Monday, 29 August 2016

Tram fiddlers turn at eleven...

Well, well, I certainly seem to have activated something in tramville!  I'm getting a regular stream of vitriol sent to me to publish on this blog by people who, whilst first accusing me of being a troll, nonetheless take me seriously enough to get all offended by my words about gauges and standards. You can't have it both ways, boys (and I use that word intentionally).  Either I'm an evil troll and so should be ignored, or I'm making a point that you know to be true enough to be offended by.

Either way, I believe the modern expression is something like "suck it up, baby".  I really don't give a damn.

Somebody today who can only half allow his name to be known (others have been fully anonymous) claimed that he has checked my work and reckons it is not to a professional standard.  He didn't mention which clairvoyant he used to see all the work that I never had the chance or thought to photograph and so isn't on the internet or anywhere else, but which, amongst other things, raised a family and paid a mortgage.  Something I doubt he and his tram fiddler friends could have done with their Superquick and tarbrush standards of model making.

I have never encountered a bunch of such touchy individuals before.  I asked a question, they took offence, so I hit 'em a bit harder with a criticism.  They have blown up over it.  Well from now on, whatever drivel they chose to waste their time sending me will not be published on here, good or bad, I really don't have the time or interest.

Saturday, 20 August 2016

Tales from the new shed...

Well, I can't get much else in the space and so I had a bash at getting something done in the new shed.
It seems it works, too as I've managed to get a friend's one-off Delage GP well underway.  His great Uncle, it seems, one "Bummer" Scott,  (NO! Dutton Minor, stop that) bought a 1 1/2 Litre GP Delage from his mate, Malcolm Campbell and raced it in somewhat modified form at Brooklands, etc.
My chum had bought himself some lump of resin from an ebay seller some time ago and started to remove the exhaust, but had given up and so, decided to pass the whole job on to me. Not only to correct the body, but make for it a scale, brass chassis with all the necessary slot car bits on.  So that's what I've been at for a week or so recently.
Old "Bummer" enjoying his latest toy

The modified body and scale brass chassis.

The body on its chassis, with an aluminium cockpit and in the background the new Brooklands exhaust.

I have also managed to get some more planks on the Vanity model. We now have 4 a side, no thanks to epoxy glue tother day, when for no obvious reason the mixture failed and let the planks go loose!
So, much as I don't like the stuff, I had to scrape all the epoxy off and replace with PVA and get on with that.
Add to that some work on the lathe and we seem to have got ourselves comfortable in the new workshop.

Tuesday, 9 August 2016

Enervating Emneth...

As most of you know I have moved house recently, to a wee village in Norfolk where Thomas the Tank Engine was written by the Rector of the local church, W. Awdry.

Yesterday, my bike was finally transported over on a trailer borrowed by my son-in-law and today, needing some cheese for grating onto my jacket potato, I decided to press the velocipede into use to get into the village.
Now the village stores is fine and dandy and massively extended recently to become almost a SPAR superstore, but I like the little local places, so, butchers being a diversifying bunch these days, I went to the award winning gent of that persuasion for the essential accoutrement to a jacket tatey and got a creamy but strong mature cheddar.  His little shop is full of similar kinds of goodies.  Pickles, jams, cheeses and very fresh vegetables from the farm.  His minced beef was superb too.  Alas, the Post Office didn't have any bread, so the SPAR shop it was for a loaf and a TV mag. for the Mrs.
The bike behaved and proved that a boiziggle (see Flan O'Brian) is the most efficient way for a man to move.  This time, unlike the first, I didn't fall off it and got back to safety just before the rain began.  It was an uplifting ride, the first of many, I hope.  It really would have been silly to use the car for such a short trip, especially with it running on 3 cylinders because the computers have decided there's an "anti-polution fault".
I'm tired of this nonsense, so have bit the bullet and booked it in with the local garage for a diagnostic check. Every time it beeps and puts that dross up on the dash with a wee engine light, it loads the pootah with "codes".  These have to be read by a diagnostic programme and the "shit" sorted out as the man described it.  I warm to a man who has to sort the "shit" out of an array of computerised excrement and is honest enough to say so and I am quietly hopeful of a positive outcome from a village garage that was so busy I could barely squeeze onto its forecourt and of whom, having decided to support my local once again, I hear good things.  Whilst the car is at its one o'clock appointment I will try out the more attractive looking local pub of the two available, the Gaultree Inn. The other one displays "Sky Sports" stickers outside.  I can think of nothing more guaranteed to have me running for the hills!  I have escaped the running and jumping show that some third world mob have put on for the saddoes of the world so far and have no pleasure in watching England constantly failing to do what it once showed it could.  Whilst the village centre is set on Gaultree Square, I can find nowhere called, simply, Gaultree, as pointed to by one of Norfolk's less necessary signposts. Similarly, Pingle Bridge is, amongst some others, a pure fantasy place, but it has a nice new signpost pointing resolutely to it, but you won't find it!

