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Member postings for merlin

Here is a list of all the postings merlin has made in our forums. Click on a thread name to jump to the thread.

Thread: Scale gauges
24/08/2019 22:26:24

I think IanT might be replying to me.

The private railway track and its model buildings are easily visible through the shrubbery to the right of the public footpath. I haven't noticed the house but it must be there somewhere, between the path and the river Thames. Just after passing the property the footpath bends right to return to the river side, towards Marsh Lock and Henley.. I first saw it about 30 years ago and a friend of mine walked past it last week, hence my renewed interest. I think that Fawley Court is a huge pile on the far side of Henley.

Never mind, it is not important; I hope that this thread about scales and gauges has been informative for others as well as me.

24/08/2019 18:01:38

I think the modern expression is 'WOW!'

Thank you all for taking the trouble to reply.

Abutting the riverside public footpath between Shiplake and Henley is a large house and garden with a private railway running through it. The station and, so far as I remember, other model buildings are easily visible.

Is this 'park railway' likely to be 7 1/4" gauge?


21/08/2019 18:38:32

I dare hardly show my ignorance of this subject on this forum, but after years of rubbing shoulders with clever model railway engineers I have realised that I don't know what eg 71/4" gauge means. Is it the inside measurement between rails? Are the enginese and stock to 71/4" to the foot? Wikipedia tells me so much that I become confused.

Years ago I walked the footpath past the McAlpine house near Henley and could see the layout throught he trees; it is this gauge that interests me.


Thread: Historic Frogs
20/06/2019 18:19:33

I think that Mark Twain's first short story to be published (I might be wrong) was 'The Celebrated Jumping Frog of Calaveras County'. This is an account of a powerful frog that lost a bet because someone loaded it with shot.

Thread: Model Kits
05/02/2019 20:20:53

Thanks for the advice.

I have just bought a Haynes in-line four engine. I would have preferred to make radial engine but the people I asked didn't know anything about it. These kits are not easy to come by and I guess that they have had their day, compared to more sophisticated, probably digirtal, games and models.

Thanks again.

02/02/2019 16:30:53

I realise that this is model assembly rather than Model Engineering, but some members might be able to help me.

After having sold my lathe and generally downsized I fancy buying and assembling a small table-top plastic engine kit, a cut-away one or a four in-line or even a V8 engine. Say £50 maximum plus a motor and batteries.

My problem is that almost all of the customers' reviews I have read have been very critical of the quality of the kits. Some say that none of the screws fitted their holes, cambelts fall off etc.

The big names I have seen are Revell, Haynes, Airfix and in the USA, Smithsonian.

I still have hand tools and an Emco Unimat 3 so I would be able to put small things right but I don't want to be fighting bad design and materials all the way through - it isn't worth it to me.

I would be grateful for any advice, thanks.

Thread: Drummond paperwork
28/11/2018 17:10:27

The odds scraps of Drummond paperwork have now found a new home.


25/11/2018 18:25:49

In 1984 whilst refurbishing a round-bed Drummond lathe, I wrotre to Professor D.H. Chaddock, who was then the Model Engineer magazine guru for Drummon affairs.

He sent me poor (good in their day) photocopies of three little Drummonf booklets, together with a letter giving his opinion of the date of my lathe.

Does anyone want these few bits?

Thread: Odds and sods
24/11/2018 18:55:10

I might be wrong, but I always presumed that the pliers were designed for upholstery work, to grip the material and pivot them to stretch the material prior to tacking it to a solid frame.

Thread: DTI Glass replacement
08/11/2018 21:27:01

A few years ago, in Grantham, I had two or three of mine replaced for reasonable cost by a local watchmaker and jeweller.

Thread: Setting a Machine Vice Parallel on the Mill
28/08/2018 18:06:47

Years ago I aligned the mill vice as accurately as I could, then drilled and reamed through the vice base and the table and fitted a couple of silver steel dowels with a knurled knob on top.

I also did the same through the vice into its base fitted with 3/16 inch dowels.

Putting the vice assembly on the clean table and insterting the dowels then tightening the tee nuts is the work of a few seconds.

after pulling out the lower dowels, the vice can be slit aside or to another angle without having to upturn, slide out any strips and clean it before further use.

The old workshop vacuum cleaner takes away any swarf in ther holes, I guess: i have never had any bother with slipping the dowels in.

I could send photos (if I can manage it) but the job is so simple that there is no need for them.

Thread: clocking in a mill vise. Problems.
27/08/2018 18:20:16

I have just written a longish reply and lost it whilst trying to add a photo.

Are there any detailed (for idiots) instuctions on how to do this?

Thread: Are Model Engineering Exhibitions The Same
15/08/2018 18:53:33

Is Balkan Sobranie still around?

To be serious, I no longer need model engineer exhibitions but I clearly remember the excitement of entering a large hall clutching a thin wallet and a list of assorted drills, B.A. taps etc.

Lots of the stalls seemed to be run by man and wife or family teams whom I admired for putting in the work and expense of travelling to and fro and setting up their displays. I do hope that later generations will not lose this human contact, good and slightly bad.

Thread: Which books
14/08/2018 17:48:21

When I first bought a lathe I wondered what do do with it, what direction to go. I settled on the writings and works of Geoge H. Thomas. I spend the first year or two making tools to his designs and following his 'words and music', all in 'Model Engineer' or M.E.W.

I used scraps bits of metal and bought only two or three rough castings.

No regrets.

Thread: Are Model Engineering Exhibitions The Same
14/08/2018 17:38:49

I agree with all that has been said and I wonder whether model engineer exhibition visitors at other European shows smell and behave in the same ways.

I do sympathise with the fellow in the wheelchair, I have read similar complaints before and I do try all the time to remember but stepping back is something one does after spending money, if only to get away from the purse moths. I can't see any end to this problem unless there is some sort of preferential wheelchair time allotted.

I would add some of the show people themselves who stand casually chatting for minutes, blocking the front of their stand, with their backs turned to people with questions or simply wanting to pay.

Don't get me started on lottery tickets in newsagents: the discussions, the fumbling to find the right change then dropping it in the choclate bars on the counter.

I have a feeling that we are describing most of the human race, present company excepted.

Thread: Which books
11/08/2018 23:10:19

Derek Lane 2, I am never going to extract any more from my 1948 edition of Sparey's The Amateur's Lathe so I will give it to you if you pay the postage.

I live in North Norfolk - is this anywhere near you?

How do we do this i.e. please explain how you and I exchange details privately.

Thread: GHT Drive Belt Material
08/07/2018 22:04:19

Thanks for the advice


08/07/2018 21:07:36

Many years ago I made a George H. Thomas Universal Pillar Tool which has stood on the shelf for some years. I now want to use it and have found the 5mm diam plastic belt to be broken and crazed.

Do members have any advice on a good modern material to use: I expect to have to use a soldering iron to make the join.




Thread: Who was Ted Barrs?
26/07/2017 22:13:57

This is a coincidence - I was just about to ask on this forum whether there is available any details of Myford employees.

A friend of mine, now deceased, worked there from about 1941 to 1970


Thread: Change wheels
26/08/2016 10:14:05

Sorry if this is the wrong place - I can't discover how to make a correction to a 'for sale' ad that I placed here yesterday on behalf of a friend, for a lot of hardly used change wheels.

The bores are all, or nearly all, 5/8" (not 3/8" plus a thou or so.



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