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Philou

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  • Location
    : In the deepest, darkest Franche Comté, France
  • Interests
    00 gauge, collecting mostly GW and BR(W), all with DCC and sound chipped ready for when I build THAT layout that I promised myself 40-odd years ago. Well, that's what I thought. Seems that 30 of them need chipping - urgh.

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  1. Going back to the OP's question: Thumbs up here for an Excel-type spreadsheet (OpenOffice for me). One sheet per type (loco/wagons/coaches etc.) plus extra sheets for redundant stock (stuff that was bought in the 70s for example and not likely to be run, for example), plus for insurance purposes the all important 'Replacement Value' column. As others have mentioned, it it surprising how it all adds up - even redundant stock has value! Thanks to the chaps and chapesses that gave a heads up of how to embed photos into the sheets - that'll be a nice little job should there ever be another lockdown or while away a dark winter's evening or three. For those that ought to do the job properly: paper burns so that old jotter should be copied (photocopier?) and the copies kept elsewhere. Rewritable CDs (or DVDs) DO NOT LAST!!!! The 'silvering' will eventually revert to a flat surface losing all that lovely data. Save onto something else as well. (CDs/DVDs bought commercially are usually pressed like a vinyl record and should last longer - so not the same thing at all). Finally, having done all of that, do make sure that you're adequately covered. Cheers, Philip
  2. Philou

