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  1. Wonderful perspective, of a modern development arriving in a yet to be modernised part of the country. J
  2. Hi Scott, The Peco TT is a good piece of kit, although there are a few little matters which can make it 'orid. None difficult and not many, but many have fallen by not taking then seriously enough and then been puzzled/angry after. Definitely one of the measure once, twice, then repeat several times, before glue. I can put some URLs up for motor ideas too, as there are some very good ideas out there, which have been looked at elsewhere. There are also ideas for control discussed in the same posts, which might give food for thought. Regards Julian
  3. How about the fence hole getting the kicked in planks hanging on the horizontal supports, all splayed out and recently kicked? That way you would still get the see-through effect and added plank litter to look at/ Regards Julian
  4. I was posted to Berlin for 3 years and did Train Duty Officer on numerous occasions. The briefcase mentioned contained passports, the travel permission documents documents and... err, the occasional bottle of vodka. These were marched down the platform, accompanied by the Train Sgt Major and the Sgt Major Interpreter on either side, to the Russian Officer and his clerk. Once salutes had been exchanged, the office was entered and the clerk would check that the travel documents matched the passports [when I say matched, I mean precisely that, a comma out of place or spelling mistake would result in rejection and the whole cherbang came to a halt!] Fortunately the people typing out the documents for the train were aware of the ramifications and made sure they were well checked before they got to the train. {NB. travel by car down the roads required the same documents and I did experience being sent back to the checkpoint for a correct document, 3 times. Eventually an American checkpoint guard grabbed the three passports from the Brit guard and typed an accurate document, which allowed me to travel past the checkpoint.} The return train journey had the same procedure at the other end [Braunschweig], with the same Russian Officer as the outward journey. Perhaps I should note here that the Officers were complete gentlemen as would be expected. It is perhaps also worthy of note that their hospitality meant that the bottle of Vodka, as a present to him, for his services to the passports, was gratefully accepted. It was also custom that a gifted Vodka, bottle should be shared until completely finished and on the return journey, the Russian would probably have a similar bottle as a reciprocal gift. Marching back along the platform, in a straight line, required a touch of concentration, as did climbing up from the ballast into the coach. During the checking of the documents, the British Military Train was not stopped next to the platform, but on a through line further away, hence the climb from the ballast. I was led to understand that the reason was [in part, at least] due to the passing of the Orient Express. I never saw what might have been the Orient Express, so that may be myth and mist. What I did see was the reaction of the soldiers to the first female Train Duty Officer, a delightfully enthusiastic WRAF Officer, for whom I had been allocated to be on the train, in case there might be an adverse reaction from the Russians. As it turned out there wasn't any problem at all and she got on with the Duty accordingly. Interestingly there was a rule, that apart from the 4 Russian armed guards, one at each corner of the train, no other Soviet personnel were allowed in sight of the train. So, when she had marched back to climb back into the coaches, she encountered a minor problem - the steps up to the coach were rather more than the WRAF skirt hem would allow. Undaunted, the gallant lass hitched said skirt a little and hauled up the steps. Job done! However on the return journey, she climbed down and marched down the platform as expected - however, despite the restrictions on other personnel allowed to be there, it was clear that the news of the skirt hitch-up had travelled and there were faces all around the platform, regardless of the risk of Soviet retribution. When it came to the time for her to return to the train, I plonked my hat on and got to the coach door, unless assistance might be advisable. I needn't have bothered, as this young lady had clearly been exercising the little grey cells. Having completed the march back down the platform and crossed the tracks to the coach door, she looked at the two Warrant Officers, either side and gestured with her head to her elbows and said "lift", which they did - straight up to the top step. The British Military Train went on daily for many years and was wonderful experience and opportunity for contact with the Russian military, who were very similar to ours, as might be expected. ...... All because of a train.... Regards Julian
  5. Very true, we flew a helicopter trip for a breakfast in the Grand Canyon, out from Las Vegas. En-route out of Vegas there is a ridge where it goes up to the desert plateau going eastwards, somewhere between 500ft and 1,000ft vertical. The waggoners had just travelled across the desert following the tracks, made by previous immigrants, which were so hardened by the wagon wheels, that they remain perfectly visible still. Having done that they had to dismantle the wagons and rope the bits, horses and people down over the cliffs. Obviously they didn't have ropes long enough, so they relayed down to narrow ledges in the cliff face on the way down. 20 MPH, on rails and with benches to sit on was indeed luxury. Juliam
  6. Good grief, it's long enough going by plane, and they aren't exactly fast trains either, there just isn't the quality infrastructure for the distances involved. Moving around parts of the States by car is bad enough, even with the flexability that offers and at least twice the speed of the train, too. We hadn't planned on going vast distances in Canada, as they had some area packages of a couple of days, combined with boats, car hire and hotels etc. We ruled out crossing from Montreal to Vancouver very quickly, based on the length of time. Regards Julian
  7. We were planning a Canadian trip this year [19], which died a death when it came to travel and hotel prices. It's no wonder there were only 2 x Vista Domes per train, there are few folks could afford them, given the prices of the other seats. Regards Julian
  8. Those were wonderful radio, the like of which has seldom been equalled since and never beaten. Julian
  9. HMS Hades, aka HMNB Richmond Walk. Those nearby tunnels [real and imaginary] might make lovely places for hiding all sorts of stuff...... Regards Julian
  10. I don't have ECoS, but the normal way to run 2 x loco motors together, is to make a Consist, which will have a single address for operating both motors together. Your ECoS manual will have how to make a consist. Regards Julian
  11. See what 60 years of allowing kids to play with trains can do to rolling stock, concrete tracks and bridges. Let that be a lesson to all you parents with young kids, those with kids yet to arrive and a head-up for those who allowed such neglect, to get the items to a restorer, forthwith, not forgetting a visit to the confessional to beg for forgiveness. Don't hesitate, in misery of reflection, get ye hence before more damage and destruction get visited on those gems!!!!! Happy Christmas .......... to all those who managed to keep those little beauties pristine. ................ and all those who chose to develop scenes of wonder from those basic beginnings. Merry Christmas and Happy New Year to everyone. Julian
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