News and articles from the Scalefour Society's Area Groups. Now generally superseded by our Forum.
Tuesday, 30 December 2008
Brinkley Boards Update
Morgan, Chris & Robin spent yesterday tracklaying!!!!
Yes the new Brinkley boards now have some track and just to prove it here is a photo of one of the PW gang with board 4.
In view is Graham's 3 way turnout plus a length of flexitrack to the turntable.Further progress now includes track on the main line and the shed access road including the crossover.
Morgan has also done a sterling job on the new shed roads and associated inspection/pits - any chance of a photo Morgan?
Wishing you all a Happy New Year,
Thursday, 4 December 2008
Fylde Area Group
On Saturday the 15th November the layout was visited by the East of Scotland 4mm Group, 8 members attending, most of whom had travelled down for Edinburgh for the day, including Jim Summers - the former editor of the Scalefour News who was instrumental in getting me to put pen to paper to write about the layout in edition no. 154. Also among the visitors was a former Flyde group member Bob Hetherington. After 4 hours of operating Preston, it seemed all had enjoyed themselves, I will be looking towards arranging a reciprocal visit at some point in the new year, thank you to David Orr for the invitation. Also thanks to my mentors David and Anthony who help newbies get to grips with the operation of the layout.
The next meeting is Thursday 11th December, (NOTE not the third Thursday), please contact Mike Norris (details on blue sheet), should you require more information and this meeting is a talk by Anthony Miller 'LNER Good Traffic', followed by a hotpot supper.
Thursday, 13 November 2008
Fylde Area Group
Arthur covered the area where he grow up and presented many of his own photographs, Arthur was born in Swalwell on the North Eastern from Consett to Dunston and Scotswood, starting there he covered the local industry and how his father really provided the imputus to his interest with railways.
He told us about all the lines in the area and covered many of the locations between Blaydon and Gateshead King Edward Bridge, including the Tanfield railway and Garesfield wagon way.
There were many photographs of the loco sheds at Bowes Bridge, Blaydon, Gatehead and Borough Gardens, including the loco allocations in 1947. Also numerous shots of other locations where provided including the Dunston Staithes, Derwent Hough Staithes, Dunston Power station and Vickers Armstrong.
In all we had a very informative and enjoyable evening - Thank you Arthur.
Sunday, 2 November 2008
DRAG test track progress
Thursday, 30 October 2008
This runs amazingly smoothly. Bernie also brought down a brace of converted 56xx's, really nice.
Rob Foot also brought his Hymek and ran it over Belle Vue with 6 Ironclads on the back...lovely.
Not to be out done Hubert Messing brought his converted Lima parcels car along as well.
The noble men of NAGNAG have been invited to Newbury for an evening of fun and steam type stuff, thanks to Rod Hall for arranging this for us.
Bernie's converted 56xx's on the entrance to the extended shed area of Belle Vue. More work is being carried out to Belle Vue by the Naggers, but we still need more ideas...come on lads!
So, with the extension to the head shunt now in place, this means that larger items can be run into the shed area - like a brake down crane...anyone know if theres one being designed?
Rob also had a DMU as a work in progress; Steffan, Alistair and Bernie look at a problem that Rob didn't know he had untill it was pointed out to him. Robs now trying to put a central pivot into a bogie where there isn't one at the moment.
An enjoyable evening with more progress being made, which is always a good thing.
My thanks to Newport MRS for allowing us to host this monthly meet at the club rooms.
Next meeting 26 November, when hopefully some of the Glevum group will be joining us for the evening.
Tuesday, 28 October 2008
WEST YORKSHIRE AREA GROUP
We did some planning ahead, the most important part of this being the fixing of a date to visit Mike Norris's Preston layout on Saturday 25th April 2009. A few days before this, 17th April, our regular third Tuesday of the month meeting, Mike is coming to give us a talk on the layout. The venue for this meeting is not yet decided, but hopefully I will have sent another report to Scalefour News before this.
Our default meeting night is still the third Tuesday of the month, and our default venue is still the Thatched Cottage. Any local members or any member visiting the area is very welcome to join us, but please contact me to be sure that we have not arranged a visit to some othe local attraction (railway, of course). My phone number is (0113) 2679385.