    EFE Rail JIA wagon

    Oh and make sure the axles are properly located in their holes - it has happened occasionally with other models ....
  3. Following from what Ceinewydd was saying regarding Capital Gains Tax, I believe he is correct that any changes in the nature of your home from pure residential to another sort (in rating terms) MAY well make you liable to pay some or all the CGT due. AIUI, the exception from paying CGT occurs when you use any gains from the sale wholly in the purchasing of another property - and be grateful in the UK, 'cos over here in France you pay CGT when you sell up regardless of whether you buy some other property or not. (The rate is reduced gradually depending how long you've had the property - after 30 years it becomes 0%). BTW, DO keep bills that you may have IF you've had any work done to enable WFH, as these can be used to offset any tax liabilities. Cheers, Philip
  4. Shhhh Mr H - you're making suggestions that are far too sensible. I think meter or no meter, there is a problem with some of the electrofrogs out there and a workaround has been found - for those that can do a tad of soldering. Not ideal and a nuisance having just bought something new and then to have to do some bodgery. Seemingly though, at the moment what to do? Send it back for a replacement and risk getting another dud? Send it back and get a refund? Or, do a workaround that could well be better than the factory original? I'd go for the last option myself. Cheers, Philip
  5. I'll see your 10 Coxes and raise you three! That's all we had this year, and they're all shrivelled - even the wasps are giving them a miss. It was unfortunate that there was one evening of frost when our pippin and peach tree were in bloom - result no fruit - whereas the Best Boskoop flowered the week before and we've never had such a crop nor size of apple before (except it's the wasps and hornets busy tucking into them ). I never thought of whether I could justify a Prairie on my proposed layout - impulsive purchase on my part. Ah well, Rules 1 and 2 will have to apply otherwise. Cheers, Philip
  6. Hello fellow TNMers, I've been trying to catch up on all the natter - I am still here - just it's been busy. I couldn't let Mr Hippo have all the roofing fun so I had a go as well, especially as the weather has been really, really fine here in dwyrain Frainc. It was up to 34° a couple of days or so ago. Now the sun has set it's down to a reasonable 25°. Anyway, my roofing work was redoing the flashing between our barn, our roof and that of our neighbour's roof. I had removed the awful cement fillet between theirs and our barn wall - last year (oops)! I thought I should now just get on with it. The problem is the French don't really like lead and it's not always available (it's taken nearly a month to get some in) - they prefer their horrible zinc plated steel. Me? I love working with lead, easy to fashion and cuts with a Stanley knife - so two loads of flashing done over the last two days. Just as well as rain is now forecast for a few days. Mmmmm ..... Eccles cakes. The bestest ever Eccles cake I have eaten came from yer 'umble Greggs - in Porthcawl. Used to go there whenever I was out in that part of the world doing my site visits and try to time it just as they came out of the oven - hot, crunchy sugar coating, buttery tasting and chock full of flies - unlike some I had from elsewhere that were cold, limp and with a thin layer of dark mush inside. Out of interest, who does the best ones (commercially) now in the UK? Here's one for Jamie, do you know why when you go into a Patissier here in France, seemingly the same cakes have different prices? Because over here, they're sold by weight! And another item sold by weight are cast-iron pans bought in a quincaillerie! 'Bizarre' thought I, when the local Arkwright weighed the frying pan that I was about to buy. I thought better of asking for fork 'andles - wouldn't have worked in French I suppose. Mention was made of Marie-Antoinette and 'let them eat cake'. It's all lies and propaganda. It was put about to wind up the local populace. What she actually said was 'Let them eat brioche', which as we all know is bread made with milk rather than water. She, not ever really having been with the plebs, just assumed that as there was no bread, then could eat the alternative, brioche. End result was the same - one slice or two! Back to railways - I had a parcel arrive last weekend containing a nice green engine - no, not a panneer - but a rather spiffing Prairie - I likes a Prairie I does aaarrh! I missed the speak like a pirate day (catching up, see). I did turn up in the house with turned down wellies and an eye-patch a couple of months back whilst the grandchildren were here, giving all 'aaarrrh lan'lubbers, it be speak like a poirate day'. I think a cup of cold sick would have got a better reaction ....... the French are just not into pirates at all! They even had a famous one of their own, a girl to boot (IIRC). Back to the repointing tomorrow - if the rain holds off. Cheers everyone and have a good evening, Philip
  7. Ah well, there you go, I missed the bit where you did have a duplicate - good luck in getting a replacement as it seems the wagons are as rare as unicorn pooh. Cheers, Philip
  8. @classy52 Hi, I'm only asking this question out of curiosity - is there a reason why the different numbers are seemingly a problem - I'd understand there being a problem if you'd received a set with some numbers being the same?
  9. @kevinlms I agree electrofrog would have been the business, but I did a module for my club. As I'm moving over to Code 75, I just used up my stock of points, and track, that I had - most of them I bought in the early 80s (95p sticker still on the packets). Here's a heads-up regarding track - as mentioned I bought a lot of track in the 80s. It had been stored in the dry and dark. However, the plastic goes brittle - as I found out. The pointwork was unaffected. Cheers, Philip BTW, my earlier reply crossed with that of Kevin, as this one is going to do, too!
  10. @PMP I like that! I can see you've included the welded electrical connections (sorry - don't know the proper name). What did you use to get that slightly mucky look? As you will have seen, my local materials consist mainly of coarse builders' sand - though I shall stop one day at a memorial maker (definitely not a dying business round here) and ask what they do with the granite chips/dust. My 'mucky' area -TMD - is still not quite dirty enough. I find the sieved sand just drinks up all coloured washes. Perhaps I just need to persevere. Cheers, Philip
  11. No, no cigarette lighter as I had no use for one - just my hand, if it hadn't frozen off in the morning cold. I don't think the sun ever shone on the platform ..................
  12. Sorry for coming very late to this party, but I'm about to start this autumn my layout (huzzah!) and some larger radiused or non-standard pointwork would have been useful. I don't think I shall really have the time to make many, if any, of my own points. I noted that comment was made regarding sleeper spacing and also track spacing (and follows that sleeper sizes are not correct either). For my layout I am proposing to use Code 75 (mix of F/B and B/H as per the prototype), though seemingly Code 75 isn't quite right either. I shall be cutting the webbing to space out the sleepers - but to what spacing? Shall I do CWR or shall I do 40 or 60 foot panels? Some kind soul did post up elsewhere sleeper spacing for panelled track as it is NOT evenly spaced out - oh no. And it varied between companies too - so how far do you go with the realism (not forgetting that 00 is 'wrong' anyway)? Coming to track centring, I have had a go at 45mm centre-to-centre as I can't reasonably measure more accurately than that. I could get someone to make up a setting out gauge - I don't have any metalworking machinery. I have done my own proof of concept using Peco medium points in Code 100 - I think it improved the look. Here are some photos - the first shows my take on cutting the point (switch) to make a crossover at 45mm centre. I didn't think at the time about the diagonal sleeper - in the end it didn't matter as you will see later: Here is a completed crossover. By carefully ballasting over the joint, any discrepancies in the sleepers (and the diagonal one) 'disappears'. The ends are air-gapped: Finally, a shot showing two pieces of stock on the now reduced centre-to-centre. (The purists amongst you will need to ignore the relative ages of the stock - it's what I had at hand). For completeness, using Class 800 stock, there was no clash between any stock on the main and any diverging (or converging) traffic (experience limited to medium radius pointwork). In my 'umble opinion, it looks better - even though it's not 'right': Cheers, Philip
  13. Treforest Estate station - on a dark winter's Saturday morning, at the back of an Industrial Estate that was mainly closed on Saturdays, along an unlit country lane, through a seemingly dark, endless 'tunnel' and up wet slippery steps to wait on a barren, poorly lit platform hoping that the only stopper 'up' of the day hadn't already been and gone (no stoppers for going home though), and that the driver saw you flagging him (stopped by request only on Saturdays) - did that for five years in the late 70s . In the five years, not one other person caught that train with me. If you want a modern look to the station, it has all been refurbished with matrix information boards, good lighting and shelters. Seemingly trains stop there frequently too. (Videos on YouTube). Cheers, Philip
  14. @The Johnster It's always the advice that is needed! That's why I lurk on here so much - if it's not DCC, then it's weathering, or some period for stock painting etc., etc. If you do see him on the stall, then I was in Bud's between '65 and '81 on Saturdays. He and Dave (I think that was his name) used to talk with Bud mostly regarding R/C. If it's the same chap, then yes, he was always cheery. Good luck with the electricals. Cheers, Philip
  15. @The Johnster Is the radio spares guy still going upstairs in the market? They used to be regulars in Bud's. There was a tall dark chap (possibly Dave) and a shorter chap who took the stall over eventually. I can't think it would be him though - they'd both be 90+ now! I used to get all my unshielded transformers from them - brzzzt! Flash! Cheers, Philip
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