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Midlands Meccano Guild
96th Meeting Model Report
Midlands Meccano Guild
96th Meeting - Saturday 28th March 2015
(Photos taken by Bob Thompson, Jenny Thompson & Mick Burgess)
After a long, damp and grey journey (from deepest Essex!) it was still raining a bit when I arrived. Although it was just after 10.30 am the car park was full and I was lucky to find a space. Not surprisingly I found the hall packed to the rafters with members and their models, and the atmosphere was positively buzzing with the measured excitement known to occur when Meccano enthusiasts “swarm”. Those lucky enough to be “in the know” may witness this phenomenon twice per year in the midlands area.
The turn out of members was considerably larger than usual and may even have been a record. Since a number of long standing members were absent on this occasion, it was clear that the total membership has grown in recent times and, indeed, some new members were signed up at the meeting. Thus the challenge facing your reporter was considerable and I did struggle to get around all the models in the time available. As always, my apologies to those I have missed or misrepresented in any way.
Since Mick Burgess usually leaves the meeting at lunchtime, I often fail to report on his models as they have gone by the time I get around to them. So, to make up for previous omissions I decided to start my tour with his collection of small models.
As usual Mick brought along a collection of smaller models built from manual instructions covering many years of Meccano development. The earliest model was of a field gun nicely constructed in nickel parts and based on 24.3 in the 1916 manual.
The next model was of a 6” naval gun, resplendent in pristine nickel, and built from instructions dating from 1928. The model also featured in the book of New Meccano Models dating from the same period. Next up was a saloon car nicely presented in mid red/green colours and featured as model 4.35 in the 1954-1961 series of instruction manuals. The next pair of models completed the collection and both were built from instructions in the 1962-1969 series of manuals. First a sports car, model 4.15, and lastly, a shooting brake, model 5.2. Both models looked very attractive in a yellow/zinc colour scheme.
How do you change gear and control the direction of rotation of a Powerdrive motor when it is not directly accessible inside a model? Faced with this problem Christopher Bond
has engineered a neat solution and he brought along his “PDU puzzle” to demonstrate the solution.
The key to his successful solution was found when he noticed the similarity between the black gear select ring on a PDU and a plastic milk bottle top. A V-shape was cut in the side of a top, the end cut out, a slit made in the side opposite the V, and the resulting “female” face-cam slipped on to the PDU in place of the black ring. A “male” cam was made from a different, deeper plastic tube top, and a four-legged spider of obtuse brackets built up on a 57-tooth gear ring, 3/8” bolts gripping the female cam. The gap between the cams slides one plunger in and one out of mesh as the cams are rotated through a sixth of a turn by a pinion in mesh with the 57-tooth gear. To overcome the property of PDUs to change direction of rotation with each gear change a crosshead was arranged to operate the reversing switch with each gear change. An indicator shows which ratio is engaged. For a more detailed description members may e-mail Christopher on firstname.lastname@example.org.
Roger Marriott brought along some typical display models with a transport theme. First was a superb rendition of a 1931 Bugatti type 54 sports saloon, looking very attractive in a blue/zinc colour scheme. Second was the chassis of the Aero Morgan 3 wheel car nicely set out in red/zinc colours and built to the current Terry Pettitt design, more of which later. Roger has undertaken to photograph the model in various stages of construction for the building instructions, currently being serialised in the MMG Bulletin. Central to this group of models was a rotating display in the Meccano factory style showing off a splendid model of a Norton motorcycle carefully modelled in a red/green/zinc colour scheme.
Although not an official Meccano display model, the design looks very convincing. Alan Covel
has a long and distinguished track record for building very large Meccano models in his trade mark yellow/blue/zinc colour scheme. On this occasion he brought along a “small” model, by his standards, of a 0-4-0 narrow gauge tank engine with integral tender called “Nina”. Modelled very nicely as ever using pristine yellow/zinc parts, the model dimensions are 50” long, 15” wide and 26” high. The wheels for the model were made up from 4” diameter Meccano components and shod with 6” diameter ashtray tyres. Model engineers among the membership will undoubtedly be familiar with this type and style of locomotive.
Nearby, I came to a pair of fine transport models built by Brian Edwards
. Brian always manages to produce something new, or different, for each meeting and this time we were presented first with a Bedford OXC tractor unit with “Queen Mary” trailer as used by the RAF in the 1940s-1950s. This model was nicely detailed in mid red/green colours and measured about 40” long. His second model was of a 1950s Bristol K-type open top double deck bus. In an attempt to recall the Eastern National livery of the period the model was finished mainly in yellow parts with green trim. The result was most evocative of the period, and I should know as I grew up in the region and went to school on yellow/green Eastern National buses.
