Wednesday, 20 June 2018

Macbeth at the RSC



Last night, Sue and I visited the Royal Shakespeare Theatre, Stratford-upon-Avon to see the latest play; Macbeth with Christopher Christopher Eccleston and Niamh Cusack. This is the first time I've seen Macbeth at the RSC and was initially disappointed that it was a contemporary setting, but within minutes and the rather unique take on the three witches I was smitten.

Sue found the background music a little distracting but I really enjoyed this dark and intense performance. For more details see this link. On this occasion we did not stay for the after-performance questions and answers.

Tony (and Sue)

Monday, 18 June 2018

Fathers Day 2018 - part two



Holly bought me this board game for Fathers Day (as well as two bottle of Cidre). We are looking forward to having a game later this week.

Thank you.

Tony

Sunday, 17 June 2018

Fathers Day 2018



Sue bought this booklet called Fifteen Shillings Change at the railway exhibition last week and packed it as a Fathers Day present for me, which I opened this morning. It is a reproduction of a sales leaflet published by Kerr Stuart for their range of geared engines, 30hp, 60hp and 90hp. I already have a lot of illustrations and details of this family of engines and have every intention of building one to my 1:27.7 scale. I have already modelled the 30hp and 90hp models in 7mm = 1 foot. See this post for details.

The leaflet has been reproduced in partnership with the Hunslet Engine Company and the Industrial Railway Society. And the plan is that other historical leaflets will be reproduced in the future.

Tony

Thursday, 14 June 2018

Military Modelling Magazine gone..... Not quite.



Over the last month I have read several rumours and claims that the long standing Military Modeller magazine is to close. At first I thought it was just the web pages or the on-line forums that were going but as time has passed it seems that the rumours were true as this post over on Missing Lynx confirms. Military Modelling was launched in 1977 and the last stand-alone edition was May 2018. 41 years of content which also included Battle - the wargaming magazine for some time.

I have a number of editions of the magazine in my 'to-keep' stash including some early editions and quite a few of the collectors editions and will be sad to see this stalwart of the model making community go. I look forward to seeing what Model Military International do with this new challenge but will miss MM.

I suppose that it was inevitable as even after reading the rumours I was not tempted to pick up the final edition, an edition that (in my opinion) was a little light on content.

"Is this the way forward?"

With so much content available on the internet and a lot of it available for free. Is this the beginning of the end for traditionally published magazines. Looking at the shelves of W H Smiths; I doubt it but a 41 year old magazine and one that I had regularly bought has now gone. Well not completely as MMI say that they will be keeping some of the regular themes and departments.

So long and thanks for all the memories.

Tony

Sunday, 10 June 2018

7mm Narrow Gauge Association Model Railway Exhibition 2018

Yesterday, Sue and I attended the 7mm Narrow Gauge Association Model Railway Exhibition in Burton upon Trent. We set off early and were in Burton by 10.00 but parking problems meant that we were a little late arriving at the show. On entry to the exhibition I was surprised to see how busy it was and we spend the first period browsing the exhibits in the main hall. Later I found the competition area and here is my best approximation of the conversations I had with the competition judges.

Me (to judge No.1) 
   Is it OK for me to enter a model that is not 7mm scale?
Judge No 1
   Yes. OK; Oh what scale is it?
Me
   11mm = 1 foot
Judge No 2
   What track do you use?
Me
   16.5 Peco Crazy Track
Judge No 2
   Yes Fine, pass the model over to me and I'll take some photos of it on the display stand.
Judge No 3
   What does that represent?
Me
   18 inch industrial narrow gauge.
Judge No 1
   Well you had better hurry up as the competition entries shut in 5 minutes.

I had to rush back to the car and instead of picking up just the Green Diesel, I thought it best to take in the plastic storage box containing all of the models and figures I had packed as I was so pushed for time.

Back in the hall I took out the Green Diesel and filled in the competition form for the Don Mason Shield (Scratch Built Locomotives) and while filling the form in I showed the painted resin figures and the OSO Salt salt pan.

Judge No 1
   You can enter that in the Earl of Crew (Buildings) category.

So another form to be filled in and some more models were brought out of the box.

Judge No 1
  You can enter the Grey Locomotive too.
Me
   No - I can only enter one model into each category.
Judge No 1
   I know, but you can enter the grey locomotive in the Howard Clark Trophy!

So there I was with minutes to spare exhibiting three models in three different categories.

I took the plastic storage box back to the car and Sue and I continued to examine the diverse displays and browse the sales stands.

Around lunchtime Sue and I decided to drive into the town centre. I'd not visited Burton for many years - in fact the last time I was there was for my job selling wines and spirits to Bass Brewers. The town has changed quite a bit in that time but as it was sunny and we were in no rush we both enjoyed our time and even picking up some plants for Holly's allotment.

Back at the exhibition we arrived just before the AGM had finished and I was still browsing the stands (in fact - picking up some second-hand model making magazines) when Sue called me to say that I was being summoned - I was needed as I had won a prize.

Judge No 1
   We need you for the group photo, you have won runner up in the Don Mason Shield. And I was presented with a Nosbert (see below).


As I was standing waiting for the photos to be taken, I was approached by Judge No 2.
   You've also been awarded runner up in the Earl of Crew Cup (again see below).


