Yesterday I received a copy of Narrow Gauge and Industrial Railway Modelling Review, from Bob Barlow. Bob has recently taken the editors chair, Roy Link now taking on the role of production editor. The magazine has always been a good quality read, similar to Narrow Gauge and Shortline Gazette with some esoteric items but always backed up with good writing and production. I’ve known Bob for a good few years and like a number of my other friends we like the big mainline stuff, but show us a weed strewn line snaking off between a couple of buildings, and we’re there, like rats up drain pipes ignoring the double headed prototype Deltics charging past on the mainline behind us. The magazine is well laid out, clear color and black and white pictures illustrating the articles and a beautiful set of 4mm line drawings for the War Department Baldwin 4-6-0T. The Baldwin article is an excellent example of the ‘finescale’ mindset, this article taking elements from kits as well as scratchbuilding components to make a sublime representation of the real thing. Whilst the magazine title does what it says on the tin I’ve no doubt that like many of the MRJ’s, the techniques and skills on show will be transferable by those so minded to more mainstream themes. Bob was the original editor of Model Railway Journal (MRJ), and there are some noticeable parallels between NGIR and early MRJ’s which together with Roys skills as a modeller, writer and illustrator bode well for the future. I feel a subscription coming on.
Having spent the morning reading NGIR it relit the actual ‘modelling’ fire, which has been a bit dull of late. I’d recently had the opportunity to fit Shawplans latest Laserglaze set to my Bachmann 08’s however they still looked a bit chunky in the running gear having the original connecting rods, one of then in fact having a set on back to front from the factory. I’d bought a good few years ago a set of Brassmaster rods to replace them, and they’d been sitting there saying ‘fit me’, ‘fit me’, though nowhere near loud enough. Well I rummaged around and thought ‘stuff it’, I’ll fit them. So I did. The power of the written word is extraordinary sometimes.
Well the first one is done, and theres a second now work in progress, which will be finished later today. The only extras needed were Romford crankpins from bought from 247 Developments, and that its a very simple conversion. Once the pair are done there’s a real danger that there’ll be a industrial shunting plank in OO. That plank is likely to be inspired by Whittle Colliery in Northumberland, in which my late father in law once arranged a shift underground for me. That has always been an abiding memory, something that H&S almost certainly wouldn’t allow these days, and I thought one day I’ll model something like that.
And that Barlow chaps not entirely blameless either…