Saturday, 18 October 2008
Fylde Area Group Meeting
We were treated to 14768 Clan McKenzie, HR Clan Class loco being built by John James as a commission, which I later saw fully lined out and painted at Scaleforum the following week.
We also saw some test etches form Ian MacCormac, in both 4 mm and 7 mm scales of an LBSCR 1865 Craven 1st, very fine.
Next we had an interesting (if somewhat unlikely) comparision between an early coach and a Clan class of 1919, the coach being bearly the size of the clans tender, this shows just much the railway had developed in 50 years.
The next meeting is Thursday 23rd October, please contact Mike Norris (details on blue sheet), should you require more information and the meeting is a talk by Arthur Kimber 'Railways and Memories of North West Durham'.
Friday, 12 September 2008
Fylde Area Group Meeting
Thursday, 28 August 2008
NAGGERS monthly meet.
Alistair Stannard brought some of his fabulous buses to show.
Alistair and Dave Hagger have taken on a conversion of a Bachmann Hall. This is after last month when it was discovered that the Hall due for surgery was infact not a candidate for such drastic changes, but now a willing victim has stepped forward and is to under go 'a change' or two.
Rob Foot has promised to convert a Heljan Hymek, he was hoping to have it to run this week but, the wheels did not arrive in time, never mind, always next month.
Bernie brought some more of his experimental wagons and conducted some more tests on sprung and rigid chassis. Has to be said the wagons really did look the part, all weathered and looking run down. Those that were sprung performed faultlessly.
Discussion was given to finance and other topics which are detailed on the NAGNAG website.
All in all a very interesting evening, enjoyed by all.
My thanks to everyone that contributed and again to our hosts NMRS. Next meeting 24 September.
Thursday, 7 August 2008
9 DAZE IN JULY
In order to further progress the extensions to Burntisland 1883, we hired our normal location (village hall, Dechmont) through local resident Richard Darby. And there for 9 days the layout remained erected for anyone interested to come along and make advances to it. And many did.
To digress, in true Ronnie Corbett fashion, I should say at this stage that progress to Burntisland 1883 isn't as straightforward as it may seem since the East of Scotland 4mm Group (or "Scotland East" in Scalefour Society parlance - sorry I've digressed again) are based in anything but the East of Scotland (or Scotland East).
Contributors to the extensions - so far - have been based not only in areas that can be described as the East of Scotland but going outwardly extends to Glasgow, the Borders, the Inner Hebridees, Cumbria, Shropshire, Berkshire, and Ceredigion (that's in Wales for the geographically challenged). Some from these far-flung outposts even made the trip up for the adventure in July.
So making all parts of the jigsaw fit isn't as straightforward as would first be imagined. However the jigsaw is indeed coming together.
The major item to be accomplished during the week was the laying of approach track to the goods ferry. Using Templot, this was built as a single unit and getting this laid was key to other envisaged activities, at one end of the layout at least. With that complex piece of trackwork laid, track could then extend westwards and eastwards. T'was not all plain sailing as the pained expressions in the attached image testify.
Meanwhile, in other parts of the room, others were busy finalising track for the goods ferry, wiring up and mounting a host of tortoises and D clamps, a number of other wiring matters, chairing track, adding scenery, finalising building of boards, to mention but a few.
The present position with the layout is that virtually all boards are built just the passenger ferry pier to go, most of the track is laid, and the back is broken on the wiring front.
The layout looking from the east now looks like this :
And from the west like this :
Of course all these extra metres of sidings and track will look awfully empty without an additional wagon or 2. To this end we had a wagon building session some months ago run by Simon de Souza. Possibly inspired by that session, Ian Terrell has worn out many a Swann and Morton blade to produce some fine dumb buffered stock : Still a long way to go, but lots of progress made to date. Next milestone will be getting engines running across all of the new track, and then on to scenics. However, that will all have to wait until after exhibiting at Hawick on the 23/24th of August, where a slightly extended version of the original layout will be on display.
Thanks to Jim Summers for most of the photos.
