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2nd June 2012 RMG meeting

Lovely! A day out in the traffic on the M25.  June 2nd was the first day of the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee Celebrations and she was attending Epson racecourse for the Derby – So was everyone else who can drive it seemed! For this South East Londoner, a journey way out west is daunting at the best of time. Sitting in the traffic, counting the rivets on the back of a Tesco lorry is not my idea of fun.

After what seemed an eternity, I arrived at Ottershaw two and a half hours after setting out. I was not alone, as members arriving from the opposite direction also had experienced long delays in getting there. If it wasn’t for the fact that I had agreed to do the model report, I think I would of given up and turned back.

Mr & Mrs T were in attendance along with their usual vast array of Meccano and related literature for sale along with a good number of members. This has to be one of the busiest regular meetings in the south, and even though the hall has recently been refurnished, space can be at a premium. After I got my breath back I started around the hall snapping pictures and talking to anyone who would listen! It is amazing what you see if you are not sitting behind your latest creation.


The first thing to catch my eye was Mick Burgess winding his up-turned single decker bus. This mildly amusing scene was followed by a demonstration of the bus running on the floor of the new extension to the hall. Note the destination board. Mick had brought along several instruction manual models built from his very nice clean looking Meccano. Mick’s models are interesting because at first glance they all appear to be built from immaculate Meccano. In fact, though the Meccano used is not by any standard tatty, it is all play worn. Strategic use of washers and making sure the parts are placed in the model with the best side showing, the real secret to the presentation is down to the fact that every piece is cleaned and polished before it is used. The overall effect is to trick the eye into ignoring the odd scratch, bend and area of missing paint.


If you don’t want to catch a bus, how about a tube? Roger West had brought along, for its last outing, his magnificent LT Standard tube stock car. A fantastic model with the usual attention to detail lavished upon it by a skilful and considered builder. I wonder what Roger will build next?

Now, I do like a big crane…

…but this is just showing off! Look at all the mint dark blue Meccano and yes it is (or was) all mint stock - he told me so! Richard Payn built this model as a joint effort between himself and Michael Adler. No mean feat as they live 2,250males apart! Michael designed the model, Richard built it from Michaels draft plans and incorporated a few improvements, in certain areas, that have been incorporated in the final model plan. The model of a Takraf level luffing crane stands over seven feet tall and is mounted on four equalised bogies. As you might have guessed, there is a nice bit of gearbox design incorporated in the model, courtesy of our man in Bromley, and operation is via radio control. All will be revealed in the model plan coming soon from MW mail order – that’s another fiver you owe me Howard!


David Tracy’s Ancient Motor Car from the 1930 No.4 Meccano manual made an interesting addition to the day. I have a soft spot for some of those old models. In 1930 the cars on the road would just be starting to look more like modern cars that Model T Fords and the open top sit-up high design would have looked old fashioned then like a 1980s Escort does today…


Having always wanted an Elektrikit as a kid I was interested to see an original and almost complete French version, the ‘Meccano-Elec’ being shown off by Elektrikit enthusiast (and the reason that Elektrikit parts are so expletive on ebay) Stephen Jeavons. Stephen has built some amazing things using bucket-loads of Elektrikit parts recently.

A good day was had by all and it made a change to be able to walk around and look at some of the other models for a change!



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