Our experiences and model displays at the Model Engineering Exhibition at Alexandra Palace ...

2017 - 20th-22nd January

With wails of "woe, thrice woe" ringing in our ears from Chairman Dave over the amount of paperwork he has to complete for this show, we headed north to the Alexandra Palace with our usual enthusiasm. Whilst there were some planned changes to set-up and break-down for us, it all turned out pretty much the same as last year. Chris R, Brian and Graham J took care of Friday, Tim Ev, Martin and Aaron were in attendance on Saturday and Chairman Dave, Chris K, Brian, Ed and Matthew took care of Sunday. Chris L did his bit here and there over all three days when not with his model railway chums. Keith also paid us a visit on Friday to let us know how his house renovation is going - or not, as the case may be! Tim Ea visited on Saturday.

Once again it seems we all had a good time, traffic to the table was pretty constant across the three days and we think the visitors enjoyed stopping by for a chat and a look at our models. Hopefully we may see some again at club meetings in due course.

Friday photos - Graham J, Saturday photo - Tim Ev and Sunday photos - Chris K / Ed.

2016 - 15th-17th January

Well here we are again, back at the Alexandra Palace to share the billing with the World Snooker Championship. It's always a laugh to cause mayhem with the organisers due to our changeover of models and personnel each day, but they coped admirably this year, although Dave T and Martin had some fun on Saturday I believe. Did we do anything different? Is there much more to say? Not really, it's now a well-oiled routine and the biggest struggle is to find club members to come to the show and for all of us to exhibit new models. Having said that, it's hard to tell if people would notice the same models as most other exhibitors seem to show the same stuff year after year.

We had a range of interesting discussions with modellers and non-modellers on a variety of subjects, fortunately all avoiding the merits or otherwise of the particular kits and manufacturers as to the accuracy of their plastic. To those interested in the club, we hope to see you in the near future.

Thanks to all who braved the North Circular to display - Dave W, Brian, Dave T, Martin, Chris K and Graham J and thanks to the members who came along to provide moral support, though coffee and cake would also be appreciated next time. They were Chris R, Ed and Matthew, John and Phillip. Keith also came along to remind us he's not dead and in the words of Arnie "He'll be back" - he just doesn't know when.

2015 - 16th-18th January

It's cold, the days are short, the mince pies have run out and there's blokes next door potting their balls into pockets - yes, it's that time of year, the London Model Engineering Exhibition. Once again we have braved the North Circular to attend the show amongst the working trains, boats, trucks, tanks and planes of the engineering exhibitors and traders to demonstrate there's also life in plastic. As we are the odd ones out, as one of the organising staff described us, we do get a fair amount of attention from visitors. More importantly, it's not the endless discussions about the merits of the latest releases that tend to dominate conversations as other shows.

On the opening day Brian, Tony H, Chris R and Graham J set-up the display and were pleasantly surprised to find that access to the show was plain sailing. Heading to our usual spot, we were up and running in time for a brisk show start, which continued throughout the morning and did not relent until mid-afternoon. The larger models naturally attracted lots of attention, but so did the collection of egg planes, with many people curious as to what they were and why anyone would want to build them! As a result, lots of wide-ranging and different conversations with a variety of folks, some of whom were plastic scale modellers. Chris R was able to engage the railway enthusiasts with his display of two locomotives.

On Saturday, Dave T, Martin and Aaron displayed their models alongside those left by Tony and Brian. Dave T reports that it was probably the busiest day he has seen at the show since attending and the pace did not let up until around 4PM. Again, a lot of visitors interested in the larger models and Martin's dioramas [probably just as quirky as the egg planes to many visitors!].

On Sunday, Tony H and Brian returned for the final day, supported by Graham C. Tony reports that it was another busy day and once again a fair few of our business cards were taken away. Let's hope they do more than end up in the recycling bin.

Another enjoyable show completed and we hope to see some of visitors who came to see us at a future club night.

Below are some photos of Friday's table display. Unfortunately we did not get any of Saturday nor Sunday - sorry.

2014 - 17th-19th January

A few weeks into January, with Christmas a distant memory, we head north and east to attend the London Model Engineering Exhibition. A three day event, so we juggle people and models to ensure we have someone and something on display. Compared with last year it was a whole different show - a lot warmer, a lot brighter and many more people. We were one of three clubs exhibiting plastic kits and therefore something novel for the majority of visitors to look at when they got bored on lathe demonstrations and rummaging amongst the huge quantities of plastic trays on the trade stands looking for the elusive never-needs-sharpening, cheap-as-chips drill bits.