Saturday, 12 July 2008
Fylde Area Group Meeting
Tony Miller did bring along a number of his wonderful hand painted coal wagons, many local to the Preston area, particular impressive is the 'Preston Industrial Co-Operative' wagon. These were hauled round the layout by my Jinty 7472 (a Preston engine - often nicknamed at the time 'City of Preston').
On Wednesday the 2nd July a number of members travelled to John James's house for an inaugural run of Benfieldside following its re-installation and rewiring, again a most enjoyable evening was had by all and we are all looking forward to another session.
The next meeting is Thursday 17th July, please contact Mike Norris (details on blue sheet), if you require more information and the meeting is a run and natter session, please bring something of interest to run or discuss.
Friday, 27 June 2008
Cumbrian Area Group 2nd Meeting
Ian's wife Betsy produced some excellent scones for tea, some of which were eaten by the Area Group members, although the majority had been scoffed by Ian and Betsy's border terrier.
A third picture shows more details of Clecklewyke, which will be exhibited with Area Group members' help at Halifax on 27/8 September and at Workington on 22/3 November - two alternatives to Scaleforum and Warley if our northern friends find those too far.The next meeting of the Area Group will be at Stephen Paulin's house on Saturday 2nd August, where there will be a demonstration of split-chassis* loco building. More details from Stephen at email@example.com
Thursday, 26 June 2008
A Worth While Event...
Monday, 16 June 2008
Fylde Area Group Meeting
Thursday, 22 May 2008
NAGNAG inaugural meeting
Well, the days slipped past and letters were received, emails returned and come the appointed hour, members turned up!
A big thank you to everyone that made the effort to attend. In all 16 members attended the first meeting, with another 3 members on holiday, but wishing to participate in the group. What a result!
There are a number of diverse modeling interests, ranging from the Brecon & Merthyr line to the S&D, to Alexandria Docks in Newport. Era's range from the 1940's to late 1960's...plenty of scope for the future. Everyone had the opportunity to talk in the group and express what they wanted out of an area group, the most common theme being 'support and encouragement'. Whilst a noble sentiment, the group must have something to support and encourage over, so with this in mind, the next meeting (yes, there really is going to be a next meeting!) is based on a show and tell evening.
My thanks to everyone at Newport MRS for their help and for letting the group use their club rooms.
A special thanks to those who gave up their time when they had/should have been preparing for Railex this weekend.
Next NAGNAG 25th of June, it feels great to be able to say that!!
If you want to join the group and see what we are about, then mail me at firstname.lastname@example.org
Monday, 19 May 2008
CAG do it in rubber, and resin
Before our very eyes Adrian produced crisply cast resin parts and made the whole process look very simple and straightforward. So to prove it wasn't all smoke and mirrors he then had untrained volunteers successfully producing castings from his preprepared moulds. He gave practicable advice on what was and what was not doable in this medium all of which made a great deal of sense.
At least one member was suitably inspired to wonder if here lies the answer to the production problems related to the long trains of bogie limestone hoppers we don't have running up and down on Knustford East.
Adrian instructed us on both mould production and their use to produce the final castings, but as the rubber moulds take 24 hours to cure, practicals in mould making didn't form part of the show. This months photo (by Ron Dickinson) shows Adrian sitting in front the the minimal amount of equipment he used to so ably demonstrate his craft.
The rest of the meeting was taken up with further discussion of the production of point rodding stools from the Colin Waite etchings parts (anybody with concerns about their eyesight may need to give this one a miss) and whether the was any real practical difference between the chimneys fitted by Gorton to O4s and D9s. Oh happy days.
Wednesday, 14 May 2008
HR meets GWR at DRAG
Saturday, 10 May 2008
Fylde Area Group Meeting
Terry took us through the history and development of this pre-war Southern railway station built as a branch off the South Eastern and Chatham line from Gravesend to Port Victoria. Following this he showed us slides of his layout and explained the progress so far. It seemed the Southern railway wanted to develop a seaside resort (effectively in the Thames estuary) and this was the location chosen, once the railway was built war interrupted the plans, but post war austerity saw Allhallows as the lowest priced 'seaside' ticket available from London. To this end long expresses were provided with many thousands or people making the journey to nowhere, as the expected developments at Allhallows never materialised, but it still did not seem to deter the desire to get out of London.