Then as all the competition winners were being lined up for the final group photo, I was once again tapped on the shoulder.

Judge No 3
   You have also won runner up in the Howard Clark Trophy.

So in a juggling act, I had my photo taken with three Nosberts. (Nosberts are the nickname for the awards. This year they represent trench officers from WW1 which commemorates 100 years since the end of the Great War).


Back home I scoured the attic and found my earlier award from 1995 (minus the Nosbert as he is doing sterling work as a foreman on the Ogam and Stone narrow gauge layout).


A great day out and three awards. I think I'll be doing it again next years which will be the 40th anniversary of the Association.

Tony

Friday, 8 June 2018

1:27.7 scale conversions



While working on other modelling projects these diversions have been great fun. I am currently building and painting models for the second Pen & Sword book and in down-time waiting for glue to set or paint to dry, I have been playing with the 1:27.7 scale resin men that I produced for my Narrow Gauge Adventure project for more information see this post.

As you can see in the image above, I have used some of the resin casts as the basis of conversions. The complete engine driver - Finley is in the centre, while the two conversions are either side. And below you can see the painted examples. I thought that the white coveralls were a great variation on the denim or dark blue clothing seen in earlier posts, while the knitted bobble hat reminded me of my Uncle who would wear a similar hat while fishing.


If you want copies of these resin models please see this link.

Tony

Tuesday, 5 June 2018

Pike's Pits - an unusual scale/gauge Narrow Gauge Railway Layout



Earlier this week I picked up a second-hand copy of Railway Modeller from May 2015 (Vol 66 No. 775). The magazine featured a narrow gauge model railway layout called Pike's Pits. The reason I was interested in this layout, scratch-built engine and wagons is that it was built to the scale of 12mm = 1 foot and running on 32mm (O Gauge) track representing the Isle of Purbeck 2 foot 8 inch narrow gauge railway. A perfect representation of the Furzebrock or Pike Bros ball clay tramway.


As well as having beautifully constructed motive power in the form of 'Quintus' a Manning Wardle 0-4-0 saddle tank and rollings stock constructed from strip wood. I was impressed with the attention to detail of the structures and landscape. It also made me realise that I'm not alone in wanting to re-gauge existing model railway - track gauge wheel sets and wagons to produce my own 1:27.7 or 11mm = 1 foot models featured on this Blog.


I have filed the magazine away under 'inspirational layouts' and would recommend anyone else (if indeed there is anyone out there following my own narrow gauge adventure) to search out the magazine and check out the models.

Tony

Monday, 4 June 2018

Fred in 1:27.7



My latest painted figure - Fred from the Charlie, Finley and Fred set of 1:27.7 scale resin cast figures. For details see this post. The miniature was inspired by Fred (the steeplejack) Dibnah in his iconic hands-in-pockets pose and painted in Fred's blue denim work clothes.



Maybe I should have added some more creases to the figure!

Tony

Sunday, 3 June 2018

The Grey Diesel has a driver and a new display base



Following on from yesterdays post I have updated the driver (Finley) of the Grey Diesel and produced a short section of narrow gauge track to display it on.

For more information on the resin figure see this post and for information about the diesel see this post.


The resin driver was re-painted after being used as the master for the set of three figures featured in the post/link above.


The display base is a short section of Peco 'Crazy Track' O-16.5 narrow gauge track on a section of scrap wood. The groundwork was built up from DAS modelling clay, then covered in fine sand and small stones before being painted with acrylic paints. The grass tufts are from my spares box and were originally intended as decoration for wargame bases.


Tony

Saturday, 2 June 2018

A Driver for the Industrial Narrow Gauge Critter



Next Saturday my plan is to visit the 7mm Narrow Gauge Association Model Railway Exhibition in Burton-upon-Trent, for details see this link. I will take along some of the 1:27.7 or 11mm = 1 foot models and I thought it was about time I painted up a driver for the 'critter'. For details of how this model was made, see this post.

I started with the standard resin casting of Charlie (the seated driver) - see this post. By the way these resin castings are available for sale at £10.00 per pack, see the earlier link/post for details of how to order.


I needed to amend the pose to get him to sit comfortably in the open cab. He was cut at the waste and twisted slightly, the legs were opened up and the right arm was re-positioned. In the image below you can see the conversion work and the Milliput/Green Stuff sculpting.


Charlie now sits much better in the cab/on the wooden seat.


I used quite a bit of Milliput/Green Stuff to fill out his bottom and get a good fit to the wooden seat.


The model was painted with acrylic paints and washes.


And here he is seated in the Green Engine/Critter. The conversion work took about 2 or 3 hours and the painting even less. I feel that the critter looks much better now that it has a driver and the open cab is filled.


Tony

Friday, 1 June 2018

Landraider from years ago



Following on from this earlier post I have also found this work-in-progress photograph of a cardboard Landraider. The model was eventually finished and painted in a grey/blue colour but I have no images of the finished model and no idea where it is now.

Like the earlier Gobsmasher, the Landraider was built many, many  years ago and I think this is the only image I have of it.

Construction was various pieces of scrap cardboard and bits of scrap plastic glued together with PVA and superglue.

Tony