Two quotes from MRJ

Well, it’s thanks to Allan and Ron for entertaining us for the past month with pictures of Switzerland, and giving me a break from blogging.  I’ll try and get back into the swing of things now, starting with two quotes from Model Railway Journal.

From Jerry Clifford’s editorial….

The experience got me thinking about exhibiting in general and the expectations of paying public in particular.  We are in the entertainment business but, for me, the role of the exhibitor is to educate and inspire, as well as entertain.  The flora and fauna of the social media are regularly full of comments and complaints about the running, or lack of it, on exhibition layouts, and whilst I agree that those of us who put ourselves up in front of the paying public are there to entertain, I do feel that many see that entertainment in only one dimension – the trains.  Setting the scene and creating the context through which our trains, both historical and geographical, can perform, is every bit as important as the trains themselves.  I, like many others, put a huge amount of time and effort into the research and realisation of my miniature slice of reality and would hope that it could hold a spectator’s interest, for a few minutes at least, while they await the next bit of action.

Another view on the ‘entertainment .v. scale modelling’ discussion.  As ever, I’m convinced that the best exhibitions have some of each type of layout.

And Richard Ellis on how to make manure – ‘O’ scale that is!

No scene where real horse-power was used would be complete without a smattering of fresh manure.  This is really fun to do, simple, yet effective.  The raw ingredients are sieved sharp sand, sieved soil, a blob of PVA and a dash of washing up liquid.  Mix them all together into a paste and leave for a few minutes to start to go off.  Then apply in manure-like deposits to the road surface, being careful not to overdo it and keep it to scale.  Now drop a very small amount of superglue in one or two places at the edges and sprinkle some sieved soil over it.  The addition of some straw (brush bristles) is also effective for adding texture.  Now leave it all to dry, preferably overnight.  In the morning, take a scriber or similar blunt instrument and abrade the surface of the now rock-hard manure.  This will have the effect of knocking off any loose bits but also where it has scraped the surface the colour is instantly transformed to a much lighter shade – almost gingery.  If you make a habit of studying real manure, you will see that it is far from a uniform colour and high in texture.  This method, I think, gives a passable [Ed: Hope this wasn’t meant as a pun] representation.

If any readers can do this in ‘N’ gauge, I’d be most interested – and probably slightly in awe of the modelling skills involved.

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And, just for a change, another Swiss holiday #15 – and last!!

Day 14


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And, just for a change, another Swiss holiday #14

Day 13

Another scorcher. Rode on more postbusas than trains. Took trains to Ilanz changing at Reichenau Ramins. From Ilanz we made our way by postbus as to Davos changing at Laax, Chur and Tiefencastel. We took the nostalgia train back to Filisur. Luckily we got seats in one of the open air panoramic wagon but unfortunately the Crocodile was not at Davos to pull the train.

Reichenau Ramins

Chur station from Postautostation


Chur Postautostarion




Views from Arisen Viaduct


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And, just for a change, another Swiss holiday #13

Day 12

Another sunny day. Today was an out and back journey by train to St Gallen. When we got there we visited the large model shop but Allan found nothing he wanted. Then Allan returned to station to do some grieving whilst Ron went for a walk round town and do some shopping. We met up got a late lunch time snack on the balcony of the Mirror Restaurant which is above the station.

St Gallen


Views from balcony of Migros restaurant


Bahnhofplatz St Gallen


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And, just for a change, another Swiss holiday #12

A few trains in the pictures today!

Day 11

We left from an overcast and blowy Viznau by boat to Luzern and then on by train changing in Zurich and Chur to Filisur, where it is warm and sunny.

Views from Vitznau landing stage


Hotel Grischuna, Filisur

Albulatal from Filisur Station

Crocodile with historic service train


Glacier Express at Filisur


5pm train to Chur arriving at Filisur


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And, just for a change, another Swiss holiday #11

Allan chips in on the Stoos trip….

Here are some extra photos from yesterday trip to Stoos.   The cabins stay horizontal as you go up the track which is said to be a gradient of 110%.

One photo is taken looking under the next cabin.

Don’t think I’d want to do this one immediately after lunch!  It looks more like a ski jump than a railway…


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And, just for a change, another Swiss holiday #10

Day 9

Another very hot day. Set off by bus to Rotkreuz changing at Kussnacht. We then took train to Zurich and following a couple of train journeys we took a boat down Lake Zurich to Rapperswil for train back to Kussnacht.

Drama on the journey back. We saw a man lying on his back by a level crossing and then the train came to a stop. The driver and guard walked down the outside of the train before extracting a mangled bike from under the train. The train then continued on its way. We were late into Kussnacht and were pleased to seen our connecting bus waiting for us.



Kussnacht on Lake Zurich



Day 10

Still no rain but overcast today and breezy on Lake Lucerne.

First thing today we headed by bus via Schwyz to the recently reopened Stoosbahn, which is the steepest funicular in the world. It was an experience! Shortly after leaving the valley station it is like going up a wall in an outside lift. After visiting Stoos we descended and caught a bus to Schwyz Bahnhof for trains to Luzern charging at Arth Goldau. In Luzern Allan settled down to do some grieving [not more grieving? Ed.] whilst Ron went into town to walk round.   We returned to Vitznau by boat. Now have to repack our cases for transfer tomorrow to Filisur.





More pictures of the Stoosbahn next time, from Allan.



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