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Rule 1 and other guidelines


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I was just editing a feature for the April issue of BRM that mentions 'Rule 1' - namely "It's my railway, so I can run what I like." It made me wonder, if that's Rule 1, what should the other rules be for railway modellers? They don't have to be controversial, but what are your own golden rules? Share your thoughts with us and if we can, we'll condense the responses into a 'Ten Commandments of Railway Modelling' (or more if required!) as a bit of fun.

As an example of something similar in the cycling world, see Velominati's The Rules

 

Hope to see as many of you as possible at Doncaster Racecourse this weekend, but even if you're not there, have a great weekend and Happy Modelling.

 

All the best

 

Ben

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I used to get annoyed about causing minor damage to a new model (perhaps a screwdriver slipped as I was removing a body).  However, as the real railway isn't perfect, my rule now is to bear in mind that any accidental blemishes you make on your models will no doubt mimic the prototype.  So if for example you scratch the paintwork, don't fret; it happens to full scale trains! 

 

And of course we see some really bashed-up models now with weathering techniques, where "blemishes" have been added on purpose.

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How about for a rule 3 "There IS a prototype for everything" ? - you just have to look hard enough...

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Rule 4 If the small bit you have is really vital, it WILL suddenly exit your control with a ping sort of a noise, be heard to ricochet off one or two things close by and then disappear, claimed by the infernal carpet monster. The level of importance of said component is in direct proportion to both the speed it exits your tweezers and the ingenuity and/or illogicality of its final hiding place.

 

Rule 5 The carpet monster is building a quite respectable collection of your favourite scale model railway components.

 

All the best,

 

Castle

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Rule 5 The carpet monster is building a quite respectable collection of your favourite scale model railway components.

 

I'm pretty sure my carpet monster will have a finished model of Ropley long before I do!

 

As a personal rule, if it looks finished, it is. Leave it alone and don't fiddle with it!!

 

Another general rule could be 'No matter how accurate you think have made something, there will always be someone who can point out the bit you got wrong!'

 

Tom. 

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How about for a rule 3 "There IS a prototype for everything" ? - you just have to look hard enough...

Absolutely, as a OO modern image modeller I love the way that current operations give rise to a range of layout friendly prototypes - 3 Network Rail 37's running light, DRS 66 pulling one Mk3 for refurbishment, MPV with 7 OTA's in the middle, preserved 50's operating timetabled services, all prototypical....

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Rule 6 - they must be a bus crossing a bridge over the railway

And/or an Eddie Stobart lorry.....

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Great stuff so far - thanks for the responses. I think we can all sympathise with Rules 4 and 5!

 

Keep them coming!

 

Ben

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Not sure we can compete with the machismo of the Velominati rules (no disrespect, my son lives by them), but some of them could be used for modellers too, eg "Socks can be any damn colour you like".

 

Anyway, how about Rule 8: Always expect the worst. At the most critical point in your modelling session, three things may happen: (i) you'll run out of glue, (ii) a family member will burst open the door and ask where the vacuum cleaner is, or (iii) you'll suddenly remember you left the dog tied to a tree in the park. On the rare occasion where none of this happens, there will instead be an earthquake.

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Rule 9:    If you really - really - want a model of some unusual prototype, then you'll have to build it yourself.

 

Rule 10:    If you are forced down the road of building your own loco / rolling stock / multiple unit, you'll find that decent drawings - and most of the parts you need - are next to impossible to find (and prohibitively expensive if you do manage to find them) - and none of the parts fit together properly.

 

Rule 11:    If / when you finally finish your build, you'll find a well known RTR manufacturer offering a more accurate version of the same model at about a tenth of what it cost you to build your version. However, this doesn't necessarily mean that said RTR model will actually have been supplied to any shops ... .

 

Rule 12:    Who said there only had to be 10 of these rules?

 

 

Huw.

