The Whatcom Skagit Model Railroad Club (WSMRC, formerly the Bellingham Society of Model Engineers or BSME) creates, develops, operates, and maintains a public model railroad display evocative of the historical relationship of railroads in the development of the Pacific Northwest. The club currently operates an HO scale layout and an N scale layout.
The WSMRC maintains a library of materials (books, periodicals, and video tapes) about regional railroads and model railroading for use by members and the general public. Members conduct research into the history of railroads in the Pacific Northwest.
Interested in Membership?
We welcome your interest in our club and feel you should know some aspects of our group which may not be readily apparent from just visiting us on our open house dates.
We are a Digital Command Control club (DCC) and prohibit the use of Direct Current (DC) locomotives on our layouts. DCC provides us with the ability to project a more realistic operation experience, but it is certainly considerably more costly than the old DC locomotive concept used formerly. As such, our locomotives and train cars are expensive, with the value of some trains exceeding $1000. With this level of expense, the club simply cannot provide loaner equipment. As a club, we expect members to provide their own DCC locomotives and respect the property of other club members. Ownership of your own personal Digitrax compatible throttle device is required. In many ways, the best candidates for membership in this club already have their own DCC equipment and experience from another club or their own home layout.
Our layouts are extensive, complicated, sometimes confusing, and in some respects delicate. The tracks, scenery, bridges, buildings, and other layout details represent hundreds of hours of sometimes painstaking work. You will be expected to take reasonable care of these items and be prepared to compensate the club for damage you might cause. Operating on our layouts requires considerable manual dexterity and alertness. Please be forewarned that if you consider yourself clumsy, this club may not be for you.
Children under 18 must be accompanied and directly supervised by an adult.We frequently interact with the public with the expectation that there will be no foul language and members will exhibit a clean, hygienic, well groomed, personal presence. Intoxication and alcohol use have always been prohibited within our club.