No, this is not a review of the latest episode of ‘Dr Who’. Rather, there have been some interesting posts recently on how ‘time’ and ‘location’ work when we are building a model railway. I’m a sucker for these ‘philosophical’ posts. That’s probably as if I keep it all in the mind, I won’t have to build anything.
First, Chris Mears’ ever reliable ‘Prince Street Terminal’ on ‘Seven minutes and fifty-three seconds’. He writes…..
The above video was shot on the Claremont-Concord at West Lebanon. The video runs just under eight minutes in length. It has been edited from its original length but is a terrific record of just how long each movement takes and the pace of working a simple yard. Why not use the video itself as a measure of what can be accomplished in that same period of time on the model?
There are some interesting comments, as well. I’ve reposted the video below, as it’s a good view.
Our American (and Canadian) cousins are much better than us in the UK at timing our shunting / switching. I think this is a different hobby perspective. In the UK we are often exhibition orientated, and the idea is to keep things moving and entertain the public. Nothing wrong with that, and we also see some prototypical shunting on other layouts at a show. In North America, they seem to be discovering how a simple shunting operation becomes more interesting if you think what actually needs to happen. For example, there’s the pause to let the ‘man on the ground’ drop off the engine without too far to walk. And the wait to let him walk back. There’s the pause before buffering up to stock so you don’t hit them too hard. There’s the time to couple, to connect brake hoses, to through point switches….. and so on. It might need a little research to realise what ought to be happening at each stage of our model shunting operation, but this will fill out our operation – and make our small layouts seem a lot bigger.
As a PS, progress in the railway room continues. Several years ago, I bought a carrying case with a number of trays for ‘N’ gauge stock. I have transferred all my USA stock to this case and found that a draw full of Atlas and Microtrains boxes are compressed into a smallish case. Only the cabooses (or cabeese) reside elsewhere, in their own box. I do have some stock left over, that will get sold off.