EMRA 2021 Calendar

Our sister club, the Edmonton Model Railroad Association (https://www.emra.club/) has once again sent us one of their excellent calendars for 2021. They produce this calendar every year using photos taken by their own members.

In a letter from their President (Tim Walker) accompanying the calendar, it sounds like their past year has been considerable more difficult than ours. We are so very lucky to have been as minimally affected by COVID-19 as we have!

This year has been unlike any other preceding it. With the COVID pandemic, we made the decision to suspend operations back in March. We had some relief from August to November when we able to access the building and work in small groups on projects. Unfortunately, at this time we have had to suspend operations until the new year. I’m sure this is like what you have been experiencing. Our model railroad community is small, and we have been trying to keep communication open between our members by hosting various online video events. Hopefully with the vaccine rolling out in Canada, we are nearing the end of these strange times.

Tim Walker, President — Edmonton Model Railroad Association

Thank you very much for the calendar EMRA and we wish you a speedy return to normal operations!

Layout Room Flooring Upgrade

The layout room is beginning to look much better after the laying of the first set of floor tiles yesterday. It has taken months to complete removal of the layers of old, tired carpet in the room — painstakingly moving shelves, cupboards and progressively lifting the legs of the layouts to get the carpet out. Then weeks of back-breaking work to remove the old glue from the floor!

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Coronavirus / COVID-19

The current situation with Coronavirus/COVID-19 has placed the club in a difficult position.

We have suspended all club meetings, social activities and get togethers for the time being.

As such, we are currently unable to commit to opening to the public when the museum is open.

On behalf of the club I apologise for the inconvenience, but trust you understand that the health and safety of our members is paramount.

Lotterywest Grant for New Patio

Damaged Patio Shadecloth

Three years ago (to the day!) the simple shade-cloth patio protecting a portion of the outdoor area at the club was destroyed in a storm. Since then we have been trying to figure out a way to replace it.

Damaged shadeclothThe original was built by our senior club members over a long period of time using salvaged and second-hand materials. There were two problems with adopting this approach again: 1) Clearly cobbling something together using second hand materials isn’t strong enough to stand up to storms and 2) our senior members are now too senior to contemplate this sort of activity, and our less senior members either don’t have the necessary skills or time to be able to contemplate it.

Lotterywest SupportedWe applied to Lotterywest for a grant to build a new patio and yesterday we were successful! We should receive the grant within a week allowing us to book a contractor to complete the work at the first opportunity.

A big thank-you to our President, John Kinson who was the driving force behind getting quotes, completing the mountain of paperwork and liaising with Lotterywest.


BHP Billiton Model Donated

BHP Model

The club is delighted to accept the donation of a very nice model of a North-West construction camp from BHP Billiton Iron Ore that is now surplus to their requirements. The model is approximately 1:100 scale — close enough to HO 1:87 for us to be able to make good use of virtually everything on our main HO Gunyidi layout.

The model has been very professionally produced and the WAMRC gratefully acknowledges BHP Billiton Iron Ore for donating this model to the club.

Is that the time?!

New clock

The clubrooms have a new BIG clock — now easily read from anywhere in the main layout room. It has a flat glass cover which doesn’t result in light reflections like the old small clock which made it hard to read.

Free to the club — saved from a rental house clear out where it was destined for the tip!

N Scale progress

The N Scale boys had another good evening last Wednesday putting together one of the larger end pieces of the new layout and then attaching legs and bolting the modules together.

Still haven’t got around to doing the last minutes or sending out the notice of next general meeting — must get on to that!

Dry-cell Battery Recycling

With the explosion of electronics in use in Model Railways in recent years, the club is finding itself going through more and more dry cell batteries. Peter Tullis recently obtained a ‘Dry Cell Battery Recycling Container’ and has placed it in the library for anyone to use.

When replacing dead batteries, please put the old ones in the container rather than throw them in the bin. You can even bring them in from home as well! The types of batteries accepted include:

  • AA and AAA cells (single use & rechargeable batteries)
  • C and D sized batteries
  • Button batteries (e.g. from watches)
  • 9V batteries
  • 6V batteries (e.g. lantern/torch batteries)

Any broken, damaged, leaking or corroded batteries should first be placed in a zip-lock bag (use one of the old mug bags).

Once the container is full, it will be returned to the recycling depot. From there, the batteries are sorted into single use and rechargeable types. Single use batteries are sent to NSW for recycling (by AusZinc), while the rechargeable types have to be sent overseas (France or Singapore) as Australia currently has no recycler for these battery types.

Lead acid batteries (both sealed rechargeable and vehicle batteries) cannot be placed in the container. These types of batteries should be disposed of at Household Hazardous Waste depot, or directly with a scrap metal dealer.

For more details, see the Eastern Metropolitan Regional Council’s Household Battery Recycling page.

New clubroom number & updated membership list

The WAMRC club rooms has a new mobile phone number: 0451 186 010

This phone is in the club rooms and switched on all the time — but there is no answering machine or voice mail. It will only be answered if there is someone at the club (which is normally only on Wednesdays and during the day on Saturdays and Sundays).

For other ways to get in contact with the club, see the contact page.

A new membership list is now available in the members’ area (restricted access to members only). There are quite a few updates on this latest version (including Rowan’s mobile, Cliff’s address & mobile, Paul’s address & mobile, Chris’s mobile, Gary’s mobile and Brian’s mobile) so I encourage you to update your records accordingly. I’ll also print out a bunch of hard copies to leave in the club rooms.

As we are coming up towards the AGM in July, I’ll also be sending out copies of the current membership register in conjunction with the usual call for nominations at the beginning of May.