Sept 12 - Jan 13
you will have noticed the website change over the Christmas period. The
old website got a little bit messy with numerous broken links
and duplicated pages. There were over 500 pages which I have trimmed down
to less than 150.
The new site is based around the drop down menu, which I am hoping will
hold me in good stead for many years. Took ages planning it out and
then actually rebuilding the site. I would estimate 5 days plus
numerous evenings and there is still pages to put back.
I hope you find
the format easier than before but if you are having problems then do
get in touch. One bit of feed back was the missing accessories. Turns
out they didn't notice you don't have to drop the menu bar down but you
can click on accessories. I have put in links on other pages so
hopefully it will help people to navigate around.
If in doubt use the search box - except for buffer stops. I noticed the only text is in a graphic image.
The grand plan - 3 clicks at most, to any page.
Alexandra Palace - London Model Engineering Show 2013
Once again we attended the London Model Engineering Show and shared a stand with Station Road Steam.
Brass Drivers Controls
searching the internet for many months to look for drivers controls I
had to give up and make my own. Not ever having commissioned foundry
work before (except plaques) it has been a learning curve. The new
controller is primarily for the large 7 1/4" gauge locomotives but will
equally fit in a 5" gauge driving truck and could be used as an
alternative to the hand controllers.
The brass top plate is mounted on a laser cut steel
frame which incorporates a notching device to give the drivers handle a
notching effect. The notching disk also has a key slot to give the a
positive stop at the max and min positions. Although it has notches,
the control is via a potentiometer so you still have infinitely
OK see the video and it might make sense.
Prices and launch date to follow.
Two (or Too) Big Locos
With the Chingford Captain Howey loco being over a
year old it is a bit unreasonable to keep borrowing it to demonstrate
at trade and club days. So in October I decided to restart the
construction of a second loco. Originally the frames were welded on the
back of Captain Howey's but then stood up right in the workshop for a
year or so.
The 140 amp 24v controller we use in our engines is still going strong and now it has a few more tricks up its sleeve
The use of the iDrive in the large locos has led us to explore additional features on the controller. To
start with we are now able to put relay control direct from the wiring
loom. This removes the need for separate battery connections. We have
also programmed the top socket so it will provide 24v when reverse is
applied. This can then be used to switching lights over when reversing.
the board is the same it is the way we program it that has changed. Pre
2013 controllers will not have these features unless we re program
them. Happy to re program any controllers but you will need to bring
them back or arrange to meet up at a show.
Pinewood Railway - RoR Owners Day
Bit of a gamble to hold
a day so late in the year but for once in the year the weather was kind
to us. Many thanks to Colin Gross who did all the dirty work. Thanks
again for Colin who has been mugged in to repeating the event on May
25th 2013 but this time with Station Road Steam owners.
Ron Manning driving the 12v Jasper - Thanks to David who did the signals for the day.
Ready for this - Clark and Jasper behind Clark's Jasper locomotive which is called Clark.
The boys unloading Captain Howey which Ron kindly brought over from Chingford.
Clark and Jasper waiting to go out on the mainline.
Graham with his early Trojan followed by Keith with his Y6 tram engine
Captain Howey with Keith and Philys
Colin's Hercules complete with sound system. This loco causes me a lot
of grief because of the amount of requests I get to have a Hercules
like this. We are working on it.
As well as a Hercules and Jasper I took a trailer with the ride in
tram. Ran well but definitely needs a dash board and drivers
control. Something just wrong with a hand controller.
were all made to feel very welcome at the club. We all just turned up
and played trains. A great railway and a great club. Do hope you can
join us in May. Should be great especially with Staffords in steam.
7 1/4" Gauge AGM - Mizens Farm
This years AGM was held at Mizens Farm. Our second visit as we
had attended the 7 1/4" gauge Juniors Day. On both events the club were
most welcoming and it was a joy to attend.
My family joined me on Saturday and we had the tram out on the track. Pictured here with Clark driving.
Once again too busy talking or playing so I only took a few pictures.
Beautiful steamer with matching coaches. Many envious people around
Left - Tinkerbell from East Herts Miniature Railway.
My only trips around the track behind a steam train was behind EHMR
tinkerbell. They even took it up the new inner line with hair raising
inclines and descents. Great fun. The club coaches from Mizens Farm are
also interesting. Sit astride but with a curved roof and windows to
give it a railway coach look.
Very stable and nice looking. The use of inside frame bogies allow for
low running boards to run the full length of the coach. While the
handles on the roof are totally practical, they do detract from the
details of the sides.
I only did the Friday and Saturday and by all accounts the rain set in and spoilt the running on Sunday.
Up north this year? Not sure yet.
W5 - Belfast
ago we supplied a complete train set to W5 in Belfast. W5 is a centre
which is a very hands on interactive centre. To call it a museum would
be wrong and to call it education based makes it sound dull, but it is
a kind of cross between the two, with the best of both and none
of the boring bits. Christmas time and for the third time they were
setting up their winter wonderland and Christmas Express Train.