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Paint Drying and Grass Growing - a rant. - Model Railway Shows. - Model Railway Layouts. - Your Model Railway Club
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 Posted: Wed Apr 23rd, 2014 08:42 pm
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wahiba
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I pay £8 to visit a model railway show and what do I find? Mostly nicely constructed scenery models, and if I am luck a train moving - usually just moving.

I then see a layout with trains running and no scenery. Which is the most exciting - of course trains running. Interestingly the two I remember from my most recent show were both real steam. One Hornby 00 the other Hornby Tinplate 0 locos converted to run on real steam.

OK - not every nicely constructed scenery layout has movement akin to grass growing. There are exceptions.

In broad terms the majority of Tramway layouts, of all gauges, seem to be continuously running. Classic train layouts of the likes of Hornby Dublo, Hornby 0 and the assorted large US gauges always seem to consist of trains running.  Railways running.

I have seen really excellent layouts where the track is actually one big loop and the trains continually follow. Evidently it is not too difficult to work the sections, like a real railway, automatically.

I suppose some of the shoe-box models may be excused but definitely not some of the large ones. Even so I have seen memorable continually moving shoe box displays. It can be done, a proper show box.

Two running track. Two trains run past, fine. But only once and then head into the large fiddle yard behind. We then watch the paint dry and grass grow before another appears. Surely a couple of trains can do a few loops and then as one runs into the rear sidings and another exits simultaneously. There are usually enough people in matching polo shirts who should be able to organise this.

A show is a show open to the general public. It is not symposium of experts ready to admire the minutae. By all means run to a timetable, but not in real time which is how most seem to.

I want to see model railways.

Please for many of those involved in model railway shows learn a little about presentations.

To those of you who do go out of you way to present a show, thank you.

Maybe I am in the minority? If so then I suspect it is my interest in the technology as well as the appearance that is at fault.




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 Posted: Wed Apr 23rd, 2014 10:25 pm
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60019Bittern
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I think we have all been there and have the T'shirts to prove it. Another thing that bugs me is the number of times I see 'the hand from the sky' giving a loco a shove over some bad connection or point or trains continually derailing at a point, the same point, time after time. Yes, some of the layouts have had a lot of time, energy and money spent on them but the overall effect is ruined by bad running, if anything runs at all. And another thing that gets my goat is running the wrong stock, especially on freight trains. 4 wheeled loose- coupled private owner wagons do not run behind 66's.



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 Posted: Thu Apr 24th, 2014 01:27 am
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MaxSouthOz
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Hi David

I've added an 'a' to Paint in the header.  I hope that's what you meant.

I'm afraid that I'm in the minority here.  In Oz, trains are a rarity if you're trainspotting. That's probably why not many of us do it by comparison to the UK.  Also, it's hard to find decent Anoraks in the shops here.  :lol:

My layout is relatively bare of trains and occasionally one appears from behind the mountains.

What bugs me is the un-prototypical speeds of the trains on exhibition layouts.  My mate, Ian and I have been known to carry portable speedo's at exhibitions.  If you ask politely, exhibitors will allow you to park one on their layout.
They're usually horrified when they see the readings.    :mutley



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 Posted: Thu Apr 24th, 2014 01:40 am
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bike2steam
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By 'do a few loops' I take it you mean the same train going round -again, and again, with 'train-set' running there's nothing worse to spoil the illusion, good for the kids not the enthusiast, the trick is 'time compression', or speed up the clock between trains, well run layouts get this representation right. For the right type of layouts try the bigger shows more geared up for enthusiasts than the smaller family shows where the quality is normally lower.



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 Posted: Thu Apr 24th, 2014 10:49 pm
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col.stephens
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Wahiba said, "I want to see model railways."

Do you want to see a model railway, OR a model of a railway?

If the latter then you would expect to see a model which, as far as is possible, replicates all of the operating methods used by the real railways.  You certainly wouldn't see the same train passing the same location, heading in the same direction twice.

Personally, I would much prefer to see a model railway operating according to all of the rules governing the prototype.  However, I would agree that certain liberties must be taken with the time between trains, otherwise on a model depicting a branch line, you might only see one train movement during the whole day at a show!

Terry


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 Posted: Fri Apr 25th, 2014 02:00 am
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BCDR
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Hi Wahiba,

I think we've all been there. I used to go to 2-3 shows in the UK a year (for around 10 years Warley and the Alley Pally plus a few others, depending on my travel arrangements), and I go to 3-4 shows a year in Canada and the US. I've also taken part in a few shows as an exhibitor (HO and OO). As a punter I want to see trains running, it's why layouts and clubs get invited to a show. As an exhibitor I want to run trains. And it's show and tell time.

There is a disconnect for a number of reasons. Poor planning or a lack of a running plan, too many operators (or hangers on getting in for free) chatting away inside the layout, a lack of contact with the public (using the baseboards as a barrier), the list is endless. The most successful ones are where the operators are a) on the public side of the layout, b) are prepared to interact with the viewing public and explain what is going on, and c) actually have a timetable with some interesting operations. It also helps if there is a member of the team not running trains and there just to interact with the public. Too many exhibitors seem to think it's a club session being held in a bigger room. Give me a small show in the church hall or community center over any of the big ones, much more fun (and a lot less expensive). And the tea and food is generally better.

I have however seen successful layouts 4 deep in punters at big shows. Trains are running, the scenery is believable, and the exhibitors are prepared to talk about what they are doing.

