Club Blog 2021

Tuesday January 5th to Tuesday July 20th  '21.  Due to government restrictions on the number of people who could meet socially indoors, there have been no club meetings so far this year. 

Tuesday 20th July '21 A small group of mainly committee members gathered at the WFCC to open up in readiness for next weeks opening to all club membership.  Following a discussion in the car park on the way forward, we met in the club room the bi-fold screen was back, so we had two rooms. Discussions on Grahams plan for building the new layout was held, the debate was that it should be made by club members but overseen by the Project Manager so we do not make the mistakes on BWJ. A set of full size drawings was laid out on the floor and then set up one of the new boards and matched it to the drawing to see if the points would equate where the point motors would fit underneath, and it looked with a slight bit of tweaking it will work.

One club member who did a lot of the backscene on the N gauge has offered to make some of the scenery on the new layout and a mock up template was shown to those present, we agreed to approach them in due course.


It was agreed that we will see how many members turn up next Tuesday, and it is planned to put up the new boards so as we can lay out the plan and ask members their opinion and report to the Committee on how we can go forward.

Tuesday 27th July '21. Our first club meeting for all the membership since March 2020.

The Club Secretary welcomed everyone back after our enforced closure, explaining the current position if members had not returned, and what we intended to do this evening.

The new OO layouts boards were assembled which measured as being 16ft in length, this means a reduction of the fiddle yard boards by 1.5 boards, by regulating the adjustable feet we do not think we will have to do anything with the fiddle yard feet, after discussion it was agreed we would use boards 2,4,5 with slight alterations. The layouts new back boards were assembled and are a tight fit but maybe some alteration will be needed when it comes to crating.  With the fiddle yard boards erected it looks we can achieve 3’ radius curves.

The layout manager conversed with present members on what we might attempt, similar to the Thomas layouts scenery - with static and interchangeable items, they would like i.e. Traditional Station or 1930’s Southern Region, Farm, Brewery etc. (Some more enthusiastic than others!).

Next week we will still monitor attendance, and it is our intention to set up both the N Gauge and Thomas layouts to check their condition after being

Tuesday 3rd August '21. New OO Layout -  Members reviewed the rear fiddle yard boards, Nos 1 and 7 boards, which are now redundant, these were stripped off all track, and electrical equipment and wiring.  The former No 12 board, which is also redundant, with 8 lengths on straight track on it will be used for training of ballasting etc.


Members set up the clubs Thomas layout, They overhauled all 4 boards for wiring connections, repairing where known faults had developed and reglued some of the supporting blocks.


They then cleaned the track and partially ran a loco, which failed to do full circle due to the joints between of the boards being slightly high.

The N Gauge layout taken from the cupboard but only the trestles assembled.

The Secretary made an announcement that this was the second week of the Committee’s review on opening up. As we have had a positive response, with the Treasurer receiving several apologies, we will continue. He also announced the date of the delayed AGM which will be held on September 7th, letters will be distributed shortly.

Tuesday 10th August '21.  A well attended meeting.  Work on the Thomas layout was undertaken and a point motor replaced. O&ULR was erected and tested and uncoupling servos adjusted for throw.  The new (As yet to be named?) OO layout baseboards and rear fiddle yard boards were erected and around 10mm was removed from the fiddle yards legs to allow a continuous level surface with the new front boards.  Unfortunately there was not room available for OSP&WL N gauge layout to be erected. 

Chairman announced that volunteers were being asked for to help at the forthcoming Folkestone Exhibition in early October. He also reminded all present that the clubs delayed AGM would take place on 7th September at 19:30.

Tuesday 17th August '21.  Yet another well attended meeting with a high number of club members present.  We have the luxury for a few weeks of using the adjacent dance room, so the bi-folding doors were opened and we immediately doubled our meeting space.   Peter N gave a demonstration on ballasting track and then members tried their skills at having a go. The ballast wasn't glued, so it could be reused again in the future on layouts as needed. It was a good experience for those who hadn't undertaken ballasting before. One board of the N gauge OSP&WL layout was worked on scenically.  The new OO layouts rear fiddle yard baseboards were correctly and level joined and then new alinement dowels installed.   Thomas layout had its underside bracing reconfigured.

Tuesday 24th August '21.  A lower number attended this eveing  although it was noted, several members had given their apologies for various reasons.

