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Avon Bridge... wonderful...

Posted by rockershovel , 10 August 2018 - - - - - - · 275 views

I really must get a dashcam.  
Off to S Wales this weekend for my annual dose of Sportster racing. Actually not the only time I ride this bike but the only place it gets a “proper” outing on its natural habitat, a half-mile trotting track. Where’s Bruce Brown when you need him?  
So I drove over the Avon Bridge heading West, with the evening...


Back where I hadn’t expected to be...

Posted by rockershovel , 17 June 2018 - - - - - - · 170 views

I’m out on site again, on a rather spectacular location overlooking the Solent. This is my first “site” job in the U.K. for almost ten years, back on a drilling site after a long time away from that field, so I’ll see how it goes.  
The specialist contractor, my employer, are the British arm of a Dutch contractor and rather unexpectedly, I find I’m m...


Declining standards...

Posted by rockershovel , 27 May 2018 - - - - - - · 248 views

Had a rather disappointing lunch today, in several ways. Ventured down to Cambridge to see someone, and stopped at a pub near Duxford for lunch. I’ve been here occasionally over the years, but shan’t be going again... 
The once-rural setting of this former coaching inn has been progressively eroded by piecemeal light industrial development, and it no...



Posted by rockershovel , 13 May 2018 - - - - - - · 193 views

Heard an unusual aircraft noise, went out into the garden and saw a Lancaster bomber approach from the North, bank and turn, and head off North again.  
From BBMF at Coningsby, I suppose... quite something to see!



Posted by rockershovel , 13 May 2018 - - - - - - · 145 views

My good wife spelt the evening watching the blizzard of pyrotechnics and strobes which after a while, I realised was Eurovision... Ho hum, business as usual.  
I did watch the voting, more or less, it’s no fun any more. The new voting format seems designed to gloss over the more obvious politicking and settling of old scores between “far-off countrie...


Wonderful stuff!

Posted by rockershovel , 17 April 2018 - - - - - - · 115 views

Stranded in a Premier Inn in Preston, writing pre-contract documents for a cable landfall job, thought I’d watch some tv. Browsing around the sort of selection of channels on offer in such places, I hit on Voyage To The Bottom If The Sea!  
I haven’t seen this in years! Glorious cheesy 60s adventure sci-fi, utter hokum with the production values of a...


Ethical tea!

Posted by rockershovel , 07 April 2018 - - - - - - · 113 views

Just been into town on various odd errands, and had tea and cake in the Church in Cathedral Square.  
Cup of tea, very nice piece of walnut and coffee cake, £1.90 including the rather glorious setting. No organ recital this morning, apparently. Why anyone goes in the Starbucks opposite, I have no idea.  
Also found a new barber in Priestgate. My...


more 12" = 1' , it seems...

Posted by rockershovel , 19 February 2018 - - - - - - · 132 views

people have definitely woken up after Xmas, now. The phone has been ringing all over the place and I've just picked up a couple of months' work in 12' = 1' scale, Quality Engineer for platform doors on the CrossRail project. It's only a short job, closing out at the end of the project as the original team move on - but I don't doubt that it will be very b...


6N ... more malarkey...

Posted by rockershovel , 04 February 2018 - - - - - - · 85 views

Sorry to say it, but I think Italy are going to be in for a long, hard tournament. Seven tries against, a disallowed try from an obvious forward pass in what looked like a set-piece move which didn’t execute; an obvious foul that would certainly have been a penalty try if it hadn’t been given anyway, and not one, but two consecutive muffed short kicks. It...


6N time again..

Posted by rockershovel , 04 February 2018 - - - - - - · 65 views

It’s “that” time of year again... I quite enjoyed yesterday’s offering. 
Scotland appear to need a sustained search for their “thinking cap”, they were obviously missing some important part of their preparations against Wales. The chaps in red looked good, though, loved the interception try and AWJ and Leigh Halfpenny are always good value. I’ve neve...


Sunday tv (2)

Posted by rockershovel , 21 January 2018 - - - - - - · 116 views

Saw the trailer for “Biggest Little Railway”. Still feeling mellow after three episodes of Onedin Line followed by gammon and veg for dinner, opted for a hour in the garage and a soak in the bath while the wife watched Call The Midwife..


Sunday afternoon finesse...

Posted by rockershovel , 21 January 2018 - - - - - - · 103 views

Played a finesse this weekend, spotted that “Onedin Line” was on and steered the good lady wife to that. Hearty Mummerset accents, swelling orchestral soundtrack, occasional tall ships footage and a blessed lack of ill-bred people accusing each other of murder, great stuff!


MMI 2-8-2s - on the test track

Posted by rockershovel , 18 January 2018 - - - - - - · 186 views

Took both 2-8-2s to the Club test track this afternoon. Tried them on a NCE Powercab controller, the Gaugemaster was packed away as part of a general reorganisation that’s been in hand for some time.  
Very impressed with the slow running, in particular. Very steady and controllable. The brakes need thinking about, as does the regulator - I’ll have t...


On the buses....

Posted by rockershovel , 15 January 2018 - - - - - - · 184 views

My good wife appears to be plumbing new depths in her doze-in-front-of-ancient-sitcoms marathons, three consecutive episodes of On The Buses :P ... astonishing to think of Reg Varney’s sometime popularity...


Colorado 2-8-2s, now with sound!

Posted by rockershovel , 15 January 2018 - - - - - - · 301 views

I’ve just heard that my two MMI locos are ready for despatch, complete with DCC and sound. I’m really quite excited about this, partly because the job has been subject to a fair amount of “mission creep” due to developments in available hardware and software along the way 
Here they are https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=nW6r7ydm6k8&feature=youtu.be...


Turkey curry!

Posted by rockershovel , 30 December 2017 - - - - - - · 132 views

Just had the first turkey curry of the season, always something of a seasonal treat....


Christmas tree train

Posted by rockershovel , 26 December 2017 - - - - - - · 207 views

Put last year’s plastic toy train around the tree, to the amusement of various small nephews and nieces. No 1 Son dismantled the loco, placed a scrap of draught excluder over the speaker... lost one side of the “motion” .. now we have another similar train among the presents....


First World Problems..

Posted by rockershovel , 23 December 2017 - - - - - - · 130 views

No 1 Son came round yesterday with No 1 Grand-daughter, who certainly has a good set of lungs, on the evidence. She was apparently wearing her latest “Christmas outfit”, I’ve seen whole Third World relief appeals with less kit than this child ..... 
Cleared my desk at Vossloh Kiepe, having run out of budget and headcount. Ho hum. I’ve been to a coupl...


Change of scale..

Posted by rockershovel , 16 December 2017 - - - - - - · 173 views

So, the railway job ends next week, so that’s the end of working in 12”-1’ for the foreseeable future.  
Time for a break I think, the refurbishment of the club room is now complete so perhaps it’s test track time!

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