There are many reasons why I choose to take Fisherton Sarum on the road a few times a year this include: the enjoyment of exhibiting something I have built, having fun operating the layout with my family and friends and to meet a wide range of fellow modellers; many of whom have a common interest in all things Southern, and it is great that they take the time to show an interest in what I have done.
There are of course downsides, some of which include: having to load and unload the layout / vehicle twice for each show (although even at a total of 20′ long Fisherton Sarum was designed specifically to fit into the back of Ford Mondeo estate car!), the loss of a few days of vacation, the travelling (often hitting the Friday rush hour) and the inevitable damage that can occur both to the layout and rolling stock.
With a couple of exhibitions on the horizon later this month (Worthing MRC) and October (Hornby Magazine Great Electric Train Show), as I have previously posted I have been able to up Fisherton Sarum at the clubrooms of the High Wycombe and District MRS.
In addition to a few changes and repairs to the layout itself I have been taking the time to check every item of rolling and carry out some routine maintenance, running repairs and getting round to adding a few extra bits of detail here and there. Yes, although I only usually take part of my overall fleet to a show it still amounts to nearly 80 locomotives, 20 or so coaches and 50 plus wagons!
The maintenance and running repairs I have been carrying out includes, where applicable: wheel cleaning, light oiling, pick up adjustments, touching up paint work and repairs to any structural damage
I have also taken the opportunity to complete a few detailing jobs either for the first time or sometimes re-affixing some of the small detail items that have got knocked off either during transportation or handling at previous shows, including: fitting cylinder drain pipes, front steps, brake rodding and headsignal discs or lamps.
Having the layout set up and operational, something I can not do at home, makes these tasks easier and enables each locomotive to be run to ensure all is well, and being at the High Wycombe and District MRS, for which I am most grateful, also means I have access to their workshop and test track if prolonged running is required which makes this workbench work quicker and easier. So far about 50 of the fleet have been checked over so just a few more to go over the next couple of weeks!
If you are able to attend either of the two exhibitions come up that Fisherton Sarum is attending, please make sure you say hello, as I said earlier meeting fellow modellers and or other Southern Railway fans is very much a part of the reason behind exhibiting that I enjoy.