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Thread: RTS Virtual Hump Yard for Barstow

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Apr 2001
    Location
    St. Catharines, Ontario, Canada.
    Posts
    3,603

    Default RTS Virtual Hump Yard for Barstow

    While playing around in Google maps I went back into Barstow to try to find where the actual hump yard would be. Didn't take long as it sticks out like a sore thumb east of the receiving yard and west of the old yard. I was considering using the old yard but it's a good place for storage etc. and besides it's pretty small. I'm also in the process of at the very least taking the train data from the TD3 simulation from early 2010 and applying it to my own system. However I'm keeping everything as optional and editable as possible to be used on whatever system anyone is running.

    I found a nice straight section of track in the sim about 5000 feet or so (about 2K shy of the maximum receiving track). When you take away the power and helpers most can be done in one operation. The straight section is obvious to see as it is the farthest southern track (essentially the link between the Aux Lead and receiving).

    Any train that arrives in Barstow yard receiving would have it's power removed and taken to the shops. The hump units could sit around the west end. The inbound train would already be tagged with waybill numbers or destination tags (3 letter for BNSF, 2 letter for UP) or would have to be added prior to humping. Once this was complete the hump power would back down this track at the east end and ensure the cars remained on the straight section. The power would then be cut off and move back to the curve by the tower east of receiving and relinquished. The string would then be acquired saved with a train name such as "HUMP", "HUMP2", etc. then deleted. Gone but not forgotten Anything being humped is being stored and accumulated for future destinations just like a real hump would do if it existed in Run8. But this is my solution to make it all happen.

    On the east end of the virtual hump past the tower by the curve the hostler power would be waiting to pull once humping was complete. The software would then process the hump data and add them to the virtual hump yard sorting by destination and/or any blocking required etc. If you were building BARTEL for example normal process would be just spawn it in the destination track and your ready to roll. Thing is your train would always be the same (unless you like creating new trains), and in fact that track could be occupied. Instead now you have a virtual hump yard full of cars for various destinations. You pull up TEL for example in the RTS software and from the hump interface select this to be spawned. The virtual hump track for TEL is now emptied in the database. The RTS software would calculate the locations on the hump track mentioned and create an XML file called "OUTBOUND" or "PULL" or something. Remember the tags will not show but that isn't important now except for locals. Go into Shift F1 to spawn "OUTBOUND" and your TEL cars will appear.

    Now you take the hostler pull down the east end and back down an available destination track. You can monitor the power from the hostler to get an idea what kind of power you would need to add to this train. If you want to fill up the HP Ton requirements and get rid of some empties in the process you can take empties from the old yard and add it in. The virtual hump can also collect any empties coming in so that the hostler can bring them down to the old yard for storage.

    Again it's not as quick and easy as simply spawning a train out of thin air or deleting it. Being a virtual hump your essentially doing the same thing but over time different make up of trains coming in will instantly change the makeup of your outbound trains. This will eliminate the need for creating custom trains out of Barstow and that creativity can be saved for IM and perhaps other through or inbound trains, etc.

    The track would never be tied up for long in case trains have to get in via the Aux lead, or transfers need to be made etc. down this track. There is at least 1 other track nearby that would probably be more optimal but due to curves takes up more nodes thus requires more programming. Again this is just another thing I'm working on for this summer. Because the cars become part of the database I'm looking at producing some YM reports of capacity, tonnage, etc. giving him an idea as to what needs to move or can wait. If you have any other ideas etc. feel free to shoot them by. I'm hoping to start coding this in about 2 weeks time.

    Thanks

    Sean

  2. #2

    Default

    Humping cars to make trains is an integral part of the operation, and this sounds like a great way to get the feature into play. It could almost be made a stand-alone sim, or a sub all by itself.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Apr 2001
    Location
    St. Catharines, Ontario, Canada.
    Posts
    3,603

    Default

    I was going to do this for Mojave but I found making trains from a short distance to a short distance was not appealing enough. Now that I know these trains are going to move a distance or at the very least be part of the distance then staging Cajon trains is worth it.

    I've got to take the RTS platform and expand it to the full logistics of where they go now. Going to start with 2010 data which is smaller and see where it takes me.

    Thanks

    Sean

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