Announcement

Collapse
No announcement yet.

Alaska Railroad

Collapse
X
Collapse
First Prev Next Last
 
  • Filter
  • Time
  • Show
Clear All
new posts

    #31
    The first step in doing a route, especially in a large city or a yard, is how much is too much, or how accurate can it be. I remember some 15 years or more ago, someone propoed doing all of Proviso Yard (Chicago Area). I hope he is still alive and well. Such is the case with Anchorage. I am including, as accurately as possible all of the passenger facilities. I'm also including all of the industrial tracks that I can find, including several in the port area, north of the yard area, and a branch that goes to Fort Richardson and departs the main track just before mile 120 which is the end of the route - 5 miles beyond the main part of Anchorage in order to provide a staging area for activities. The image is clipped from Google Earth and shows the main part of the yard area. The interlaced lines are several industrial leads laid over a wye. The passenger station is near the bottom middle and the short red line is a M/W parking area for track machinery. Click image for larger version

Name:	ANCH_CLIP01.jpg
Views:	501
Size:	129.2 KB
ID:	2287844
    Elmendorf AFB is just out of the image at upper right and Fort Richardson is further to the right and up. I'll give you guys the track and maybe somebody will do the detailing while most of us are still alive to enjoy it.

    J. H. Sullivan, P.E. retired from CSX, SR, & C&TS docent corps

    Comment


      #32
      Friends,

      I have completed the main line stopping at mile 130, about 10 miles or so north of Anchorage and now I am detailing in the tracks at the dock area. Then I'll do the Whittier Branch and Fort Richardson and then try to clean up as much as I can of "lost" track pieces. Much of the route runs on side hills, and so fully 1/3 of the track is under the terrain, generally by no more than a meter but all that has to be shaped. I can appreciate a lot about TSRE but it has one error that I find serious. That is, that the latitudes have 4 point precision, i.e. xxx.xxxx while the longitude only has 3 point precision, i.e. xxx.xxx. That 4th digit is important and it means that a marker can be either on the track where it is supposed to be, or it can be 20 feet either side. So things like a turnout, where I mark the points, may have a marker beside the track rather than on it. Also there will be some drastic grade changes in the dock area leading to the engine terminal just because that is the way the land is laid out and limitations of MSTS track pieces. I've also used a lot of dynamic track in that area, so if someone grabs the unfinished produce and wants to try to improve that area, I am going to enclose in a folder all of the .kml and .mrk files I have used. You can load a .kml file into Google Earth and it will display the digitized track. I will also be including the track charts as a .pdf file. Look for these as subfolders under "documents". If enough interest shows up to warrant further work, I will do Anchorage to Fairbanks & the 40 mile branch east of Fairbanks to a AFB but otherwise I have several other projects.

      Not related to MSTS or TSRE I am doing a education project for the Friends of the Cumbres & Toltec and I spend about 1/2 of each play day working on that. Also, if anyone plans to visit the C&TSRR, the season ends this year on Oct. 21 but if you travel out there, then the best place to stay a night or two (or more) is the Victorian B&B. Two of the nicest folks I know own it and it is a great place to stay, 5 blocks from the railroad depot. John & Victoria Bush love Railfans.

      Also, I am finding that when those icky things happen where a track piece wants to snap to another but is off vertically a bit, fully 95% of the time I find that if you select the piece being joined to and then hit the "z" key to delete the vector, then reselect & hit "z" again, the new piece links up correctly.

      J. H. Sullivan, P.E. (retired)

      Comment


        #33
        Looking forward to it.
        If you like what you see here at Trainsim.com, be it the discussions and knowledge in the forums, items saved in our library or the ongoing development of our TSRE Fork, I hope you'll consider a paid membership to help support keeping the site operating.... Thanks!

