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Meccanuity 2011

Report by Keith Patey

The Telford and Ironbridge Meccano Society (TIMS) is a friendly club open to individuals of any age and ability (but children must be accompanied by an adult). Three meetings each year are held in February, August and November with the 'Meccanuity' Exhibition taking place on the first May Bank Holiday weekend. Further details can be obtained from their website www.tims.org.uk.

The 2011 Exhibition was held from 30th April to 2nd May in the Enginuity complex at Coalbrookdale, Ironbridge Gorge, Shropshire. This site is open to the public and houses many interesting 'hands-on' exhibits. Adequate space was allocated to the Meccano wallahs and their models which included the usual suspects of Meccanographs, clocks, steam engines, cars, lorries, motor bikes, cranes, buses, helicopters, etc. and an extensive Hornby 'O' gauge layout. This year's theme of fairground models was represented in abundance with many freelance machines on show.

The main hall at the Meccanuity exhibition
The main hall at the Meccanuity exhibition

The contingent from SELMEC was represented by the following members whose models have been reported previously but are hereby briefly acknowledged:

Ivor Ellard had his tongue-in-cheek version of the solution to the energy crisis, Kew Bridge Steam Museum building (with boilers) and a large Meccanograph.

Ralph and Sue Laughton brought a Nano roundabout and miniature Ferris wheel in pristine red/zinc, a race game featuring three quad-bike racers and a replica dealer's Ferris wheel.

Ivor Ellard's models
Ivor Ellard's models

Ralph and Sue Laughton's race game
Ralph and Sue Laughton's race game

Chris and Cathy Warrell showed the Royal Victoria Dock Bridge (1998) sited in London Docklands (switch-operated), a battle-fleet consisting of a submarine, river gunboat and battle cruiser (from sets 3 and 4), dragster, three-wheel sports car, drum kit, art deco table and chairs, Van Gogh’s chair and a Stetson-type hat with sundry Meccano adornments.

Keith Patey brought a Bottom Dump Truck (from leaflet no. 10.18) but not motorised.

Chris Warrell's bridge
Chris Warrell's bridge

Keith Patey's dump truck
Keith Patey's dump truck

Jim MacCulloch had an impressive 100 ton dockyard crane, small beam engine, marching marauder (with six legs) and several small-scale models.

Dave and Marilyn Taylor attended with their comprehensive array of parts/literature for sale, both new and used, some at 'bargain prices'!

I think it fair that a good time was had by all and I take this opportunity to thank the organisers for all the hard work and effort entailed in running a successful exhibition. We were certainly made to feel welcome!

The Ping Pong Firing Range Challenge

In this very entertaining contest as many ping pong balls as possible had to be fired at a target in one minute. Of the five entries only two actually scored any points at all! And some fell far short. The winning machine (based on a tennis ball machine) was built by Rob Mitchell.

The winning ping-pong ball firing machine built by Rob Mitchell
The winning ping-pong ball firing machine
built by Rob Mitchell

» This article appeared in the June 2011 issue of SELMEC News.

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