Friday, 29 August 2014

Project X

A recent comment on an old post reminded me that I have a few ideas in mind for what to do with the Apa box after I dismantle the current diorama.

Most of them involve trams in some form or another.

This Lisbon tram is sat on the track at the moment. Strictly speaking it is sat between the racks because it is a nominal 12mm gauge out of the box. I quite like trams in rural settings, or better still the locations where an urban line becomes a rural one. So my project X involves such a transition, and the X itself  is also an important part of my putative tram layout design.

Incidentally whilst I was writing this my eye was caught by a photo sticking out from one of my father's old tram books that I inherited.

I know it wasn't taken on his garden railway, although that did see the odd tram operate on it. It appears to be a commercially produced photograph taken in 1959

Monday, 25 August 2014


For me there is always something appealing about the combination of narrow gauge railways and canals. So I when on a  bit of a whim I persuaded my wife that we should take a brief diversion to visit Foxton locks and the site of the old inclined plane I was pleased to come across this small cameo.

And a couple of shots of the locks and the site of the inclined plane

Friday, 22 August 2014

If Only I had an Armchair

I'm always conscious that at times this must come across as an armchair modeller's blog.  I salve my conscience by reminding myself that it would be nice to have the time to be an armchair modeler. In fact put me in an armchair at the moment and the only thing I'm likely to do is fall asleep.

I'm writing this in a bar in Melbourne.  I think it is Monday but to be honest the last ten days are a blur of cattle class travel, hotel rooms, meetings and presentations.  I lost my voice five days ago but the show goes on. It will be another four days before I see home again. Unfortunately the trip home involves around 40 hours without a bed.

On the other hand I'm having the time of my life.  I've just got off this vintage Melbourne tram

Yesterday I managed to persuade some of the leading minds of my industry that they wanted nothing better than to take a major detour so I could take a handful of pictures of the Puffing Billy

On Friday I delivered a speech in front of $200m worth of classic cars

I've even seen and filmed a platypus.

I've also talked the hind legs off several donkeys despite my loss of voice

This trip had been dominating my life for the last four months. It has taken a lot of planning by a lot of people and a lot of panicking by me that I've tried to hide from everyone else involved.  The pressure to get it right has been enormous and more than once I've suffered from imposter syndrome.
Carefully crafted PowerPoints have been thrown into the WPB at the last minute and replaced by improvised and impassioned talks designed to address the needs of the audience  and some how it has all come together.

Can you see where I'm going with this

Yep, it is a bit like building a layout.