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Everything posted by chris

  1. Rapdio are a Canadian business building trains in China to sell in the UK. I assume they are looking at all the projects they have on at the moment and doing a risk assessment. Their assessment of the Prototype HST will have shown them that the risk factors are simply too high and that the chances of them making a loss are considerable. The question is what are the risks? As they say. The drop in the pound is going to make their product more expensive in UK shops, which will make it harder to sell (I'll come back to that). Manufacturing costs in china are rising quickly, they will have to pay more to have them made. Nobody, and I mean absolutely nobody, knows what trade tariffs will be in 3 years time, that's instability that they talk of. Read any Model Railway forum, including this one, and lots of members are complaining about the high price of new models and how they won't be buying these expensive products. If you and I, their market, go online and say we won't buy models that cost £xx.xx then it will scare manufactures off. A brexit vote was always going to make imported goods more expensive, this was made very clear before the vote and as a nation we voted for it. The argument is that it will bring manufacturing back to the UK. Personally I don't think it will, I can't see Hornby taking back control of their supply chain and building everything in Margate, but I wish they would. That said it would probably mean they went bust, but I think they are going to do that anyway!
  2. That's interesting. I've named stations and junctions on my railway, but not farms, bridges and viaducts. I'll have to put my mind to that. I was very deliberate with my naming of stations, well that is what I tell myself. Having named my first couple of stations Amblethorpe and Colwick I realised that it was a good idea to name my third station beginning with the letter B so I'd have A, B and C stations. Since then I have made sure I haven't reused a letter for a junction or a siding. With a computer based signal box sorting things by alphabetical order makes a lot of sense.
  3. I don't have any motivation to exhibit. But with the tramway I have something "that will generate a lot of interest among the viewing public." The practicalities of going on the exhibition circuit are beyond me because I don't drive... I should be able to talk a mate or two into assisting me if I do book for the occasional show. A friend and I have big plans to build a modern image layout of Morecambe and Heysham and to exhibit it. But he is suffering from a chronic illness so all we can do at the moment is plan. The main idea behind taking some of Amblethorpe to the Coffee Shop is to get my station on show, with a few DMUs moving in and out. If we keep it simple the only extra boards required would be for a station throat. I'm meeting my mate John at lunchtime in the shop, I'll see if he's got any any enthusiasm to get it on with it.
  4. I've made a lot of progress with my tramway. So much so I am planning of showing it. My wife and I own a local coffee shop and one Saturday I'll set up the tramway there and run it for the customers. This idea got me thinking, could I also show Amblethorpe? One option would be to simply have a running day on the Sunday after I've had the tramway out, and had out flyers on the Saturday. Another option could be to take Amblethorpe to the coffee shop. A lot of the scenery on Amblethorpe are dioramas that I place next to my tracks when I am having a running session. I could make and indoor version of Amblethorpe by putting some track on a baseboard or two and simply place my scenic sections next to it. I've spoken to a mate to see if he fancies taking on this project with me. I'm awaiting his response.
  5. Yes Mick, I've done some preliminary work on board 4. My attention should switch over to that in the next couple of days. And if you think that they wax crayons were imaginative then my first posting on board 4 will blow your mind.
  6. I've been cracking on with my winter project, my tramway. Before starting on the new board, I've had a big push to finish of the one I started last winter. It is a corner board with a bandstand on the inside, and allotments, pinic area and market stalls on the outside of the tracks. This is how it's looked through 2016. The first job was to add a building as a tea and coffee bar. The Metcalfe cricket pavilion fitted the job, and the space. I also put together the Metcalfe pub tables I'd bought last year. A couple of low relief tree finished off the back corner. I wanted a tarmac path around the band stand. I would have used Metcalfe card sheets, which the roadways are made of, but I had run out. Instead I used a cereal box and aerosol paint. I needed to do some careful cutting to get the path to fit the landscape as the bandstand sits atop a small rise. I am pleased with the result. I used acrylic window sealant in the flowerbeds. I was going to flock the grass between the bandstand and the tracks, until a mate pointed out that a grass mat would be better. I'd run out of grass mat so bought a new one. He was right, it went down a treat and really looks the part. I'd also got to work on the allotments working on the greenhouse, pigeon loft raised bed etc. With most of the elements for the allotments made it was time to plant everything in the scene. Lots more brown acrylic sealant was applied to create soil and hold things in place. Noch laser cut plants are used for the veg. The runner beans are Busch. Today I finished the allotments off and planted the flower beds. The flower beds were mainly made with pan scrubs and grated wax crayons (the purple bits were from Woodland scenics). The tulips are Noch, but I added a flake or two of wax crayon to improve the look. There are a few more jobs to do. I will add gates to the allotments. Buildings need to be glued down. The market stalls require items to sell. It needs to be peopled. The final job will be to add the overhead. This has to be done last because it really gets in the way of doing everything once it is installed.
  7. I've been working a lot with correx recently. I've just build a baseboard for my tramway out of the stuff and I have produced a very sturdy yet lightweight base. Looking back at this forum I can see that I installed a correx back scene in August 2013. As you can see from my recent picture it still looks very good. It has lasted much better than the painted plywood it replaced. The top edge of the back board is now more brittle, but it doesn't look like it will fall apart anytime soon. After 3 years I'm still happy to recommend correx if you need a back scene.
  8. I recently bought some hooked knife blades for my Stanley knife. They weren't suitable for the job I got them for, but they are brilliant for cutting roofing felt.
  9. I have a "security shed". It's got small windows, internal hinges, padlock covers and a heavier grade of timber. If you are buying a new shed I'd recommend going for something similar.
  10. When I started build my garden railway I already had a big shed in a small garden. Over the last 6 years my railway has slowly grown to take over nearly all of the shed. Most of that growth was to stable the ever expanding depot allocation. The most recent reorganisation was/is to allow for the housing of a station in the shed. I've given up on the pretence that I have a shed which has a railway running through it. I now have a railway shed. Is my shed big enough? Yes, just. My shed is 12 by 6 (foot). When I bought it I wanted a 4m by 2m shed, it would have been a better fit for my garden. But imperial still rules in British sheds I'm helping a mate build a railway shed, it's 24ft by 4ft6. It will host an end to end layout, which may branch out into the garden. When it comes to sheds for garden railways my preference is for a long thin one. Anyone else got any thoughts on shed size and dimension ratio?
  11. Hi, I have a twin track railway that is about the same size as your plan. I run it with a PowerCab, hooked up to a computer and use iPhones and iPads as throttles. It works very very well. I have a lot of points, about 20 in the shed and 16 outside. I cannot control all of that with the PowerCab, I need the computer to make sense of it all. I doubt your system will be as point heavy as mine (I try not to think of the cost of all the points, motors and accessory decoders!) But it's worth thinking about whether you want points and if so how you plan to control them. Buy a big shed. I've got a 12 foot by 6 foot. I'd love it to be 14 by 8.
  12. I was going to place a DMU on the line for the photo, but the ice crystals on the railways were so large I was put off.
  13. It's a bit chilly in York this morning.
  14. I've met Gordon at a few shows this year. Ravenscar Pier is a fine model, especially with the addition of the cliff railway. I've been considering buying from Model Railway Scenery for a while, but something put me off, so I haven't got round to it. Has anyone any experience of making their models? The John's Model Railways kits are a great design from a functional/structural point of view. But the graphic design is a bit lacking. They build a good model, but could look better.
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