Ken Wright brought along a new helicopter model built from the “Rescue helicopter” Evolution series outfit. As might be expected of a model builder with Ken’s experience, the model was very carefully put together and looked extremely attractive in its orange/white colour scheme. To give you some idea of scale, the rotor blades are moulded in black plastic to give the model a “proper” appearance, and the rotor diameter is about 18”. It looked suspiciously similar to the Aerospatiale Puma to me.
Then I came to my good friend Colin Reid
who had brought along the familiar collection of enviable stuff that he manages to acquire for quite modest outlay. No less than four Meccano steam engines, two early Marklin type vertical engines, the Meccano 1929 vertical engine and the modern Mamod type. He also had a hot air engine of unknown parentage. Other interesting goodies included a 1934 Spanish No.4 Meccano outfit in original wooden box and a modern Tuning radio control car outfit.
The next model I looked at was a superb version of the 1931, 4½ litre Blower Bentley beautifully modelled in mid red/green parts by Tony Wakefield. The model was built to a scale of 1:6, it has wheels based around the familiar ash-tray tyres, it is raised on a plinth for display purposes and measures about 18” overall length. Tony informed me that the model is not quite complete so, watch this space!
Mark Rolson has become a bit of a specialist in large heavy duty tractor vehicles which can be coupled with a variety of trailer units. Mark brought along a pair of his model tractor units, both built to quite large scale as determined by his choice of ash-tray tyres for the wheels. Both models represented typically rugged North American heavy equipment and were of similar size at about 3ft overall length. One model was of a Peterbilt tractor originally designed by Joe Attard and appropriately modelled using a yellow/green colour scheme.
The second model was to a design by the late Dr Keith Cameron and published as Canadian Special Model No. 11. The prototype for this model was the Kenworth W-900 tractor and Mark had given his version an attractive yellow and dark blue colour scheme.
Then I got waylaid by Geoff Burgess and John Hornsby who wanted to tell me about their models. But, too much talking and not enough noting means that I do not have much to report here.
Geoff’s model was of a 1940s Foden Timber Tractor chassis which looked very businesslike in the works department. The model measured about 2ft overall length, made good use of medium red and green parts and was scaled, yet again, by an appropriate set of ash-tray tyres. John’s model, on the other hand, could easily have been missed as it was a relatively small construction, being part of a much larger model still in development. The “model” was one of eight trailer bogies which embody some clever mechanics in their diminutive works.
John showed me that not only is the bogie steerable but it can also be adjusted in height by means of the internal mechanism. Those who like to build large heavy machinery involving bogies would do well to look at John’s compact design next time the opportunity arises.
Manchester Corporation operated a “same day” parcel delivery service using tramways parcel vans from 1905 until the early 1930s, when motor delivery vans took over the service. Morning shoppers in the city centre could have parcels delivered in the afternoon via the tramway system, on a 'cash on delivery' basis. It was most evident that Geoff Devlin
had undertaken a lot of research into the subject and brought along to the meeting his excellent model of a tramways parcel van. The prototype for his model was the typical Parcels Department parcel van No. 6 operating about 1925. The large capacity van body was built on the frame of a scrapped passenger car and was powered by Brill 22e maximum traction type bogie trucks. Manchester trams were painted scarlet red, they had a route mileage of about one hundred miles and the track gauge was four feet eight and a half inches. Geoff’s model was built to a scale of approximately 1:16 which translates into a rail gauge of 3½”. The model parcel van was completed in a mid red colour scheme, which is quite in-keeping with the prototype and was set up to run on a short length of track for demonstration purposes. To give an idea of scale, the overall length of the van was 24”, width 6” and height 9½”. For the tram fanatics, Geoff pointed out the unusual position of the main running light and the two small red lights, fitted on the bulkhead behind the driver. Geoff’s other model on this occasion was the helicopter built from the Speed Play outfit No.7901 which he had acquired recently at a car boot sale.
Alongside Geoff’s fine model, I came to yet another splendid model, a marine steam engine built by Paul Brecknell
. The model was based on the 1950's No. 9 outfit model (9.18), but heavily modified and built without the limitations of outfit contents. It was constructed in pristine light red and bright zinc parts with the flywheel (2× part No.137) and feed pump cylinders (2× part No.216) in matching blue. The careful construction, attention to detail and choice of colour scheme made this a very attractive model, and it runs very well too. Paul provided me with a very detailed breakdown of the main modifications to the published design, which is really too detailed to reproduce here. However, some general modifications include a lot of brassware not featured in the original model, a concealed Powerdrive motor and gear train to provide motive power and, to remain within the spirit of the original model design, the handscrew driven motor reversing mechanism (although it is much quicker to use the reversing switch on the transformer!).
