The principal purpose of the Operations Special Interest Group (OPSIG) is to discuss, develop and disseminate ways of operating model railroads to realistically emulate practices of the prototype. This includes sharing information on various methods of generating, moving and controlling traffic to heighten the feeling that our models are an active and integral part of the national rail transportation network, serving shippers and consignees throughout the nation. We also discuss and communicate information about the methods and procedures used by the real railroads and ways of most practically and realistically adapting them to the model world. So if you like to operate the railroad you've created, this is a place to learn more and find others with similar interests.

We publish a quarterly magazine, The Dispatcher's Office, which in addition to containing articles and information on railroad operations (both prototype and model), contains listings of operating layouts, sessions, and events that members are invited to attend. Back issues are available. In addition, the OPSIG web site serves as a clearinghouse for publicizing regional operating events and meetings, where layouts are open for guest operations. We also have a Facebook page and send out the Second Section email newsletter on a regular basis. 

What's New?

Payment Policies

In June 2022, the OpSIG eliminated its PO box, due to the high cost of maintenance. All payments to the OpSIG must be made electronically and we no longer accept mailed payments. Checks can get lost and stolen. Bounced checks cost us both time and money to recover the bad payments. 

In the membership purchase/renewal system, you can use a PayPal account or you can use a credit card without first creating a PayPal account. In either case, OpSIG does not receive or store any of your credit card information. This is the safest and fastest way to make your payment. 

If you need to send a manual PayPal payment to the OpSIG, make sure you send it to payments@opsig.org. This address is used for purchase of the Compendium book and printed back issues. 


My Railroads and Railroad Directory Feature

In the past, the membership application included space to let people enter their personal railroad information, as well as club railroad information. In order to allow more detail and to simplify the membership application, personal and club railroads are now managed under a new My Railroads feature. To help describe your railroad, there are a lot more fields available to describe your railroad and your operations scheme. You can also add photos of your railroad, as well as links to your social media and websites. 

After you've added your railroad, it will appear in the Railroad Directory, which is restricted to members of the OpSIG.