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Ian Morgan

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  1. I found the Merg hardware ServoSet unit (Kit 76A) a good investment, small and portable for grovelling about under baseboards, and utterly reliable and simple to use. I am now building a ServoSet3 that is described by Duncan Greenwood in the Merg forum and Wiki. This is Arduino based with a colour touch screen display and can be used for setting end stops and speed when connected to the Merg Servo4, plus the CANSERVO8, CANMIO-SVO and CANMIO-Universal. Just having some problems loading the software/firmware, but it looks promising.
  2. The significance of the black guy (actual name Doris Miller) manning the AA gun during the attack at Pearl Harbour, is that, at that time, the US Military did not allow black servicemen to use guns. They could normally only work in the engine room or in the mess in the Navy. So when Miller took over firing an unmanned AA gun, and then went on to bring several injured sailors to safety, he rightly earned himself the Navy Cross. Actually, many black American sailors joined the submarine service because, although nominally they worked in the mess, on a submarine every crew member is trained to do any job, just in case. These stories are far more interesting (and socially relevant) than the Beeb's WOTW.
  3. Three hours wasted. Not just the sepia tones, but the blurry, echo effect movements really did not help (I thought my telly was on the blink). Then the currently politically correct speech about how the British Empire behaved in conquering the world, and this being our just desserts. It was just too contrived and out of place.
  4. I am also watching the latest series of 'The Crown' on NetFlix. This covers the 1960's. This has some amazing CGI. You could almost believe Princess Margaret and Lord Snowdon are boarding a VC10 and taking off, and that the area around Aberfan is still covered with pitheads. A fill in shot of the journey to Sandringham had a green Class 37 and maroon coaches passing through the countryside, and I don't know if it was real or CGI.
  5. Yes, it is all about the story telling, and this little world has a charm all of its own.
  6. So, a few of this year's layouts were to be seen at Warley: One board of Team Grantham's 'Race to the Stars' layout was on a layout planning demonstration stand, along with the scale model of their fun fair layout. All three of the 'Men of Kent' team's layouts were on show. They are moving to the Ashford Model Railway Museum 'Pop-Up' museum today. The LocoLadies' charming layout was being displayed for a final time before being split up to form new layouts for their grand children. They sold off the crocheted trees on the Sunday afternoon in aid of a breast cancer charity, and also formally presented one to Kathy Millatt, as she appreciated them so much
  7. I enjoyed seeing the complete layout, I have only seen bits of it before at other exhibitions. Well done all.
  8. I believe they get the costumes, and other things wrong too, but we only see the railway bloopers that we are knowledgeable about. The BBC series "Merlin" had Gaius wearing spectacles, and Merlin being pelted with tomatoes while in the stocks. The legends place the rule of Arthur somewhere in the 5th or 6th century. Spectacles were invented in the 13th century, and tomatoes did not come to Europe until the 16th century.
  9. Shouldn't the catenary wires lean over the other way, so the droppers pull the contact wire out to the curve? I could not find a clear enough image of a tight curve on the RhB on the 'net, but logically I would say your setup would pull the contact wire further away from the track centre.
  10. Not just Berlin, but the "Iron Curtain" severed railways across Europe. A line between Bavaria and what is now called Czechia was built when there was a good relationship between the two, and the station at Bayerische Eisenstein was actually built straddling the border. When the 'Iron Curtain' was constructed, it ended up passing right through the main booking hall. The blue and white railing, and a stone in the floor of the booking hall now mark the border: There is a nice little railway museum on the German side, more photos in my Flickr album:
  11. The Soviet military also had to come into West Berlin to take their turns guarding Rudolf Hess and others in Spandau Prison.
  12. Another point of interest, it seems that the Soviets built their war memorial in Berlin before the city was divided up between the occupying forces, and it ended up being in what became West Berlin. So, every day, a Soviet military 'honour guard' had to cross into West Berlin to stand watch at the memorial.
  13. I believe the briefcase would have contained all the passports of the train's occupants, along with all the official travel forms. These would be carefully checked and any full stops or commas on the passport had to match those on the travel documents. Reading other online accounts of the military train, there might also have been a bottle of whisky to assist the Soviet officer's eyesight during the checking.
  14. I was just passing on what I was told - it was probably wrong, or incomplete and it was 35 years ago that I was told it, so I might have mis-remembered.
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