The Andover Modelex 2016

As promised in this week’s post I’ll be bringing you some photos and videos from the Andover Model Railway Club’s annual exhibition, ‘Modelex 2016’.

The exhibition was held at the John Hanson School in Andover over the 3rd and 4th of September 2016.  As expected there was a good selection of layouts and traders to entertain the crowds.  I was there along with my club, the Gosport American Model Railroad Group, and we were exhibiting our modular N Scale layout ‘Solent Summit’: well about two thirds of it.  As normal what happens with these shows is my time is consumed by operating our layout, even with a team of five it takes all of us, but I was able to get around the show and see most of the layouts.

So here is a whirlwind tour.

To start we have ‘Botleigh Old North Road’.  This is a 4mm/00 Gauge layout by Ian Corps.


The layout is modeled on a fictitious engine shed on the Southern Region.


The layout is all about showing off locomotives.


Steam and diesel locos worked the yard; naturally the diesels looked a lot newer and cleaner.

andover-2016-botleigh-old-north-road-3 andover-2016-botleigh-old-north-road-4 The beautiful T9 on the right reminds me of my trip to the Dean Forest Railway Gala a few months ago.


The layout itself had a lot of detail and I’m sure I could spend hours looking at it before I found everything.


I think the Q1 on the turntable needs a good scrub!

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Next we have the first of two O scale layouts ‘Goonhilly’ built by Steve Rogerson of the Andover Model Railway Club.


O scale is fantastic at showing detail, in the guards’ van or ‘Toad’ the crew are sitting down having a chat while the class 14 and auto coach trundle into the station.


At one end of the layout was a beautifully modeled bridge.

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The first N gauge layout is ‘Barrack Way’ built by Dave & Rene Lear.  The layout is aptly names and it’s based around a large army barracks.


As with all Dave & Rene’s layouts it’s the hundreds of vehicles, people and scenes that makes them fun and this one is no exception.

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Next we go to a layout modeling an imagery terminus next to an alpine lake in Switzerland, ‘Schwarzee’, built by Martin Axford.

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Mike showed me pictures of the actual building he based the station on from his travels in Switzerland and he has this one spot on.

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The next layout was, I think, the best in the show and it won the public choice for best in show as well.  ‘Lydgate’ built by Dave Spencer is an imaginary 4mm/00 Gauge layout based on the railways of the industrial Forest of Dean.


As I’m from the town of Lydney in the Forest Of Dean, and have been a member of the Dean Forest Railway for most of my life, this layout was a joy to see.


The attention to detail was wonderful and the depth created by the scenes transported me back to the forest.

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The second O scale layout was ‘Praa Sands’ built by Tony Collins also from the Andover Model Railway Club.

andover-2016-praa-sands-2Again O Scale is fantastic for detail and this GWR tank looks just like the real thing.


The next N Gauge layout is ‘Garsdale Head’ built by Michael Le Marie.


It is designed to have a Settle & Carlisle look (an iconic railway in the UK) and it does that well.

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‘James Town’ is the next layout although it has nothing to do with me!  It belongs to Andrew & James Bernett and is a fictitious American-themed On30 layout and was lots of fun.


The layout has several loops on different levels with a variety of trains running around.  Below is a short video of one of the larger steamers passing by.  As you can see from the character in the foreground, from the movie ‘Cars’, having fun is what this layout is about.

‘Mortonhampstead’ is the next layout and is 4 mm/OO Gauge.  Built by Andy & Ryan Lamb it depicts a branch line terminus.

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There were also four other layouts at the show, two I have covered in other exhibition reviews so I will simply link back to those, but it was nice to see them again.

Brighton East – 4mm/EM Gauge layout built by David Smith.

Hollow Fosse – 3mm / TT Gauge layout built by John Thomas.

‘Portsea’  –  3mm / TT Gauge layout built by Paul Hopkins & John Wakeman.  Sadly I didn’t get any photos of this great layout thinking I had already covered it in a different exhibition review; so it will have to wait until the next time I see it.

The fourth layout is ‘Croydon North Street’ built by Darren Johnson, this lovely layout will be appearing in the Poole Model Railway Exhibition on the 6th of November so I will share it with you then.

So that just leaves our layout, ‘Solent Summit’.  For this exhibition we had 23 of our scenic modules plus the two big yards and I managed to catch some shots and videos from different points.

An A+B set of Northern Pacific F7s leaving ‘Cascade Falls’ with a local freight.


A pair of Burlington Northern SD24s on the oil train.


The oil train rumbled on through town heading for ‘Solent Summit’ in the video below.

A lone Santa Fe SD45 switched ‘Dilithium Propellants’ as the big trains rolled by.


A Great Northern switcher collects paperwork from the tower at the lumber yard ready for the day’s work.


Sierra Railroad no. 38 waits with a former Northern Pacific rotary snow plow, heavy snow is forecast for tonight high on the pass.  The Union Pacific Portland Rose awaits its departure from ”Solent Summit and over the pass, hopefully before the snow starts.


The UP Portland Rose is now ready to head out from ‘Solent Summit’.


In the video below the Portland Rose crosses the ‘Warsash Wye Trestle’ just past ‘Solent Summit’. As the last of the cars clear the station limits and the heavy challenger clears the trestle the driver opens the regulator.

The UP was also handling the troop train as it passed through town.  This Big Boy made light work of this heavy train.

The BN oil train finally arrived in ‘Solent Summit’ just ahead of the Southern Pacific Daylight powered by an A-B-A lash up of Alco PAs.


A long UP freight powered by a GP35, GP7 and a pair of GP20s crosses the ‘Warsash Wye Trestle’ and runs through ‘Solent Summit’.

As well as snow, ‘Solent Summit’ must be expecting power trouble tonight because UP have supplied an old EMD DD35 to provide power for the small town.


Sierra 37 & 39 double head a freight train past ‘Watson’s Siding’.

The Santa Fe California Limited passes ‘New Mills Halt’, this train is too important to stop here and runs on west.

The Aloc PAs prepare to leave ‘Solent Summit’ with the SP Daylight jumping ahead of the BN oil train.


The Virginia Rail Express Commuter train powered by a MPI MP36PH-3C waits at ‘New Mills Halt’ for the shift change at the factory.  The factory still uses the trusty Shay to move boxcars around.


I had a great time at the Andover Modelex 2016 and I could not have done it without my club.  Thanks to the Andover Model Railway Club and to my team for putting on a great show.  From the left, Chris, myself, Bernie, Ted, Morgan & Chris.


‘Solent Summit’, well parts of it, will next be appearing at Fareham Railex on 1st and 2nd of October, the 28th to the 30th of October at the NMRA(BR) convention in Meriden, the 6th of November at the Poole And Districts Model Railway Society’s annual exhibition and the 10th and 11th of November at the Hampton Court Model Railway Societies Tolworth Show.

Maybe we will see you there.