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Author Topic: Differences in modeling throughout the world  (Read 17056 times)
rogertra


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« Reply #45 on: September 13, 2013, 11:11:31 PM »

Jeff.

I agree with train lengths.  My staging yards, once they expand, will hold several (not sure how many) 25 + car freights plus power and caboose.  Of course, there will also be shorter ones, for shorter trains.

However, as I model a minor division point, practically every 25+ car freight will be a through freight.  Eastward, the trains will be blocked so that the block of cars assigned to my yard will be on the rear and westward trains the block for my yard will be on the head end.  This is due to the yard lead being on the west end of the yard.  Eastbound trains will stop with the van (caboose) just pass the crossover to the yard lead and west bound trains will stop short of the same crossover.  Eastbound the yard switcher will come off the yard lead and will detach the van and set it aside and draw the cut of cars into the lead and shove them into an mty track and then pull the waiting cut of cars from the A&D track and shove them down onto the waiting train.  He'll then tack the van back on, the road power pumps up the brakes and, away goes the eastbound.  Westbound the power will stop short of the crossover, uncouple and draw forward into the clear.  The switcher can now access the front of the train, pull the interchange cut clear and shove it into an mty yard track, pull the outgoing cut of cars from the A&D track and shove them down on top of the waiting train.  As soon as the switcher is out of the way on the yard lead, the road power backs down onto its train, pumps up the air and away it goes.

Both east and west bound there are (or will be) water cranes located so that waiting road power can fill their tenders while the yard engine is switching their train.  

BTW, although the yard is a minor division point, it is not a division point for the main line, just for the various branch lines it feeds, just like Farnham Quebec.  So power and through train vans will not be swapped.

My two longest yard tracks tracks take 14 and 16 cars each but my yard lead on takes eight cars plus the switcher.  Now the model railroad bible says that the yard lead should at least be as long as your longest yard track.  We guess what, the model railroad bible is wrong!  Yard built before radio had leads only as long as far as the engineer and switchmen could see.  So steam age yard leads were not 50 to 100 cars long, they were usually around 20 to 25 cars long.  As far as the engineer and switchmen could safely see each other at night.  So my yard lead of eight cars is about proportionally correct.  Smiley

BTW, in case anyone else besides the three or four of us participating in this tread are following this, a real railroad yard is NOT, repeat NOT used for "storing" cars.  A railroad yard is a fluid thing.  Cars arrive only to be sorted out into blocks to forward them to their next destination.  The last thing a yardmaster wants cluttering up his yard are cars being stored.  Cars being stored are stored elsewhere until business picks up.  They are not stored in the yard.  So, if you have cars just sitting around in your yard that are not going anywhere, get rid of them!  Put them on shelves, like I do, until they are needed.  

Now, mind you, if I decide there's been a downturn in business, say real longshoreman's strike in the Port of Montreal, then I pull all the waybills of cars heading to and from the Port of Montreal and hold them and don't put them back into the waybill rotation until the real strike ends.  Now I have a surplus of cars.  What do I do?  I do what the railroads do.  I call a freight extra and send all those mty boxcars etc. off to some unmodelled siding out in the boonies (staging) and there I place them on shelves, with their waybills, until a need them again.  Smiley

So that is another prototype you can follow, the real world.  :-)

« Last Edit: September 14, 2013, 01:46:14 AM by rogertra » Logged

Skarloey Railway

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« Reply #46 on: September 14, 2013, 06:38:06 AM »

This is interesting. I like the idea of making more of the model by focusing in on the prototypes activities to make more of the space you're able to model. Switching (shunting in the UK) is labour intensive and slow, far slower than it is shown on most models I've seen. That may be because most models I've seen are at exhibitions where the public must be entertained and would probably drift off if a loco spent fifteen minutes dropping off a few cars.

The drawback is many of these activities are, for practical reasons, best in HO/OO or better yet, in O, which means we have compromises in getting everything to fit. N gauge is much better in that respect but who enjoys switching in N gauge, especially as we all get older.

So, two yards separated by a holding area long enough to take the longest train + the space for braking and acceleration modelled in HO or (ideally) O gauge.  Mainline on one or two levels, shelf style, running above the yards and round the room modelled in N gauge.