Nearby was an equally nostalgic factory produced display model brought along by Tom McCallum
. As might be expected the model was superbly restored and presented in pristine condition. Dating from the early 1960s the model was a squarish looking estate car, typical of the period, and constructed in light red and green parts. Interestingly, the whole body of the car was hinged to the chassis so that it could be lifted up to reveal the interior detail. Judging by the interest in this exhibit, I picked up the message that it was quite a rare find. We have seen quite an assortment of display models over the years, but I have never seen this example before.
Next I came to a fairground model attributed to Michael Bent
: a familiar looking fairground ride of about 3ft diameter and powered by an ER20 electric motor. The design looked very much like a No.8 outfit model but, as far as I am aware, the model was an original and colourful design by Michael.
Tim Martin showed a model of a familiar showman’s engine of about 2ft overall length. I was told that this was the late Ernie Chandler’s model, which is why it was familiar, and it was good to see that it still exists and was brought out for an airing – a really nice way to remember past friends.
It is not often that Mike Cook
, your model reporter, brings a model to a meeting. However, after several years in the making, I brought along my latest model of a Foster Thrashing Machine. Based loosely on the Foster’s of Lincoln standard thrashing machine, the model was built to an approximate scale of 1:12 and makes extensive use of my most pristine light red/green parts. Most of the internal machinery is represented although lacking in detail because of the difficulty of fitting it all in such a small model. However, the visible parts of the machinery provide a reasonably convincing representation of the prototype. Without a doubt, the most difficult construction was the crank shaft which operates the straw shakers – it required no less than eight accurately drilled couplings (part No.63), a very rare component indeed in the Meccano parts inventory! The model is fully working but unpowered. It is intended to drive the thrasher from a suitably powered traction engine in due course. An attractive and distinctive feature of the steam driven thrashing machine
is the external belting connecting the many driven shafts. Even my best Meccano driving bands were just not up to the job, so I resorted to making up my own drive belts using Polymax NBR Nitrile cord. This is a synthetic rubber product which can be made up easily into flexible, low tension drive bands and they work really well.
To keep the thrashing machine company, I also brought along my elderly Fowler ploughing engine, which the observant will realise they have seen on a number of occasions in the past.
Next to my models was “collectors corner” where some interesting historical stuff was displayed.
Jim Gamble brought along about 20 early instruction manuals and each one was in a different language. This made not only an interesting and attractive display of nostalgia, but the very strong point that in its heyday Meccano was a truly global product inspiring the young would be engineers of tomorrow all around the developed world.
The Rob and Wendy Miller
, (members of NMMG and welcome guests at our meeting ) are well known for their educational work with youngsters involving the use of Meccano but, as far as I can recall, I have not reported on their activities before. Not surprisingly, the model they brought to the meeting was a simple mathematical calculating device involving an educated monkey! Lots of young person appeal here as the device can be used to make simple additions and multiplications. They told me that the model has its origins as far back as 1916, but their version was based on that described by Graham Jost in CQ for December 2005.
Moving on to a large assortment of small models brought along by Colin Bull
. Four small models were constructed from the Evolution series outfits. However, one of the models was Colin’s interpretation of a photograph of a prototype model for the series which has never actually seen the light of day. Colin had done well to emulate the red and black colour scheme of the original. His second collection of models was from the Meccano “Gears of War” series dating from 2011~12. These comprised a “King Raven” helicopter, a “Centaur” light tank, the “Silverback” machine gunner, an “armadillo” vehicle and numerous support items. This series was new to me and involved a large amount of moulded grey plastic and very little Meccano – not something I would go out of my way to find. In my view Colin’s star model was the compact grasshopper beam engine built to the design by the late Bob Ford in the yellow/blue/zinc colour scheme.
Brian Compton brought along his model of an Automated Rolling Bridge Road Coal Loader and Un-Loader for another outing. The model was inspired by the Coal Loader and Un-loader described in the CQ special publication by Oscar Fontan and Keith Cameron. This is a large model sitting on a base about 2ft square and Brian’s version looks splendid in its immaculate mid red and green colour scheme. The model relies entirely on its electronics for its automated cycle of loading, unloading and shifting “coal” around aimlessly.
