3) Locate the Web site of four rail historical groups, then find information on the history of the rail preservation operations and 
               purpose of each group. Talk with a member of one of the groups and find out how you might help. 
          (4) Plan a trip by rail between two points. Obtain a schedule and explain when the train should arrive at two intermediate points. 
               Purchase the tickets and make the trip. Explain to your counselor what you saw. 

How to save the badge requirements as a PDF file