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Meeting Minutes

Saturday 8 November 2008

Called to order 20:25TMRCST

Attendance: 2 regular, 3 associate, 1 guest

1)  QEJS (JEM) Move to accept reading of previous minutes MPWB

2) Amendments
 - None

3) Governor Reports
 - DML wants to remind the membership that TMRC is a social activity, and a big part of keeping it fun is showing up and participating.  Turnout tonight was good, and we hope to see more members in the future.

 - Our officers have badgered the ASA into clarifying the club membership criteria.  We need to maintain at least five student members, and students must make up at least 50% of our active, voting membership.  This means that we can have unlimited inactive/semi-active associate members and unlimited non-voting guest members, so long as no more than 5 associate members participate in any official club meeting.  In short, we may now accept guest memberships again.

5) Officer Reports

 - Public Relations
    * Our Fall Open House is in two weeks (Saturday the 22nd).  We'll be adapting the ads from this spring and running them in the Tech and DomeView soon.
    * DML made an open house checklist back in the spring.  He'll find it and send it to the email list for future reference.

 - S&P
    * We have four of the new cabs currently built, but the software is not in a permanent state.  Report bugs or requests for new features to QEJS or JP.  The goal is for the cabs to be intuitive to use.  There already are some interesting undocumented hidden features.
    * QEJS added a switch to the Middle Heights crossing signal to shut off the sound.

 - Operations
    * We now have nice card pockets on the fascia to hold our car cards.  JEM has donated the use of his label maker to identify them.
    * After the track cleaning next Saturday we'll run a short op session.

 - Rolling Stock and Track Standards
    * Passenger equipment has been repaired but still doesn't track well.  With some effort we should have at least one passenger train running by the Open House.
    * We have a full selection of caboose parts and materials for electrical contacts if anyone is interested in fixing our cabeese and making them less draggy.

 - Maintenance of Way
    * The way is still there.
    * East Berkmannville still needs several switches by Anderson Lumber.  Should we make this the subject of a club workshop?
    * Track cleaning next Saturday in preparation for the Open House.

 - SceneComm
    * New backdrops are in place all the way from Madlinger Chemical behind the freight yard to Comfort Candies by the ladder.  Holes were left for the upper level tracks to run under the tower.  The easiest way to hide these tracks turns out to be painting them sky blue.
    * ASM installed hand rails at Middle Heights and they are surviving for now.

 - Benchwork
    * The next benchwork project to do is the helix.
    * We're looking for ideas for upper level benchwork that's nice and thin but strong.
    * The third level will be high enough that some fold-away steps are in order.  Should we motorize them and run them from the cabs?

6) Old Business
 - The October 25th op session was held, attendance was David L., Genya, and Malcolm.  The operations scheme works with only three people, but it is slow.  We can keep up to ten operators busy with combined passenger and freight operations.
 - Fall Open House Nov. 22, track cleaning Nov. 15.
 - More parts for the new cabs are being ordered, more jacks have been installed.
 - The turntable is now controllable from the cabs.  It's switching zone 20, end A of the turntable is represented by * and end B by #.

7) New Business
 - We're planning a series of Saturday workshops during IAP.  Each will feature some project which students and/or club members can work on together and which will be useful on the layout.  Some ideas:
    * S&P: build new cabs
    * Operations: op session
    * Scenery: trees, building flats
 - QEJS gets the Alvar Saenz-Otero Award for Hoodwinking the Institvte for getting more club room keys just by asking. 

8) Miscellaneous
 - We have recovered from the theft of drills and drill batteries back in May: DML bought a new DeWalt battery, JEM bought a new Makita battery, ASM donated a corded drill.  Drills and drill bits are now being kept under lock.  ASM can now take back his Ryobi which had been on loan to the club.

ASM {QEJS) motion to adjourn MPWB 
Adjourned at 21:18TMRCST

Tech Model Railroad Club of MIT
MIT Room N52-118
265 Massachusetts Avenue
Cambridge, MA 02139

+1 617 253-3269
Email: tmrc-web@mit.edu