Membership inquiries

The below is general information, for questions and/or more details please use our contact form.


We would love for you to visit our club and discuss membership. Our member meetings are Friday (except Holidays) from about 7-11 pm, and Sundays 1-5 pm. We are open the Second Sunday of every month except May from 1-5 pm for our public open house. The first Friday of the month is our monthly business meeting, when we discuss general club business and members vote on any actions, e.g. what fan trip to take. The third Friday is reserved as an "entertainment" night, for any type of club member presentation or just to watch a video from our library, although members still run trains as well.


The club is located at 225 W. Saratoga in downtown Baltimore, the 200 West block is between Howard street (the light rail runs up Howard at that point in the city) and Park Ave. Saratoga is the block north of the Lexington Market light rail stop.  The club is on the third floor above Grandma's candle shop, the door is on the left side of the building, we only have stair access.  If visiting on a Friday night, please make sure we know you are coming and call when you arrive so someone can let you in.


We operate the HO layout using an NCE DCC system, so all locomotives must be DCC equipped. The HO layout is a double track mainline with one major yard and several industries, and passenger stations. The layout models the area from Baltimore to Wheeling, WV, although we have Baltimore landmarks we don't have an exact model of Baltimore. The only equipment restrictions are metal wheels and kadee compatible couplers, you can run any time period and any roadname, the club's railroad is known as the Chesapeake and Western.  The club also has a HOn3 Narrow Gauge line called the High Oak and Northern.  Additionally there is a trolley system in the city and an interurban connection from the city to a rural coal mining town.


The O-scale layout is 2-rail and set in the steam/diesel transition era, metal wheels and kadee couplers are required. The layout is a single track mainline running through a rural setting from the fictious town of Piedmont. The club's railroad is known as the Allegheny Northern. The O-scale also has a trolley system running the length of the layout powered off the overhead wire.


The club attends the Great Scale Model Train show and the Greenberg's Great Train and Toy show at the Maryland state fairgrounds in Timonium. We display and run our Timesaver switching challenge layout as well as selling items donated to the club.  We also attempt to have an annual fan trip to the various tourist railroads in the area.


The application fee is $30 and membership is $120 per year for full membership, which is payable in two installments if desired. Other membership categories are available for younger (under 18) and those who only can visit the club a few times a year. We currently have a board imposed assessment of $80 per year due to our financial status.  When you join in part way through a year the dues are pro-rated. Your application fee goes towards the first dues payment. We have a three month probationary period for a new prospective member to get to know the club and members to get to know them.  It is mainly to find out if someone is really interested in the hobby and our organization, we have people apply for membership and then never see them again.

Baltimore Society of Model Engineers