Monday, 8 August 2016

Tramways and trolling, ha!...

Because I share some interests with friends I thought I would join a Facebook page on Tramway Modelling.  Ye Gods, what a bunch of stiffs!  I got approval today and left it today!  Some turd reported me for trolling!  I asked the perfectly reasonable question, "why don't trams get modelled to the correct gauge?".  I get a torrent of modellers' abuse for wanting things to be right and the old saw about we do it for fun.  Well hey, misery-guts, so do I.  I just like it to be right, all down the line.  If you can't tell the difference between 16.5mm and 18.8mm, you should maybe take up golf.  I ain't saying that you're wrong to do it your way, just that the way you do it is wrong, as in inaccurate. That is beyond discussion.  It's a fact. You may chose to live with the error, but don't try ignoring it or defending it in my company or I too will get all defensive...and I WILL defend doing it right, whether you think that's trolling or not.  Whatever trolling is.  I guess because their little enclave of shit modellers hadn't heard of me they assumed I'd come from nowhere to "troll" them.  As if I had the spare time to do that.  I asked a question...they chose to be offended by it...tough titty, tram fiddlers. That's the attitude that has ensured smaller scale tramway models have been absolute garbage for decades and still don't improve.  Unscale gauges, jerky motion on poorly laid commercial track, overspeed mechanisms that are bought in and not made, all set in an urban background that looks like it was cobbled up for the sake of having something there, rather than nothing.  All the problems of model railways in the '50s, 60 years later!

Needless to say, I left the page to save the poor dears the trouble of kicking me off!

Wednesday, 3 August 2016

A shame, but also very worrying...

This week, our older son and his family are staying with us. They have come down from the frozen North,border country. Officially England, but after being Scotch 13 times it is to this day unsure of itself, is Berwick.  I say Scotch, because nobody has yet explained to my satisfaction what the difference is twixt Scottish and Scotch.  Why are people Scottish, like the borders, but whiskey, beef , broth and mist are Scotch?
Anyway, down they come. The girls, twins of 12 years this Saturday and identical, slide through in a slovenly way grasping laptops and phones (at least, as far as I can see, one each).  The boy, 14 and better now than he ever was comes similarly equipped but at least attempts a joke about it.
6 months ago, all were playful, fun and full of beans.  This time they have become ignorant, surly, sullen, argumentative, ill-educated little know-it-alls.  And that's just the girls.  We probably won't see them again. There's so little point, when all the time they have been here they have hidden away in our spare bedroom which is precariously half full of moving home detritus, playing on their 'phones or communicating at a distance with their laptops.  Their only conversation with us is "where's Mam?"or "Where's my charger?"  They seem incapable of joined speech or any activity which demands they let go of the Holy Instrument.  I am so incensed by this attitude that I tell them to hang on to them or, if I find one, I will take it away, hide it and when it pleases me I will clamp it in the wide jaws of my woodworkers' vice and slowly crush it, thrilling to the tiny tinkling cries of utter destruction that will emit from the glass, plastic and other components.  I will bag it all and send it back to them at my pleasure.
You know the really frightening thing about this?  They can barely understand half of what I say. One of them, whilst arguing with me about their future admitted she had no idea what "alternative" meant or what language I was speaking.  She was serious.  What this is a sensor of is the fact that in the future they will be effectively bloody useless.  And so will most of their kind.  The underclass. The ones who used to be bred as cannon fodder and mill slaves.  But we aren't fighting anywhere much any more and there are no mills to grind them down, so they will become dangerous without the slightest notion of why.  They will become frustrated and unfulfilled without realising it is entirely their own doing.  It will be in their hands, quite literally, the little slab of plastic and glass that I have not been able to crush, will have dulled what little remains of their brains to the point of utter dependability upon technology. Technology which is already fragile and often unreliable.  They are moving into a world with less and less electricity. There will be power shortages. Even in California, there are now! In their world it will be a commonplace.  But these kids didn't understand how it all worked. They didn't even have the nous to work out where their battery power comes from. They didn't know what a power station was. Why?  Because their teachers are the most appallingly incompetent bunch of wasters and because they are almost proud to have never watched the news, believing that they can't because they only get "movies" on their telly.  Their ignorance is almost mind-blowing in its completion.

It will all lead to a position in the future where there will not be enough people with the intelligence or information to even slightly HELP to run things, never mind the world.  A few nerds will NOT be enough.  The multitudes of brain dead morons like my grandchildren will see to that.