model train set on track

Reproduction Trains and Parts

To All Manufacturers and Vendors Who Sell Reproduction Trains and Parts at TCA Meets or Advertise Trains and Parts in TCA Publications

The Association requires that all reproduction parts that are major components and large enough to mark without damaging the piece be marked as a reproduction with either the manufacturer’s logo or “R” visible on a cursory examination. A “major” part is one that if missing would seriously detract from the item’s value. This includes complete locomotives, cars, accessories, etc.

To sell these reproduction trains and train parts at TCA meets or by ad in TCA publications, a Standards Committee Inspection Report must be completed by a Standards Committee member. If you have reproduction trains or train parts that have not been inspected, contact the Standards Committee to have an Inspection Report completed. A copy of the Report will then be filed with the Business Office and they will issue a Certificate of Compliance. The Certificate of Compliance must be displayed on your table at TCA meets. Ads in TCA publications must note your compliance with the Marking Standards in order to be published. (Revised procedure adopted July 1997)

Train Collectors Association Marking Standards

Enacted June 1981; Enforcement date June 1982; Revised October 1992.

Failure to properly mark reproduced parts and receive Standards Committee Certification will prohibit entry of those parts to any TCA meet or function, whether offered separately or installed on a train or accessory.

Marking of reproductions and replacement parts applies to ALL parts and reproductions appearing at any TCA meet or function. Exceptions may be requested by the parts manufacturer. Determination will be by the appropriate Subcommittee of the Standards Committee.

Acceptable markings in various materials are:

Aluminum extrusions: Acid etched or embossing as for sheet metal.

Brass plates, other metal plates, letterboard strips: Letter “R” denoting REPRODUCTION to be in lower right-hand corner on the exposed surface.

Cast parts: In the pattern.

Paper: Catalogs and other paper items to be identified with the word “Reproduction” with the Date and by Whom.

Plastics: In the pattern or die or by hot stamping. Replacement plastic shells to have 3/16 “R” or manufacturer’s logo on outside or inside.

Sheet metal: Embossing visible through both sides, or by a permanently attached embossed tag.

The above methods of marking shall be permanent in nature and visible on a cursory examination of the item.

Note of Caution: NO ONE can take an unmarked item into a meet. Items manufactured after June 1982 must be physically marked into the metal or plastic. Items manufactured prior to June 1982 must have the red REPRODUCTION label affixed. The marking regulations apply to the original manufacturer, his agent or representative, and to any subsequent purchaser.

Standards Subcommittees

Contact Robert Robinson 64-1098 for certification information.

Listed below are the subcommittees to which parts may be submitted for Certification of Markings. Manufacturers may request a general compliance certificate to avoid the submission of individual parts.

Steering (handling fakes & frauds)
Prewar Trains (Before 1942)
Postwar “0” (1946 -1969)
Modern (1970 – present)
Postwar American Flyer
Refinish Identification
Paint Identification

For Members of Full TCA Standards Committee, Go Here