Center Peninsula Track Planning, …..Container Terminal & Port Facility

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beiland

Well-Known Member
I assume we are talking about the tail track attached to the runaround one,...the short curving one closet to the edge of the plywood deck?

That's there for a couple of reasons: 1) I had the space, 2) it could provide a resting space for a switcher (or two) that would be working the container yard, 3) it could provide for a temporary stacking point for empty container cars waiting to be moved over to the freight yard. Thats want my thinking was??
 
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roofintrash

Active Member
You mentioned in an earlier post about leaving the roof off and detailing the interior. If it were me, I would remove the entire aisle side bay of the warehouse and leave it open to the aisle. You could still put the roof on and add some variable lighting to highlight the interior details. The edge of that structure jutting into the aisle is just a disaster waiting to happen.
Just my 2c
Rick
 

beiland

Well-Known Member
You mentioned in an earlier post about leaving the roof off and detailing the interior. If it were me, I would remove the entire aisle side bay of the warehouse and leave it open to the aisle. You could still put the roof on and add some variable lighting to highlight the interior details. The edge of that structure jutting into the aisle is just a disaster waiting to happen.
Just my 2c
Rick
Leaving off that side merits some thought, I'll have to think about it.
.....but I would think that the rigidity of the complete 'box' would make it stronger against bumping? I'm also thinking that the entire bldg could be made easily removable on particular occasions,..a slot in the floor of the terminal bldg to allow drop over/around that track running thru it.
 
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beiland

Well-Known Member
Do you think that maybe your trying to cram too much in that space? Not being critical, just asking.
I must admit to have been accused of trying to put 10lbs of layout into a 5lb bag...:rolleyes:

But I'm trying to make this peninsula area a good switching exercise,...the combination of the container yard, the pier terminal bldg, the carfloat, and a couple of other businesses/structures that needs various types of freight cars moved around and to them.
 
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beiland

Well-Known Member
Today I was looking at some new possibilities for my carfloat location. While doing this I took a new look at those tracks and switches I have been considering for the trailing ends of my container yard.

I introduced a 3-way turnout to gather the 3 track ends together. The 2 container tracks now deposit the long locos and containers onto 1 long 'tail track' rather than 2.
I still retain that shorter tail track off the end of the run-around track to act as a layover for the switchers ready to work the container cars.

DSCF5092.JPG



DSCF5093.JPG



DSCF5094.JPG
 
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beiland

Well-Known Member
What I'm thinking here is that other half of the carfloat/barge will fold down,...or just be stuck in the end when during a switching operation with it.
 

beiland

Well-Known Member
If you look at those photos I posted just above, you note that I moved the carfloat over so it had its feeder track was no longer going thru the pier terminal bldg. I caught so much grief about its not being prototypical to have that track thru the center of my pier terminal, that I figured I should investigate alternatives.

Well I played with several different configurations, and I have reasons to reject most of them. So I am going back to my old 'thru the building' design,....and I will just make the pier terminal bldg quickly removable for those that get upset about it,...thats easy enough,...plain track feeding the carfloat (on occassions) ,......problem solved.
 

beiland

Well-Known Member
New Solution


I believe I have arrived at a good solution to my problem with this area,...ELIMINATE the pier terminal bldg,...while leaving my track plan basically as it was with the bldg there.





I went back and attempted to shuffle things around similar to what Dave had offered recently. Here are a couple of photos of that 'shuffle game'...









I had a few more attempts I did not photograph. The basic problems I was running into was a) progressively more encroachment on that aisle space to put a track on that aisle side of the bldg, b) trying to include an imaginary ship docking on that side, c) trying to include a dockside crane that made any sense, etc.





I finally went back to that original carfloat plan I had. I picked up the pier terminal bldg and sat if off to the side,...ELIMINATED. Now I have a nice clear run to the carpfloat that I could place some other structures along side that approach track, or just leave it open.












This configuration also works extremely well with my thoughts that the dock slip there can be utilized for several other 'ships',....other barges such as sand, coal, etc


















...or even a small cargo freighter






What to do with that great Pier Terminal bldg?
I'm going to keep it handy for 'guest appearances' . I will make it a readily removable structure that can be used on some occasions, or not on others.
 

dave1905

Active Member
If you are going to eliminate the pier building then move the float bridge closer to the base of the peninsula and leave room to get the whole car float on. There is no need for that long of a lead to the float apron UNLESS you add a couple stub end tracks there to hold the cars going to or from the float to make switching it easier.
 

beiland

Well-Known Member
I did consider moving the carfloat again so that the whole thing was on the peninsula deck,...but I had gotten so use to the idea that I only need to display half of it, I stayed with that idea. As you said I may want to add stub end tracks off the approach track, or whatever. I still need to do some more thinking about the trackage/structures in that area between the carfloat and the base of the peninsula.