On the opening day Brian, Tony H and Graham set-up the display and endured the usual rigmarole of trying to get in the exhibition at the designated points and times - a task always made difficult by the apparent lack of communication between the organisers and the staff who manage the facility. It's a minor niggle you can do without after an early start. The good news though is we are always in the same place, we have plenty of table space and we have a good view of the whole show and are not tucked away in a corner. Business for us was brisk up until and including lunchtime, with the inevitable drop off in the last two hours, which gives us time to have a good look around ourselves.

On Saturday, Dave T, Martin, Aaron and Keith displayed their models. Martin's dioramas, as always, attracted attention and many people told us they were impressed with the quality and variety of models on show.

On Sunday, Tony H and Brian returned for the final day, supported by Keith. My thanks to John Silvester of Hanworth Airpark Model Flying Club for the shots taken of this day.

Overall, we all thought it was a good show with lots of interest being shown in our display and a number of individual models. It's nice to have the opportunity to meet visitors who are not necessarily plastic model makers, or even mode makers. At least we get some variety from the usual latest kit problem discussions. A few people expressed an interest in coming along to the next club meeting and joining the club - so we look forward to seeing you - and remember if you can't make it next time, there's always another time.

Below are some photos of Friday, Saturday and Sunday's table display - Sunglasses at the ready with our new banner and tablecloth being used together for the first time!

2013 - 18th-20th January

We were there for all three days as usual, meaning the display was never the same. The photos are taken of Friday's set comprising those models made by Tony, Brian and Graham. Sadly the other two days' displays were not photographed. We had lots of visitors throughout the three days and Brian was successful in selling a number of copies of his DVD on making your own decals.

We don't have a display stock on models, so everyone brings their own to each show. What they bring is down to them, so there's no theme. We're aiming to ensure all models now have identification labels, and we've added a few acrylic stands to the display to lift some of the smaller models up for easier viewing. The photos below are a mix of those taken by the three attendees - again what we choose to focus on is down to us.

2012 - 20th-22nd January

Photos below are for our "Friday" and "Sunday" tables - it changed each day as different club members brought different models to put into the display. Friday's set comprised those models mainly made by Tony, Brian and Graham. Sunday added Dave W's and Martin's. We had lots of visitors throughout the three days, and given the engineering focus, Brian was is his element showing his miniature motors and lighting systems. Even Graham managed to talk about something different other than Harriers - though not for long of course. Martin and Dave W got to talk about planes for a change. Nobody fell asleep, and it was great to walk out of a show without a few additions to the model stash under the arm, although some of us failed the test - no names, no pack drill Dave W.

