Topics

Frt Car Model Database


Bill McClure
 

Does anyone use a true database program to keep track of freight car models? As opposed to a spreadsheet program.

Thanks,
Bill


Kenneth Montero
 

One modeler that I know uses Yard Office software. I plan to use it as a database.
 
Ken Montero

On 12/17/2020 6:54 PM Bill McClure <virginianbill@...> wrote:
 
 
Does anyone use a true database program to keep track of freight car models? As opposed to a spreadsheet program.

Thanks,
Bill


Robert J Miller CFA
 

I have used MS Access. I export them to Excel and download to my iPad when I go to train shows (you remember those) so I don’t buy something I already own.


From: main@RealSTMFC.groups.io <main@RealSTMFC.groups.io> on behalf of Kenneth Montero <va661midlo@...>
Sent: Thursday, December 17, 2020 8:25:02 PM
To: main@RealSTMFC.groups.io <main@RealSTMFC.groups.io>
Subject: Re: [RealSTMFC] Frt Car Model Database
 
One modeler that I know uses Yard Office software. I plan to use it as a database.
 
Ken Montero
On 12/17/2020 6:54 PM Bill McClure <virginianbill@...> wrote:
 
 
Does anyone use a true database program to keep track of freight car models? As opposed to a spreadsheet program.

Thanks,
Bill


Paul Koehler
 

Bill:

 

Yes I use File Maker Pro.  Like it very well.

 

Paul C. Koehler

 

From: main@RealSTMFC.groups.io <main@RealSTMFC.groups.io> On Behalf Of Bill McClure
Sent: Thursday, December 17, 2020 3:54 PM
To: main@RealSTMFC.groups.io
Subject: [RealSTMFC] Frt Car Model Database

 

Does anyone use a true database program to keep track of freight car models? As opposed to a spreadsheet program.

Thanks,
Bill


Ralph W. Brown
 

Hi Bill,
 
I use an alpha-numeric (by manufacturer and manufacturer’s item/part number) inventory list, with columns for descriptive info, status and/or notes (planed project id, needs paint, lettering, weathering, repairs, etc.) and location.  I did mine with WordPerfect, but it could just as easily be done with Word or any other such program with which one is familiar.
 
I also started using DataCrow (http://datacrow.net/) a number of years ago to keep track of my library after having inadvertently acquired more than one duplicate volume.  The program is set up in modules designed to manage books, images, music, movies, and other things.  The user can also create additional modules for other items as well.  I haven’t tried to do that, but I imagine one could create a custom module for freight cars and other models.
 
It will be interesting to see what other folks are using for that purpose.
 
Pax,
 
 
Ralph Brown
Portland, Maine
PRRT&HS No. 3966
NMRA No. L2532

rbrown51[at]maine[dot]rr[dot]com
 

From: Bill McClure
Sent: Thursday, December 17, 2020 6:54 PM
To: main@RealSTMFC.groups.io
Subject: [RealSTMFC] Frt Car Model Database
 
Does anyone use a true database program to keep track of freight car models? As opposed to a spreadsheet program.

Thanks,
Bill


Bill McClure
 

Thanks for the suggestions.

Bill


Lester Breuer
 

Bill I do.  I use Microsoft Access as I it does help me to keep track of the freight cars I have.  Microsoft Access allows me to get data on my freight cars via queries  and reports I have written.  I began years and years ago in D-Base and eventually moved to Acess.  I have attached photos of of how I can pull data via queries and a report and one filled out as building a model.

Lester Breuer






Lester Breuer


John Sykes III
 

Naw.  I use Excel to track my collection.  I have found that I can sort, search, etc. as well in Excel as I can in more sophisticated database applications and it is easier to use and modify.  It is working fine for my ~775 car freight collection.  I track more of the prototype information than the model information, unless there is something unique about the model (e.g., 1956 Revell models or the Ambroid "One of five thousand" models).  I have separate lists for my steam and diesel motive power (~100) and passenger cars too (way behind on that one).  Agree with comment above about buying something at a show that I already have (been there, done that).  My main tracking is by reporting marks, then road number and then about 1/2 of the ORER info.  I have good coverage in ORERs from 1930 through 1970's for primary references.

--  John


Schuyler Larrabee
 

Oh sure, your example is a Sunshine kit you bought for $20 . . .

 

Rub it in a little more, whydoncha?

 

Schuyler

 

From: main@RealSTMFC.groups.io <main@RealSTMFC.groups.io> On Behalf Of Lester Breuer
Sent: Friday, December 18, 2020 10:29 AM
To: main@RealSTMFC.groups.io
Subject: Re: [RealSTMFC] Frt Car Model Database

 

Bill I do.  I use Microsoft Access as I it does help me to keep track of the freight cars I have.  Microsoft Access allows me to get data on my freight cars via queries  and reports I have written.  I began years and years ago in D-Base and eventually moved to Acess.  I have attached photos of of how I can pull data via queries and a report and one filled out as building a model.

