Tuesday, January 22, 2019

Spools of wire

Am I the only person who uses wire? It seems so as I picked these up from the Stevenage 2nd hand stall in the middle of Sunday morning. Spools of enamelled wire suitable for winding solenoids, or in my case, using for droppers for track feeds.

To be honest, I just liked the look of the wooden bobbins.

The thicker wire is 0.5mm diameter, the thinner 0.1mm

Both come from The London Electric Wire Company and Smiths Limited. I can't see any dates on the paper labels affixed to the end of the bobbins so this is all I know.

I wonder how old they are? I'm thinking over 50 years, possibly a war surplus item? 

Monday, January 21, 2019

Bachmann shopping list


Since I ended up with a Hornby shopping list, it makes sense to have a Bachmann one as well since I attended their product launch on Monday.

The lack of eye-catching new locos means I'm not so quick with my credit card. I built a kit Baguley 009 loco years ago and for the moment, one will do. This doesn't mean a lack of tempting goodies.

In the Scenecraft range, there is a new modular warehouse system, in both OO and N gauge. The main walls will be available in different heights so you can build as long a structure as you want. Decorative tops clip on and if you'd like an entrance door, there is one that can be applied to the front covering up a couple of windows. I'd suggest removing the inner frame (hand on to it, it's a nice brass etch) and painting the area black, but this is quick and clever. Skytrex does something similar for 7mm modellers.


If you can bear to look away from the trains, how about a 1/32ns Lancaster bomber kit? Don't rush though because even at £400, they have all sold out. I'm not into warplanes myself, but can see why you'd want to build it.

Along the same lines, there will be a 1/12th scale Chopper bicycle kit (both these are in the Pocketbond range) for around £15. This I could be tempted by just as a fun project.


Very much under the radar, is this new range of PVC embossed surfaces from Proses. Each sheet is 14 X 34cm and you get three in a pack for £11.95 (RRP). There are some cracking surfaces an the material seems similar to Paylight, beloved of Iain Robertson years ago. I will defiantly be trying some of this stuff as soon as I can get my hands on it. 

Sunday, January 20, 2019

CMRA show 2019

Burg Oberlowenstein

Off to sunny Stevenage for the Chiltern Model Railway Exhibition. A show I still want to call St Albans, even though it moved from their years ago. The venue is much, much better. Loads of space and not bad catering too.

Difficult to pick a highlight from the layouts on show. I think it either has to be the Chinese layout with its long trains and grimy blocks of flats with businesses housed on the ground floors. Either that or the "layout in a suitcase" with a circle of track filled with an endless train of American bogie wagons trundling around.

Endless train

You wouldn't want to be waiting at this level crossing!

Other than this, there was lots and lots of chat, a bargain from the second-hand stall (more on this another day) and a thoroughly good day out. 


Saturday, January 19, 2019

Saturday Film Club: Different types of railway



Oh dear.Looking through YouTube, I thought this might be interesting. It is, but not for the right reasons. 

OK, there are some really interesting clips in here, but it's going to have enthusiasts cringing. Especially when we see one of those new fangled diesel trains introduced by the minister...

Friday, January 18, 2019

Point motor fitting for the Hornby Collectors Club magazine


Point motors come in all sorts of shapes and sizes. In the Winter 2019 issue of the Hornby Collectors Club magazine, I tackle fitting them to your track.

Surface mounting motors are a very practical option if you don't want to make holes in your baseboard, or maybe you simply can't because the layout is already built or mounted on a very solid lump of wood precluding access underneath.

Hornby offers a couple of options, the small motor shown above, or a larger solenoid that can be fixed under the board (I cover this as well) or housed in a nice little hut that could be weathered to be very unobtrusive on a OO model.