The yard switcher gets the train together in one of the yards. Meantime, in staging on the upper deck the train is all ready prepared to go. Once the train is made up, the switcher leaves off and the road engine backs on, hooks up and trundles off into the holding area. At the same time, the N gauge version of the train starts on its winding way around the room, maybe passing another train midway, until it returns to staging, at which point, the larger scale train starts up and trundles into the second yard ready for being broken down or switched to its destination. If the N gauge mainline is modelled so that they eye is always two feet from the train then it needn't be hyper-detailed as we're after the 'train in the landscape' while the yards are modelled to allow for prototypical operation. That way each scale does what its best at.   
Colin.
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jward


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« Reply #47 on: September 14, 2013, 09:00:13 AM »

not sure how thing are done in the uk, but there is a reason switching is painfully slow in real life: safety and damage control.  on the real railroads, the phrase "no more than four" is drilled into crews heads.  the laws of physics say that the impact force of two objects colliding increases with the square of speed. that is, using two cars coupling at 1 mph as an example. couple the cars at 4 more the impact is 16 times as great, couple at 10 the force is 100 times greater. over 4 mph and damaged freight rises dramatically.

safety factors on most railroads dictate that trains must be stopped when crew members board and unboard. the days of brakemen swinging on and off the cars like monkeys are thankfully over. no longer do they kick cars, with brakemen riding the kicked car and securing the handbrake while in motion.

another factor that takes time has to do with the brakes. on cuts of cars being worked in the yard, the air is often left in the string. when cars are uncoupled, the angle cock must be turned on the cars so that when the airline parts after dropping one car, you don't lose the air in the rest of the string. with so many angle cocks turned, the air is effectively bottled in each car, and the locomotive has only its own brakes to use to slow down. when the hoses part, the air leaks out of the car being dropped, instantly setting the brakes.

before the cut can be worked, somebody has to walk it, and turn all those angle cocks. since they are located next to the coupler where the air line enters the car body, there is no safe way to do it on a moving train. after the cut is worked, somebody must walk the track and turn all the angle cocks back, and reconnect the air lines between the cars. they must also look for "jams" where the knuckles on both cars are closed, preventing them from coupling. when they find a jam, the yard engine must couple back up to the string and pull it forward a few feet so that one of the knuckles can be opened, then back the cars together again. all of this takes a lot of time.

when I worked the power plant job, it often took us 3-4 hours to assemble a 100 car train of empties. we put the air in the cars as we went.
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Jeffery S Ward Sr
Pittsburgh, PA
Skarloey Railway

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« Reply #48 on: September 14, 2013, 10:44:54 AM »

not sure how thing are done in the uk...safety factors on most railroads dictate that trains must be stopped when crew members board and unboard. the days of brakemen swinging on and off the cars like monkeys are thankfully over. no longer do they kick cars, with brakemen riding the kicked car and securing the handbrake while in motion.

Oh, but in some places they still do. Well, almost, the brakemen on this train don't jump from wagon to wagon like in the old days when a train like this might be in charge of only a handful of men, but this recreation of a 'gravity' train on the Festiniog Railway shows the principle. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-dVEW5wKrFE the first half of the clip shows the train going up the line under steam power. Gravity then takes over for the descent.

I should add that railways/railroads post 1930 (ish) has more or less zero interest to me and my preference is 19th century to pre world war one.
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Desertdweller

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« Reply #49 on: September 14, 2013, 12:03:52 PM »

Jward made an observation I had taken for granted, but is often overlooked or not understood in the model railroad world.  Rail yards are not used for storing cars.  Some big terminals may have storage yards, but they are not typical.  The closest thing to storage tracks in many yards is the "rip track" where cars awaiting repairs are kept.  RIP means "repair in place".

Most rail yards are used either for classifying (sorting) cars, or holding blocks of cars for trains to pick up.  In theory, any yard more than 50% full is considered jammed and difficult or impossible to work.

The cars are not making any money for the railroad if they are not in use.  So a healthy railroad will not have plugged yards.

On my own passenger-oriented railroad, at the end of the operating cycle, the terminal tracks are empty.  The few cars that remain overnight are spotted on tracks at the mail-handling facility or the express house.

Since almost all the action during the summertime (the time or year modeled, as on most model railroads) takes place in daylight, it relieves me of the need to add lighting for night operations.

Les
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rogertra


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« Reply #50 on: September 14, 2013, 03:21:03 PM »

Les.

It was me not Jeff who pointed out that yards are not for storing cars but yards should be kept fluid.  Smiley

My yard is also a terminal for commuter trains to and from Montreal.  I do not have a coach yard but the commuter train's three or four passenger cars lay over the in bay platform where they are (in theory) serviced ready for their next run.  So I guess, in a way, that track could be considered storage.  Smiley

Commuter trains depart from track 2, the bay platform, but arrive on track one, the main track.  The train engine, usually a light 4-6-2 head off to the roundhouse while the 0-6-0 switcher which looks after passenger trains and the industrial area, switches the mty passenger cars from track one over to track two for servicing and the next departure.  As I mentioned before, I have an 0-8-0 that switches the freight yard tracks.

You mention lighting.

Another point where younger modellers get it wrong.  Steam engines only ran with the headlight on from around 1958/1959 or so.  Before that, the headlight was off during the day except when entering longer tunnels, in falling snow, heavy fog, when approaching a platform with waiting passengers or whenever extra safety was called for.

