JAN. 4th, 2025

40th Anniversary & Farewell


Zen and the NNL Western Nationals

"As for finding the meaning of life, simply sharing time and making new friends in the company of other modelers was trueth enough for most of us. Certainly hundreds of high-quality models, but the vast majority were built by enthusiastic modelers whose skills are still developing. They were there simply to show and share their work at an NNL, where all modelers are created equal."

-Car Modeler magazine, July 1998

If you're a die-hard model car builder, then the NNL West is one of those shows you look forward to every year (since 1985). If you live here in the bay area, it's a big national event right here in your back yard. If you're coming from other parts of the country it's a chance to get away from the bad winter weather and take in a great event in one of the most beautiful parts of the country at the same time. I'll never forget the guys from the MASSCAR model car club pulling grass from my front lawn and putting it in their pockets to take home! There is plenty to see and do in the area, there's the beautiful coast line, San Francisco, and the Wine Country. Friday there will be a special shop tour all day Friday where we will visit several bay area hot rod shops.

The NNL West is about a lot of things: it's about great looking model cars, it's about meeting old friends and meeting new ones, it's about maybe getting your model photographed for a magazine (have you seen the previous years coverage in the Scale Auto,Contest Cars, Model Cars, FineScale Modeler, Dedictated Scale auto Enthusiast and Model Car Builder magazines?), most of all it's about having fun. During the day you can check out the door prize table and maybe win a prize. You can also walk through the NNL West Model Expo held in the same huge hall as the NNL. Vendors come from all over the country bringing great deals on the latest aftermarket parts, NEW kits, or rare old kits! Modeler's save-up all year for this great chance to stock up on modeling goods!

The NNL West is a non-competitive event. The only two awards are the "Youth Modeler's Choice" award, and the "Adult Modelers Choice" award. But there will also be the NNL West "Staff Picks" again this year. I'm sure there will be others as the show draws closer (if your club is doing something special, email us and let us know!). Keep your eye on the "What's New" page and we'll let you know.

If it's your first time at NNL West let's give you a quick run down on what to do; first you'll want to buy tickets at the box office located in the lobby ($20.00 for adults, children under 12 yrs old free, ticket sales start about 8:30am, & doors open at 9am), make your way to the front door in the "A" HALL this year where NNL volunteers will take your ticket and give you numbered placemats to put under your models, take your models to a table and display them. You'll also receive door prize tickets but you might want to buy extra (there's a lot of door prizes to go around, but the more tickets you have, the better chance you have to win). Check out the swap meet area.

At 3pm the last door prize drawing and awards ceremony will be held. Please stick around for the awards ceremony and cheer for your fellow modelers. But, as soon as the awards ceremony is over please pack your models as quickly as possible and leave the hall. The volunteer staff needs to clean the room and be cleared out by 4pm. Your cooporation would be greatly appreciated. There's an informal celibration dinner at the Sizzler Steak House down the street after the show.


"Modelers from all over the country have learned that few events attract such a wide variety of indivuals, models, vendors and ideas as the "NNL West".

-Scale Auto Enthusiast, June 1995

"NNL WEST was impressive as it always is with a number of tables of very exquisite builds. Lots of street machines, showroom stock, muscle cars, drag and stock cars, not very many customs and not many youth entries. It's amazing the amount of talent exhibited and the off-the-charts workmanship. It's too much to see and do in 7 hours. The NNL is a must-attend event for those who build car models or those who just want to see what's out there. The show is traditionally held towards the end of January and folks will have quite a while to wait before the next event takes place." 

-Doane Yawger, Model News 2023

"With the coverage of the NNL West in this issue, it makes next year's a bitter sweet end to the show that was a catalyst for so many builders on the west coast for so long. It may be the last NNL West, but it will never be forgotten. Get your plans ready now for that show"

-Model Cars, March/April 2024

Model Cars Magazine

"This is a Fabulous Model Car Show, not a Competition, I can not encourage Model Car builders of all skill levels to attend this show enough. There are tons of vendors and a great relaxed , sharing atmosphere that will give You wonderful memories. Thanks to all the people who put this show on for continuing to carry on the tradition."

-Chris K. Hale




Speeking of volunteers; this show is manned by model car enthusiasts who are there strictly because they love the model car hobby and want to give something back to the hobby. The volunteers come from all over California, Oregon, and Washington, and the Unted States to help, so if you have any questions or need help with anything just ask for a staff member, and don't forget to shake their hands and say "thank you" at the end of the day!

WE NEED VOLUNTEERS! If you can help please contact us as soon as possible.

2025 Themes are:


Special table for NNL WEST past winners, NNL WEST giveaway cars, and NNL WEST history you would like to share.

NNL West Registration Form - Click Here

NNL WEST Flyer - Click Here



We look forward to

"Seeing you in Santa Clara"


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