Christmas Post

Among the dwindling count of cards arriving in our mailbox this Christmas, there appeared a plump envelope with a strange foreign stamp. It was from Dave Doe, that stalwart defender of Proto:87, that Englishman living in Holland-now-France, that dear old friend. Along with a card, Dave enclosed some wheels that he has discovered. Astonishingly, the […]

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Awesome gift under the tree

Doesn’t everyone prefer homemade gifts? This year the kids teamed up to create enough Mark II Stock Keepers to keep me quiet for a while. Mark II and Mark III (fewer staples but more labour) both enable me to reach small pieces easier than the original Mark I version, pictured here. The Girl even decorated […]

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Insertion cast wheels

On Wednesday, I managed to get away from the Christmas concerts for a meeting of the North Shore chapter of the local NMRA division. It was Graham Stokes’s annual “Trains and Scones” evening, and as usual he had a little table to show off progress on our current projects. I wanted to show the wheels, […]

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Ted Rose’s lessons

The arrival of Lance Mindheim’s book on my doorstep this week almost makes me want to stop talking about applying lessons from art to railway modelling. But, well, it’s kind of fun, and Dave Eggleston reminded me that we were going to look at a couple of Ted Rose’s wonderful watercolours to see what we […]

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Lessons from art school

Earlier this week, Dave Eggleston posted some of his notes from his classes with Charles Emerson.  It’s a super list of attributes that make a painting good, and I wondered if we can apply any of these same lessons to elevate our model railways and railway models. A good painting is logical and consistent across […]

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Flat car loose ends

While I was happily installing flat car decks at VTEX, it was John Green who noticed that the ends of some of the boards were lifting. Thank-you John for pointing this out while it was still relatively easy to fix. As I’m finished with casting experiments for now, I spent tonight’s modelling minutes on fixing […]

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Wanted – pressure vessel

Readers of this blog will know that it is unusual for me to admit defeat. Usually, I will doggedly pursue an idea until everyone has pretty much drifted off to cat videos, except for a few readers who check back to shake their heads and mutter such things as “he had so much promise.” However, […]

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What’s the big idea?

Mike Cougill posted one of his thought provoking missives this week.  Then this morning, Lance Mindheim announced his new book.  Both encourage us to think of model railroading as art.   Now, I’m absolutely looking forward to the day when Canada Post drops Lance’s book on my doorstep.  He has done far more research and education about art […]

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Necessity invents a palette

A couple of weeks ago, as I was setting up to demonstrate at VTE, I realized I didn’t have anywhere for my puddle of glue. I normally use an old CD for this purpose, and for years AOL provided me with an almost monthly supply. I still have a lifetime of CDs ready to receive […]

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