I believe I can fabricate a very quick fold-up for the second portion of the carfloat to use when doing operations with it.

And of course I will have that terminal building ready to do 'guest appearances'......;)
 

beiland

Well-Known Member
Dave posted:
Put a crossover at the base of the peninsula from the right most container track over to the lead to the float dock, use the float dock lead as the tail track.
Inbound train noses into the right most container track, cuts off power, goes into the float lead

The reason I didn't send any of the mainline locos (steam or diesel) over to that side of the peninsula is that I didn't have any short, good way to get them back to the turntable/roundhouse, or freight yard, without making them wait for operations, or sending them all way back around the layout. I didn't think that would be realistic at all.


I figured that that tail track could collect a long steamer, or even perhaps a doubled headed diesel set and send them back 'home' while all the unloading of containers, or loading of the carfloat proceeded without their interference?





Dark2star:
Also, looking at your location, I think it would be a perfect excuse to leave the nice locos sitting there and looking good at the best spot on your layout (rather than having an empty piece of track there).
You had such a nice shot of a large, beautiful steamers sitting right there in the perfect spot. Go back one page. Which looks much better than an empty piece of track. Or an empty well car. Which is why the purpose of the escape track is escaping me...

I think I explained my thinking of the tail track above,..for the locos. The reason I show a couple of well cars just sitting there is to emphasize that this tail track can also be used to move empty container cars out of the front of the line and back over to the yard area,...so the switcher can push more cars in for unloading. My use of 2 cars was to say I can possible move 2 cars at a time, rather then just one.


As to 'displaying' the locos, i have a nice big turntable right next the deck's edge at the very end of the aisle,...with lots of 'outdoor' tracks for those big steamers. Should be a good show, rather than hiding them down in staging. (I'm also planning on having primarily diesels climb the helix up from staging, that may, or may not, give their trains up to steamers.


That Santa Fe engine facility up on the top deck will have considerable 'outdoor stowage' for some pretty snappy looking diesel engines,...and its close to the edge for viewing as well.
 

beiland

Well-Known Member
Potential Operations on the Peninsula


Here is how I would imagine some of the operations would happen on that peninsula.


The mainline train would enter on either of those 2 tracks that meet at the double slip. The mainline loco might uncouple right there, and proceed to get back over to the roundhouse area or the freight yard by way of that escape route provided by the tail track at the end of the container yard and the runaround track.


Or it might go ahead and pull the train thru the container yard, but uncouple and leave non-container car(s) there at the double crossover. It still can use the tail track to escape and go home.


The switcher then comes in to pull groups of container cars into the 2 tracks for unloading. As they are unloaded, that switcher (or a second one) can pull singles or pairs of those unloaded container cars over to a waiting area (the freight yard perhaps). Then come back to repeat the operation over and over, ...pulling new container cars into unloading, then over to the freight yard waiting area.


Another switcher working the right side of the peninsula would grab off non-container cars up at the double slip and move them onto one of 3 waiting tracks for selection to be delivered to the 1) big dockside crane out at the end of the peninsula, 2) the carfloat, 3) several other warehouses in that port area, 4) allied rail rebuilders, 5) another industry possibly located on that thin right hand shelf, or 6) maybe even the brick factory or waterfront scene down in the far corner on that right hand deck.


(that little switcher working that side of the peninsula might be given its own little 'home' in one of the arches of the via-duct)






That little switcher might be a steam type like the infamous 'docksiders', or it might be a swarm of trackmobile types. Those multiple little switchers might lie in wait on that one siding next to allied rail rebuilders.






One of the 'port warehouses' I am considering is utilizing either the Walthers Waterstreet Freight Terminal kit, or the P2K 'Moore & Co' structure located approx here,..








 
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beiland

Well-Known Member
Doing the last few days I rebuilt the substructures for my stone arch viaduct/bridge that appears in the background(s) of where my central peninsula meets the layout. I had wanted to finalize these structure sizes and exact placement so I could move on to finalizing the track plan(s) on the peninsula itself.


The structure(s) first out front of the viaduct on that one side were the roundhouse and the turntable. I had now finished building my new turntable pit, and mounting the footprint of my roundhouse onto its new metal base piece. There were a couple of obstacles I need to consider in exact location of that big roundhouse,...a) how close that rear corner might be fit to the arch bridge, and b) clearance for a piece of all-thread rod that might be eventually be erected in a vertical manner to support the overhead steel beam that stretches across the entire room to support the upper logging area. That all-thread rod may never be used, but I wanted to make sure to not cover up my pre-drilled hole just in case.