        Comment


          #34
          I've almost got this trackage complete. Over the last 2 days, I laid the Whittier branch. One thing I wish we had was a sort of dummy track that would link to real track and was about 3-5 miles long. One of the tunnels is 5050' in length and the other also is a highway tunnel. There are ordinary crossing gates at the ends and these theoretically keep vehicle and trains apart but the road inside the tunnel is evidently laid over the track like a streetcar line. The combination tunnel is 13,358' in length. Both tunnels are straight, so my method was to line up the entering end as close as I could and then lay 500 meter straight track through the tunnel. Using either the 500R.25 piece or a long 1 degree piece I adjusted the entering end and finally line up the output end almost perfectly. Next then was Whittier itself. So here is Whittier yard looking toward the dock area. Besides this, there is a short spur about 1/2 mile from the tunnel that went to a saw mill that apparently is gone, but the track is in place more or less. One of these yard tracks will extend to the rail ferry slip. This is where any railroad interchange with the lower 48 occurs, it being several hundred miles closer to Seattle than Seward. There are no dynamic pieces here though I use them to measure.
          Click image for larger version  Name:	whittier_dock.jpg Views:	0 Size:	97.9 KB ID:	2288401
          Jerry Sullivan

          Comment


            #35
            As of earlier today, I have finished all of the track for the route including the Whittier branch, Anchorage airport branch and Fort Richardson. I found that the error function listed many of the odds and ins that I had dropped in the big pit, but not all, so I resorted to Eric's method of finding items in the world file with grossly erroneous elevations and so far that has worked and I have cleaned out a dozen or so items lost in the great white----. My method so far is that if the average "Y" value for objects in a world file is, for example 140, and I have one that has a Y value of -3365, then I change that value to 145. Then when the route is opened in TSRE and I jump to that world file, the erroneous item is much more visible, though in this mountanous terrain it might still be below the surface. I also know of a couple of places t will change dyanmic track to fixed pieces. I'll include all .kml and .mkr files in the upload as well as a rather detailed explanation of how and what I digitized to do the route. For most of it, Google Earth has some imagery from earlier this year and I used that, for example. I'll let the next guy(s) deal with the roads and figure out how to plant really dense forests. One or two of the tunnels in the loop district are on curves that are nothing like what we have curve pieces for, but I have used some separate tunnel pieces that work quite well in those situations and I plan to add those to the route & .ref file and place them. Some of the tunnels are very short and it should also be noted that many of what we think of as overhead bridges, are more like short tunnels. I guess that was so snow cleared off the road would not land on the track.

            J. H. Sullivan

            Comment


              #36
              Today was spent in removing all of the orphan track pieces I could find which was probably 95% of them. The method I used, is to bring up the route in Track Viewer and maximise the window. Then move along the route making sure that at least two squares, i.e. world files, are on the sides of the world file(s) supposed to contain the track. If any little dashes appear that are not connected to the track, then that world file has some de----------------ep sixed orphans and it is not necessarily the one with legitimate track.. Go into you favorite editor and search for items that have a large negative "Y" coordinate and when you find one, change this value to something zero or higher. I like to make it about 5 meters higher than the average terrain height that I saw. Then go to that world file in TSRE and hunt for the errant items and when you find them, just select & delete. As Eric told me, the .tdb file does not care about this elevation value, and I will add, AS LONG AS IT IS AN ORPHAN, not connected to other track pieces. Then save the route. I have around a dozen areas of dynamic track and I also plan to eliminate as many of those as I can. I think I will leave the digitizing of roads to others as it is easy but time consuming and I will have some recommendations about that in a text file in the documents folder & subfolders. Main thing is to use the 2023 images as much as possible as those are what I used to digitize the track and there are some anomalies, likely related to the extreme far north of this route. If anyone wants to include the Anchorage International Airport (Ted Stevens Internation Airport) there is a lot about it in the series "Ice Airport" on the Smithsonian channel. I have included the 2 mile or so branch to the passenger terminal.

              J. H. Sullivan

              Comment


                #37
                Eric,
                Others,

                I hope the upload is okay. I have not been able to install successfully, PaintShop Pro X9 so that I could resize the thumbnail. It is larger than you specify. Otherwise I believe we are good to go and I have included my email in the instructions.txt file. The upload includes .kml, .mkr, and .pdf files. The latter is for the entire Alaska railroad with Seward to Anchorage being the first
                25 pages or so. Okay fellows, some of you wanted this, so have at it. There is some ARR rolling stock in the library but being lazy, I let the virtual ARR borrow an L&N train for test purposes.
                All major routes have been checked with Track Viewer by creating paths and most of them have been run. As this was my first attempt at TSRE there may be some anomalies.

                J. H. Sullivan
                (aka landnrailroader)

                Comment

                Working...
                X