Reference Material

On this page you will find a listing of all known catalogs, books, and S-scale magazines (both print and digital, with links to article indexes). The NASG's Mobley Library can provide copies of magazine articles, and has other features (NASG membership required).

Contact person: webmaster


Scenery Unlimited produces a Walthers-style catalog that lists almost all S-scale products available (at least through distributors and dealers). It covers all flavors of S-scale modeling. This $17.95 catalog can be ordered via mail, fax, or by calling in with your credit card.

For their first catalog of 2018, Lionel decided to incorporate all of their product lines into one large one. The S-scale products start on page 200, and the online document doesn't provide a direct link to that page, so you literally have to scroll through all the pages online (or start at the back and work your way backwards). The NASG's promotions committee has contacted Lionel about this issue, and so Lionel has generated a copy of the catalog covering just the American Flyer product line. You can download that copy here. Similarly, they have made available the 2018 Catalog #2.

The 2018 Volume 2 catalog was released in August 2018, and can be viewed or downloaded from this Lionel web site page. The S-scale products start on page 68 (again, scroll to the end first and then page backwards).

MTH's catalog is also available online. Through their web site you may order a printed copy. Authorized dealers may have printed copies in their stores. The catalog is dated 2013, because they don't release a new catalog until all items covered in that catalog have actually been released. The last items (the F3 and turnouts) were released in the summer of 2017, so we are expecting a new catalog any day now.

American Models has their products listing on their web site, but they will mail you a printed catalog for $10. Generally, if you have bought a product directly from them recently, they will mail you a free copy of their catalog when it is updated.

B.T.S. has their catalog available online, which you can order in printed format for $8. It lists all their kits and their detailing parts in all the scales they carry.

For those who enjoy collecting older A.C. Gilbert A.F. catalogs, they are available in print versions from various sources, and RFGCO sells PDF versions.


© Kalmbach

Kalmbach's "Greenberg's American Flyer Pocket Price Guide". This guide covers current market values of original A.C. Gilbert and, later, Lionel American Flyer products. It is updated every other year.

© TM Books & Video

The "American Flyer Price & Rarity Guide" provides in-depth analysis of pricing trends for A.C. Gilbert and Lionel American Flyer products. Originally released in 2004, this second edition was released in 2012. Note that this company also sells the Kalmbach guide (above), so you can order both at the same time for savings in shipping, if your local hobby store doesn't carry these.

© Thomas S Barker

The "Gilbert American Flyer S Gauge Operating and Repair Guide" book is now in its third edition. This book covers how to mechanically and cosmetically restore your A.F. cars and engines, as well as accessories, by an author who has real-world experience.

© Thomas S Barker

The "Gilbert American Flyer S Gauge Operating & Repair Guide: Volume 2" continues from the first volume (above) with more details, new information, and an index to content provided in both volumes. These are a "must have" if you are new to collecting or operating A.F. trains.

© Bibliographic Press

The "Gilbert American Flyer Instruction Book" is a re-release of the original 1952 book published by A.C. Gilbert themselves. It offers information about how to operate and maintain your A.F. trains and how to build A.F. layouts.

© Krause Publications

The "Standard Catalog of American Flyer Trains" book was released in 2007 and covers the pre-WWII American Flyer HO- and O-gauge-compatible trains, and the post-war S-scale products produced by A.C. Gilbert.

© Trainrefs

The "A.C. Gilbert's Postwar American Flyer S-Gauge Reference Manual" was released in 2001. It provides detailed information about how to perform repairs on A.F. products. It features photos that are actual size in the book.

© Heimburger House

The "A.C. Gilbert's Famous American Flyer Trains" provides historical information about A.C. Gilbert and his company's American Flyer S-scale trains.


The "Complete Service Manual for American Flyer Trains" was written by the owner of K-Line Trains. It features wiring diagrams, schematics, repair, and operating instructions for American Flyer products. This book was published a long time ago, so it might be hard to find and pricey.

© Friedman

"American Flyer: Classic Toy Trains" provides an illustrated guide to the American Flyer product history.

© Heimburger House

"A.C. Gilbert's Heritage" offers one-of-a-kind product photos, a history of the Gilbert family, inside information, and the original price list from 1951.

S-scale Magazines

This is a complete listing of print and online magazines that cover S-scale solely or routinely, both current and old, in alphabetical order. The "Frequency" column indicates the number of issues published per year.

1:64 Modeling Guide
DEBenLLC Publications
2003 - 2008
Richard Bendever bought "S/Sn3 Modeling Guide" from Billy Wade, and renamed it
1:64 Modeling Guide
RLN Publishing
2008 - 2012
ceased, because it was financially un-sustainable
3/16 'S'cale Railroading
Ed Loizeaux
1989 - 1992
financially un-sustainable
Canadian S Scale Quarterly
Charles Hicks
1991 - 2013+
Classic Toy Trains
Kalmbach Publishing
1988 - present
toy train enthusiast; has S occasionally
Ken D. Mackenzie
1985 - 1989
NMRA S-scale SIG; "scale" modeling only
Narrow Gauge and Short Line Gazette
White River Productions
1975 - present
occasionally has S narrow-gauge articles
Railroad Model Craftsman
White River Productions
1933 - present
occasionally has S articles; NASG's inside-the-cover ads
S Gauge Herald
Wally Collins
1960 - 1978
printing costs too high (Wally paid for the entire run of the magazine)
S Gauge Herald
Rollie Mercier
1986 - ????
S Gauge Herald
Rollie Mercier
1994 - ????
restarted again
S Gaugian
Heimburger House Publishing
1962 - present
longest-running S-only magazine
S/Sn3 Buyers Guide
Billy Wade
1993 - 1999
became "S/Sn3 Modeling Guide" in 1995
Slim Gauge News
1970 - 1974
started as Sn3 only, but grew to be general narrow-gauge, and morphed into The Narrow Gauge and Shore Line Gazette
Sn3 Modeler
Heimburger House Publishing
1984 - 2018
The Dispatch
1978 - present
requires NASG membership
The S Scale Resource
The Model Railroad Resource
2014 - present
digital, free; "scale" modeling only.

Magazine Indexes

NASG Dispatches

We have a complete article index for all of the publicly-available NASG Dispatch issues. You can find that in the Articles Index section of the Dispatch's Back Issues page.

Non-S Magazines

The indexes below only list S-scale articles (all flavors) in non-S magazines. If you are new to S and you happen to subscribe to any of these magazines, this would be a great way to learn more about what modeling in this scale is about.

External Indexes

These are external links to listings maintained by this web site's webmaster, but on his own, personal web site. These are by no means an exhaustive listing, but every little bit helps.

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