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GMRC Series 2 - Episode 6 - Semi-final 1 - 'Myths, Monsters, Legends and Fables'

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Saturday 12 October

7:45pm - 9pm Channel 5

 

SUMMARY

Three teams compete in the first semi-final, where they have to make designs inspired by myths, monsters, legends and fables - with two spots in the grand final up for grabs. James Richardson and Tim Shaw oversee proceedings, with the creations including the Loch Ness monster being transported by train for a rendezvous with Godzilla and King Kong, a theatrical interpretation of King Arthur's Knights of the Round Table, and a spooky child's bedroom with an enormous devil tree bursting through the floor.

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1 hour ago, LNER4479 said:

Thanks Andy,

 

As RMWeb members tend to be interested in the background / logistics then I think I'm OK whetting your appetite as follows:

 

For the semi-finals, all teams were presented with identical 'trainset' boards, ie with track already laid. You were allowed to add to or amend the track layout if you wanted to. As has already been highlighted, the idea is that all three of your layouts had to be capable of being joined together in the event of you getting to the final so this middle layout thus had a lead in from the left and a lead out on the right.

 

You had to have prepared and submitted a design for what you were going to attempt, despite naturally focussing on your heat layouts, which was something of a challenge in itself. NO pre-building was allowed but the pre-ordering of the equipment from the series sponsors was essentially the same. The scratchbuilt challenge was still in there - and your design had to incorporate a loading and unloading feature.

 

Not that I'm looking for sympathy at all (I'll only find that in a dictionary), but as the winners of Heat 5 we had the short straw as the filming schedule was such that the shoot for Semi-Final was DIRECTLY the day after the last day of Heat 5 (this appeared to be a consequence of the format change as this would originally have been the second of two quarter finals filmed back-to-back). So we simply stayed overnight in one of Reading's Purple Palaces (all provided for by KBG) and were back at Fawley Hill the very next day, our pre-ordered stuff waiting for us.

 

There was no time to celebrate our Heat 5 win; instead - and as Andrew had dryly predicted (in the event of us winning Heat 5) - it was indeed the 'mother of all pub discussions' over a late night pizza and a pint (or two). I hadn't fully appreciated how much of the design was still in my head!

 

Great banter with the crew and the other two teams on site. I hope you enjoy what happened next ...

 

 

I hadn’t realised that you would be doing the semi finals straight after your heat. We were completely exhausted after we finished our heat and all power to you for setting  to and creating another layout immediately afterwards. Looking forward to seeing it on Saturday. 

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It was very difficult to get to sleep after Heat 5, I did not know whether to enjoy thinking about our winning layout or worry about the build that was due to start in a few hours time. As Graham says we not had time to think the build through in the same detail and we were to work even further away from our normal modelling style.

Edited by LMS29
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Easy topic =- myths Bachmann City of Truro with a special effect of flaming axleboxes, monsters - Hattons Beyer Garratt, legends - an old Hornby Rocket and fables a Hornby Apple Green Flying Scotsman  (as in late and never early)  :D

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7 hours ago, LMS29 said:

It was very difficult to get to sleep after Heat 5, I did not know whether to enjoy thinking about our winning layout or worry about the build that was due to start in a few hours time. As Graham says we not had time to think the build through in the same detail and we were to work even further away from our normal modelling style.

 

I think you and the rest of your team did very well, you looked exhausted on the  first day of the semi final.  We were certainly glad that we managed to get a rest after heat 1 to regroup and plan.

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I think getting the wild card spot - and thus filming 5 days later was the best outcome we could have hoped for from Heat 5. Had we gone through instead of Team Grantham, we literally had a few basic plans and a carrier bag of bits - plus the pre order.

 

We'd planned a Banksy-esque Dismalland theme park with various derelict rides and attractions, including an edible gingerbread house, an animated beanstalk and a slightly twisted "Babes in the Wood" scene using the Prieser Nude Bathers set and some strategically placed trees....

 

The railway would have been the park transport, with a Wild West train on one track and a scrap train recovering materials on the other. We had also planned to load a full size wagon onto a narrow gauge carrier Leek and Manifold style, but as I'd forgotten to bring the parts for that with me, there would have been a fair amount of improvisation on that element.

 

Really looking forward to seeing the layouts, as it's a great fantasy theme.

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3 hours ago, noiseboy72 said:

I think getting the wild card spot - and thus filming 5 days later was the best outcome we could have hoped for from Heat 5. Had we gone through instead of Team Grantham, we literally had a few basic plans and a carrier bag of bits - plus the pre order.

 

We'd planned a Banksy-esque Dismalland theme park with various derelict rides and attractions, including an edible gingerbread house, an animated beanstalk and a slightly twisted "Babes in the Wood" scene using the Prieser Nude Bathers set and some strategically placed trees....

 

The railway would have been the park transport, with a Wild West train on one track and a scrap train recovering materials on the other.

 

I take it the Wild West train wouldn't have had a "skeleton crew" - the driver being a Preiser "grim reaper" ... .

 

Joking aside, this sounds like an interesting idea. Whether this is quite the way in which the people of Weston Super Mare would like their town to get extra publicity is not for me to decide.

 

To be honest though, I'd imagine that there were probably a lot of very interesting layout ideas proposed but not built for GMRC - but we'll probably never get to hear about most of them.

 

 

Huw.

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I remember looking at the amended schedule and thinking that the Heat 5 guys really had pulled the short straw. One extra advantage for the even numbered heats (2 & 4) was that their semi-final was the one where the wild card would go, so we only needed to think of one semi-final design.