A steam loco's headlight has two positions, "On" or "Off", they are not dimmable.  It would be nice (Bachmann?) if all DCC systems permitted individual control over both headlights.  I also really do not like those DCC systems that automatically switch headlights when the engine changes direction.  That's NOT realistic.  Manual changing of headlights should be the default with automatic as an option.

A steam locomotive's headlight was a 90W electric lamp.  It wasn't a sealed beam headlight like a diesel or modern steam excursion steam locos.  The steam headlight should be yellowish, not not white nor with a blue tint.  Bachmann and other makers should also note this.  Smiley

Switch engines, at night, usually operate with both headlights "On".  Steam are always on a full, because you cannot dim a steam headlight, but diesels operate (usually) with both headlights on dim, day and night.  They only go to full when entering the main track during switching moves.

Jeff and Les.

Any photos?
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Desertdweller

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« Reply #51 on: September 14, 2013, 09:34:23 PM »

Roger,

You make some good points.

I'll try to get some pictures posted.  Do they have to be downloaded from a site like Photobucket?

Les
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rogertra


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« Reply #52 on: September 15, 2013, 01:48:32 AM »

Les.

You upload the photos to Photobucket, it's free and once you've uploaded the photos you will find underneath each photo, or to the right if you're looking at the larger version of your photo a list of link options.  You left click the link the one that reads "IMG" and that automatically copies the link.

In your post, you then right click, where you want to photo to go, and the image will appear in your post, thus: -



Now, as you are composing your post all you will see is the URL but don't worry, if you click on the "preview" button below, you will see your photo as it will appear in your post. Once you are happy, you can either add more photos or text and once you are done, press the "Post" button as usual.

The photo above is looking east towards the roundhouse. caboose track, and the east end ladder track. The main is the stone ballast and the other tracks are yard tracks.  The main yard is to the left and the two tracks to the right are interchange tracks used by the NYC, the D&H and the Rutland Road.  Off in the distance, the tracks spilt and one will go through the wall almost straight ahead and that will be the GER main like to the Maritimes and the line curving to the right will be the track going down into the USA and the NYC, D&H and Rutland Road but at the moment it leads to staging.

Buildings are just place holders until I decide what to do.

Posting photos is, once you've set up a Photobucket, or Flickr account, is dead easy.  An idiot could do it, as I've just proven above.  Smiley
« Last Edit: September 15, 2013, 05:30:13 PM by rogertra » Logged

Desertdweller

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« Reply #53 on: September 15, 2013, 01:25:49 PM »



Here is a photo of the California Zephyr on arrival from Chicago.

This is a test of sorts to see how this works.

Les
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Desertdweller

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« Reply #54 on: September 15, 2013, 01:27:41 PM »

OK! That worked!
Thanks, Roger.

Now I can post pictures to show the things I have been talking about here!

Les
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rogertra


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« Reply #55 on: September 15, 2013, 05:26:00 PM »

Les.

Great photo and well done on the posting.  Smiley

Told you an idiot could do it, didn't I?   Grin

Nice train BTW, you've got to post more photos.

Forgot to mention.  Did you know that if you click on a posted photo, it takes you to that person's Photobucket page and you can view other photos they've up loaded to Photobucket?  I just did that and you've got some nice photos there.

« Last Edit: September 15, 2013, 05:28:31 PM by rogertra » Logged

Desertdweller

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« Reply #56 on: September 15, 2013, 05:34:03 PM »

Well, thanks, Roger!

I posted a bunch of photos in the "Show us your layout "thread.

Les
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rogertra


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« Reply #57 on: September 15, 2013, 05:42:13 PM »

Well, thanks, Roger!

I posted a bunch of photos in the "Show us your layout "thread.

Les


Just saw those Les, well done.  Smiley

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GG1onFordsDTandI
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« Reply #58 on: September 15, 2013, 08:43:01 PM »

Skarloey, The gravity train, that's one interesting ride.
 Not a fan of car bodies, are you Les? Cheesy ......Wink  Now Im off to the layout thread for another look Cool
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Desertdweller

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« Reply #59 on: September 15, 2013, 10:18:11 PM »

GG1,

Yeah, I'm a fan of carbody units of any make.  Always wanted to run one in real life, but never got the chance.

I've ridden in them, though.

I'm really a fan of streamlined passenger trains.  By happy coincidence, almost all of these used carbody units.
E7's, E8's, and PA1's are my most common units.  I have a good share of passenger F's, and various other types, including E9's, the E5 you noted, a pair of FPA2's, and a DL109.  And my newest type, a U30CG!

My railroad exists before the big mergers of the late 1960's.  And business looks to be a bit healthier than it really was back then, although all my trains had real prototypes.

There is one harbinger of bad times to come in the sky: a Boeing 707.  The trains could compete with the Boeing 399, offering better accommodations though at slower speed.  But they just couldn't compete with the 707, twice the speed of the elegant 399.

Les
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