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  1. Hello Jack It occurs to me that the Airfix crane might be suitable with a different base, especially if you were able to do a bit of kit bashing on the cab. There's nothing wrong with the working end of the Airfix kit as a crane per se; it's just very untypical of dockside portal cranes. That's probably largely down to the market dominance in the UK of various models of Stothert and Pitt's Topis level luffing 'crank' crane. I rather wonder what it would look like to put the H0 crane on the Airfix portal and vice versa. Apart from the slanted planking on the cab door there's nothing too overtly teutonic about the H0 crane unlike some which , like some plastic kit buildings, just look very Germanic.
  2. As Gilbert had pointed out, the GOG has published a number of books of small layouts so it can't be too negative. Though I've no intention of modelling in 1:43.5 scale (The French generally use that scale rather than 1:45) I find them very useful for good idea for even smaller layouts in 1:87 scale. The thing I do find odd though is the habit of including each contributor's membership number with their name and I've also noticed that in the GOG Gazette. I'd have to search high and low for my membership number (if any) for any of the societies I belong to.
  3. Hi Richard Not a problem. I just wanted to put the record straight. Your argument is interesting and it did lead me to think a bit more about age profiles. I agree with you completely about not putting all our efforts into attracting youngsters (though that's important too) but not about assuming that the age profile of potential recruits is the same as that of modellers as a whole. I suspect that there are peaks of recruitment at various stages of life and retirement, especiially with a reasonable income and a home with some space, is certainly one of them but by no means the only one. Best wishes David
  4. Hi Richard It's not my view. It was actually Eddie B you were responding to and not me. I'd quoted him at length in order to respond with some thoughts about how Societies might be governed but that had nothing to with age profiles. I've actually never subscribed to the view that if you put a Thomas train set layout in the corner of your exhibiton for the kiddies to play with, they'll all be fine scale modellers twenty years later (Among my favourite childhood toys was a farm tractor that would rake or plough the soil- or rather the sand tray- as you pushed it along. I've never had the slightest desire to be a farmer or a tractor driver!) OTOH, put up a shunting puzzle layout that visitors of any age can have a go at operating and that may be a very different story. People do come into the hobby at various stages in their lives. For some it's a retirement or 'kids now left home' hobby but I've noticed that quite a high proportion of the more interesting layouts here are by people with young children. Assuming that a high proportion of people who get into the hobby as adults or teenagers stay in it and that people come into the hobby at any age, the cumulative effect of a proportion of people recruited at older ages and of people who've grown older after being in the hobby for a long time will automatically produce a higher proportion of older modellers. That doesn't mean that the hobby is not attracting younger people. What that means is that if we want to continue attracting new recruits to our hobby, it and the various societies that support different aspects of it, need to be attractive to people of any age or background. Strangely enough, since I model French railways in 1:87 scale, the show where I've found it easiest to get practical hands-on advice about many aspects of modelling is ExpoEM though some others are also not bad for that.
  5. It's been interesting, if sometimes painful, to follow this discussion and it is very relevant to anyone involved in any Society. We can all learn lessons from this for our own organisations such as. Is the Society that the committee thinks it is offering, the same Society that "ordinary" members experience. The French Railways Society, along with a couple of others I belong to, does have a standard calendar year membership period but, for those who join after September, their membership runs to the end of the following year. New members also receive all the preceding Journals for that year. In cash terms the journal actually is the main "member benefit" . There are many others including an extensive library , large photo archive and a members' email group, but the real benefits of membership are or should be priceless. If a society is any good (and I don't know enough about the GOG to comment on that) then a new member should feel they've had the full value of their annual membership in a lot less than a year.
  6. Another way of doing it is to have a committee composed only of "roles". In other words members who actually take on specific roles in the society such as membership secretary, treasurer, editor, librarian, archivist, sales officer, exhiibition organiser, webmaster etc. according to the society's requirements. That way everyone on the committee is actually working for the society's members and in a large society the "roles" may well have deputies or even small teams of members which should also take care of succession. You might then directly elect the Chair but nobody else just stands for the commitee. This is not the same as people getting onto the committee and then divvying up the roles. It's doing the job that makes them committee members.
