Saturday, 23 April 2016

Spalding Model Engineering Show

The Eaugate Light Railway is slowly beginning to entice a stream, or at least a trickle, of weekend visitors. This time it was the turn of Martin from Odds Oracle to take to the controls of Teddy. As he has already blogged we then made a trip over to the Spalding Model Engineering Show.

One day I will remember to go to a model engineering show with a shopping list since there are a few things I now regret not buying, especially from the MJ Engineering stand.

I find it fascinating to see how advanced some parts of the hobby have become. For instance Martin and I discussed the low cost of some of the detailed parts available to the model ship builder these days.
The unusual Clyde class lifeboat

Compared to model railway shows I do find it difficult to do justice to pictures of either ship or aircraft models at shows like this

No, not an A3! I actually tried, and failed, to get a picture of the gauge 1 Aveling at the Peterborough 16mm show a couple of weeks ago

Something both Martin and I were pleased to see was a stand dedicated to the almost forgotten sport of tethered car racing. This chap was casting his own car bodies

The 1/3rd scale Bentley car engines were possibly the most exquisite examples of model engineering at the show.

I was also pleased to see a Tuxford portable engine. It is a good job modern cameras can cope with a range of formats.

I still have a soft spot for vintage model engineering like this 3 1/2" gauge GNR Atlantic

Martin and I were also both taken with this stand of unusual large scale radio control vehicles. This Morris Minor is based on the builder's own car. It is very impressive how with balsa bodywork he has captured just the right impression of the finish you find on a loved, but not concours, old car.

Also interesting was the back story to the livery on his Delaine bus. He was struggling to get the blue right for the roof until the company actually provided him with the paint they used, at which point he discovered it was actually purple, not royal blue. That says a lot about the problems of trying to match colours on models

He also had a couple of commercials on his stand that were actually scaled up from Dinky toys rather than being scaled down from the real thing

By the entrance to the canteen there was a very impressive 1/6th scale dozer complete with an animated driver at the controls. Somehow I forgot to take a photo of that, but this is one of the builder's other animated figures, happily drinking away as the crowds passed him by.

Saturday, 9 April 2016

16mm Show

There is no truth in the rumour that the only reason we moved to near Peterborough from Warwickshire is because the 16mm Association  moved their annual show from Warwickshire to...near Peterborough.

Well it might have crossed my mind during the decision process, but these days I find 16mm less fun than I used to. Why? Well probably a complex set of reasons. A conversation at today's show made me think that there are two main reasons. Oddly both are based on a very positive development, which is the increasing use of accurate 16mm scale. I've been a vocal, and sometimes unwelcome, advocate of that shift for many years, so I shouldn't complain. The main downside  is that scale models lack the same "heft". Linked to that is the feeling that a scale loco and stock deserve a scale railway, which is a challenge in the garden.

At the show there were a number of layouts that showed that the exhibitors had thought beyond the idea of an engine chasing its tail along a glorified test track. The small but perfectly formed Campell's Quarry being the prime example. Elsewhere the thinking wasn't always followed through.

I came close to losing my heart to the new 7/8ths scale Accucraft Decauville. I might still weaken.

Back at home Teddy has been undergoing some maintenance. Hopefully these shots show how easily the Scamp design can be broken down.

Teddy, bare

On the OO9 Cadeby front the big excitement has been the arrival of the Minitrains vehicles and the Narrow Planet O&K that will use the Minitrains loco chassis. I'm still trying to find the Egger track.

The downside is as I clarify the best use of the space for the track layout it looks like the model of the shed that housed the model railway can only be partially modelled. Iain would probably see that as a reason to model the interior....