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Vaughan last won the day on November 1

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  1. I think that's the funniest piece of satire I have seen in a long time. "Recreate the misery in miniature". "Free wailing child sound effects". Brilliant!
  2. Thanks for that, Q. Actually I have been posting this on here as I don't belong to a model railway forum. Perhaps you can recommend one, for 4mm scale, preferably with a bias to the ex G.E.R.?
  3. I thought you might like an up-date on what I have been up to in the garage this summer! I thought it was time I started to make a layout, although I will have nowhere in the house big enough for it, when it is finished! I have already made scale drawings and wanted to portray it on a curve, which makes it much more interesting. So - take a sheet of 8mm ply, staple on a sheet of plain backing wallpaper to draw on, drill some holes in a bit of wood and staple it to a length of thin electric cable (which won't stretch). Poke a felt tip pen through the hole, pass it across the paper and you end up with a 15ft radius curve. Trace out the other holes, measured to scale, and you have a double track railway line, on a curve equivalent to about 17 chains in full scale. Still fairly sharp in railway terms, but quite realistic on a model. From this, I can draw out a plan for the pointwork in the station layout. I had already made the basic pointwork a few years ago, so now I can lay it out, and it should look effective, as it is made to follow the curve. So now that I have the basic trackbed, I can start to make the baseboards, to fit it into the scenery. So far I have made 4 baseboards which are all one metre wide and bolt together with threaded rod and butterfly nuts. Now we begin to see the profile of the countryside, that the railway will pass through. This is very important, as the model must look as though the railway has been built to pass through the countryside and not the other way round! Next, the trackbed can be laid onto the baseboards. This is the first chance to see how it all might look when it is finished (with luck) so I have spent a couple of days just looking at it, and moving the buildings around to find the best arrangement. I have ended up shifting the whole station about 4 inches to the right, which will give more room for the pointwork at the left, so it now looks as though the station building is hanging over the edge! This doesn't matter, as the scenery is naturally falling away as it goes past the front, where there will be a road, which crosses the railway at a level crossing, with gates. Hence the crossing keeper's cottage, to the right in the photo. The platforms are just mock-ups, which I shall make properly now that I know where they are going to sit. So far so good. With a bit of luck it might not look too bad. Next job will be to saw up the track bed where it crosses the baseboard joints, so that I can separate them, and work on each one on its own. Then I can start laying the track. In January, I am taking over the rent on a storage unit in the village, so I will have somewhere to set it all up. The final layout will be about 7 metres long, so I need some space!
  4. My thoughts are with you this morning, Charlie. I had the pleasure of a chat with Macie on a couple of occasions, on the Broads. On the island in Thorpe are the graves of 3 of my parents' dogs, one was my mother's poodle (also a trained gundog) whose grave is close to where the gunboat used to moor and I am told, is still looked after by one of the residents there. The other two are up in the woods at the back, where my father had dug a duck pond out of the marsh and where they spent many an evening duck shooting. Their head-stones are still there, if you know where to look. There was a 4th labrador but she has no grave, as she had to go off to the vet when the arthritis got too much. I had to leave my own Labrador in France, back in 1983, when the yard I was working for was put up for sale and I had to come back to Norfolk. She was a bit old by then and I am afraid I just couldn't afford all the vets bills and quarantine, which were necessary in those days. She spent her last few years with friends on a small boatyard on the Midi but it had such a bad effect on me that I have never wanted to have another dog. I will always have some wonderful memories though, and I know you do too.
  5. Probably by guesswork on a forum, without knowing any facts.
  6. Oh dear. I know this is off the subject of the thread but I am afraid I can't take that one "lying down" as it is historically incorrect and verges on the defamatory. I happen to have been the assistant yard manager for the "bunch that bought it" and so I was heavily involved in growing the business by building 100 new boats in one winter, thus increasing the fleet from two to three hundred, in one go. This also provided much needed business for many other yards who took part in that building, under contract. I suggest that the boats that needed renovating afterwards, had already been in the fleet before the "bunch that bought it" came along. As to the boats that we built, I hired one of them from Richo's a couple of years ago, 41 years later and still as good as the day I helped build it. Back on the subject, I think this shows that we should not pronounce on the effects or ramifications of a business deal about which we can only conjecture, since we actually know nothing about it.
  7. If you have three domestic batteries and are also thinking of an inverter (which may need its own supply batteries, depending on the intended use, you will need a charger of at least 40 amps at 12 volts, preferably with a three - output supply. That is unless you are confident that your engine battery and its separate circuit do not need a charge from shore power, in which case two outputs, but still 40 amps capacity.
  8. Still need to know why it seized, all the same. . . .
  9. I agree with your stance on this. In all sorts of regulations and EC directives, there is a big difference between the words "must" and "should". The former is an obligation but the second is a recommendation.
  10. Incidentally, the reason for the article was that they have just introduced hydrogen powered public transport in Carcassonne. The vehicles have electric traction, with power from batteries charged by a hydrogen fuel cell. The article had a clear opinion of "suck it and see" as they are still concerned about storage tanks on the vehicle and also the cost of re-fuelling installations. Fine for a bus company with a depot, but not the same practicality for white van man, I would think! There was also a clear feeling that as hydrogen is at present made as a by-product of the refining of fossil fuels, there is hardly any "green" advantage!
  11. Funnily enough I was reading an article about this in our local paper here yesterday. A very interesting feature is that hydrogen in future may be produced by electrolysis, from water, and the electric power for this can be provided by wind farms or solar farms. This makes great sense to me as I have always been sceptical about wind farms, as they can't store the current they produce, so don't work on calm days. This could be a much more practical use for them! I guess we will now have to wait while this process is experimented with, in order to make it economical in mass production. I quite agree about the danger of explosion! We have spent years getting rid of petrol in boats, and now this! Anyone who has had a battery explode on them, will know what hydrogen is like!
  12. As Tropical Linda would, I am sure, assert!
  13. That is a very good point. I still notice, however, that you are seeing lots of them on Hickling, but they seem to have disappeared from elsewhere on the Broads. Could that be because otters don't live in reed-beds? Just a thought. . . . .
  14. In fairness, I don't suppose the good Doctor had any input into the technical installation of a launch. He would have relied on his technical staff (and maybe his nav. committee?) for that. I don't know what is installed in this craft but I am told it is a turbo Nanni. I have experience of operating the 4 cylinder turbo Nanni (which replaced the 5 cylinder non turbo) in hire boats and they have proved a reliable and trouble free engine. The problem may be that a turbo only works when the engine is "working". This is fine in trucks and also in high speed offshore craft but the use on inland waterways, cruising for long hours at low speeds, does not lend itself to a turbo application. In our case, and in consultation with Peachments who supplied the units, I had the boats fitted with a smaller and finer propellor, so that the engine was revving a bit higher when the boat was going slowly. (2100 revs at 11KPH instead of 1700 revs with a big prop). Sorry about the KPH but that is the speed limit on French canals. It is about 7MPH. It may be that the SOB would prove more reliable, and just as useful, if they experimented with the size of the prop.
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