To support the talk Terry brought along many of the original signalling diagrams, which included locking tables (most rare) for many of the stations along the line and also included some of the stations altered to support the new branch.
Many thanks to Terry for a very interesting evening.
The next meeting is Thursday 15th May, please contact Mike Norris (details on blue sheet), if you require more information and the meeting is a run and natter session, please bring something of interest to run or discuss.
Tuesday, 6 May 2008
West Yorkshire Area Group
Our society publicity penetrates Europe and led to a visit by a none member OO scale modeller (British LMS period) from Switzerland who had timed his holiday to take in Scalefour North. He came on both Saturday and Sunday, and we take this as proof that we are doing something right. Possibly he was impressed by the usual high standard of modelling on show, and will join the Society.
We still use the Thatched House pub near Wakefield as our regular meeting venue on the third Tuesday of each month, but vary this to provide a mix of visits to members homes and other places of interest. Anyone wanting to join us should contact me for confirmation of date and place of our next meeting.
Friday, 2 May 2008
Canadian Area Group
S&D "Jinty"leans into a curve
"Christopher", a Riceworks Buckjumper with Scannell CSB suspension built by Mark
Last weekend, the 26th and 27th of April, was the big event of the year for British outline modellers in Canada; The Great British Train Show put on by the Platelayers Society was held in Brampton, Ontario. It is, to the best of my knowledge, the only all British railway show in North America. There were 52 exhibits including 22 layouts, 23 traders, 4 clinics and 3 miscellaneous displays. Included among the layouts was one P4 example "Nether Upton and Upper Leaside Light Railway" built by Mark Stapleton and David Knight. Other S4 soc members present were Dr Tom Kidd and Phil Insull who helped with the layout operation and Graham Evans, new to the Society who joined us for a chat. Some pictures of the show in general and the P4 layout in particular are to be found above. The next GBTS will be in 2010, last weekend in April.
Wednesday, 30 April 2008
CAG April Meetings - Things get hairy!
The objective of the day was to demonstrate the wonders of the Noch Electrostatics grass planting system. You know the idea, electrostatically charge some fine fibres of grass coloured material and shoot it onto a glued surface where the charge will keep it standing on end while the glue dries. That nice Mr Noch provides both the clever device which generates and applies the charge, and the grass fibres. These come in a variety of garish shades but by judicious mixing it is possible to achieve a realistic colour for your chosen season. The secret seem to be not too much green but plenty of yellow and brown. To work it appears you need the target to be electrically earthed to the charge producing gun, requiring either a conductive target layer, like aluminium foil with a base fibre mat glued on top and/or a good soaking with electrically conductive glue sold for the job (looked and smelt like PVA, with added salt perhaps?). Wire the gun to the foil/glue layer, shake away and lo and behold things got hairy.
This exersize was duly performed on a section of Don's Central Cheshire line Alpraham Sidings which we have all been enjoying so much in MRJ recently, and as in the MRJ, John Sherratt provided photos of the event. I regret that on this occasions the photos did not do justice to the results so instead I leave you with a shot of the much to be envied general environment of the Central Cheshire line, mostly obscured by an, always to be preferred, back view of a fair percentage of the group.
April 27th also saw a layout meeting hosted by Dick Petter. This was held to ensure we are getting on with the tasks we must complete before Knutsford East reappears at Scale Forum in September. Signalling was much to the fore. Our current signal operating mechanisms have not worked as well as we would have liked, sometime not at all, and Phil Bourne had a new generation of mechanism on display. Another signalling job required is the completion of the point rodding. The design of the rodding runs has been done by our own in-house professional signalling engineer Tony Walker, in pursuance of the S4 ethos of getting it all right. To complete this design there is, among other things, the small mater of the construction of large numbers of point rodding stools. We all now have our quoter, even if, like me, you managed to forget to go to the meeting!
Also on view were bits of two new Loco's. That is a D9 and an J10 (both LNER/ ex GCR) suitable for Cheshire Lines use.
I leave you with further pictures, again courtesy of John, one of Phil's magnificent new mechanism and another of the chassis of the D9 (an 4-4-0 for those not up to speed on LNER class numbers). This comes from Dick's hands and as always exhibits engineering values most of us can only dream about.