So here is that final location of the turntable and roundhouse, and subsequently the tracks involved.






One particular trouble spot presented me with lots of problems,...the connection of the container yard's incoming track from that slip switch, with the yard track itself, and the two curved tracks exiting the yard to go to the turntable. It involves a dbl-curved turnout, a long Y turnout, and single turnout. These all have to be smoothly connected together them selves, while at the same time providing the proper angles to the group's 4 'arms'. As I had mocked it up originally, it was not going to work.


(these next 2 photos looked promising.....




.....but didn't pan out in reality.)





I eventually got it worked out by overlapping ever so slightly the dbl curve and the Y turnouts



One of the major results sought was how to keep that upper 24-25” r left curving track from reaching to far up into the turntable zone, and still providing a fair lead into the turntable itself. I'm still debating the use of a std small radius left hand turnout here vs a short Y turnout.






There is a lot to be said for working these track plans at FULL SCALE. I doubt I would have found this problem with smaller scale drawings.
 

beiland

Well-Known Member
Barrier Plate

As I was working on this left hand side of the center peninsula container yard area, a new thought occurred to me. The track close to the edge would likely need some sort of protection from someone in the aisle knocking trains off that edge. Why not have a barrier that would incorporate a 'backdrop image?


So here is what I've come up with so far,...just a quick mock-up. Mount a vertical barrier along that edge, and on its inner face a picture on stacked containers, and ship loading cranes off in the background.






On the opposite side of that barrier plate, perhaps just photos of stacked containers.



Having that barrier plate there would permit me to move that track a bit closer to the edge, thus providing a little extra real estate on the central peninsula. So now it is 1+3/4” from the edge.



Brian
 

bob

Administrator
Staff member
Locomotive Escape Routes (from the container loading/unloading)

This resulted in my introduction of another double-slip crossing. Here you can see how that allows for that very long SF loco to sit on either of those 'tailing tracks' and still back down to the escape track on the far left. And with the addition of 2 other crossover turnouts the 3rd track can delivery a long steam (or consisted diesels) engine to one of those 'tailing tracks'.
OK... Deep breath...

Let me preface this with the following. It's your railroad, do whatever you want to do. You can choose to install something just because it's cool, you like it, or just because you want to.

That said, I can tell you that I have 30 years experience building container yards. Mine are in 12" to the foot scale. Port of Tacoma, Port of Seattle, Port of Tacoma. I've been project engineer on container terminals at all of them.

That said, a couple of comments.
1) A lot of container terminals, (but not all) simply don't have escape tracks. They take up valuable space and turnouts are expensive, as in $50,000 each and up. So they just use stub tracks and shove the cars in. Problem solved, and you have more room for cars.

2) Even when a container terminal has an escape track, they don't have double slip switches. Double slip switches on the prototype are extremely rare. They're normally only used in passenger stations and other areas with limited space and lots of traffic. They ridiculously expensive and challenging to maintain. I have never installed a real one. I've never even bid on a project that had one. In fact, I have rarely ever even seen one of them. There's some in Chicago at Union Station, maybe LA on the passenger lines, and possibly other big city terminals that I'm overlooking. They were more (slightly) common on the east coast. But outside of busy passenger terminals, they're rare indeed.

That said, IF the civil engineer who designed this project actually called for that, I would go to the owner with a Value Engineering Change Proposal (you save them money and get a small percentage of the savings as reward) and I'd say "How about I save you a 1/2 million dollars and years of maintenance headaches, whaddya think?" Two of them in one terminal? Sorry, but that's never been done. In fact, I’m almost sure one has never been done. Maybe, but really doubt it. I rarely say "never" as it seems you can find dang near anything. But I'll make an exception in this case. The cost simply couldn't be justified.

The same for that crossover 2 car lengths from the switch. That costs about $100K and it serves no real purpose. It simply wouldn't be there.
 
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bob

Administrator
Staff member
As for you Mijack crane, they don't drive back and forth moving containers around by driving all the way to the end of the train. They're far too slow for that. They drive from one container to the next, lift it up, shift it sideways and set it on a chassis. As the truck drives away, the crane rolls to the next container (only a short distance) and then picks it up and set it onto the truck.

1589945377745.png


See the room on both sides of the track for trucks to pull in?

OK, so what about your layout? Well, I'd suggest this. Put a wider gap in the center of the four tracks. Have you crane straddle two and have the other two for storage of containers waiting to be unloaded. The gap wouldn't have to be wide enough for a truck, just enough room for the crane runway. The area on the right would be your truck loading lane.

crane.jpg
 
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beiland

Well-Known Member
OK... Deep breath...

