Image above captured on the upper deck of the layout where scenery has progressed to some extent...
Shot with Olympus C-750

Welcome to the SP Oregon Division!

An N Scale RR depicting the good old days along "The Friendly".

Sunday, March 25, 2012

Expansion Phase II Commissioning

  Last weekend we were able to have a real loose operating session to drive the layout hard and find out how things performed with the new Staging addition.  Ray threw a lot of weight into getting the signaling installed and reconfigured, and deserves his usual pat on the back for what many take for granted regarding the intricacies of installing CTC on the railroad.  Staging has made a dramatic change to how the layout flows now, and appears to have reduced the overload problems that my Eugene Yard had been bogged down with.
It looks like things are fairly solid since we ironed out a few minor details, but I still need some more feedback from operators on how the staging flows (regarding arrivals and departures).  Looks like I might have to add more dreaded paperwork to the General Rules on how operators are to handle staging, as it is not as seamless as I had hoped.  There is a bit of confusion on trains arriving at their destination name (for ex Portland), but then pulling the train the rest of the way into the staging yard leaves the head end at the opposing name location (ex Klamath Falls), so crews are not clear on which yard office handles the paperwork.  I suppose just a minor glitch that seasoned operators will never think about, but I want to simplify things for new operators so as not to drown them.  Hoping for more operator suggestions on how to deal with it on a simplistic level as they encounter it first hand...
Still more work ahead before any official crew calls go out again, but once I can get a grip on the loose ends (adding related cars, associated paperwork, etc), we will schedule accordingly.
The next session will surely unveil some more items that need attention, but I plan with each future session to expand on train assignments in an effort to fill out operations, and also to make car flow even more a part of the railroad, as opposed to just moving the trains.
Hoping to move toward adding more scenery over the next few months....