Favourite Photos...

Favourite Photos...
Reading Lines GP35 #3647

Middletown, Pa

Saturday 30 January 2016

New Rutherford Yard Design & Altered Track...

Inline with the updated post below with the altered track plan, here a few photos of the new track work install.

I have installed one of the new PECO Code 75 - Double Slip Switches in the yard leads (north & south) that will allow both the southern & northern classification tracks to use the new switch lead (orange track).

The below plan shows the tracks and use (colour coded) along with some measurements of each...

The track work being altered and installed, this is the northern yard lead (right side) and the new switch lead to the left (coming off the dbl slip).  The double slip allows for either of the three northern classification tracks to be switched onto the switch lead.

The north switch lead is 4.4 metres (14.4') long and is as long as any of the classification tracks.

The second double slip switch allows movement between both the northern & southern arrival/departure tracks and classification tracks, and shortens the existing crossovers that were installed by half.

By installing the double slips within the classification area of the yard we have also lengthened some of the classification tracks with the removal of excess crossovers too.

Next stage is to wait for one more double slip to arrive and install the remaining track, wire up and test out ready for another ops session.

Sunday 17 January 2016

A few alterations to the track plan...

After last Tuesday nights Ops session Brendan and I were talking about a few little addition to the new Rutherford Yard area that would make it operate easier and add to the operations side of the layout.

So over the last few days I have been playing around with the configuration of the track on the Rutherford Yard leads and made a few little additions, some more permanent additions and added some more structures.

Below is the new version of the track plan in full:

This plan has been updated (30/01/16) to included two PECO Code 75 - Double Slip Switches, these and a few alterations to the track arrangement in the yard/switch leads will make the operations of the yard a lot more efficient.

The biggest additions to the track work are an extra spur/yard lead that now comes off the northern tracks of Rutherford Yard and heads over the Susquehanna River into the engine service facility.

It adds an additional bridge crossing over the river and will see the existing lift out bridge removed and changed to permanent benchwork with the bridges and track realigned and redone too.

Below is a close up view of the area with the additional yard lead, bridge and river crossing and connection into the service facility.

Again this plan is a blown up section of the new plan above...

The addition of the yard lead which also enters the service facility ends up adding some improved ops capability by allowing locomotives to offload their cars into the yard then shoot out one the lead into the facility for refuelling, sanding and/or maintenance.

It will also allow the yard switchers to use it for storing a cut of cars or blocking duties with fouling the northern main anymore.

In all relatively small change but with some great value add options to the overall layout operating scheme.

And lastly I have also made a small alteration to the York - Pulp & Paper Mill with the addition of a wood chip unloading spur to the south of the pulp wood sidings.


Thursday 14 January 2016

Another Ops Session & Rutherford Yard Test...

So Tuesday night was our semi-regular ops session again for the first time in 2016.

Unfortunately as we were busy problem solving and entertaining I didn't get any ops photos or videos.  Next ops session there will be both...

We had our regular crew of Noel, Dennis & Brendan, and a first time visit from Greg who is also within the greater Melbourne N Scale group.  Noel also brought along his friends from South Australia - Warren and his son Charlie.

The night started out fairly slowly with our usual light hearted banter and catch-up conversation from what we had all done over the festive season.
Brendan and I identified a issue with the LocoNet and one of the BDL's presenting with some odd behaviour.

In the end the BDL issue was problem solved down to being none of them had been set to be the BDL master on the LocoNet.  Problem solved by Dr DCC himself Brendan after the session had finished.  Greatly appreciated all your help too Brendan!

The rest of the night sore the guys running trains over the entire layout without to many hiccups or issues.  Greg seemed to spend a fair amount of time on the completed Reading branch switching locals around.  Noel chaperoned Warren & Charlie around whilst Charlie ran a few locals with him.

Brendan seemed to have the most fun, and was clearly the "BOL" (Best On Layout) for moving freight.  He also gave the yard a good workout, and we also identified some additions to it that will make it operate better and add value to the layout ops as well.

A very enjoyable night was had by all!

At the end of the night, and everyone had left I grabbed the iPhone and WiThrottle and switched Rutherford Yard for about 45 mins, it's only ever going to be a small classification yard for a couple of locals and maybe a full consist train but it's going to be a lot of fun too.

This is how it ended up looking...


Tuesday 12 January 2016

Rutherford Yard track work complete...

Last night I managed to finish off the remaining track work and get most of the wiring done too.

The first local ran across the yard successfully and all I have to do is wire in a few more feeders to pick up the track after some of the crossovers and the yard is ready for tonights ops session.

More soon...

Sunday 10 January 2016

Rutherford Yard trackwork almost complete...

So after a lengthy session last night and into the early hours of this morning I managed to get 95% of the Rutherford Yard track work in.

Once the first radius was marked, positioned and secured using push pins the remaining yard tracks just had to measured from the first and secured in place with more track pins.

I used a 2" (50mm) centre on centre measurement for the track spacing.  The remaining track work went in rather quickly after this, and all the remained was to install the crossovers that sit at about halfway on the yard.

The north yard ladder is installed, along with the runaround track and the start of the Wood Chip Mill spur too.

Hopefully the remainder will be installed tonight, and the wiring installed tomorrow along with the PSX-AR as the yard leads (north & south) form a wye at Harrisburg & Rutherford.


Saturday 9 January 2016

More work on Rutherford Yard...

So last night I continued on with the Rutherford Yard track work and extension.

The first step was to get the line in for the Wood Chip Mill which is now independent of the yard ladder and track work.  This is the first curve for the yard and it sets the minimum radius, the radius for this track is 28"R and is the minimum.

I use a Ribbon Rail - Alignment Gauge to set the first curve.  The remaining yard tracks are set from the first and are spaced at 2" (50mm) centre to centre.  Once the first is set its a matter of measuring from the first track.

Next stage was to check if the yard ladder, and escape track had enough room as per the plan.  I placed the yard ladder, runaround track and measured the end escape spur before anymore track is permanently installed.

Next stage is to place down the cork sub-roadbed and install the yard tracks...


Thursday 7 January 2016

Rutherford Yard Extension...

So the next stage of the layout build is to start the extension and finish off the track work for Rutherford yard.  The yard currently has the north & south yard leads in and the beginning of the yard tracks.  

I've decided to complete this at this stage as we have also begun the first stages of designing the operating scheme for the layout, without the yard this would be very difficult to check train lengths and holding capacities.

The south tracks feed out into Rutherford & Manheim & North tracks lead out to Shippensburg & York.

In order to maximise the space available I decided to do a plan in AnyRail to see what we could get to work.

The above plan shows Rutherford in the grand scheme of the layout and how it feeds out onto the layout.

The plan for the yard below is the first draft and may be changed once I get the track onto the physical bench work, and after its first operating session. 

(the above & below plans is updated as of 9/1/16)

By running the yard tracks around the corner I've actually extended most by anywhere between 4' - 8' in length from the original design.  I've also managed to get another industry into the end section, this will be a wood chip mill providing wood chips to the York - Pulp & Paper Mill.

Although the yard is not perfect and it actually finishes at the north end, it should sustain two operators for some hours switching and classifying rolling stock into locals, blocking outbound unit, freight & extra trains to be ran across the layout to the other staging yard (yet to be built) and loading the wood chip mill.

Hopefully over the next few days we can get the remainder of track work in.