On the Thomas layout since the cutting of the boards for easier transit, a slight gap has appeared along the centre line so the boards will need realigning, after a discussion members agreed to install a small sliver of wood to close the gap.

New OO Layout, following on from last weeks work, it was agreed after examining those boards, that the steel dowels installed on the right end between the new and old board would have to be replaced as they were to loose.  Work then commenced on lining up the other end of the back boards with the small flap board, this preparatory work was done ready to install the steel dowels to ensure it is a tight fit. Once this complete we can commence sealing, and laying the sheet of cork on the 7 new boards prior to agreeing final track plan and laying of track.

No work was carried out on the N Gauge tonight.   Other members held a discussion evening.

Tuesday 31st August '21.  A well attended meeting which was also a running evening using the N gauge Ospringe St Peter & Water Lane layout. A variety of rolling stock all owned by club members was seen running. Work on the alterations to the OO Thomas layouts baseboards continued. New alignment dowels and latches were fitted to the new OO layout boards, both on the rear storage yard boards and where these boards abut onto the new front baseboards.

Tuesday 7th September '21.  It was the clubs delayed Annual General Meeting (AGM).  Club Secretary Colin opened the meeting and the minutes of the 2020 AGM were agreed as being correct.  Then Chairman Brian Lambert gave his report on the club operations for the last eighteen months followed by Treasurer Kelvin Inge presenting the general financial report. Then the evening continued with election of club officers and committee members.  There was one new nomination for a committee position following Doug Attwood standing down and Nick Hall was elected to that position. A new Officer position of Vice Chairperson was agreed by the assembled club membership, and to that position Bob Bushell was voted into.   Officers:- Brian Lambert - Chairperson. Bob Bushell - Vice Chairperson. Colin Hudson - Secretary.  Kelvin Inge - Treasurer. With committee members:- Graham Church, Peter Newman and Nick Hall.  After this, a period of discussion followed re what the membership felt the club should look towards in undertaking for the rest of the year.

Tuesday 14th September '21. A reasonably well attended meeting which involved many club members in work on laying cork sheeting to the new OO layouts baseboards. The 3mm thick cork was PVA glued in place once the sheets were cut to size. Three boards still remain to be treated.  Work on the OO Thomas baseboard alignment problem continued and it is planned to paint the stations car park area rather than use printed paper as previously.

Tuesday 21st September '21.  An illustrated talk and demonstration of layout accessory operation, mainly for points, but including other working layout accessories was given by club Chairman Brian.  Demonstration boards were available to members to see and operate that used all electronic operations. Recommendations made to the club to consider using one of these systems and Servo motors for the clubs new OO layout controls and that will be discussed by the committee at a future meeting.  The slides from the talk can be seen here...  Talk on point operation link

Following the mid evening tea/coffee break Oare and Uplees layout was erected and tested in readiness for appearing at the Folkestone show in just under two weeks time.

Tuesday 28th September '21.  A few less at club this evening than usual, but still a reasonable number attended. Work on the OO Thomas layout continued with the baseboards aligned and the stations car parking area painted matt black, several coats of paint were applied.  One of the former OO Bysing Wood Junction's rear storage yard baseboards is being redesigned to become a basic club Test Track. This will eventually have fitted onto it two OO, two N and one O gauge tracks.   Simple DC analogue control will be used initially, but with suitable design members own DCC digital controllers and locos could also then be test run.

Tuesday 5th October '21.  A good meeting with much happening, plus at around 20:00 the partition between the two room was opened which allowed far more working space.  The new OO layout had more cork sheets applied to two baseboards. The multi gauge test track board had N and OO tracks fitted and sockets installed for 'pluggable' connections from the dual DC controller.  The junior group worked on a design for their track plan for the three boards they have available. Thomas saw more baseboard scenic work undertaken.

Tuesday 12th October '21.  Another meeting with much work carried out and the later in the evening opening of the two rooms to make one larger room really helped. Thomas layout saw the newly painted station car parking area white lined.  The Junior layout had the baseboards surfaced with cork as too did one board on the OO layout. The multi gauge test track board had the last section of track laid and then all wired to sockets that the dual controller can be plugged into.  The N gauge layout had wiring work undertaken.

