Operations

This page desacribes the different types of operating sessions run by the club on the club's main layout the Waitemata and Chelsea Railroad. The sections on this page are

  • Introduction
  • Scheduled running
  • Switch list running

Introduction

There are numerous aspects to the hobby of model railways. Many model railroaders see operations as an important aspect. Operations involves running passenger and freight trains in a way that is similar to that done with prototypical trains. The use of the expression is similar to in the previous sentence and not the expression is the same as was deliberate. It is impossible to operate a model railway in the same way as a prototypical railway. Nevertheless, it is possible to capture much of what is done with prototypical railways and the club aims to do that in its operating sessions.

The club runs two types of operating sesssions: scheduled running and switch lists. The club used to run car card sessions. These have now been replaced by switch list sessions.

Scheduled running

Scheduled running is an operating session of passenger, freight, and other types of trains run to a schedule. The club holds one session of schedule running the evening of the first Thursday of each month except January.

Number of operators: There are 18 positions in a session. Six station masters, ten train drivers, one per train, and two people in the dispatcher's office. If there is more than 18 operators, a situation that rarely happens, the extra operators are employed as assistant station masters or conductors on a train. If a person is interested in dispatching, they can be an observer in the dispatcher's office. If there is fewer than 18 operators, fewer trains are run or the smaller stations forego a station master, or a bit of both is used.

Station masters:  The station masters have the arrival and departure times for trains at their station, and a list, known as a swtich list, of the freight cars to be dropped off or picked up at the station. A station master phone the dispatcher's office in the basement when a train arrives at their station and when the station master wants permission for a train to leave. The station masters also performs the yard shunting.

Train drivers: Each driver has a timetable for their train stating when they are supposed to arrive at and depart from each station. The drivers of freight trains also have a manifest which lists what freight cars are to be dropped off or picked up at each station. The driver ensures their train is driven according to the rules of the railway.

Dispatcher's office: The two people in the dispatcher's office are the train controller and the assistant train controller. The train controller records the position of the trains on a computer screen and has the final say on the movement of trains. The train controller relies on the advice of the assistant train controller who is in charge of the train graph for the session.

Length of session: 2 1/4 hours including a tea break.

Switch list running

In its pure form, switch list running is an operating session of freight trains only. As with scheduled running, the movement of freight cars is controlled by switch lists and manifests. But unlike schedule running, the trains do not run to a schedule. Their movement is controlled by track warrants (tablets) or the dispatcher's office, with track warrant almost always used. The club holds one session per month most months. The sessions are usually in the evening of the third or fourth Tuesday of the month.

Number of operators: There are 16 positions in a session. Six station masters and ten train drivers, one per train. If there is more than 16 operators, the extra are employed as assistant station masters, or as a train controller. If there is fewer than 16 operators, fewer trains are run or the smaller stations forego a station master, or a bit of both is used.

Station masters: The station masters have the switch list for their station. They do not have a schedule of arrival and departure times because the trains are not running to a schedule. The station master also performs the yard shunting.

Train drivers: Each driver has a manifest which lists which freight cars are to be dropped off or picked up at each station. The driver ensures their train is driven according to the rules of the railway.

Length of session: 2 1/4 hours including a tea break.

 

Hits since May 20, 2017


Download 3d STL files