Old Hickory Council - Hanging Rock District

Troop 444: Railroading Merit Badge






  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 locations 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 and formation of Amtrak. Explain, by the use of a timetable, a plan for making a
              trip by rail between two cities at least 500 miles apart. List the times of departure and arrival at your
              destination, the train number, and the type of service you want.
        B. List and explain the various forms of public/mass transit using rail as the fixed guide path.
  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 a 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 tyes using color and configuration.
        B. Explain the meaning of three whistle 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 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
            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 your layout or diorama, and make the surrounding area on a 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 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 historic 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.

Railroading Worksheets for use in working on these requirements

Boy Scout Oath

On my honor, I will do my best

To do my duty to God and my Country and to obey the Scout Law;

To help other people at all times;

To keep myself physically strong, mentally awake, and morally straight.

Boy Scout Law

A Scout Is...

A Scout tells the truth.
He keeps his promises.
Honesty is part of his code of conduct.
People can depend on him.
A Scout is true to his family, Scout leaders, friends, school, and nation.LOYAL
A Scout is concerned about other people. He does things willingly for others without pay or reward.HELPFUL
A Scout is a friend to all.
He is a brother to other Scouts.
He seeks to understand others.
He respects those with ideas and customs other than his own.
A Scout is polite to everyone regardless of age or position.
He knows good manners make it easier for people to get along together.
A Scout understands there is strength in being gentle.
He treats others as he wants to be treated.
He does not hurt or kill harmless things without reason.
A Scout follows the rules of his family, school, and troop.
He obeys the laws of his community and country.
If he thinks these rules and laws are unfair, he tries to have them changed in an orderly manner rather than disobey them.
A Scout looks for the bright side of things.
He cheerfully does tasks that come his way. He tries to make others happy.
A Scout works to pay his way and to help others.
He saves for unforeseen needs.
He protects and conserves natural resources.
He carefully uses time and property.
A Scout can face danger even if he is afraid.
He has the courage to stand for what he thinks is right even if others laugh at or threaten him.
A Scout keeps his body and mind fit and clean.
He goes around with those who believe in living by these same ideals.
He helps keep his home and community clean.
A Scout is reverent toward God.
He is faithful in his religious duties.
He respects the beliefs of others.