Re: Why not model actual train consists?

Anthony Thompson <thompson@...>

Armand Premo wrote:
I try to remove most of the cars used in an op session and replace them with other cars for the next op session. In betwee I make up the train that will run on the during the next session. Not seeing the same cars over and over will help to make the process less boring. Your comments will be appreciated.
I agree with this idea, and have done something similar. I am meticulous in replacing in any train a "distinctive" car, such as a depressed-center car with load (or any distinctive open-car load), or something vividly painted, such as a Chateau Martin wine car or a brightly painted tank car, or, say, a helium car (yes, they are indeed appropriate for my layout place and time).
I am less energetic in replacing plainer cars, and the plainer they are the less likely to be replaced in a particular re-set, but I have been trying out a system of "wheel reports," in which I use a switchlist form to record train consists and operating dates. Once a small stack of these has been accumulated, I no longer have to rely on memory to realize that the Illinois Central box car, say, has been in that train for some time.
Most of my car changes occur with the local which picks up and delivers cars to my branch line junction, since it is driven by waybill sequences. The wheel reports are a way to avoid waybill sequencing for mainline trains but still keep train appearances varied, as Armand correctly says.

Tony Thompson Editor, Signature Press, Berkeley, CA
2906 Forest Ave., Berkeley, CA 94705
(510) 540-6538; fax, (510) 540-1937; e-mail,
Publishers of books on railroad history

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