Nearby was a small construction of a joystick switch device which I believe was another example of Brian’s electromechanical handiwork. (a description of how to build this neat joystick will appear in a future bulletin.).
Next, I came to a model of the Hindle Smart electric articulated lorry nicely presented by John Rix
. The model was carefully constructed using mid red/green coloured parts from the instructions in MP183 by Tony James. The model was designed to be built from the contents of the No.10 outfit and included some mechanical detail consistent with models at that level of complexity.
Alongside was a pair of military tracked vehicles built by David Hobson
. As is customary for David, the models were built to a high standard of fidelity using Meccano Army coloured parts, the scale being determined by the use of plastic Meccano track components. The first model was of the WW1 British medium tank mkA “Whippet”. In reality, it was a fairly mobile machine gun. Interestingly the prototype was produced by the steam machinery manufacturers Foster’s of Lincoln. The second model was of the companion WW1 French St-Chalmond tank, the chassis only being shown as it is still in construction. I do not know the scale of the models, but both measured about 16” long overall.
Moving on to Richard Howard’s
Meccanograph, which he said was inspired by having seen one of Sid Beckett’s models drawing away recently. Richard’s model was a rebuild of a fairly standard Meccanograph design. However, he had modified the gearbox to suit his own requirements. The model was working when I saw it and was clearly capable of producing a wide variety of the typically intricate drawing designs.
Those of you familiar with MM for June and July 1939 will have seen the articles on Britain's Fighting Forces in Meccano showing photographs and minimal building information for a whole series of small military models reflecting the period just before the outbreak of WW2. John Reid
has built all of these models to his usual high standard and the collection was the basis for his attractive presentation at the meeting. The model of HMS Hood was originally reproduced from the photograph and the scant details given in the article in MM for June 1939. However, on obtaining more detailed information of the ship, it was apparent that a more realistic "simplicity" model could be constructed using parts consistent with the spirit of the time with the following exceptions – John’s preference for the use of Allen bolts, hex nuts, Allen grub screws and metric and BA washers. From the article in MM for July 1939 John reproduced six aircraft models from the photographs and the limited information given in the article.
The aircraft models comprised the Hawker Hart, Supermarine Walrus, Handley Page Hampden, Armstrong Whitworth Whitley, Gloster Gladiator and Avro/Cierva autogyro. As before John endeavoured to use parts consistent with the period and with the following overall exceptions; his preference for Allen bolts, hex nuts, Allen grub screws, metric and BA washers,the addition of tyres to the pulleys/wheels of the undercarriages and RAF roundels on all models obtained from recent Red Arrows outfits. No self respecting Meccanoman would undertake a project like this without making some changes to the models. John is no exception and the degree of modification to the aircraft varied from very little to a complete rework – because of the small scale some of the models were quite difficult to modify. In general, most of the changes were attempts to improve the scale appearance of the models in terms of dimensions, reasonably representative colour schemes and mechanical improvements facilitated by the use of modern parts not available in 1939.
Newish member Phil Rhoades
brought along an assemblage of interesting models not often seen at our meetings. First was his mechanical digger, nicely made in mid red/green parts from the 1951 No.8 outfit manual model 8.17. Second was a pair of Aeroplane Constructor models, a large biplane and a rather smaller biplane, both of which were quite typical in every respect. His third model caused a bit of a stir as it is rarely seen these days. The model was the “Penny-in-the-slot” Theatre built from instructions in the early 1950s No.9 outfit manual, model 9.10. Phil bought the model in a sale as a restoration project. Maybe it will be restored enough to relieve you of your small change at the next meeting!
Then I found a couple of interlopers from the Bristol area, namely Pete Evans and Richard Smith, (both of whom are now welcomed as new members.)
Pete Evans’ model was of a 1931 MG F2 Magna sports car previously owned and restored by himself. Some photographs of the original car during restoration showed the basic construction of the car well. The model (shown on front cover) represents the actual car, registration number MG 1410, and was superbly presented in a carefully chosen pristine red and green colour scheme. To give you some idea of scale, the overall length of the model is about 15”, and utilises repainted 3” diameter spoked wheels fitted with modified 4” diameter tyres. For demonstration purposes the model was presented on a rolling road dynamometer so that it could be shown in action. Pete started building the model over a year ago and has tried to follow the prototype as closely as possible and it was clear that his patience has paid off handsomely.
