Friday, January 01, 2016

A decade of bloggery

10 A few weeks ago, I was in London for a few drinks with anoraky friends and before we met up, was on the lookout for some transport related number 9s for this post. Only when I got back home with a nice enamel 9 on the camera card did I realise that I actually needed a 10.

10. That's a decade of blogging.

When I first started this at the end of December 2005 things looked a bit different. At the time I worked for the County Council and did a little commission model building on the side. The blog was just a bit of fun and somewhere to test a few ideas.

Since then I've left the local authority, had a few more jobs and worked for two of the biggest model railway mags in the UK as well as appearing in all the rest. I also took over, the biggest on-line model railway magazine. And I stopped comission building as being more trouble than it was worth.

There have been three one-shot or bookazine publications, all of which I'm proud of. A novel too, although there's not any modelling in that.

Posting, once occasional, is now daily. Many, many words, some of them correctly spelt, have appeared on-line. I've no idea how many - how close is the first million I wonder?

Anyway, it's review of the year time again.

Statistics are:
  • 365 posts in 2015 - one a day still. It's been close a few times but I've managed to knock something together and am still stupidly proud of the fact.
  • 168,000 visitors - Around 460 a day with 145 returning each day. Presumably a lot of people are bored at work...
  • 250,000 pages viewed over the year.

More importantly, there have been many projects I'm proud of.

In the "not every kit maker has died we're not all doomed" category are a couple of cracking models of on-track plant:

Ballast Tamper

Clockwork Industries laser-cut ballast tamper.

Rail Crane

Make your Mark models rail crane.

Both are fantastic kits that look good and aren't too difficult to build. Kitbuilding isn't all about fighting lumps of badly cast whitemetal.

That's not to say I didn't have a few fights with lead alloy.

Wartime P Class

A South Eastern Finecast P Class. There was a 7mm scale 02 diesel too.

If your tastes tend toward to odd-ball, after visiting an Emmett exhibition in Birmingham, I came away with a Smallbrook Studio kit for Nellie:

Nellie painted and weathered

It's not just locos either, there was the amazing Magna Rail cyclist, seen here passing a Petite Properties cottage.

Cyclist diorama

A bit larger, in 7mm scale, I headed out to the garden for this greenhouse diorama.

Greenhouse Diorama

I've even managed to knock a project off the list from last year!

Bantam Front

The Bantam Tug has been on the water and looking good. One day I'll weather it but that can wait a while.

We'll just have to ignore the 3mm scale Class 25 now making 4 years unfinished and the industrial Garratts still not out of their boxes either.

2016 holds yet more projects.

Quite a few of these will be for Ruston Quays, the new BRM project layout I've been working on. This is scheduled for a couple more trips in the spring, and on one of these it will be accompanied by Melbridge Dock, our venerable old layout which also managed a couple of shows in 2015.

Anyway, thanks, as always for reading my waffle and sometimes even commenting. To be honest, even if no-one dropped by, I'd probably still write stuff, but it makes it a lot more fun if I know it's being read. Happy 2016 everyone!



Colin Murdoch said...


Congratulations on the 10th aniversary. Yes there are some of u s out here who like to read the blog daily.

Regarding your quick round up - what happened to the GWR Railmotor? Is that still a work in progress (or not)?

Nick Brad said...

It's been an absolute pleasure following your blog, although I cannot confess to logging in every day, I have read every single post by back tracking. Hopefully you're getting a little kickback from clicking those adverts every time I visit ;)

Apple Tree said...

I am one of the 145 that read it every day. Over breakfast with a pot of tea and a Ryvita. I like it because it is short and you do not have to commit a lot of time to it and whatever your troubles for a few minutes you are whisked away to modelling land.
Many thanks Phil, Happy New Year and keep the blog going.

Paul B. said...

A post a day is quite an achievement. Some of us struggle to write a couple of posts a month... I like the mix of subjects, for example I know nothing about model boats but enjoy reading about a subject that is outside of my main area of interest.

I'm one of those daily visiters, and no I don't look at it when I'm supposed to be working! Your blog is in part the inspiration behind mine, and the reason that I decided to use Blogger when I moved away from blogging on a certain forum.

Keep up the good work, and especially the Warehouse Wednesday feature.

Paul B.

Woody said...

A fantastic achievement! I have only recently come across your blog but I now read it everyday as well as dipping into the past posts. You have probably achieved more in the last 10 years of modelling than I will in a lifetime although your projects and blog do give me inspiration. Looking forward to the next 10 years of posts. Many thanks for the time you put into the blog and the fine modelling you bring to us.


Phil Parker said...

Thanks for all the thanks folks. Yes, the adverts do bring in a tiny income - pays for my Flickr Pro membership and a couple of other web subscriptions so please keep clicking! Google seems to be getting some interesting adverts nowadays too. The Workbench people look awfully interesting...

GWR Railcar, yes, that should go on the list. I hope it doesn't for 2017 because I've finished it of course.

Thanks again.

Andy from Workshopshed said...

Congratulations on 10 years, a couple more to go myself. It's nice to see a site still going after a decade many bloggers fall by the wayside. Some great projects and I've learnt some interesting things.

Keith Parkinson said...

Congrats Phil. Always enjoy the blogs, and if you remember taking the Hospital railway to Ely a good few years ago - that's when I first met you and was impressed with your work. All the best for 2016 and onwards.

James Finister said...

Congratulations. Life wouldn't be the same without my daily dose of the blog.