We're in the process of labelling and cataloguing our models for the shows, so apologies for the lack of detailed captions for this photo set. If it's not a Harrier or a plane, Graham the webmaster cannot identify it. I'm sure many of you visiting this site will recognise what they are anyway.
2017
2017 Show - Opening day (Friday) with models from Graham J, Brian, Chris L and Chris R ...
2017
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A little surprisingly perhaps, the eggplanes generated a fair amount of interest and lots of smiling faces amongst even the most hardened steam and metal enthusiast ...
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Brian's Alfa Romeo Type 159 and Honda 750 drew many an admiring glance and detailed inspection ...
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Chris L's railgun took the odd aerial attack from Brian over the course of the three days ...
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Keith and Brian chewing the cud ...
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Martin and Chris L pose for photographer Tim Ev over our Saturday layout ...
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Brian practising his model divining skills over the Sunday layout (or tinkering as Chris K described it) ...
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The Sunday table with models from Chris K, Chris L and Chairman Dave ...
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It was nice to see Matthew's models on the table ...
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Brian's collection of models.
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"Do you make models?" says Brian ...
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The Sunday gang ready for action.
2016
2016 Show - Friday's (Day one) table display put together with models from Chairman Dave, Brian and Graham J. 96 square feet of table space to fill, here's how we did it ...
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Dave W's armour selection made up the right flank (left as you look of course) ...
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With Graham J's "Harrier - One of a Kind" display and eggs holding the centre ...
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And Brian's eclectic mix on the left flank, complete with sound and lights of course.
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A few alternative views ...
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Not quite Red Arrows alignment in this display team ...
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Brian faced with the "Which button shall I press next?" decision.
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We're now on to the Saturday table, manned up by Martin and Dave T (who took the photos) ... remnants of Dave W and Graham J's display covered one half ...
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And Martin and Dave's models the other
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A few less models, but some breathing space between them for ease of viewing.
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The third and final day, Sunday, saw Dave W and Graham J return, accompanied by Chris K
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Dave W's armoured column remains on the left ...
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Graham J's Harrier's have flown to be replaced by the WW1 collection and a couple of Harriers (because you always need Harriers to start the "Why did they take them out of service?" discussions) ...
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Chris K's subs, Sci-Fi and figures complete the display
2015
2015 Show - Friday's (Day one) table display put together with models from Tony, Brian and Graham J.
2015
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Harriers and eggplanes were the major theme for this half of the table
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Brian's collection pretty much took up the other half of the table, with Chris R providing the interest for the steam enthusiasts with his two locomotives.
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Brian's Mil Mi-10 was at stage front to demonstrate that even plastic models can be given lights, motors and movement
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Tony also took the opportunity for some IPMS promotion and sold a few of the Red Arrows special briefings
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Harrier central - I wonder who brough those?
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The egg planes seem to draw attention to the display as people were curious to find out more about them
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Brian's Lighning and Meteor allowed a few visitors who had worked on these aircraft to pass on a few anecdotes relating to their RAF service.
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Tony's Jaguar in its Gulf War scheme
2014
2014 Show - Sunday Table - Tony and Keith at the ready (Photo courtesy of John Silvester, Hanworth Airpark Model Flying Club)
2014
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Sunday table - Q&A session underway (Photo courtesy of John Silvester, Hanworth Airpark Model Flying Club)
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SUnday table - Brian in over-drive (Photo courtesy of John Silvester, Hanworth Airpark Model Flying Club)
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Sunday table - caption competition (Photo courtesy of John Silvester, Hanworth Airpark Model Flying Club)
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Sunday table - the boys in blue (Photo courtesy of John Silvester, Hanworth Airpark Model Flying Club)
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Saturday table - models by Dave T, Martin, Aaron, Tony H and Brian (photo by Dave T)
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Saturday table - models by Dave T, Martin, Aaron, Tony H and Brian (photo by Dave T)
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Saturday table - models by Dave T, Martin, Aaron, Tony H and Brian (photo by Dave T)
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Saturday table - models by Dave T, Martin, Aaron, Tony H and Brian (photo by Dave T)
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Saturday table - models by Dave T, Martin, Aaron, Tony H and Brian (photo by Dave T)
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Saturday table - models by Dave T, Martin, Aaron, Tony H and Brian (photo by Dave T)
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Friday table - models by Tony H, Brian and Graham
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Friday table - models by Tony H, Brian and Graham
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Friday table - models by Tony H, Brian and Graham
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Friday table - models by Tony H, Brian and Graham
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Friday table - models by Tony H, Brian and Graham
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Friday table - models by Tony H, Brian and Graham
2013
2013 Show - The Friday table display in all its glory
2013
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Brian's tongue-in-cheek marketing of his 2012 6-Month Challenge entry
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Tony singled out Graham's GR9 that usually flies with the other 16 Harriers in the Kestrel formation display by the Harrier SIG.
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HMS Howe seeks protection from over-enthusiastic finger pointers!
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Brian's display set of home-decalled models complements the objective of selling his "Make Your Own Decals at Home" DVD
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The first time Graham's 1/48th scale collection of Harriers has been seen together on our display table with Tony's recent GR5 build adding to the flightline.
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The view from our side
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The table centre from our side
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Brian's battery powered efforts didn't always take too kindly to the cold
2012
2012 Show - Day 1 - Brian is all set and ready to go - and checks to see if the doors are open yet.
2012
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There was no particular theme to the display ...
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.... we just brought the models we had available to us on the day ...
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... we covered a few different subjects ...
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... and someone just had to sneak in some Harriers - I wonder who?
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Both Hunters attracted a lot of interest and attention, as well they might
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The Avro Canada CF-100 Canuk - one visitor used to work on the production line for this aircraft
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A little gem of a model
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Dave W's armour - a Challenger I
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Do they need any introduction?
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Another view of the aircraft section
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Hasegawa Egg Plane - F4 Phantom
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Brian's vehicle collection
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Variety is the spice of life
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A collection of Martin's models
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Another of Martin's figure models
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And one of Martin's dioramas
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Tony's B-17
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Dave W's armour gets a run-out - a Challenger II in desert scheme
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The armour section
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A view from our side of the table
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Proof for those who know the Alexandra Palace that we were in the Great Hall