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Old 23-07-12, 08:28 AM   #1
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Default Am I Just Old School

Well managed to get my first rally in this weekend, the sun was shining and everyone had a great time.

This was my first rally for a number of years and I was a complete stranger on the field, but in good old stationary engine style everyone made me welcome and offered their help.

Something’s have changed a little since my last rally though, every morning I would uncover my two engines my Sattley TA and little Norman T300 and begin cleaning them off and cleaning the brass work ready for the day’s event. I soon noticed I was the only one doing this. Is this not the done thing now, do we just leave everything and wheel them out and fire them up. I have no problem with seeing an engine in its working clothes but some engines were not even cleaned off, covered in oil and grime.

Another thing I noticed was no one seems to have any sort of information up about their engine. I walked the complete two rows and quite a few engines had a board saying what it was and quite a few had nothing at all. I have an information board for each of my engines telling the public what it is, what they were used for and a brief history on the engine. We watched throughout the weekend and the number of people who walked past the engines most everyone stopped and read my write ups. To the general public it’s an engine just sitting there chuffing away and they all look the same so they just walk past and think boring. I also have at the bottom of my information sheet “Any Questions Please Do Ask” and again I was surprised by how many people would read the info and then beckon me over for more information.
If we are going to take the time to prepare these engines for exhibiting, should we not take the time to present them in the best possible state and to give as much information to create an interest for the people viewing them.

I’m not having a go here this is more of a question really, but if this is the trend then I would much prefer the “old school way”. As I said earlier Sandy and I had a wonderful four days at Boconnoc and would recommend anyone going to the this event, we were also made very welcome by fellow enthusiasts and we are looking forward to our next rally.

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Old 23-07-12, 08:38 AM   #2
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You're absolutely right on both counts Ross...

I don't like to see neglected engines, and mine gets a good wipe down before it is sheeted up in the evening. I then give it another wipe whilst I'm oiling ready for start-up. I don't polish brass because I like the patina of age, but that's a personal choice.

I make great effort to put out engine boards and it is obvious the public appreciate them. I always find it surprising that guys will spend the whole winter restoring an engine, but can't find an hour to make an information board. The public walk straight past these engines.

Glad you enjoyed your "first" rally - welcome back!

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Old 23-07-12, 09:08 AM   #3
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I will always spend a bit of time polishing the brightwork on my engines as I prefer the sparkle of polished copper and brass. Saying that, I do tend to keep my engines reasonably clean and will give them a light washdown with the hopper water and washing up liquid.

Over the 5 years I have been rallying I have noticed hardly anyone brings a plaque board. Im guilty of this too as I don't have one - not enough plaques to warrant one!! but its on the to do list.

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Old 23-07-12, 09:09 AM   #4
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I agree with all said .

Information boards and a willingness to speak to joe public should be a part of everyone's rally tool box .

Boconnoc is a lovely place to hold a rally and I just wish I lived near enough to make it as one of my regular visits .

Glad you enjoyed it .

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Old 23-07-12, 09:42 AM   #5
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I usually give the thing a wipe over with an oily cloth, but I am banned from polishing brass by my fellow engine men because whenever my Brasso tin gets opened the rain begins to fall. I do have an information sheet but no longer carry a plaque board as I think that they look a little OTT at times.

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Old 23-07-12, 09:50 AM   #6
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We have two large information boards for the Ruston, plus one that gives the Forum address etc.

The information is read by many, and often we will get a small crowd around just reading the boards! Many visitors at Nuenen take pictures of the engine and then they photograph the boards for later reading.

(Picture copyright Fens Vintage web site)

I give the Ruston a wipe over each morning but there is nothing to polish as such.

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Old 23-07-12, 11:39 AM   #7
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I give mine a wipe down before I cover them up, If the feeling takes me I do a few brasses but not to bothered about them!

I always try to have a info board or 2.

My engines never look the best, but I try to do the best to my ability and with what I have got, but agree it only take 5 minutes to knock up a information sheet.

Cheers Steve
The Wizard from The Lizard
WW1 ABC, Brockhouse Spryt, Norman SC, Sattley TA, Scott SE, Stuart H1, K, Pre-P3, R3 & WD, Villiers WX11
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Old 23-07-12, 05:59 PM   #8
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I always try to provide info about my engines for joe public. Alot of the time though people tend to look at the exhibitors number and look in the programme to see what make and model it is etc.
I'll be doing a one day event this sunday and I will sort out a info board for that too.
Are you coming to morval this year Ross?
Cheers Dan
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Old 23-07-12, 10:58 PM   #9
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Well it looks like everyone is in agreement here at least, so not sure why this was not so at Boconnoc. Perhaps it was the £5 entry fee, that did have a major effect on the amount of engines there. The last time I went there would have been well over a 100 engines. This weekend there were only twenty eight. I was talking to the Engine secretary and he was saying he did not agree with the charge but is overruled by the committee. It did have a drastic effect on the amount of engines there. I personally had no problem paying the £5 entry fee as sandy and I said we had four wonderful days in a fantastic setting (Boconnoc is held in an old country estate) with lots to see and do for £5. What are others feelings about paying an entry fee.


yes I should be at Morval with the Sattley and the T600 & T300
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Old 23-07-12, 11:12 PM   #10
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i am currently in prosses of making 2 information boards for my lister A
1 before and after restoration and second one the history of the a type and its uses
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