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MERG West Midlands Area Group

Contact Us

To contact us use the MERG West Midlands Area Group contact form.

For MERG members, you might also like to look at our area group forum.


Allan Gardner


The next meeting of the West Midlands Area Group will be:

Sunday 12th January 2020

At Titford Pump House, Engine Street, OLDBURY, West Midlands B69 4NL.

Google Map

About Titford Pump House.

There is plenty of car parking – mostly on Engine Street, some within the Pump House compound. The address above includes a Google maps link. All facilities are at ground level.

This quarters topics:

We welcome two of our own group, John Fletcher and David Roberts as our speakers.


10:00 Coffee & Registration

10:15 Welcome Introduction: Peter Wilson

Housekeeping: Fire exit & procedure, First aid, Toilet, Dishwasher.

Other matters Election of WMAG Co_Ordinator for the year, PCB Course Update, Arduino Course Update, Shows & Exhibitions.

10.30 Talk 1 What is Arduino

David Roberts will explore the Arduino. The various types of boards and how they can be used in the model railway.

11:30 Refreshment Break

Tea, Coffee, and cake.

11:45 Talk 2 MERG: My Journey

John Fletcher will pass on his experience (so far) as a relatively new member, cross-referencing to his articles in the Journal over the past year.

12:15 Talk 3 Things in my workshop

David will introduce some of the practical tools he has found useful over the years.

12.45 Discussion: Any Questions and any Answers!!

Opportunity to discuss things further from this morning sessions.

13:00 Lunch

Bring your own or eat loads of cake!

13:30 Practical Workshop Session 1

Our usual informal session. David will bring along various Arduino boards so if you want to delve a little deeper he will be on hand to help you. Otherwise, chat to colleagues or work on your current project. We will do our best to help with construction and problem-solving. Bring your own tools etc.

14:30 Refreshment Break

14:45 Practical Workshop Session 2

Continuance of the practical session

15:45 Clean up, Wash Up and close

Interested in attending?

The meeting is open to all MERG Members.

To give us an idea of numbers, could you let us know you are coming by contacting me or use the MERG contact form above.

We will need a contribution of £3 to cover the costs of the meeting.

Meeting dates for 2020

The dates below are for the quarterly meetings for 2020.

  • Winter - Sunday 12th January
  • Spring - Saturday 11th April
  • Summer - Sunday 12th July
  • Autumn - Saturday 10th October

We have booked the Titford Pump House for these dates.

Format of Future Meetings

We are seeking views from members with regards to the structure and format of future meetings.

The areas we would welcome comments on are:

  1. Fixing dates for the next year
  2. Saturday or Sunday
  3. Venue
  4. Meeting format
  5. Speaker and contents

If you have a view on any of the above, please share with the co-ordinator using the contact form above.

Previous meetings

July 2019

Electrostatic Discharge: What it is and Why it is Important. David Roberts

David will explain to us what Electrostatic Discharge is, how it is caused and the damage that it can cause to modern electronic devices and systems. Simple and affordable measures to mitigate the problems will also be described.

The Theory and Practice of a Simple MERG Kit: David Roberts

Some of us assemble kits without knowing very little about the types of components used and why they are important. David’s presentation will consider a simple MERG kit – the CANACT – look at the components used and explain why they are chosen and how it works.

April 2019

What is Arduino and what can it do for railway modellers

Tony Chamberlain and Dave Thomas will present all things Arduino

October 2018

‘Wiring and Power supplies for the Railway Modeller’

We were delighted to welcome David Roberts as our keynote speaker on that occasion.

David gave two talks in the morning.

The first one, focused on wiring for the railway modeller and included

• Theoretical aspects of electrical wiring • Design & Implementation of electrical wiring • Examples of wires, tools and terminations

His second talk was Power Supplies and explored:

• History • Direct Current (DC) Supplies • Linear Mode Supplies • Switch - mode Supplies • Sources of Power Supplies • Commercial Devices • Surplus Computer Supplies

July 2018

Howard Watkins as our keynote speaker.

The theme of our meeting was ‘Back to Basics’

AM - Two talks given by Howard to include

- Theory and practise of Soldering. - Tools and Supplies - Component recognition - Using LEDs

PM - Practical 'HANDS ON' session to include an opportunity to build a track tester,

public/westmids.txt · Last modified: 2020/01/06 10:09 by allan_gardner