Let me preface this with the following. It's your railroad, do whatever you want to do. You can choose to install something just because it's cool, you like it, or just because you want to.

That said, I can tell you that I have 30 years experience building container yards. Mine are in 12" to the foot scale. Port of Tacoma, Port of Seattle, Port of Tacoma. I've been project engineer on container terminals at all of them.

That said, a couple of comments.
1) A lot of container terminals, (but not all) simply don't have escape tracks. They take up valuable space and turnouts are expensive, as in $50,000 each and up. So they just use stub tracks and shove the cars in. Problem solved, and you have more room for cars.

2) Even when a container terminal has an escape track, they don't have double slip switches. Double slip switches on the prototype are extremely rare. They're normally only used in passenger stations and other areas with limited space and lots of traffic. They ridiculously expensive and challenging to maintain. I have never installed a real one. I've never even bid on a project that had one. In fact, I have rarely ever even seen one of them. There's some in Chicago at Union Station, maybe LA on the passenger lines, and possibly other big city terminals that I'm overlooking. They were more (slightly) common on the east coast. But outside of busy passenger terminals, they're rare indeed.

That said, IF the civil engineer who designed this project actually called for that, I would go to the owner with a Value Engineering Change Proposal (you save them money and get a small percentage of the savings as reward) and I'd say "How about I save you a 1/2 million dollars and years of maintenance headaches, whaddya think?" Two of them in one terminal? Sorry, but that's never been done. In fact, I’m almost sure one has never been done. Maybe, but really doubt it. I rarely say "never" as it seems you can find dang near anything. But I'll make an exception in this case. The cost simply couldn't be justified.

The same for that crossover 2 car lengths from the switch. That costs about $100K and it serves no real purpose. It simply wouldn't be there.
Hi Bob,
Thanks for your participation in my discussion, particularly with your very considerable practical and interesting experiences. I don't take any offense at your observations/suggestions, rather I consider them a learning experience.

Overall I think you can appreciate my dilemma, ....just not enough space to include the number and variety of industries and trains I hoped to put on my layout (regardless of era). I might well have liked to make that whole peninsula strictly a container yard, but as it is I chose to only devote half of its area to a 'container facility'.

My experiments with track configurations for this area have been ever changing:
a) 3 Container Tracks: My first inclination was to have 3 tracks of container cars down under those m-jacks, just to make it appear to be a very busy facility. I was quickly convinced to reduce that to 2 tracks, with one lane for the semi-trailers.

b) Tailing tracks: I have played with a number of configurations for these, and please note that I have eliminated that dbl-slip switch down there, and a few other turnouts. I now have just principally a 3-way to gather those tracks together, ..
https://modelrailroadforums.com/for...rminal-port-facility.31911/page-2#post-470416

c) Tailing tracks: I have persisted with the idea of having the 'tailing tracks' as a result of this initial idea of how the center peninsula might operate,..
...excerpted from posting number #34
Here is how I would imagine some of the operations would happen on that peninsula.

The mainline train would enter on either of those 2 tracks that meet at the incoming double-slip up near the roundhouse. The mainline loco might uncouple right there, and proceed to get back over to the roundhouse area or the freight yard by way of that escape route provided by the tail track at the end of the container yard and the runaround track. (or by another short cut)

Or it might go ahead and pull the train thru the container yard, but uncouple and leave non-container car(s) there at the double-slip. It still can use the tail track to escape and go home.

The switcher then comes in to pull groups of container cars into the 2 tracks for unloading. As they are unloaded, that switcher (or a second one) can pull singles or pairs of those unloaded container cars over to a waiting area (the freight yard perhaps). Then come back to repeat the operation over and over, ...pulling new container cars into unloading, then over to the freight yard waiting area.

Another switcher working the right side of the peninsula would grab off non-container cars up at the double slip and move them onto one of 3 waiting tracks for selection to be delivered to the 1) big dockside crane out at the end of the peninsula, 2) the carfloat, 3) several other warehouses in that port area, 4) allied rail rebuilders, 5) another industry possibly located on that thin right hand shelf, or 6) maybe even the brick factory or waterfront scene down in the far corner on that right hand deck
.
d) Traveling m-jacks: I do realize that these m-jacks don't do that much 'traveling' doing their operation. It was my plan to have the container cars moving in under them in a steady stream to be unloaded,...and another reason to have the tailing track(s) rather than stub tracks, so this operation could be somewhat continuous in nature.
I also intend to have 2 m-jack cranes in that short distance, rather than just the one I show in mock-up.



e) M-jacks: I sure wish there were some taller M-jack models.
 




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