Category Archives: A MECHANICAL ISSUE

HOW DO YOU KNOW YOUR L.D.E.’S?

Layout Design Elements,

A railroad modeler’s defence…

‘Gainst unreal ideas

That bring one to tears,

Look to the prototype hence!

At a Connecticut loading dock,

A switching design loudly pops….

An Inglenook

Said someone in a book,

Makes a switching puzzle that rocks!

Certain real boxcars,

Are have doors damaged by sudden jars…

Or loads have shifted

An engineer gifted,

Learns which side of the dock a car is better to be parked!

This game I’ll reproduce,

The prototype is of use….

These pictures found

In archival ground,

Good modeling is real life—reduced!

Jonathan Caswell

 

REAL-LIFE INGLENOOK POSES PROTOTYPE PUZZLES
CSRR Inglenook CSRR Inglenook

Stuart Pate, from Bolton, Connecticut USA, took these shots of a prototype Inglenook sidings that is in daily use in East Hartford, Connecticut on the Connecticut Southern Railroad. “It is used as a baled pulp transloading point for a small tissue mill that is located away from the tracks,” Stuart points out. “As you can see from the photos, it has the required three tracks, two of which are at a loading dock that holds two cars per side, while the third is used as a ‘hold’ track before and during switching.

“Normally, loaded cars are either brought in on the arriving train or stored on the right hand track. Upon arrival, the conductor of the train talks with the forklift operator on the dock to determine which cars have been emptied, and to receive instructions regarding the placement of the loads. Sometimes an outbound empty may be ‘buried’ behind a load, or a car may have a defective door on one side and have to be swung to the other side of the dock for access. Some of the inbound cars may have priority over others for unloading.

“For the modeler, this represents a simple prototype for a very small and operationally flexible layout. Scenicly it’s nothing more than the three ballasted tracks and a wedge shaped dock with a telephone pole and small red equipment box. It wouldn’t have to handle only boxcars like the prototype. Flatcars and gondolas loaded with steel, lumber, curbing stones, or farming equipment could conceivably arrive here. The forklift could be replaced by a mobile crane as needed.”

When I asked Stuart why he had such an intimate knowledge of this little scene, he confessed, “Yes, I’m an engineer on the CSOR in East Hartford, and I get to switch the ‘prototype inglenook’ almost daily. It’s a small part of the East Hartford yard. In one of the photos, you can see some track to the right, so if you had a spare couple of inches it would also be possible to have a length of track against the backdrop displaying some favorite cars.”

Article and pictures reproduced from  Page 73, May 2008 on-line issue of http://www.carendt.com/small-layout-scrap-book/page-73-2008/

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(VERY) EARLY MORNING PROGRESS…

Couldn’t sleep—what a shame–

Had playtime to reclaim…

Three or more tries

Under night skies,

But with a clearer brain!

He completed reconnecting

Both spur and runaround track connecting….

All rail joiners fit

He was done with it,

Couldn’t test with the power pack defecting!

Musical power packs,

Changing over to  power tracks…

When he’s done

both layouts’ll run,

He’ll go on to more creative acts!

Jonathan Caswell

Google Image of a real train engine switching a spur track..

 

HIS TRAIN LAYOUT IS “P.C.”

His N scale model railway,

Unfinished to this day…

Is labeled P.C.

Not politically,

But “Procrastination Central”, he’d say!

So much on it still to do,

Each project is almost half-through…

Keeps changing direction

On theme selection,

Rearranging things as if on cue

HE THINKS…he’s nailed it down,

His scrap plastic pile’s quite a mound…

Rough kitbashing

Some parts go missing,

On which  he won’t expound!

–Jonathan Caswell

 

ANTI-P.C. MODEL RAILROADING?

He going back a few years

When people held fewer fears…

About burning coal

For energy goals,

When a coal train regularly appears!

Not using behemoth power,

A giant producing huge watts-per-hour…

But a cool RS-1

To get  the job done,

Or a steam engine with cinder shower!

Close down this plant—Why?

So you got a little smut in your eye…

Berry bushes poke through–

Gonna wipe out thorn bushes, too?

Expensive scrubbers can clean up the sky.

Most of all–coal trains bring jobs,

Labor and wind farms at odds…

How many men

Does solar need attend,

Its labor needs at large?

Moving coal cars is fun,

As models–not the real ones–

Although on my pike

I’ll do what I like,

But not with the same need of funds!

–Jonathan Caswell

 

LET US SLEEP ON IT*

woe betide them that try

to se in stone what needs more time…

My turn table lost?*

without further cost?

Then I looked near bed time!

I thought I’d lost my lead

To that tyrn table, but indeed…

A curve could be made

With large enough radius laid,

To satisfy the using of steam.

A switch I’d previously cut in,

To one engine stall could run…

The other could Branch

From the turn table switch–

My space problem was overcome!

Envisioning a massive water wheel,

Fed by a sluice pipe has appeal…

This motorized–

Already planned (what a surprise?),

For which the tourists would positively SQUEAL!

And then, the bridge over a mill dam flood—

If I wanted, a covered bridge wouldn’t take TOO MUCH blood…!

Just for light tourist trains–

Steel reinforced all the same–

An occasional short freight could be good!

-0

I wish I could draw all this now,

All it took was time to see how…

Possibilities arise

by opening one’s eyes,Imagination plus a day’s-worth of wrinkled brow!

–Jonathan Caswell

*NOTE–Refer back to the post..ECONOMIC CHOICES IN MINIATURE…posted yesterday~!

HERITAGE RIDES AGAIN!

On the Railway named “PAN-AM”,

They conjured a curious plan…

An old loco

With it’s first logo,

Put it back in service and it RAN!

Mostly for local yard work,

Natives thimk it a perk…

Local history

Working patiently,

With the expected GP-7 or 9 quirks!

Spends time in between rail yards–

East Deerfield, Portland,  onwards…

Railroader memories

Don’t grow up on trees,

And for a while they won’t break down from rust!

–Jonathan Caswell

Image from the NERAIL NEW ENGLAND PHOTO website of a currently-working heritage locomotive

MODELING MEMORIES

His memories of New England various,

Were by and large vicarious…

Mostly pictures he saw

with interest and awe,

His chances of a visit–hilarious!

Point of fact he was too young,

Couldn’t drive himself even some…

The eight-hour ride

Once a summer left wide,

Window for relevant magazines to come!

Still his interest grew,

Past the time when he knew…

This paint scheme was gone,

these ALCOs moved on.

But the history he wanted to view.

Found an N scale engine thus,

Painted just like this—a plus–

To re-enact

Historical fact,

Without too much fuss!

–Jonathan Caswell