Pete’s mate Richard Smith
baffled the crowds with his unusual model called “The Octomecc”. The model was inspired when Richard saw a late 1950s Meccano Mechanisms Display board and decided to integrate that design with his burning desire to build a model of an Octopus fairground ride. The model looks like the eight arm fairground ride with the passenger cars removed and replaced with eight different demonstration mechanisms. It has a diameter of about 30”. The model incorporates a variety of drive methods, utilises large amounts of gearing and, in his own words, provided a significant study in finding the sources of, and reducing, friction. A primary objective of the model was to create a visually attractive display model that might appeal to young minds. The eight demonstration mechanisms comprise an NMMG Meccanic waving, an automatic forwardreverse drive, a two speed drive, a crown wheel and pinion differential, an NMMG Meccman with jack hammer, an intermittent drive, an out-of-line drive and a pinion differential. Whatever next?
Our chairman George Illingworth
has more than a passing interest in fire engines and has built a vast number (well into double figures!) over the last few years and I have previously reported on a fair few of these. George brought along another four fire engine models to the meeting which may, or may not, have been “new stock”.
The theme for this small collection was that the prototypes were all designed for operation over rough terrain. The models represented a 1926~27 Morris FD, a 1942 WOT1 Foden crash tender on a Ford chassis, a 1955 “Green Goddess” 4×4 pump and a 1960 Alvis Salamander Mk6 RAF crash tender. As always these models were nicely presented; carefully built with a sympathetic approach to choice of colour scheme, and with an appropriate attention to detail sufficient to give a convincing representation of the originals.
Having suffered the “slings and arrows” of the public transportation system our president Geoff Wright
arrived at Baginton just as the afternoon festivities were kicking off. To his credit he also carried one of his models with him which was quickly stationed alongside George’s fire engines.
Geoff’s model was of an Inter-station Omnibus built in mid red/green colours whilst remaining within the constraints of the 1950s No.9 outfit. I have reported on this model during the course of its construction and I know that Geoff had a bit of a challenge getting his design looking and working correctly whilst remaining within his chosen limits. This is a nice looking model and he did well to get it out of the No.9 outfit.
Without a doubt, the biggest and most eye catching model at the meeting was brought along by Gregg Worwood
. The model was a 1:5.7 scale version of Stephenson’s Rocket locomotive together with its tender, a first class carriage and a third class carriage. The scale was determined by the large flanged rings (part No.167b) used to make up the driving wheels, and this made the whole train about 7~8ft long overall. The model was very well built using predominantly light red/ green parts, with some yellow and blue parts for variety and for trim. In all, a very attractive and nicely presented model.
Next, I came to another large and unusual model brought along by Sid Beckett
. Regular readers of the report will know that Sid often bowls up with an unlikely model made in Meccano, for example, do you remember his saxophone of some years ago? At this meeting his model was of a lighthouse complete with working light. The model measured about 3ft high with a nominal diameter of about 12in and was constructed largely using red and yellow plating. With the lantern of the lighthouse removed the revolving light arrangement was open to inspection and comprised a pair of lenses mounted on a rotating base with the lamp at its centre and it worked pretty much as per prototype.
Quite often we find Paul Hubbard
using his time at our meetings either building a new model or dismantling an old one. This time he brought along a structurally complete model of a 300 ton gantry crane of the kind found in heavy engineering works. This particular model was based on one previously built by Rob Mitchell. Paul’s model measured about 3ft by 12½in and comprised a very substantial structure as might be expected for a heavy duty crane. At the time I saw the model Paul was busy working at getting the internal electrics organised.
Then moving on, the large space next door was occupied by the Giant Walking Dragline model as featured on the cover of the 1950s instruction manuals. The model was built utilising yellow/zinc parts by Terry Wilkes
. Terry did well to build the model from the contents of outfit No.10 plus a few extra parts and some modifications. I found this model very interesting as it was remarkably similar in appearance and size to a Ransomes and Rapier W300 I built about 30 years ago, and it took me two attempts before I achieved a satisfactory result! Terry managed to achieve a fully working model with much simpler internal machinery and, he explained to me how he had managed to get it walk satisfactorily, which is always a challenge with this particular machine.
Whilst on the subject of cranes, the Welsh contingent represented by Mei Jones
brought along a pair of crane models made up from the cranes Super Construction outfit. The models had been put together with obvious care and looked rather small and neat alongside their giant cousin.
