Felixstowe Area �N� Gauge Group

John � The World Wide Group of the N Gauge Soc. together with the European Railway Assoc., held their annual exhibition at the Crewe Railway Heritage Centre on the14th and 15th May. Dave, Alan and myself took the American layout Sutherland to the exhibition. My son Michael came to help on the Saturday.
There were fewer layouts than expected and few visitors considering that the Centre is near the rail station and easily accessed from the centre of Crewe. Perhaps it was poorly advertised. Nevertheless, we enjoyed ourselves and the layout ran well and was enjoyed by many enthusiasts.
The Centre is interesting in that there are a number of ex. B.R. locos. etc., classes 87, 86, 37, H.S.T , A.P.T. a Manchester tram and various other rolling stock. A narrow gauge miniature railway kept Dave and Alan happy.
If you are not a member of the WWG may I sing it's praises. For members of the N Gauge Soc. the annual fee is �5.00 (The price of two cups of coffee!) For your money you will receive an excellent, emaiIed bimonthly magazine, The Globe, every bit as good as the N Gauge Journal, and a by-monthly supplement that deals with current railway matters around the world, plus many photos.
Even if you have little interest in other nations railways it's worth a fiver to see what you may be missing. I can't recommend membership more highly. Should you be interested in giving it a go just let me know.

Dave sent me pictures via Messenger to my phone, but something went wrong and the entire conversation deleted! I managed to retrieve a few shots by emailing them to my desktop�.

Clearly it all got a bit too much for Alan.....

Kevin and Chris were invited to show Chris� 1930�s German Tramway layout at the Billericay show on May 28th.
It was a good show and well attended with about 300-400 people throughout the day coming in.
The layout, being a little different to the standard 1950�s BR, got a good level of attention, though I feel it�s more because of having working buses and lorries travelling around the town scape. This still seems to be a major attraction in N gauge, which is nice.

I have spent many an evening before the show adding plenty more details and finishing touches to the layout, though I still have a ton more to add still. The layout performed perfectly without a single derailment or hitch all day, so that�s good after having a sticky point motor at the Norwich show.
There were plenty of other layouts there too of O gauge down to tiny 1:350 T gauge, Plus a two other N gauge layouts:
The first was made by Ray Taylor and Anna Bass, who set up a mock living room to display their DCC coffee table layout, complete with walls and comfy chairs.

I found this picture of their impressive room setting on Facebook�..Ed

The second was a Billericay club module layout, in an end to end formation passing through a nicely made scratch built and kit bashed station. This was the only module with any scenic on it, but if they keep up with the standard of scenery on the other modules then it will be one to see again in the future.

I also found this photo on Facebook, of Kevin and Chris with Hartenberg�..Ed

LAYOUT PROGRESS by a different Chris
I reported last month that work had started on my new main layout, and the shunting colliery layout had suffered a little due to that.
Well, as I mentioned, the shunting layout now lives under the main layout baseboards, but I had overlooked the fact of how to get it out to do any work on it!
So, the two stands were whisked into the workshop and had four tiny wheels added to the bottom of each one. At the same time, I reduced the stand�s height by about five inches to allow for trees etc on the layout. This now allows the layout to be pulled out and pushed back under, with ease!

In case you are wondering about that central support leg for the upper layout, it appears to be hinged and has a plate for a magnetic catch, so it can be folded out of the way to pull out the lower layout�.Ed

Mentioning trees - loved Chris Hart�s piece in last month�s newsletter about how he makes his trees. I use a similar method with mine, will expand more on that when I have enough made up. At the moment, I spend many sessions bending up bits of trunk and branch into random shapes, but that's another month�s article.

Some of our memeber's new pourchases:

New from Kato, a DB EMU 4 car set (DB ET425 Regio)

Second hand off eBay, an 8 set of Japanese tankers (JNR 1000 tankers)

A couple of new locos have joined the fleet since I last wrote - a cracking Graham Farish A2, brand new and unused, runs like a dream.
Also a previously enjoyed Farish, factory weathered, WD 2-8-0.

I'm a huge fan of the Farish WD's, they are smooth runners and good pullers, I've not found one with a fault yet.
Sadly though, the Dapol 9F in the photo with the WD is the only one I have left as I've been through 11, yes � eleven, that have all suffered with bad build and quality issues - from noisy motors to the complete loco lurching from side to side as it makes its way down the track. I'm really disappointed as the real 9F rates highly in my list of favourite locos, but is clearly not destined to figure in any great numbers on my layouts.
The new Dapol class 27 that I reported arriving in the last newsletter has also gone back with quality issues - ran fine in one direction, but awfully noisy, with a grouching type noise in the other. Oiled it lightly and ran in for 4 hours, 2 hours in each direction, but to no avail so back it went.
On the upside, I added some Dapol Gresley teak coaches to a current rake I have and they look superb, just the job indeed!!