Tuesday, 13 March 2018

Club Meeting, 11 March 2018

Hi All,

A quiet start to the day yesterday, in that I was the only one there.  For about a minute.  By the time that I had walked round and opened the back door Geoff the Pres was there.  Then there was quite a lull.  Eventually we totalled eight, with every who does not live at Rhyll slowed by heavy traffic.  I hope that you have all made it home again by now.  Would have been an interesting drive home for George who is trying to be kind to a slipping clutch.  He can't get it fixed because the dealer is booked out replacing dodgy airbags.  Last time I had trouble with a clutch totally fail to transmit any torque I was about mid-way between Borroloola and Burketown.  Before satellite phones.

Progress at CSCC?  Every point on the layout now has a motor fitted (bar one).  Every point in the Stanley Creek yard is now fully functional (bar one).  Beginning to sound more like a wild west ranch than a train layout.  However, now that he has mastered his first 3-way point, the ones at Mousehole and Sayer should be sooo easy for Derek.  George worked the quarry for a while, then made templates of various parts of the layout that we know will never be finished.  David laid ballast at John Falls, then he and I failed to find why his X Class will not go.  Neither will anything else on his home layout, so there has to be a magic button that needs to be unpressed.  (no, not the 240volt one).   Dale and Grant discussed scenery, without actually doing anything.  Judy laid out Geoff's mint Tim-Tams for us to enjoy at smoko.

Next week Martin and I will be flying the Club Flag at the RSL exhibition, and encouraging any one who shows interest to call in at the club.  Can you please keep the extension leads under control.  Or even clean up the main line near the tunnel and have a running day.  Times for the exhibition are 2pm to 5pm Saturday and 10am to 4pm Sunday.  (I think)


Club Meeting, 4 March 2018

Hi All,

In contrast to the previous week, this time we had lotsa hands on deck.  A full complement of executives, plus Judy, Derek, George, Greg, Paul, Rod and this scribe.  The usual suspects - Martin, George and Paul - got stuck into scenery.  (George was really stuck in, finger painting with PVA glue.)  To this we could add Geoff the Pres rearranging the buildings along Mousehole Main St and Geoff the Sec getting serious about his coal mine.  When he turns up with Davy lamp and pick axe I'll know he is really serious about coal mining.  Derek spent the afternoon getting back to where he was at the start of the session - three way points offer an interesting challenge when wiring up motors to operate in the correct sequence, and indicator lights that indicate something useful.  I made a late start on retro fitting under base Hatton's point motors at the East end of Sayer.  With two double slips and three points still to go, I need to develop a much better technique.

Late in the day we finally parked Bald Mountain in its allotted space under the baseboards, and promptly filled the space in the middle with the portable HO layout that will become our "This is how you do scenery" exhibit at shows.  George - being OIC this project - set Rod to work on it then went home.

Which brings me to shows.  Martin has been building up his stockpile of exhibitors for next year.  His appeal to members a few weeks ago produced layouts from Simon, Greg and myself.  Then there are three Club layouts - Bald Mountain, U-drive and the above scenery demo.  Ted Allan wants to bring his new narrow-gauge O scale layout, there is Shannon Tapia with an N scale layout and there is the new layout from Grossard Court.  We have had Hollowglen and Eyarth before, but both these have been extended, and both would like to return, so I think we can fill the Centre once again.

Geoff the Pres has offered to bring the Tim Tams next week - see you then (long weekend)


Sunday, 25 February 2018

Club Meeting, 25 February 2018

Hi All,

There I was, (thinking about) digging this hole, hole in the ground.  Then I realised just how hot the sun is.  So here I am, sittin' in the shade etc., writing some notes.

Yesterday was a quiet day at the Clubrooms - put that down in no small measure to the Superbike races.  That was Paul's reason for coming early and leaving early, having checked that the new warehouse will fit on its appointed site at Port Gary.  George continued with building fences in the paddocks around the quarry, and tells me that his prize Jersey herd is now safe from the ravages of whatever stud bull David has introduced to the neighbourhood.  Rod arrived and looked rather lost without facing five scale km of track waiting for him to lay.  I think that he and Dale then went off to decide how they would fit Hattons sub-baseboard point motors to various 3 way and double slip points still needing such things.  Greg and I chatted for a while about how on some Sunday arvos the right thing to do is stand around and chat.  Then, armed with a laptop, JMRI and a PR3, he went off to chat with Geoff the Pres's 4-6-0 whatever.  It, however, was not in the mood for a Sunday arvo chat.  Other locos did chat both with JMRI and the Digitrax sound loader so we knew the system was OK.  Back to Geoff to find what we guess to be a wiring problem, perhaps between loco and tender.  Judy made sure that we took time out for smoko, helped along by Nancy's muffins.  That some muffins went home again is a testament to how few of us were there.  Not long after that, most went home to dodge the traffic.

I had no traffic to dodge, so stayed on to tidy up a bit.  So, usual caveat that these notes are one man's view of the world and not official Club policy.  BUT, now that we have a very nice room, and an operating layout, can we keep it that way?  

Usually, Rhyll can be mistaken for Sleepy Hollow, but next weekend is the Wooden Boat Festival.  Up to 15,000 visitors expected, so don't come that way - unless you want to make a day of it and look at wooden boats.  You might need to park at my place.