  7. Hi Jack We ought to be aware that though the track arrangement can certainly be shared, the actual artwork of the published versions are still someone's copyright (In this case Peco Publications) I have used thin model aircraft ply as a layer to protect the external foam-board layer from dents etc. but it is fairly expensive stuff so I think mounting board or card might be a suitable alternative. I agree completely about the need for ply bases for point motors. I've done that with manual point levers on my H0 layout and with Fulgurex motors on my H0m layout. Plan No. SP35 isn't quite Cyril Freezer's original design. That was in RM in 1957 (the same plans were published in the earlier editions of 60 plans for small railways) and for OO was only 6ft 8 ins x 9 inches. The throat pointwork only occupied about 2ft 6ins of the right hand board so seems to have been based on two foot radius points*. Cyril clearly decided that was a bit too tight as his own published versions of the plan went to three foot radius points and the size also grew, first to 7ft by 1ft and then to 8ft long. With three foot radius points the basic Minories pointwork does fit fairly comfortably onto a metre long board (39inches) so it would certainly fit onto one of your planned modules. In the SP35 version he'd added the kickback siding but that does takes the length needed with three foot radius points to about 42 inches. I'm not sure what the kickback siding really adds to the plan unless it's developed into a goods yard with platform three used as the goods headshunt. I think it might be worth following Cyril's suggestion and having an extension to add to the left hand board. Provided it's not too wide I've also come to the conclusion that a metre long portable baseboard is a lot easier to handle- especially up and down stairs- than the traditional four foot length and would of course fit into those Christmas Tree boxes. 28cms or 11 ins is quite wide enough for Minories and will even just about take a goods headshunt alongside the no 3 platform track and still keep the platform widths legal. *It didn't quite make sense to me that Minories was originally designed for two foot radius points when Pecoway and Indivdulay points for OO were all three foot radius. However, the 1957 plan was actually drawn as a five foot long folding layout for the then brand new TT-3 and Peco's points for that were eighteen inch radius which when enlarged for OO become two foot radius.
  8. Thanks Jack Using those Really Useful Xmas tree boxes could be a bit of a breakthrough for me as storing layouts is always a challenge. With those I could store modules in my somewhat damp garage (where I already store books in Really Useful boxes with no problems at all) I've made baseboards with the cheaper sort of foamboard and, so long as you use sensible engineering structures based on its inherent strengths and weaknesss (foam board is a lousy plank but makes very strong girders though that's true of plywood as well). it seems to work well. Baseboard joins were the main challenge and for my small H0 layout, which is horizontally hinged, I used a basic timber frame but a surface of foam-board with additional strengthening members also from foam board. It's lasted well for about twenty years without any sagging though the layout is table top rather than being supported on its own legs. The downside iof foamboard is that the card surfaces are very easily dented and damaged so if I was using it for side members I think I'd laminate ordinary mounting card or just craft card onto the vulnerable outside surfaces . The upside is that you can build a strong baseboard in an evening with basic craft tools and PVA- no sawing, hammering, or drilling required.
  9. By the mid 1950s traffic to and from Bason-Bridge was definitely being worked via Highbridge. I know, because my ex LNWR and LMS grandfather was one of the signalmen at Highbridge (which by then was WR) and just before he retired he arranged for me to ride on the footplate to Bason Bridge and back- I was only four at the time but I think we were taking milk tankers there and bringing back the empties. I'm also pretty sure the loco was a tank.
