2014 January

January 2014 Meeting at Henleaze (Malcolm Hanson)

1. There was a good turn-out at Philip’s on the 9th Jan. Tony South brought a Lunar Module model with all the external fittings, such as communication dishes. Richard had been working on his Canberra Bomber which will finally take flight in grey livery. He showed us how the bomb doors will open and close. The secret of Steve Briancourt’s girder framework, shown to us at the previous meeting, was revealed to us as being the internal structure of the hull for the USS Missouri, all carefully planned so that it will support the final 9’ long battleship.  Sam was still sticking to the modern stuff, this time a rather sleek F1 car. Neil’s latest vehicle turned out to be a Routemaster Bus. So far the lower deck has been built with the characteristic radiator shape nicely achieved.  John Day continues to work on a series of Tony James No.10 models. This time we saw a completed version of a JCB digger and a partially built Coles Mobile Crane. Pete Evans showed us a very convincing realization of a Red Baron Fokker Triplane made from a mix of standard and Aeroplane Constructor parts.  David Millar had an entertaining Shooting Range model with two “guns”, one firing collars and the other part 168d metal balls!  I had been working with my grandchildren on various standard and plastic Meccano models together with models made from “giant” Meccano systems from Jura Castor and Buildit.  I brought the results along.  We welcomed new member John Hawkins who brought a small traction engine that made use of some of the parts he had recently managed to acquire, such as a pre-war flywheel.   All these models can be seen here: http://www.nzmeccano.com/image-73322

2. Our next meeting will be our annual exhibition the date for which is fixed for Sat May 3rd.  Richard Smith has kindly offered to help organise another exhibition in his local village hall of Tockington, BS32 4LH, which will be open to the public (see map below).  We will open to the public from 10am until 4pm but we will be able to get in from 8am to set up.  The Ben Johnson Cup will again be awarded for the best model in the show. Neil will be producing voting slips for the public, and us, to use in selecting the “best model” which will also give a brief account of Meccano and the club.  To make this viable all models will need a brief note associated with them detailing the model name and description plus the identity of the builder.  Please all make sure you do this.  Supervision of the door and collection of money from visitors will need us all to help and Neil will devise a rota for this.  Other domestic arrangements are as follows:
Lyn Smith and friends will arrange the catering.
Richard will produce a poster advertising the event a copy of which will be emailed to everyone for them to use in promoting the show locally to themselves and where they work.
Richard will contact local schools plus scout/guide groups.
I will try and get us a mention on Points West or the local radio.
I will contact “local” Meccano Clubs with details of the event.
Everyone needing power should bring an extension lead.

This year’s scrap heap challenge is to build a device powered by a No.1 clockwork motor that has 6 legs on which it “walks”.  Now when I say walk I mean it must have a recognisable walking action with each leg pivoted to the chassis in some way.  Sticking 6 “legs” rigidly on rotating wheels so that it is effectively a car will not be allowed!  The device which walks the furthest on a single wind of the motor will be the winner.  If you would like to enter but have somehow avoided acquiring a No.1 clockwork motor then tell me and I will give you one!

3. The meeting after next will be at my place on July 10th, the week after Skegex.
This year marks 30 years since I founded the club.  In that time I have run the club in a simple and largely informal manner.  As some of you know I have been diagnosed with advanced prostate cancer and my latest treatment has now failed.  I have a few potential treatments left to me but we need to think carefully about the future of the club and how it might be organised and run.  We had a brief discussion about this at Philip’s but I hope we can take this further on July 10th.  If you have some thoughts about this but cannot attend then contact me in some way beforehand to have a word.