See you on the 4th

Thursday, 22 February 2018

Club Meeting, 18 February 2018

Hi all

Peter away this week so no note of any note, just to say thanks to the efforts put in by everyone in building this rather large layout.  Again all the people on site just went about their business under the watchful eye of Dale and things just happen.
Of importance, Grant came good with his promise to supply Tim Tams for arvo smoko, and Dale has offered to bring some Nancy goodies next week.

Until then

Geoff b, sec

Thursday, 8 February 2018

Club Meeting, 4th February 2018

Hi all,

In very benevolent weather (I had the top down on the EOS) about half of our members arrived at the Club for a pleasant Sunday arvo of messing about with trains.

As to what happened - that's a bit harder.   Both Geoffs and Dale had a bit of a blitz on the store room which included putting one of the cabinets out of the layout room in there.  The corner cupboard seems to have become the home for all things electrical.  The shelves now hold a range of tools and scenic materials.  A box of "Help yourself, we don't need this" has materialised.  George went off to the quarry again. The dark side of the Club went about their business.  Their efforts with concocting a raspberry pi appear to have borne fruit (ugh!), in that I did see Greg driving a loco from his mobile phone.  One day, they will let us all in on the secret.  If it involves a smart phone, there lies my own first problem.

Port Gary

Speaking of problems, Dave and and I had a review of problems relating to convincing beautiful brass locos of 1980s vintage to join us in the digital age.  Specifically, fitting a DCC sound decoder into his Samhongsa (BGM) VR X Class Diesel.  With some help from a 3D printer, I think we will get there, apart from the lights at the short hood end.  That's a brazed/soldered closed box, and it's such a beautiful bit of kit that I simply refuse to take a Dremel grinding disk to it.  VR generally ran long hood forward, so at least it will have lights at the front.

Turntables are now in place at Mousehole and Sayer, and the loco facilities sidings are in place at Sayer.  Finished, except that I might add a couple more stub lines off the table to give somewhere to park out of service locos.  It's now over to Derek to do the electrickery bit.

As threatened, Geoff the Sec rolled out a list of things to discuss over tea.  Proper minutes will appear on the notice board at the Clubrooms one of these days.  Bits that I recall were that, while Martin has the final say, we thought that dates and prices for the 2019 show will be unchanged.  Gingin will be renamed, simply as "Steward".  Our Sec will talk to Jack about G gauge and to Paul about a web site for the club.  We will struggle, and I think fail, to get a layout to Stawell for their show this year, but will able to support them next year.  Still not too late for some one to stick their hand up.  Helen had packed up all of her cake tins ready for her move Mornington way, so the farewell feast was strawberries, melon and grapes.  Not the only reason we will miss you, Helen.  There is a trestle bridge that relies on your supports, and one day fairly soon the Helen/Judy forest will take root on the layout.  On the medical front, Geoff the Pres's sister is now recovering well from her close encounter of the equine kind, and we wish Alan well with his upcoming operation.

At our show, the club was donated the remains of a Triang Minic train set (circa 1947).  Geoff the Pres, an inveterate collector of archaic things mechanical also has one that does not work.  We decided to donate the Clubs bits to Geoff to see if he can make one working unit from the combined remains, on the condition that he brings it to our Show as a working "novelty".  At 70 years old, everything old is new again!  Some (many) of the early plastic bits have cracked/broken/distorted so it may be the 3D printer to the rescue, and everything new will be old again.

Late in the day, George's extended family came to collect him and made complementary noises when they came in and had a guided tour of our work in progress.

That's plenty for now, see some of you on the 11th

Sunday, 4 February 2018

Vale Bob Steward

Dear Colette,

We were all saddened on hearing the news of Bob's passing.

He has always been a valued member of our club.  His knowledge and experience of modelling both railway and scenics has helped us in building our current Club layout.

Bob kindly donated a "station building" with platform and lighting which has taken pride of place in a particular location on our new layout.  It is disappointing that he will not be able to see it.

As has become traditional in our club, Bob will be remembered by having a location on our layout named in his honour.

On behalf of myself and all Club members please accept our sincere condolences.

Yours sincerely,

Geoff Newman,
President, Phillip Island and District Railway Modellers, Inc

Sunday, 28 January 2018

Club Meeting, 28th January 2018

Hi All

Eight hardy souls battled their way to the Club, plus one visitor who was in Cowes anyway.  What a day for traffic!  Australia day weekend, Classic Motorbikes at the circuit, last weekend of the school holidays.  40°c in the shade.  The poor old tourist road was not in the shade, and melted.  Great lumps are presumably stuck to somebody's wheels - they're certainly not on the road base any more.  Traffic at a standstill from the koala reserve to somewhere past Grantville.  So the story goes - I did not check it out personally.

That's a great airconditioner in our layout room.  Two turntables arrived under Greg's arm and are now in place.  The one at Mousehole is well advanced, thanks to Rod, while the one at Sayer is less advanced, thanks to me.  Geoff and Geoff did stuff with the coal loader thing near the soon to be renamed Gingin.  Dale found things that no one else could find, Judy chatted and organised us for tea, Jack flew a drone - fortunately in the main hall, so the layout was safe.  Our visitor (lives in Sunshine, so not a prospective member) thought the layout was great, particularly impressed by ease of access, and ability to run long trains.  Then went off to collect his family and enjoy the drive home.

                                                                 In memory of two legends

Geoff the Sec wants to discuss a few things next week to find out in which direction we wish to head - he will be sending out some hints about the topics this week.  Usual story - if you can't be with us, then send him an email.

See you on the 4th