Switching Engines...Manually or with Track Power ?

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.


Brakeman Hal

Well-Known Member
When I install my new, longer Siding (72.5" or 290 scale feet), I may want to make a provision for running the Engines on and off the Siding using Track Power rather then rolling them on & off Manually.

Here's how I THINK I would do it, step-by-step:

1. With the Steamer on the Siding, I would run the Diesel train up to approach the turnout to the Siding, then roll the Throttle to zero.

2. Then I would walk the 20 steps from my Control Station to the Siding location on the back wall of the layout.

3. I would uncouple the Diesel, throw the Turnout Points to the Siding position, then throw the Toggle Switch providing Track Power to the Siding.

4. Then I would walk the 20 steps back to the Control Station and roll on the Throttle until the Diesel enters the Siding and the Steamer enters the Main, then roll the Throttle to zero.

5. Then I would walk the 20 step to the Siding and throw the Toggle Switch to "off", then reset the Turnout Points to Main.

6. Back 20 steps to the Control Station, where I would reverse direction and slowly throttle the Steamer back to the freight train, and couple to it.

7. If all goes as desired, I would then have a Beer!

(Of course, manually moving the engines would save 80 steps!)
Hal
 
Last edited:

Iron Horseman

Well-Known Member
I think you are right, step-by-step:

1. Stop mainline train short of one end of siding (lets call it turnout #1).
2. Uncouple train from mainline train.
3. change the turnout #1 position to siding.
4. activate power on siding
5. change the other turnout #2 to the siding.
6. activate throttle moving both trains.
7. when the diesel gets all the way IN the siding and the steamer gets all the way OUT of the siding turn off throttle.
8. change turnout #2 to main.
9. Change turnout #1 to main.
10. Turn off power to siding.
11. reverse loco from siding, backing down the main to the train.
12. couple the train.
13. Run train.
 

Brakeman Hal

Well-Known Member
Hey Ferrous Caballero:

You took my 6-step procedure and condensed it down to 13 steps! :D


But seriously...I thought the #2 turnout would automatically align itself to the Main when the engine exited the siding.

Thanks for the reply,
Hal
 

Iron Horseman

Well-Known Member
But seriously...I thought the #2 turnout would automatically align itself to the Main when the engine exited the siding.
It might. Depends on the turnout and/or the mechanism used to switch it. Some are made to spring when entered "backwards" to prevent derailments. I am not familiar with the current Atlas design.
 

dave1905

Active Member
This is a really basic thing, you can find books back into the 1950's that will describe to wire things to do this. Divide the track into blocks, areas that are electrically independent of each other. Have one for the main track (and siding switch) to the left of the siding, one for the main track between the switches, one for the main track (and siding switch) to the right of the siding, and one for the siding. Install a DPDT switch (if you are using two throttles) or a SPST (if you are using one throttle) to each block. Now you can turn "on" and "off" the power in each individual block giving you lots of different ways to make the move.
 

Brakeman Hal

Well-Known Member
My layout has no "Busses" or "Feeders" throughout its 130 foot circuit.

My O-Scale 2-Rail track has rails that are larger in cross-section than #8 AWG wire, making busses and feeders unnecessary for the single train I run.

My rails are their own busses and feeders!

Brakeman Hal, age 83
 

bob

Administrator
Staff member
1. With the Steamer on the Siding, I would run the Diesel train up to approach the turnout to the Siding, then roll the Throttle to zero.

2. Then I would walk the 20 steps from my Control Station to the Siding location on the back wall of the layout.

3. I would uncouple the Diesel, throw the Turnout Points to the Siding position, then throw the Toggle Switch providing Track Power to the Siding.

4. Then I would walk the 20 steps back to the Control Station and roll on the Throttle until the Diesel enters the Siding and the Steamer enters the Main, then roll the Throttle to zero.

5. Then I would walk the 20 step to the Siding and throw the Toggle Switch to "off", then reset the Turnout Points to Main.

6. Back 20 steps to the Control Station, where I would reverse direction and slowly throttle the Steamer back to the freight train, and couple to it.

7. If all goes as desired, I would then have a Beer!

(Of course, manually moving the engines would save 80 steps!)
Hal
Sounds a lot like the real thing, except we have to walk a lot further. Oh, yeah, and you forgot closing angle cocks and connecting the air line when you connect up to the train. Oh, and you'll need to hope you have a brakeman at the back of the train to do your last car test for you, or you'll need to make another long walk.
 

Boris

Beach Bum
Sounds a lot like the real thing, except we have to walk a lot further. Oh, yeah, and you forgot closing angle cocks and connecting the air line when you connect up to the train. Oh, and you'll need to hope you have a brakeman at the back of the train to do your last car test for you, or you'll need to make another long walk.
For sure. Nothing to it when you're the "hoghaid". ;)
 

D&J RailRoad

Professor of HO
I don't know Hal. It seems that every time you ask for an idea, you end up telling us that the way it is is the way it will stay.
As for your issue of having to walk from one point to another, I would move the command station, but then, that's what I would do. You don't have to do that nor am I hardly suggesting you do that.
 

Brakeman Hal

Well-Known Member
I don't know Hal. It seems that every time you ask for an idea, you end up telling us that the way it is is the way it will stay.
As for your issue of having to walk from one point to another, I would move the command station, but then, that's what I would do. You don't have to do that nor am I hardly suggesting you do that.
Hey Ken:

I don't mind the walk at all!

As for adopting the ideas of others, it's simply that they would not seem to be advantageous to the operation of my railroad.

The command station MUST stay where it is, because it's the only location where my line of sight is not blocked by one of my 8 valve covers!

Thanks for your reply anyway!:)

Hal
 
Last edited:

Sirfoldalot

Product Tester ACME INC.
Staff member
Not for Nothing, HAL ... You could solve a lot of issues with a "Walkaround Throttle" with a couple of plugins at various locations on the layout.
That's the way I would go!
 

Brakeman Hal

Well-Known Member
Not for Nothing, HAL ... You could solve a lot of issues with a "Walkaround Throttle" with a couple of plugins at various locations on the layout.
That's the way I would go!
Thanks, Sherrel, but after 36 years as an Aerospace Lab Test Engineer, working in Wind Tunnels, Altitude Chambers, Vibration Labs, Antenna Ranges, and Gunnery Ranges, I've had it up to my throat in Technology!

There's no doubt that a "Walkaround Throttle" would be a great benefit to a large sprawling layout like mine, but I simply don't want one!

Thanks Anyway, Sir!

Hal
225.JPG
 

Sirfoldalot

Product Tester ACME INC.
Staff member
That's OK ... You are doing well! The old saying of "It's your railroad" is always correct.
I think what you have done, considering your age, is great. You have 6 years on me and I am nowhere near what you have!
 

Sirfoldalot

Product Tester ACME INC.
Staff member
Nice looking train - HAL - just the right length for most model layouts.

I used to love to play poker - especially the tournaments.
The problem today is -- I cannot stay awake at the table long enough to get to the end of the tournament.
 




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