My advice - the next time it happens ask the layout team why trains are not running. An then go and find the show manager and complain, and ask for a refund if more than 25% of the layouts are growing grass. The last thing organizers want is ticket sales down next year.

Nigel




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 Posted: Fri Apr 25th, 2014 04:40 am
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Gary
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I definately agree with Nigel's second paragraph. The most recent show I went to was held in an RSL Club (Returned Servicemans League) and there were about 14 layouts. Only one or two were more trainset like, whereas the rest were good looking layouts. Some had proper running sessions, a diverse range of trains, not the same train doing continuous laps (bar the first two mentioned) and the operators came out the front of their layouts. One layout in particular had plug-ins (NCE handsets)at the front of their layout so operators could come and chat whilst still running trains.

I found this exhibition much more enjoyable and the exhibitors were always willing to have a chat about their layouts, their involvement, their stories and what you, as a viewer were interested in. Quite a pleasant morning I would say.

Thumbs up for the smaller exhibitions. Oh, another thing, there were no trade stands, it was stricly a model railway exhibition.

Cheers, Gary.



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 Posted: Fri Apr 25th, 2014 11:19 am
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bike2steam
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I'm one of those afflicted with a bad sense of 'multi-tasking', get me talking while operating a layout, and the whole sequence goes to pot. No I don't agree with operators in the front of the layout, it blocks the view for some, and can be annoying for punters when it's crowded. But we do have a 'spare' operator, having a rest from operating, interacting with the viewing public, because Blandford is not just a model railway, but also a promotional tool for the town itself as a working museum attraction, you will see if you come to Warley this year, it's good to see that Warley are using Blandford for their promotional blurb .



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 Posted: Fri Apr 25th, 2014 07:15 pm
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wahiba
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I must admit I was expecting a bit of a slagging off for my comments. I confess that I am too forgiving and would never think of complaining. I understand the amateur efforts put in and the difficult the creator has in standing back from their pride and joy to see themselves as others might see them.

I also go to the shows to see what I might find on bargain and book stalls. I generally do not begrudge paying up as I appreciate there is no such thing as a free lunch. I was just curious if others did feel at times the about some displays the way I do.

I will concur that smaller and specialist shows are often more entertaining from a display point of view, but then they tend to lack some of the trade stall I look for. Mind you, small shows are often the best source of bargain oddments, often from the organising clubs sales stand.

PS I hope col.stephens does not run his layouts to the timetables of the railways run by the original Colonel Stephens:lol:

David



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 Posted: Fri Apr 25th, 2014 08:41 pm
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col.stephens
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Actually David, I do.  There should be a train along any week now!  :lol::lol::lol::lol:

Terry

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 Posted: Sun Apr 27th, 2014 07:53 pm
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wahiba
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Blimey - gives me time to get down to Shepherds Well to catch it!

Seriously  -  while I might now reside in 'Gods own County" I am a Man of Kent. Now the EKLRR was long gone before I was aware of such an institutions, although I think it was still 'running' in my first year. I actually believe my Dad worked on it for a day or so as a relief porter. He had recently joined the railway.

I do remember all the mines still working, especially Snowden where steam engines worked way past their demise on the main line. My Mom was a teacher at Aylsham CPS for some years.

Early last year we visited the garden centre at the end of the EKLRR, after being to Barnsole Vinyard and before a next day trip Transmanche to stock up on French goodies.

One advantage of living up North is that literature relating to the South does not get snapped up at second hand book sales so I have a good OS Map from the 1920s showing The EKLRR in full.

David



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 Posted: Mon Apr 28th, 2014 01:32 am
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BCDR
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RE Blandford.

Return fare for Warley is just under $1000.00 bucket class. Plus the admission (and the parking). :lol::lol::lol: And it's November.

Nigel



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 Posted: Tue May 6th, 2014 10:13 pm
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wahiba
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This is the type of layout I like to see at a show>




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 Posted: Tue May 6th, 2014 10:33 pm
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Ed
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Brilliant video :thumbs:thumbs:thumbs

and the music is 'spot on'.


Ed

PS I'm going to end up keep watching this, just for the hell of it.






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 Posted: Tue May 6th, 2014 10:37 pm
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60019Bittern
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A bit hypnotic at times.



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 Posted: Thu May 8th, 2014 05:51 am
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Iansa
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The best bit was the music.

 After about 2 minutes I was nearly hypnotized and went to sleep.

 The track work is very clever but no scenery, buildings etc, does not turn me on. Sorry.

 Cheers

  Ian



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 Posted: Thu May 8th, 2014 01:04 pm
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Petermac
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Nor me Ian - even though I like trams and propose to build a tram layout.

Clever things these "Grand Junctions" but there has to be a reason for them ............unless of course, it was just to demonstrate the potential ..............:roll::roll:



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 Posted: Thu May 8th, 2014 01:39 pm
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Petermac wrote: Clever things these "Grand Junctions" but there has to be a reason for them ............unless of course, it was just to demonstrate the potential ..............:roll::roll:

Eh, thought that was exactly what it was for.

As it says, eventually 12 or more streetcars to run on the layout.

This one's got 'scenery'.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pn7mkJTVgbU


Ed
 



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 Posted: Fri May 9th, 2014 03:33 am
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Iansa
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Now that is a layout I could spend a lot of time looking at.

 Plenty of movement and a reason for its existence.

 Cheers

  Ian



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