Friday, May 22, 2009

CJ Freezer 1924 - 2009

CJ Freezers name is a part of British railway modelling history.
I shan't add to the obituaries written by folks more adept than I that have appeared on the internet and will appear in the model railway press in the forthcoming issues since his passing on May 19th. He was 84 years old and as we Brits like to say;
"He had a good innings"
Just to say that when I first started in the hobby C.J. Freezer was the editor of Railway Modeller and as such was Model Railways in England. In addition to his editorials Railway Modeller featured many of his inspirational trackplans.
The plan that everyone recalls is his now classic design Minories. A three platform city terminus that is still as popular today with modellers as it was when he first came up with the design over 30 years ago. I've just picked up copies of Railway Modeller from September 2007 and September 2008 and both feature layouts that the articles state that Minories was the inspiration for the design (Bradford City Road and Somers Town respectively). That is quite the legacy.
CJF or CJ Freezer was synonymous with model railways so much so that it is only with his passing that I have heard his name "Cyril" mentioned.

Playing the waiting game

A couple of weeks have passed and nothing has happened on the P4 front. Now that's not for want of trying. If there was something to do then I'd do it but I'm waiting for a couple of orders to arrive from the UK and until they get here I can't really do anything. So I'll sit and twiddle my thumbs for another week.
What is really frustrating is that its a holiday weekend here, (Memorial Day) you just know that at some point its going to rain...

Friday, May 15, 2009

The plan that started it all

This is it, the plan that started the whole Saltfleet Haven thing more years ago than I care to remember now. This of course is not the original just a computer rendering from it. I do still have that original drawing somewhere and if I ever find it again I'll post it. It's a far cry from the ideas I've been producing lately. Much smaller, simpler and less inspired by the real location than the latest designs. This would make a mighty fine P4 test track too...


I am immensely frustrated this week. I've had the week off work. Something that Americans have termed a "Staycaytion" in their need to assign snappy phrases to mundane things.
Time that I would really, really have liked to devote to this P4 layout. But no. The items that I had ordered did not arrive in time, perhaps I should have ordered them a week or so earlier. So I've worked on my T scale layout a bit. Read through some of my old Lincolnshire railway books, (Halton Holegate on the Spilsby branch would make a great subject for a model you know).
Most importantly I took time to work out if the proposed sketch I have for the Nuclear flask layout would work out how I want it to.
Truthfully speaking it doesn't.
One thing I wanted to do with this layout is have all the scenics on one easily manageable and transportable board. Antics with my HO scale layout Oneota Yard on a day that threatened rain was enough to convince me in my situation that is very important. Basically a layout that was designed to be transported in the back of my truck ended up having to be transported in our Scion XD. Great car though this is, its not suitable for transporting a 5' long layout. If the Nuclear flask layout was to fit on one baseboard it would be as long as Oneota yard.
Back to the drawing board.
So, frustrated.

Friday, May 1, 2009

Now I never thought about that...

I've spent the last couple of hours:
a) getting in a last training run before Sundays Marathon and:
b) putting together a Parkside wagon kit - PC06A LNER 12 Ton plywood goods van.
It has probably been as much as 20 years since I last assembled one of these. But it wasn't long before it all started to come back to me.
Parkside kits are very nice and a delight to work with. This particular one is going together very easily.
Upon reviewing the painting instructions for the kit. It says to paint the body Brown - Railmatch 235 for my chosen period. There's the but you see for as far as I know you can't buy Railmatch paints here in the good old USofA. I know that I will be weathering the paint job on the van anyway. But as a starting point I need a base colour for the body. What would be a good match for Railmatch 235?

Time to stop faffing* around...

*faffing - wasting time and getting away from the job in hand.
The job in hand in this case is the building of a finescale 4mm scale layout. Except lately I seem to have got somewhat sidetracked and faffed around with other jobs. Some were quite legitimate i.e. preparing my H0 scale layout for a show, other jobs like posting some other trackplans plainly was faffing of the highest order. But not today.
For today I made some steps in the right direction. I popped 2 orders into the mail for some P4 stuff. I ordered some track gauges and wheelsets from the Scalefour stores and a pair of P4 points kits from the P4 track co. It seems very strange in this day and age of the internet and instant global communications that there are still places that still rely on the mail service.
Now, suitably fired up. I think I'll go and assemble one of my Parkside wagon kits. Incidentally for Parkside I could place an order online.