Over the years Terry Pettitt
has deservedly grown a reputation for designing and building scale models of all kinds of vehicle within the constraints of the Meccano system. That he has been remarkably successful at this is borne out by the steady production of a new model for nearly every meeting. His latest creation is a very fine model of the 1934 Aero Morgan three wheel sports car. The model is about 2ft long, the scale being set by the use of nickel 3½in pulleys with tyres to represent the spoked wheels of the prototype. An appropriate colour scheme of red platework with bright zinc to represent the mechanical aspects looked the part completely.
The model boasts a staggering amount of detail including the V-twin engine with working valve gear, clutch, three speed and reverse gearbox, and a chain drive to the rear wheel. It is fortunate that building instructions for the model are being serialised in the MMG Bulletin so we can all benefit from knowledge of Terry’s model building skill. Terry’s other model at the meeting was his familiar Fordson tractor with trailer.
This part of my tour circuit is usually quite busy with many bits and pieces jostling for space with Meccano models of all sizes.
Amongst the clutter I came upon two small models brought along by John Bland
. Firstly a diminutive classical windmill modelled in mid red/green parts and, secondly, a rather good looking model of a London taxi, well made and nicely presented in a blue/zinc colour scheme. In similar vein,
Roger Auger brought along the Spitfire aeroplane made up from the recent outfit, but with the inevitable minor modifications to improve its appearance, which he described to me. Roger also brought his little Tin-Tin model float plane which looked rather like the float plane version of the DH Beaver to me.
It is well known that Tony Knowles
is a collector of alternative model construction systems, so it came as no surprise to see some new examples from his collection.
Unmissable was his splendid model of Salisbury’s Poultry Cross, a familiar landmark to all those who know central Salisbury. The model was made from Construction system parts plus a few “foreigners”, in particular, grub screws were introduced in several lengths up to 12mm to improve the neatness of the model. The original medieval cross was basically as we see it today but with fewer decorative details, and without any of the top structure . The “improvements” were made in the mid-1850s.
Tony’s second exhibit was firmly based on the Tronico range of construction sets, a name I am not familiar with and I have no idea from where they originate. Tronico produce sets to make specific models in a range of scales from 1:16 to the recently launched micro range at 1:64 scale. The holes are 2mm diameter set at 5mm pitch, axles are 2mm diameter and the nuts and bolts have a metric M2 thread. At present, ten sets are available to build 5 different tractors and trailers, either as static models or as powered models complete with infra-red control . The example on display was the working version of the New Holland tractor. The 1:64 scale model was shown alongside one of Tronico’s 1:1 6 scale tractors . Tony’s third construction system brought to the meeting was a small outfit in the “EL IMECHANIKI HDITH” (The Model Mechanic) system. The set was made, probably in the 1970s, at Factory No.10 of the Egyptian Public Association for Army/Industrial Manufacturing at Abu Qy r, near Alexandria. Most of the parts are a good match with German TRIX, but the inclusion of a long strip in such a small set is unusual. Many of the models, although probably inspired by pre -war Trix, have been redesigned and the long s t rips are used to advantage in some of the models.
Dave Phillips followed with his 1926 Sentinel Roadless Super Tractor in red and green, constructed from a photo illustrated in The Old Glory Magazine. The 1926 model was one of the last of these vehicles with Dave's model showing the rear caterpillar tracks being driven through a differential and the battery stored in the water tank.
Richard Gilbert brought along his latest acquisition in his collection, a Meccano dealer cabinet in nice condition dating from 1928. The display card appeared to be in good order and was still strung with the original parts.
Then, to complete my tour, I had a brief look at Dave Bradley’s
model of a VW Camper van modelled in yellow/zinc colours. Typical of Dave, the model was quite large at about 2ft long by 12in wide by 12in high, the scale being determined by the large ash-tray tyres on the wheels, and in his trade mark style the model was kitted out with radio control.
An interesting and successful meeting with rather more members and models present than usual. So many new faces and models that I did not get around all those present before it was time to leave. It makes my job very much easier if you label your models with a few descriptive facts and the name of the builder, and I am grateful to those members who were good enough to give me some written facts about their models.
Without that information I frequently find myself “making it up as I go along”. Be warned! I must, of course, mention our traders, John and Linda Thorpe and Mike Rhoades who do a stirling job keeping us stocked with the essentials of life. I must also mention Bob Thompson who works hard to capture our meetings in photographs and, who on this occasion, had his daughter taking photo’s as well.
Lastly, I must say that I was really saddened when I learned of John MacDonald’s untimely passing, and I missed the chat that I invariably had with him and Cynthia as I toured around the meeting. He was always very positive, cheerful and helpful and will be greatly missed by all of those who knew him.
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