Dunedin Model Train Show 2019


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Saturday 13th and Sunday 14th May 2019

Location - Taieri Bowling Club, 12 Wickliffe St, Mosgiel, Dunedin, New Zealand

From 9.30am to 4.30pm Saturday and 9.30am to 4.00pm Sunday
 

 

About the American Modular Group

The American Modular Group currently has a membership of 10 Dunedin area modellers including a husband and wife combination whose ages range from the mid teen's to early 60's The group is a member of the New Zealand Association of Model Railway Clubs.

The group was formed in 1995 as the American HO Modular Group, as all members at that time were modelling HO  - a scale of 1:87. Their aim was to form a group of like minded individuals to build, operate, and publicly display an American HO Modular Layout based on agreed standards.

After some fundraising, a rectangular layout was designed and constructed.

Each member was given a module to develop, and after a time, the modules were brought back together. The differences in style, colour, terrain and type of area modelled were glaringly obvious, as was the tremendous weight of the overbuilt units.

The layout stagnated as there was no area available to work collectively on the layout, and therefore an inability to have a quality layout suitable for display.

A member of the group had been involved in The Little Train Show in Dunedin since its inception in 1990. In 2000, the American HO Modular Group was offered the Little Train Show to run, as no one else was considered suitable to run this venture.

Successful shows were run in 2001, 2003 and 2005 with the group benefiting financially with grants from the show. The group changed its name to the American Modular Group, as a number of newer members were modelling other scales.

A large 9 metre x 3.5 metre HO layout was able to be professionally constructed in 2003 from plywood and ceiling tile, and the old layout was junked.

The layout was worked upon in the old Telecom Building thanks to the generosity of Calder Stewart Industries until the building neared demolition. The group moved to another workshop building on the same site.

The layout progressed to be able to be displayed at the 2005 show, running, but with the scenery needing much work.

After the 2005 Little Train Show, there was a departure of some members with the rights to the show, so plans were made to continue running a model train show in Dunedin when their efforts to run a show failed.

An invitation to the Christchurch Show in 2006 resulted in much more scenicing being carried out, and a members wife began coming to working sessions. The result was that her artistic flair improved the layout overall, and she has become more active in the group, with the positive of keeping some of the male members in line. She is now"THE BOSS"

About that time, the group was forced by a pending demolition to shift again, this time to premises owned by Calder Stewart Industries above Gourmet Icecream, where the support of that resident company was appreciated.

The HO layout was displayed at the 2006 Christchurch Show. There was positive reaction by the organisers who had seen the layout in its earlier configuration at the Dunedin Show, and surprised by the step up in its overall appearance.

A small N (1:160) layout had been developed during this time, Orsnow, and it was displayed at the Invercargill Show where children were encouraged to operate it. This proved to be a positive for the children, and hopefully may have sparked an interest in modelling railways. This positive reaction promoted thoughts of building more layouts for children to operate

In March 2007 the HO layout was displayed at the Cromwell Train Show, this time with one side completely revamped. Again there were positive comments on how much the layout had been improved.

In May 2007 the American Modular Group ran their Dunedin Model Train Show displaying their HO layout, plus the Orsnow layout for the children to operate. The layout was set up for better operating for smaller persons.

This show is the group's only ability to raise funds for their continued existence.

Donations from the children operating Orsnow, netted sufficient funds to be able to import a Thomas the Tank Engine train set with extras, including Percy. The project by two of the group members built a bi level, two track, HO Thomas & Percy layout, giving two layouts for children to operate.

The group was forced to move out of the premises [now at the mid-way area of the Dunedin Stadium] in May 2007, and is now based in a rented school room with a long term lease.

Members can now continue to promote the hobby of Model Railways - called by some as the World’s Greatest Hobby - and by others as a Three Dimensional Art Form - with the schools and others in the community.

In May 2008, and 2010 more successful Dunedin Model Train Show's were run, as featured on other pages of this web site.

The Thomas & Percy layout gave another layout for children to operate, and Thomas & Percy actually survived the weekends thrashing. However, the controller for the upper track could not stand the pace, and the resulting smoke issuing from it resulted in it having to be shut down. Thomas & Percy chased each other on the lower track, and as one was faster than the other, much amusement was enjoyed by those watching.

The Thomas & Percy layout has been added to with a circus tent, some of Thomas' friends racing around on a road, push buttons to fly Harold the Helicopter, or work Cranky the Crane to try to knock off Sir Topham Hat's hat. There is an airport, and a Jurassic Park with lots of dinosaurs, and well as other fun things to touch and play with. After 2014 show it was sold to another group. We have build a new Thomas layout for 2015 show

As part of the group's community commitment, now the Thomas & Percy layout is up and running reliably, it, and Orsnow the N layout will be made available at no cost for schools at school fairs and such like. The HO layout would be made available also for schools that have a sufficiently large enough space for it to be erected.

There are other layouts owned by members that have been displayed at the 2010 and 2011 Dunedin Model Train Shows, and some have been displayed at the Ashburton, Christchurch, Cromwell and Timaru shows over the past few years.

The HO layout has had various names since it was built, and the name settled upon is US Route 69, from the north–south United States highway in the centre of the USA. It is a Minnesota to Texas cross-country route. The highway's southern terminus is in Port Arthur, Texas. A new side for the layout featuring this port is being planned. As this area is in the mid west, it explains the various railroads names that can be seen operating on the layout. U.S. Route 69. For the 2012 show the layout will have a another name change to Route 66 with a new layout side

We have a new Thomas and Friends layout which was first showing at the 2015 show

The members of the American Modular Group are always interested in meeting with others interested in American Railroads, and as possible new members.

 

©2017 - 2018 - Dunedin Model Train Show, Hosted by  American Modular Group, Dunedin, New Zealand.

 

 

 

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