NASA Railroad

ModelRailroadForums.com is a free Model Railroad Discussion Forum and photo gallery. We cover all scales and sizes of model railroads. Whether you're a master model railroader or just getting started, you'll find something of interest here.


smiley

Member
That would be a unique and exciting scene to make. Reminds me somewhat of a topic I once came across online, about how a model railroad magazine during the height of the space race featured a moon base layout.
 

beiland

Well-Known Member
Still Using Liquid Oxygen and Liquid Hydrogen

For some reason I was under the impression that the Shuttle launch was powered with just solid rocket boost .

...but i was watching a History Channel presentation the other night on Liquid gases, and it showed the above ground spherical tanks for storing the Shuttle's liquid portion of its fuels. And there were 5 semi-trucks lined up loading those storage tanks.



I still want to bring it in by rail...at least in my diorama/module :p
 
Last edited by a moderator:
N

North Coast Railroad

Guest
I think it is very sad that the space shuttle program is dead...:(
 

frog

Member
The SRB's power the shuttle along with fuel from the tank, ox and hydrogen.

As for rail, the SRB's were shipped in segments from Utah to the cape by train. The fuel tank, made in New Orleans was shipped by barge to KSC.

Years back I worked at Martin-Marietta in New Orleans as a quality control inspector. At the peak of the launches (1985) we were turning out an external tank every 2 weeks.

I also hate to see the shuttle program end. It was really something to be a part of.
 

beiland

Well-Known Member
That would be one kick ass scene to do! I'd love to see that.
I think it would be a real attention getter seeing as how the Atlas Saturn rocket would be about 5.5 feet tall., and if the launch tower were modeled also it would be real impressive.

It would be an eye-opener for kids as well as an educational tool....how we got to the moon...WOW
 

mopacbuff

Missori Pacific RR
Smiley,

I have on old issue of Model Railroader magazine from 1973 that has an article about a lunar railroad. It wasn't a layout visit or construction article, just a concept. Pretty sweet though.

MPB
 

trailrider

Well-Known Member
The SRB's power the shuttle along with fuel from the tank, ox and hydrogen.

As for rail, the SRB's were shipped in segments from Utah to the cape by train. The fuel tank, made in New Orleans was shipped by barge to KSC.

Years back I worked at Martin-Marietta in New Orleans as a quality control inspector. At the peak of the launches (1985) we were turning out an external tank every 2 weeks.

I also hate to see the shuttle program end. It was really something to be a part of.
It sure was! I worked on SRB Decelerator Subsystem (SRB parachute recovery system) two different times, from 1980-'82 and '84-'86, out of the "Waterton Zoo". Never got to see a live launch until STS-125, when I took my wife, daughter, son-in-law and grandchild to Disney World and then over to the Cape.

The big question on modelling would be what scale model Shuttle is available. IIRC, the ones I've put together for various talks, classes, etc., are 1/144, which is too small for HO scale. :( I'd hate to think about scratchbuilding a Shuttle on the launch pad, or on the crawler in HO. The SRB's wouldn't be bad, but a 1/87 orbiter could be a bear.

Green boards all the way!

Trailrider
 

trailrider

Well-Known Member
For some reason I was under the impression that the Shuttle launch was powered with just solid rocket boost .

...but i was watching a History Channel presentation the other night on Liquid gases, and it showed the above ground spherical tanks for storing the Shuttle's liquid portion of its fuels. And there were 5 semi-trucks lined up loading those storage tanks.

I still want to bring it in by rail...at least in my diorama/module :p
Yes, the Shuttle uses both cryogenic (very cold) liquid oxygen (LOX or L02) and liquid hydrogen (LH2) to power its three Space Shuttle Main Engines (SSME's). The Sold Rocket Boosters (SRB's) are shipped in from Utah in segments and assembled at the KSC facility. The External Tank (ET...not the extraterrestrial :p) has two separate tanks, one for each liquid propellant...LOX tank on top, LH2 tank on the bottom, connected by an inter-tank structure that holds them together. Piping connects from the ET to the orbiter which has the three SSME's on the tail end. They light off the liquid engines first at about T-3 seconds and when they are sure everything is running properly, ignite the SRB's so that everything is firing at liftoff. About 92 seconds into the flight, the SRB's burn off most of their fuel and are jettisoned, to be lowered by parachute into the ocean and recovered for reloading/re-use. The ET is jettisoned just before reaching orbital velocity, so it falls back and burns up in the atmosphere. The orbiter then fires its Orbital Maneuvering System rockets (powered by small tanks containing some rather nasty chemicals on board) to reach orbital velocity. For re-entry, the orbiter is turned tail-first and the OMS engines fired to reduce velocity and bring it down. Before it reaches the air, the orbiter then is flipped nose-forward for re-entry and landing.

Discovery is scheduled for launch this Thursday at 4:55 EST to fly up to the Space Station. It will be Discovery's last launch prior to retirement. There are two more flights available, but only the next one, Endeavor, has been funded, with Atlantis on rescue standby. If funding is found, then Atlantis would be the last Shuttle flight! :( A good, if experimental, system, though NOT what it was once hoped to be in terms of a true Space Transporation System.