Friday, 25 April 2008
First Meeting of Cumbrian Area Group
After being impressed by the authenticity of his 12in/foot scale model of a Midland Railway house - Stephen is trying to get it all right - we repaired to a most excellent pub beside the remarkably intact ex-NER station for a superb lunch before returning to Stephen's house for tea and a natter.
In our company were Stephen and his wife, Cherry; Phil Tuer and his wife, Sheila, from Carlisle; David Beale from back o' Skidda' and Ian Everett from Askrigg. We discussed our interests and ambitions. Stephen showed some lovely BR wagons and LNWR buildings. Phil admitted to modelling in EM but nevertheless we listened as he talked about his interests in Cumbrian railways and the fascinating complexity of the early railways in the Workington area. He also showed some lovely etches of Furness Railway "squirrel" seats which will be available in both 4mm and 7mm scales. David talked of his intention to model a station based on the MR in Yorkshire and had brought a beautifully made chassis for an MR 2F 0-6-0, built from a Gibson kit. Especially notable was the neat way he had converted it to split axle pick up. Ian brought two
sixth-scale models of his two exhibition layouts, Clecklewyke and Humber Dock. They had demonstrated their worth by the fact that neither layout followed precisely these cameo models - each design had been modified before wood had been irrevocably cut or track laid. He also had a nearly complete London Road kit for an NER G5 0-4-4T.
Despite being scattered within a 30 or so mile radius of Stephen's house we agreed to continue with the group and to try to encourage more members. The group also agreed to join forces to help Ian exhibit Clecklewyke at the Workington exhibition, which is on 22/23 November 2008.
We decided to meet again at Ian's house in Askrigg at 12 noon on Saturday 7th June, where we will play with his two train sets and no doubt sample the wares of the excellent Crown inn. Brian Lewis of C&L will also be there and will talk about the services and products he provides. Anyone in the area will be very welcome. For more details contact Ian on 01969 650180 or email@example.com.
SLAG at Scalefour North
On the Saturday we were joined by two other members of SLAG, and by Brian Pearce who had been recruited some months ago (and undergone his driver training) to augment the team when playing away from home. Layout (and operators) performed well over the weekend, though one member was heard to admit to being “bruised” after 30 minutes of operating, acknowledging that driver training and practice was a necessity rather than a luxury!
Some very nice comments about the layout were received, and it seems that visitors largely enjoyed what they saw. For our part, we left with a list of twenty or so “things to address” before taking the layout on the road again, but all of them are comfortingly minor.
The social side of the weekend was a great success, as is normal for Scalefour North. Thanks to all the Team for a great weekend.
Sunday, 20 April 2008
SCOTLAND EAST AGM WEEKEND
Contrary to what the heading might suggest, our AGMs aren't (generally) protracted enough to last a weekend. The AGM was held on the Saturday - as always accompanied by a bring and buy sale, awards for modelmaking, and whatever else can be squeezed in. The Sunday on this occasion was onward progress of Burntisland in the shape of a wagon making masterclass run by Simon de Souza. Both days attracted a significant percentage of membership participation
The AGM was conducted with formality, frivolity, and good all round banter. The committee were all available for re-election and happy to continue - not surprisingly this was proposed and seconded just as quickly as the speed of sound allowed. Despite a lot of expenditure associated with the extensions to Burntisland 1883 we remain in a very sound financial position, a fact that could be determined from treasurer Ray Paul's relaxed demenour before delivering his report.
The bring and buy had a good number of items for sale and many a transaction took place. Give it 5 or so more years, all these unmade kits will be back on sale again to other buyers with great intentions. Such is the lot of the finescale modeller/hoarder - but who'd have it any other way?
Wednesday, 9 April 2008
NAGNAG inaugural meeting
NEWPORT and GWENT NEIGHBORHOOD AREA GROUP...NAGNAG.
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Tuesday, 8 April 2008
Fylde Area Group
There were the usual wide range of topics under discussion. But as promised in the last update I would include some photographs of visiting locomotives of which there were several.
Bob Ellis brought this delightful NER Class P 0-6-0 No 1823
Arthur Kimber showed us his progress on two etched locomotives he has been designing;
NER 290 Class J77