 

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4 hours ago, noiseboy72 said:

We'd planned a Banksy-esque Dismalland theme park with various derelict rides and attractions, including an edible gingerbread house, an animated beanstalk and a slightly twisted "Babes in the Wood" scene using the Prieser Nude Bathers set and some strategically placed trees....

 

Not one of those Noch nookie animations then .........

 

 

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Btw, was I the only team captain who looked at the given track plan and thought "ugh, how much can I rip up in the time given"?

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5 hours ago, noiseboy72 said:

I think getting the wild card spot - and thus filming 5 days later was the best outcome we could have hoped for from Heat 5. Had we gone through instead of Team Grantham, we literally had a few basic plans and a carrier bag of bits - plus the pre 

 

ordered stuff

Yep, that was pretty much more or less how we faced up to the start of Day 1.

 

32 minutes ago, whart57 said:

Btw, was I the only team captain who looked at the given track plan and thought "ugh, how much can I rip up in the time given"?

Exactly my reaction as well! I told stern Steve what a boring trackplan it was ... to which he admitted that it was his design!

 

Anyway, only a few hours to go before finding out what we did in the circumstances....

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1 hour ago, whart57 said:

Btw, was I the only team captain who looked at the given track plan and thought "ugh, how much can I rip up in the time given"?

 

58 minutes ago, LNER4479 said:

Exactly my reaction as well! I told stern Steve what a boring trackplan it was ... to which he admitted that it was his design!

 

This makes me wonder about his reasons for designing this particular trackplan (not that I've seen it yet, you understand).

 

Might the objective have been something along the lines of seeing what different teams do when presented with a standardised "TrackMat" or similar "trainset" layout - try to improve it - or rip it up and start again - something like that?

 

Obviously, I could be completely wrong ... .

 

 

Huw.

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The need to have an entry and exit point, for it to use predominantly setrack (at the board builder's request) and to have 2 continuous circuits was quite limiting in terms of design. We had more complaints about the quality of the track laying, as one circuit de-railed anything that went around until we re-leveled the boards and tweaked all the joints and our board was also wired incorrectly and we had to reverse a feed to get it running without shorts.

 

We've just re-built both layouts in their new home - Rocket Railways in Grantham. Cosmetically they need a bit of TLC where we split them, but both are running. We're open to exhibition offers, so feel free to check out the website for more details.

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6 hours ago, Huw Griffiths said:

 

 

This makes me wonder about his reasons for designing this particular trackplan (not that I've seen it yet, you understand).

 

Might the objective have been something along the lines of seeing what different teams do when presented with a standardised "TrackMat" or similar "trainset" layout - try to improve it - or rip it up and start again - something like that?

 

Obviously, I could be completely wrong ... .

 

 

Huw.

Spot on, Huw. According to the rules that was EXACTLY what the production company had in mind.

 

Still a mighty boring trackplan, mind...

Edited by LNER4479
typo
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Well that was a great heat, well done to Grantham and Rail Riders. Brilliantly inventive setting by Rail Riders. The slightly subversive use of trains as stage hands plus spot-on engineering in Grantham's case really stood out. Nice little ode to put down the presenters' puns too! ;)

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Well done teams, 3 really good and very different layouts. Far more ambitious than ours and all really well executed. 

 

Maybe not layouts for the purists, but were they ever going to be with that theme? 

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Heads up, next weeks semi final is at an earlier time, 6:30.

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20 minutes ago, PhilJ W said:

Heads up, next weeks semi final is at an earlier time, 6:30.

Or maybe 6.25...

 

But who can tell??

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48 minutes ago, noiseboy72 said:

 

 

Maybe not layouts for the purists, but were they ever going to be with that theme? 

Wonder if they would have allowed a “strategic reserve” theme? Real steam trains hidden in tunnels and an MOD style.

 

Myth or Urban legend?

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I thought the Grantham layout did deserve its win and well done for going so far out of the box  (It's railway modelling but not as we know it Jim! )  The haunted child's room was a nice idea too.  I'm afraid though that I'm seeing far more imagination in the teams' interpretation of the themes than in the producers' choice of themes which do seem a bit obvious and aren't they rather similar to those from series one?  I think the teams were entitled to have the pre-built double track ovals built to their standards and I wouldn't describe it as a "design".  

 

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.

 

When I first saw the pre-laid tracks I had high hopes of layouts concentrating on scenic modelling, but then they went on about "imagination" and "creativity".  A shame, the scenic side is being given quite short shrift in these programmes.

 

What then amused/irritated me is that AFTER criticising the teams for lacking "imagination" and "creativity", when the teams explained their layouts the judges gave all sorts of grimaces and explained how these were meant to be model railway layouts.   Thankfully the Grantham layout was just so astounding that their whinges were lost in the overall praise, despite the lack of traditional "trains".

 

Good on all three teams.

 

.

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Oh well forgot about this tonight. Well done for arsing about times. Fridays was much better (for me anyhow)

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5 minutes ago, Georgeconna said:

Oh well forgot about this tonight. Well done for arsing about times. Fridays was much better (for me anyhow)

No recorder?

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Not wishing to detract from the other teams extremely hard work, it’s hard to figure out what the actual judges were looking for.  After the results were announced, a large number of the audience and several other team members came to us and said they were so surprised we lost as everyone thought we had it “in the bag”.  Even though it was a retake, it was fun for both Craig and I to tell Tim to “leave us alone” as he was bugging us with testing things lol.

Edited by jools1959
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