Anyhow, back to Earth...
 

frog

Member
The SRB's would be possible I suppose, used on flatcars. No idea of the train makeup but I bet it was a special train, not just added on to a regular freight like so many tanker cars.

Trailrider, you and I were in it about the same time, my time there was from '82 through '86, would have been longer except for a sudden medical issue with my dad.

I never got around to seeing a launch although my wife and I visited the cape years back and had a wonderful time. We ran into one of the astronauts there and he and I talked shop for awhile. He had yet to visit MMA in New Orleans and on learning I used to work there in QC he had great interest in our operations. Wish my wife would have taken a picture of us but she was too busy listening to our talk, like 2 co-workers she said.

The rocket garden was great as well, got to see the old Atlas with its poor record (not one of our best) and also the Liberty Bell was there at the time. These things look so much smaller in person. Hope to visit there again one day, would like to see a Delta launch.

What you did must have been a blast. I recall a time when the SRB's sank during a mission. Don't know the specifics, just heard of it at work. I always thought the chutes failed to deploy somehow. Our main task there was the ET of course.
 

trailrider

Well-Known Member
"What you did must have been a blast. I recall a time when the SRB's sank during a mission. Don't know the specifics, just heard of it at work. I always thought the chutes failed to deploy somehow. Our main task there was the ET of course."

This is pretty off-topic, but if the moderators will permit:

Yes, we lost the SRB's on STS-4 and another (been awhile), IIRC. The main parachutes are attached to the forward deck (NOT the forward pressure dome) of the SRB. The main deck fittings are attached by means of large bolts, which at the time were attached with explosive nuts. When the SRB separates from the side of the ET, a pilot parachute is deployed by firing the nose cap, which pulls out a drogue chute. The drogue slows the SRB and also orients it tail first as it is falling. At about 10,000 ft. a barometric switch detects the altitude and fires initiators that trigger a linear shaped charge surrounding the circumfrence of the SRB. The conical section (called the frustum, because it is a frustum of a cone) is attached to an aluminum grid with dividers that keeps the main parachutes from moving around during powered flight. The drogue pulls the frustum away deploying the three 136 ft dia. main ribbon chutes (made out of nylon strap that individually makes great automobile tow cable!). The chutes come out but are restrained from opening fully by "reefing lines". Shortly after deployment, explosive-actuated guillotine reefing line cutters cut each of the two reefing lines in short sequence, permitting the chute to open in two stages.

On the early SRB flights, NASA wanted to detach the main chutes at water impact to facilitate recovery of the chutes and the boosters without tangling the divers that put the nozzle plug in place to keep the water out of the inside of the booster.

MMC warned NASA that the vibrations caused by the firing of the separation ring during main chute deployment was pretty close to the vibration caused by the accelerometer that detected water impact. They either ignored the warning or requested a change too late for STS-4. The possibility which came true on STS-4, was that the ringing frequency of the sep ring charge would match the vibration caused by water impact. If that happened, the circuits would think the booster had landed and fire the explosive nuts that detatched the main deck fittings. On STS-4 that's what happened, and the main deck fittings detached at altitude. No chutes, the boosters just hit the water, broke up and sank.

The sequence logic was changed by adding a barometric switch to the firing circuit for the deck fittings, so it had to pass through a certain altitude AND sense the impact before detaching the chutes, and later the whole thing was changed a couple of times.

Anyhow, it's been a long time, and I'm not sure what the procedure is on current SRB's.

Be interesting to make a model of SRB sements for a flatcar load.

I've got another historical load. I have two flatcars. One has a pair of HO scale M4A3E8 Sherman tanks. (The "Easy-8's" are easy to spot because I added muzzle brakes to the ends of the main "tubes".) On the other flatcar are two Soviet T-34 tanks. One is intact. But the other has the turret resting on the car deck. A small hole drilled in the chassis of the tank, just below where the turret attached, on one side, plus some judicious black streaks painted on show "what happened". It is 1952. The four tanks are being shipped to some base in CONUS for analysis. It seems the two North Korean tanks were taken under fire by the Easy-8's 76mm high velocity gun. The one T-34 was hit and the turret blown off. The second tank's crew bailed out and surrendered. I haven't paid too much attention to the theoretical weights, and am using regular flatcars, but I might have to change to a heavy duty car for each later on.

Green board all the way!
Trailrider
 

beiland

Well-Known Member
Liquid Oxygen Cars (for NASA)

For some reason I was under the impression that the Shuttle launch was powered with just solid rocket boost .

...but I was watching a History Channel presentation the other night on Liquid gases, and it showed the above ground spherical tanks for storing the Shuttle's liquid portion of its fuels. And there were 5 semi-trucks lined up loading those storage tanks.