Tuesday 19th October '21.  A few less member attended tonight, but plenty of work was undertaken.  The Multi gauge test track was labelled and end plates added to prevent run away locos from shooting off the ends.  Thomas was powered up and several locos run plus more detailing work completed on it. The new OO front boards were erected once the room divider was opened just before 20:00.  Plans for an underbridge were discussed but cutting the baseboard and lowering the board in the underpass area was considered to be too much of a task due to supporting legs being in the way!  A design for an over bridge is to be worked on and approved later on.

Tuesday 26th October '12. This week saw a running evening using both the N gauge Ospringe & St Peter and the OO Thomas layouts. Club members stock was run on both layouts.  The new OO front baseboards were erected and the re designed road bridge was checked for size fit before construction begins.

Tuesday 2nd November '21. A well attended meeting and work on the first stages of track laying on the Junior layout commenced plus the final boards cork sheeting was bonded down.  Over on Thomas a couple of electrical issues were resolved and a new D connector supporting block cut and fitted on one board.  The lack of lower station platform lighting on the N gauge layout was sorted and it was decided to reposition the Turntable control switches onto the main panel.  On the new OO layout, which had the front boards erected after the meeting room was opened up, saw the first positioning lines marked for future track laying. 

Tuesday 9th November '21. The new OO layout was erected and centralisation of the track was drawn out on the front boards ready for laying the track, which has been placed on order. However this cannot be started until the boards are crated. The backboards have been numbered and will become part of the crates.  On Thomas repairs were carried out to the scenery, and preparations for a bus garage began. The junior layout was assembled and the start of laying track was undertaken.   Other members held general discussion groups.   

Many thanks to Bob for the Blog report.

Tuesday 16th November 21.  A reasonably well attended meeting.  Work on the scenic items of the OO Thomas layout continued. The Junior layout had track laid across a baseboard join after removing a previously laid track join which was not aligning correctly.  Several locos, including a DCC one with sound, were tested on the new test layout board. 

Next week we plan to paint the new OO layouts backboards in a Sky Blue colour and the baseboard edges in Black. If you would like to help,  please bring along a paint brush or roller. We have the paint.

Tuesday 23rd November '21. On the new 00 layout members arrived with paint rollers and brushes and painted the backboards sky blue and the front and side edges of the new baseboards black.

The N Gauge was not erected tonight.

Thomas layout was put up and parts of the boards were painted, several small locos were tested.

Other members joined in discussing other items.

Track relaying was continued on the junior layout with various points laid.

Many thanks to Bob for the Blog report and Anthony for the photos.

Click on an image to view it larger.

Tuesday 30th November 21.  A well-attended meeting on a running evening using the N gauge Ospringe St Peter and the OO Thomas layouts. Many club members locos and rolling stock were seen to be running.  A minor fault with the N gauge layouts Church lighting was quickly rectified.  The second room was opened at 20:00, but was not used!  A Christmas raffle was announced for a Hornby Thomas train set – 'Percy The Mail Train' was placed on display and is the raffle prize to be  drawn on 21st December which is our last 2021 meeting pre the festive holidays,  It was announced that the 21st mid evening tea/coffee break will include a free to members pre Xmas snacks.  Volunteers to help at the Canterbury exhibition in January were sought.

Tuesday 7th December '21.  A wet and windy evening didn't seem to deter those members who attended, though numbers were a little down on previous weeks.  Work on track and point laying on the Junior layout was undertaken with two points fixed down and infill track cut and fitted between the points and baseboard edges.  No work took place on the OO or the N gauge OSP&WL layouts.  A table was set up and several club members locos were serviced and cleaned.

Tuesday 14th December '21.  A well attended meeting. The Thomas themed layout was erected and used while some loco servicing was also carried out. The new Four Oaks layout had its baseboard dimensions checked for the crates that will protect it when stored and in transit and sizes were agreed. An invoice will be raised and plywood purchased in the new year.  The N gauge and junior layouts were not assembled

Many thanks to Bob for supplying the above text.

Tuesday 21st December '21.  The last meeting of the year which was was a very well attended evening.  Our N gauge OSP&WL layout was erected along with the OO Thomas layout. Both saw various members locos and rolling stock being run. The front edges of all the new OO layouts baseboards were recoated with matt black paint.  A mid evening club funded Xmas Buffet was laid out and enjoyed by club members along with their tea and coffee.  Later, a Thomas themed 'Percy the Mail Train' set, which had been donated to the club, was raffled and won by Colin.  The Chairman wished all club members a very Happy Christmas and an improved New Year.

The next club meeting is scheduled for Tuesday 11th January 2022.

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