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On a slightly less cynical note than my previous suggestions:

 

Rule 13:    If you're modifying RTR models or kits, you can almost guarantee that some parts (or bit of them) will get damaged - enough to make them unusable in the build. Eg If you need to "cut & shut" coaches or DMUs - and cut along the edges of windows or doors - you'll lose some material from the waste side of the cut - if you are actually able to reuse this piece elsewhere, you'll first need to add extra bits of material to rebuild the edge - it might be better just to cut this section back to something you can use elsewhere!

 

Rule 14:    A number of the pieces you discard as a result of such damage might turn out to have other uses (possibly even unexpected uses). Taking the cut & shut coaches in the previous paragraph as an example, you might find that discarded bodyshell, side, or end, sections turn out to be useful as jigs for working out the dimensions of (and positions of cutouts in) new interiors to fit into the coaches you're working on.

 

 

Huw.

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Rule 15: When you decide to embark on a modelling/detailling project you discover that a key supplier has recently stopped making the parts you need, through lack of interest, retirement, or worse.

 

Rule 16: You will never have any useful leftover bits in stock to complete a model, unless you work for a magazine where the correct leftover bit you need is always available! ;)

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Rule 17: After hours and hours of research, then building (then leaving the model for awhile to see if the illusive photo of the type and era of the vehicle to be modelled had a left or right-hand 'spridget' fitted) and then taking the plunge (after a three month cooling off period) painting, applying transfers, weathering etc (to the best standard you have ever done it to date) etc. The illusive critical photo (of the specific detail that you were after) appears, as if by magic, a week after completion of the model, and yes as sure as eggs is eggs, you have applied the wrong type of spridget, the wrong way around and on the wrong side! 

 

And, akin to Rule 1.....Rule 1a (or Rule 18)?

 

Rule 18: 'A recognisable model of the prototype running in a credible background' (the late, great, Jack Ray, in pr

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May I - belatedly make a slight revision ? : -

 

Rule 11a:    If / when you've ALMOST completed your scratchbuild, you'll find a little known kit manufacturer offering a more accurate version of the same model - thought his lead trimes are notoriously lengthy ... .

 

Rule 11b:    If / when, eventually, you've ALMOST completed your kit build you'll find a well known RTR manufacturer offering a more accurate version of the same model at about a tenth of what it cost you to build your version.

 

Rule 11c:    If / when you've decided to bite the bullet and you've scrapped your scratchbuilt and kit built models you discover that said RTR model has already sold out  ... .

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On 04/08/2016 at 14:27, Wickham Green said:

May I - belatedly make a slight revision ? : -

 

Rule 11a:    If / when you've ALMOST completed your scratchbuild, you'll find a little known kit manufacturer offering a more accurate version of the same model - thought his lead trimes are notoriously lengthy ... .

 

Rule 11b:    If / when, eventually, you've ALMOST completed your kit build you'll find a well known RTR manufacturer offering a more accurate version of the same model at about a tenth of what it cost you to build your version.

 

Rule 11c:    If / when you've decided to bite the bullet and you've scrapped your scratchbuilt and kit built models you discover that said RTR model has already sold out  ... .

Rule 11d If/ when you have scrapped your scratchbuilt and kit-built models and the RTR model is available, you soon find that the RTR model isn't to the specifications that the model you had intentionally been building from scratch or from a kit was (that is to say, the similar RTR model you could buy, isn't actually the prototype you wanted).

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I think Rule 2 should be: All model railway enthusiasts must attend a training course entitled 'How to persuade your partner that it wasn't that expensive if you don't include P&P'  

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Not rules but two guidelines:

 

My first trainsets were a Trix bakelite tracked 3 rail electric set and a Hornby 0 gauge clockwork set.  Both employed 0-4-0 locos hauling short tinplate coaches and wagons with little detail. So whilst I read the criticism of the latest RTR model or a kit or scratch built model, I don't lose sight of how far we have come in my lifetime.

 

Similarly, I try generally to follow reasonably realistic practice when building my layout, but it also needs to look attractive to my wife and myself and to be interesting to visiting grandchildren.

 

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