I still want to bring it in by rail...at least in my diorama/module :p
Okay, I'm coming back to this discussion again as I have a renewed vigor to create an affordable kit to build these cyro-liquid rr cars, particularly after seeing those built by Bobby Pitts.
http://www.modelrailroadforums.com/forum/showthread.php?t=28404&page=4

And of course I am thinking of those 'dream scheme' NASA cars I had mentioned before. Here are a few pics of some NASA cars that someone made up a couple years ago.
View attachment 34573 View attachment 34574
These are rather non-impressive to my senses.


I want mine to look like the 'Liquid Air' cars below:
View attachment 34575

View attachment 34576

Now we need to come up with some graphics for this 'dream scheme' car. I'm thinking a rather nice size NASA logo, and a nice size "LIQUID Oxygen". Then maybe a supporting statement like "Fueling our Space Exploration" ...or "Fueling our Exploration into Space"
...... or something to that effect?

IDEAS...please submit??
 

baztrains

New Member
HO scale NASA SRB rocket train

Oh, yeah! That would be a neat deal!

Green boards all the way!
Trailrider:)
If anyone is interested in making up this NASA train. I have created the SRB Clamshell covers as 3D-printed models, available from www.shapeways.com . There is a 2-piece version, or a 1-piece version. If using the 2-piece Clamshells, you have the option to also display the SRB sections, plus their transit cradles/frames which I've also modelled. My models are designed to fit on the Walther HO 66' heavy-duty, 4-truck flatcar. The 3D-printed parts need to be prepared for painting, plus a 0.040" piece of plasticard is required for the additional deck to mount the SRB's onto. I've also modelled the Icebreaker frames that are fitted to the leading boxcar (Bachmann sell this 50' modern boxcar). Someone has been selling my models as a finished car/load on ebay over the past few weeks (Jan/Feb 2014) if you don't fancy the idea of making them yourself. I've attached a couple of photos of the finished models.$_57[1] (2).jpg
$_57[1] (3).jpg
 

beiland

Well-Known Member
I tried clicking on the attachments I had posted here, and they didn't come up??
I got a message to contact the administrator, but not exactly sure how to do this??
Brian

Okay, I'm coming back to this discussion again as I have a renewed vigor to create an affordable kit to build these cyro-liquid rr cars, particularly after seeing those built by Bobby Pitts.
http://www.modelrailroadforums.com/forum/showthread.php?t=28404&page=4

And of course I am thinking of those 'dream scheme' NASA cars I had mentioned before. Here are a few pics of some NASA cars that someone made up a couple years ago.
View attachment 34573 View attachment 34574
These are rather non-impressive to my senses.


I want mine to look like the 'Liquid Air' cars below:
View attachment 34575

View attachment 34576

Now we need to come up with some graphics for this 'dream scheme' car. I'm thinking a rather nice size NASA logo, and a nice size "LIQUID Oxygen". Then maybe a supporting statement like "Fueling our Space Exploration" ...or "Fueling our Exploration into Space"
...... or something to that effect?

IDEAS...please submit??
 

beiland

Well-Known Member
Saturn V Rocket Model

Just ran across this model about as close to HO scale as I think there was,...1/72

https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00GOJ2BHQ/ref=s9_dcacsd_dcoop_bw_c_x_2_w

Dragon Models Saturn V with Skylab (1/72 Scale)

The 1/72 scale plastic kit of a Saturn V rocket (Item No.11017) created a huge buzz among space aficionados! Even in miniature form, it was absolutely enormous as the completed model stood an unbelievable 1.5m tall. It was highly praised for its level of detail too. As the longest, heaviest and most powerful rocket ever produced, the original Saturn V stood 110.6m high and had a diameter of 10.1m. The Saturn V was at the heart of NASA's Apollo and Skylab programs. The Saturn V's last ever use was the launch of Skylab (mission SL-1) on 14 May 1973, where the upper stage was replaced to accommodate this early space station. Owners of Dragon's Saturn V rocket will cause jaws to drop, while the finished model will without fail draw gasps of astonishment from onlookers! This is the second monstrous 1/72 scale kit of this rocket type and it comes with brand new tooling. The most obvious difference is the upper stage, which employed an S-IVB stage from a Saturn IB rocket. What's especially significant about that this part is that half of it is made of transparent plastic to allow viewers to see Skylab nestled neatly inside. All relevant details are carefully reproduced on the two rocket stages and Skylab and the model comes with accurate and large decals to provide relevant markings. This Saturn V kit will be a centerpiece of any space fan's collection and as such it comes with a stable circular base to allow it to stand stably on the floor.
SaturnV model, ps800.jpg
 




Affiliate Disclosure: We may receive a commision from some of the links and ads shown on this website (Learn More Here)


ModelRailroadForums.com is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to amazon.com

RailroadBookstore.com - An online railroad bookstore featuring a curated selection of new and used railroad books. Railroad pictorials, railroad history, steam locomotives, passenger trains, modern railroading. Hundreds of titles available, most at discount prices! We also have a video and children's book section.

ModelRailroadBookstore.com - An online model railroad bookstore featuring a curated selection of new and used books. Layout design, track plans, scenery and structure building, wiring, DCC, Tinplate, Toy Trains, Price Guides and more.

Top