  10. Good evening Jack Kapa is the registered trade name for a brand of premium foam-boards https://www.display.3acomposites.com/kapa.html but there are others. Kappa board (with two Ps) seems to have become a generic name for foam-boards (There is a Smurfit-Kappa company that produces packaging but their range doesnt appear to include foam-boards) it seems to be rather like Gaffer Tape (generic) and Gaffa Tape (brand name) The variations in premium foam-boards are significant in the display and exhibition industry particular around the printing processes used on them and the makers recommend KAPA®graph foam board for model making (Some years ago Kapa sent me a box of sample boards that I still have but KAPA®graph wasn't in their range then) For our purposes I don't think that it makes a huge difference and I've always found the generic foam boards sold by Hobbycraft and office supply shops perfectly satisfactory. I use the thinner boards for 1:87 scale buildings but I've been using foam board in my baseboards for years. So long as it doesn't get soaked- the boards that form the bread of the sandwich are afer all card- it seems to be a very stable material If you asked nicely and didn't mind there being printing on them, you used often to be able to get hold of large sheets of foam board in various thicknesses when trade shows were being taken down but that source has obviously dried up for now. The 77L Really Useful "Christmas Tree" box looks very useful and it occurs to me that a 1 metre by 30 cm baseboard with its backscene would fit inside one on its side very well. Will you be able to get all three modules into a single box? I've found that Really Useful boxes really live up to their name and I've used them to stored books and magazines in a damp garage for years without any problems.
  11. Is that why the GWR/WR didn't use Pacifics? (Great Bear apart) When I was closely observing the last years of steam at Oxford (and, to the annoyance of my friends, never writing down any numbers) the Bulleid Pacifics could be relied upon to slip while pulling away but the Castles and Halls rarely did. I used to like having the steam from the cylinder drains in my photos. They seemed to add to the atmosphere and the sightof a steam locomotive emerging from a cloud of its own steam was magical. (And yes pendants, I know it was actually water vapour and not steam!)
  12. I'd hoped that someone might have already done this as has been the case for Peter Denny and John Ahern but this might usefully be a joint effort. If we all add articles we've found, we should between us be able to generate a fairly comprehesive list. I'm not sure if this topic, relating specifically to Borchester Market, is the best place to do this or whether it needs a new topic.
  13. I think I have all his articles in MRJ, not entirely by chance, but my other magazines are a very mixed bunch. Though I'm picking up on odd articles here and there, a complete list is well beyond me.
  14. There was another reason for this peculiarity. The need to operate less well used lines as economically as possible led to so called Trains Legers (light trains) which I think were first introduced by the C.F. de l'Est though the locomotives-fourgon I know of were on the l'Ouest . Trains Leger were allowed to have a driver without a fireman but only if the conductor could stop the train if the driver was incapacitated. This required access to the cab and the conductor was also expected to assist the driver. I couldn't say whether in practice they actually rode in the fourgon or on the footplate but the fourgon compartment was still there between the locomotive and the passengers. This carried over into electric and diesel trains unless a dead man's device was fitted to stop the train automatically if the driver was incapacitated. There was a further rule for push-pull steam trains where, if the driver and fireman were at opposite ends of the train, the conductor had to be with the driver or in an adjoining fourgon or passenger compartment and trained to stop the train if the driver was incapactitated. I don't know if there was a rule like this for British push-pull trains and this may anyway be irrelevant to the period you're modelling but trains leger may be more relevant.
  15. Hi Northroader For some reason I've only just discovered your thread and it is very interesting Your surmise about the fourgon being legislated for is correct. I have a copy of the 1948 SNCF Instruction sur la composition des trains. By then it only applied to rapides and expresses where the first carriage was not of steel construction so it does seem to have been about collisions rather than boiler explosions. For wooden bodied coaches there had to be a fourgon or a fourgon (baggage) compartment between the locomotive and the passenger accomodation. If that wasn't possible, the first three compartments in the first coach had to be forbidden to passengers. The definition of passengers didn't include grooms, livestock handlers and the like. Conveyeurs (mainly postal workers accompanying mail as postal regulations required) also didn't count as passengers so could travel in the fourgon. postal workers in TPOs did count as passengers though so wooden bodied bureaux postaux ambulants couldn't be next to the loco but allèges postales could. All relevant to making up trains and I asssume that the regulations had covered a wider variery of passenger trains in the period you're modelling, hence such peculiarities as tank locos with fourgon compartment built into the end or steam railcars with a fourgon compartment between the engine section and the passengers. On suburban lines requiring fast turnrounds it seems to have been normal practice to have a fourgon at both ends of a train- that was certainly the case with the Est's double deckers on the Vincennes line out of Paris Bastille. The habit of marshalling a fourgon between the loco and train seems to have persisted for some time after it stopped being requred for slower trains and with steel bodied coaches.
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