Page 17 - May June 2020
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A structure refers to anything that would be man-made and is not being used in any of the other categories. Twelve structures need to be presented of six different types of structure. At least one of which must be a bridge or trestle. Six models need to be scratch built and the remaining six must be sufficiently detailed with scratch built or commercial parts to a good standard. Six of the twelve models need to earn Merit Awards.
More details can be found here:
For more details please visit:
Engineering and Operation (three certificates available)
Model Railroad Engineer – Civil
This category is about the planning and building of layouts. The plan can for your dream layout – but you don’t need to build it, just include all the requirements from the listed options. You can use track planning software to do this but submit your plans in a document that can be read by common software, not the program you used.
You also need to demonstrate that you can build track (and operate it) to prototype practices. There is a minimum length of laid track depending on scale. This does include sidings etc. The track does need to be scenically complete at this stage, but it doesn’t have to be all ‘hand-laid’. More on that later.
Your trackwork must include six different features as listed from the options here: Please note that your total trackwork does not have to be on one layout – it can include work done on modules and club layouts – but it must be all your work.
Photo:Hand-laid scissors crossover (Keith Webb photo)
You are also required to build and demonstrate the operation of three items of scratch-built point-work. There is a good choice of items to choose from, but a scissor crossing only counts as one! These three items need to be assessed for Merit award and this requires a powered loco passing through all routes unassisted by hand. Please note that a Merit Award here can be achieved as a pass/fail on three criteria rather than a points-based assessment.
You are allowed to use track-building jigs and tools to construct these items.
   Photo: Interior detail added to the workshop floor in Tom Winlow’s “Everett Sash & Door” warehouse (Tom Winlow photo)
Master Builder – Scenery
This particular category is quite hard to sum up in a couple of paragraphs. However, it basically comes down to creating the scene in which your models run through. It is the final quality of this scene (or scenes) which will be assessed, and there is a minimum area required depending on the scale modelled. Please visit for the full details.
Photo: A scene on Kathy Millatt’s On30 module. (Mike Arnold photo)
Master Builder – Prototype Models
Next to motive power, this may be one of the toughest categories for some. The requirement is to reproduce a prototype scene (past or present) in model form. There is no minimum area to cover, but the scene needs to contain four different model types: Rolling stock, structure, caboose or passenger car and motive power.
The individual items are not assessed other than in their conformity to the scene modelled. Of course, the scenery needs to conform with the prototype also.
     ROUNDHOUSE - May/June 2020

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