Erith Model Railway Society Exhibition 2012

Saturday 2 June 2012 – Sunday 3 June 2012
The Royal Artillery Museum

On the weekend of 2nd–3rd June a few SELMEC members, at the invitation of Paul Plummer of the Erith Model Railway Society, joined them for their annual model railway exhibition at Firepower, the Royal Artillery Museum in Woolwich. We were placed on the first floor overlooking much of the museum. Like many such displays, ‘punters’ got the run of the museum, the model railways and the Meccano. Those exhibiting were, on Saturday:

Adrian Ashford showed a fireless steam locomotive (appropriately) powered by clockwork running faultlessly up and down its length of track. He also showed a skimmer excavator, from Meccano Magazine, powered by electric motor performing to spectators.

Brian Elvidge brought a large steam power plant in yellow and zinc, running from an electric motor. He also had a gun carrier (appropriately again) from Army Multikit parts with plastic track powered by 6-speed PDU.

Tim Surtell displayed his Lightning Leap game, in which spectators had to run a ring along a zigzag track without touching the latter — or flames would come up from the end towers! A well-designed model popular with young and old. He also had his version of Konkoly’s Spanish Knight, sitting astride a horse with proudly trotting legs and waving tail on a rotating base, with a black horse and much more compact stand than the original.

Peter Clay brought his Ultrasupervariograph Meccanograph making designs many of which were taken by young spectators. He also showed a differential demo mechanism and several small models.

Adrian and Peter ‘held the fort’ on the Sunday.

Our stand on the balcony at the Firepower Museum
Our stand on the balcony at the Firepower Museum

The whole exhibition was well organised with free lunches and drinks for participants. What I was able to look at of the railway exhibition was impressive with many different gauges and types of model, including a large, detailed layout with working trains made entirely in Lego! Among the museum’s own exhibits — which as the title implies consists mainly of guns and weaponry — is a model of what must be the prototype of the last Meccano Supermodel; the caterpillar artillery tractor.

Both days were fairly quiet — Sunday in particular, due to the Queen’s Golden Jubilee celebrations. Maybe the horrific rain on Saturday night also put people off. Nevertheless those that came showed an interest and many took away exhibition flyers. Chris and Cathy, Doug Windibank and Jim Arthur came to give their support. All in all, an enjoyable event, a good follow-up to last year and a good chance to fly the flag for our hobby and our club.

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