I know what I said, but…

Today has unexpectedly thrown a bit of spare time my way. Therefore I thought I’d update on a little bit of progress. 


The past week saw me add another Oxford 7 plank wagon to my stable. Sadly, I messed up and ordered the wagon I already had, rather than a different running number. Never mind, this can be fixed. The posed shot above (on my unfinished fiddle stick) shows the new by the weathered… and reminds me I’ve still done nothing to the underframe on the right hand side wagon. 


Secondly, my embryonic layout has a name; Pipe Gate Sidings. Why? I don’t really know. It’s a place I sometimes pass through and I thought with the addition of ‘sidings’ it fit together quite nicely. Scenic details are still to be decided, however I’m planning on a building front right to hide the exit to fiddle. I’ve found an old, unmade coal staithes kit which might find a place too. 

All in all, plenty to be getting on with. To be continued…

In the summer time…

School’s out!

So, of course, that means lots of modelling time. 

Alas, probably not. Planning (lessons), planning (wedding), getting married and a honeymoon will mean I’m probably struggling for too much. 

However, I can’t wait to get married so I’m not exactly going to complain!!

Fiddling Around

Today – in between wedding things – I built a fiddle yard. Well, a fiddle stick. Actually, I built the world’s most overengineered fiddle stick. Mount board and foam board combined to build a solid structure that will hold two wagons and a loco. 

I logged the construction in a series of photos. As usual I won’t go through a written blow by blow account but there is a photographic one. 


All that is left to do is to create some mount board side walls to the stick to stop stick from falling off the side, glue the track in place and wire it. 

Finally, model railway progress!!

Another year gone

Photo Copyright Graham Shaw

Tonight sees the last concert of the academic year for my wonderful band, the Lions Beginners. It’s the annual Macclesfield Lions Concert which takes place at the splendid Kings School in the town. 

Looking back over the past year I think it’s been one of solid progress. Ok, it’s not been the rapid progress of recent years – and we’ve not added any prizes to the cabinet unlike the previous three years – but, when I look at the band that started the year and compare it to the one that finished, I can’t help but be pleased with what the band are doing. 

We started the year off with a young bunch and that bunch – due to player progression to the Juniors – got younger. This is not a bad thing. It’s a good thing. Progression is the name of the game for our organisation after all. Yet it does make it hard to get the band to (and keep them at) my preferred standard. That’s the challenge though, and that’s why I love what I do. 

Looking ahead I feel the next year might offer than Band the chance to do something a little different and break out of its annual routine. I have plans in my head – which I hope come to fuitition – to offer the players new experiences to those they’ve currently had. There is new music to be rehearsed and, hopefully, new players to embed in the band, safeguarding the future of our fantastic organisation. 

Yes, the past 12 months have been tough at times, but the good times, they are a-coming!

Bring on 2017-18!

Board, board, board. 

Some of you may have picked up on the ‘planned’ layout comment in my last post. I don’t overly have anything planned as such but, in an effort to spark some modelling mojo, I did spend this morning putting together a baseboard. 

Laser cut from Tim Horn (excellent service and product) I built up one of his ‘scenic boards’ that I had squirrelled away somewhere, all 40x25cm of it. They go together a charm, as the pictures below show. 


In just ten minutes the job was done. After that I had a little play around with some ideas, preferring the one below – a small disposal point – as a potential starting point for a new layout. The idea is heavily influenced by Marc Smith’s micro 0 gauge layout and Mark Branson’s Juniper Hill. I’ll leave everything as it looks on the picture for a bit and see what I think. 

At your convenience

Today I decided to make a toilet. A nice, simple scratchbuild. A bit of plasticard, a bit of mountboard and some fiddling around left me with the following convenience. 

Needs the roof finishing and then a wash with some browns, blacks and greys before it’s done and people on my yet-to-be planned tuning fork layout will have somewhere to pay a call when required!


And just to clarify, the bloke hasn’t fallen over due to the, ahem, aroma emenating from the hut!