Lester Breuer






Lester Breuer


radiodial868
 

I second the FileMaker Pro.
  • It's been around for freaking ever, I've used it since 1992 for various things.
  • Real easy to use, noticed there are hobby collection templates now.
  • To get up and running you can import an Excel list of your collection, and the Column header names become the Field names and each Excel line becomes a FMP Record.
  • You can also store photos of each car (or prototype) in Container fields with each record and view them.
  • Easy to Search and Find specific record(s). Can export to Excel if necessary.
  • Both PC and Mac. Works on iPads and phones too.
  • For our hobby use, any version from 13 on has all the features we would ever use, so can pickup older cheap versions on Amazon or eBay if you want.
  • https://www.claris.com/filemaker/pro/
I'm still running a database of my antique radio collection using version 3.0 from 1995 on an ancient Mac SE in the radio workshop.
It is another tool you have to learn to use, so if you don't like new things or learning, fugetaboutit...
-------------------
RJ Dial

Mendocino, CA


Bill McClure
 

Thanks again. Great stuff. I once used Bento. Then after a Mac upgrade, I received the infamous "no longer supported" when I tried to open it. Couldn't even access my files or my backups. Regrettably, I didn't even have a hard copy. So I am starting over.

I know this is a little off the theme of this list, but it will help me (and my heirs) track my STEAM ERA FREIGHT CARS. :)

Bill


Bill Parks
 

20 or so years ago I developed my own software program (complete with relational database) to manage my inventory.  Eventually, I got tired of maintaining it, and switched to Excel.  I have looked into JMRI (Java Model Railroad Interface), but it doesn't fit my needs

--
Bill Parks
Cumming, GA
Modelling the Seaboard Airline in Central Florida


Tim O'Connor
 


IMO the best way to store model train information is in simple English text files. All it requires is the ability
to use a keyboard and some kind of editor - you can use Notepad or Wordpad or Emacs or any number of
others. Or Word (.doc) files if you want to include pictures of the model in the files. PC file/word/phrase search
tools can then be used to find things very quickly! I use Windows search, Cygwin "grep", or Google Desktop,
depending on what I'm looking for.

Spreadsheets are fantastic for data files where you want to break things down into columns and rows that can
be re-arranged or sorted on demand, or when you have a single data set that grows over time - like Tom Madden's
Pullman CCR files for example.

Database programs are appropriate tools for transaction processing. IMO they are total overkill for a model collection.


On 12/17/2020 6:54 PM, Bill McClure wrote:
Does anyone use a true database program to keep track of freight car models? As opposed to a spreadsheet program.

Thanks,
Bill

--
Tim O'Connor
Sterling, Massachusetts


Barry Roth
 

I use a relational database constructed in Access. Among the tables are “project” (i.e., cars, locos, structures), “job,” “part,” “purchase,” and others. The ability of Access to generate reports, such as tasks in order of priority, is very helpful to me. 

Barry

On 12/17/2020 6:54 PM, Bill McClure wrote:
Does anyone use a true database program to keep track of freight car models? As opposed to a spreadsheet program.

Thanks,
Bill


Tony Thompson
 

Tim O'Connor wrote:

IMO the best way to store model train information is in simple English text files. 

I agree entirely. It's what I've done for years. 

Database programs are appropriate tools for transaction processing. IMO they are total overkill for a model collection.

Again, I believe Tim is right. "Overkill" is a tactful description.

Tony Thompson




Jerry Michels
 

I have used Excel for 30 years at least.  Works for me.
Jerry Michels


Bill Keene
 

I also have been using Excel for the roster of the freight cars in the layout fleet. This spreadsheet is searchable by category and major work to be done. 

Additionally, each freight car has a record “card” similar to the CCRs — CAR CONSTRUCTION RECORD — of the Pullman Company. A PDF of this Excel based CCR form is attached. 

This specific CCR is for an ATSF Sk-3 stock car that was purchased from Clark. A very nice car and one that is the standard that all of the other stock cars in the fleet are measured by. The fields are filled in with model source—in this case Westerfield—the build data and the paint data. The bottom portion is a Service Record that includes dates that the car was shopped—RIP’d—and what work was done. The Notes section included other data and a list of future shopping such as “needs to be weathered” or other repairs noticed while operating on the layout. This could include possible improvements to details. Of course, this latter bit would not be a requirement for a Clark-Built car. 😃

Cheers & Happy Modeling,
Bill Keene
Irvine, CA



On Dec 19, 2020, at 8:49 AM, Jerry Michels <gjmichels53@...> wrote:

I have used Excel for 30 years at least.  Works for me.
Jerry Michels


Robert J Miller CFA
 

Bill.

 

Is the form you attached your data entry form for your Access Database? That looks like a good way to enter the relevant data.

 

From: main@RealSTMFC.groups.io <main@RealSTMFC.groups.io> On Behalf Of Bill Keene via groups.io
Sent: Saturday, December 19, 2020 1:55 PM
To: main@realstmfc.groups.io
Subject: Re: [RealSTMFC] Frt Car Model Database

 

I also have been using Excel for the roster of the freight cars in the layout fleet. This spreadsheet is searchable by category and major work to be done. 

 

Additionally, each freight car has a record “card” similar to the CCRs — CAR CONSTRUCTION RECORD — of the Pullman Company. A PDF of this Excel based CCR form is attached. 

 

This specific CCR is for an ATSF Sk-3 stock car that was purchased from Clark. A very nice car and one that is the standard that all of the other stock cars in the fleet are measured by. The fields are filled in with model source—in this case Westerfield—the build data and the paint data. The bottom portion is a Service Record that includes dates that the car was shopped—RIP’d—and what work was done. The Notes section included other data and a list of future shopping such as “needs to be weathered” or other repairs noticed while operating on the layout. This could include possible improvements to details. Of course, this latter bit would not be a requirement for a Clark-Built car. 😃

 

Cheers & Happy Modeling,

Bill Keene

Irvine, CA

 

 



On Dec 19, 2020, at 8:49 AM, Jerry Michels <gjmichels53@...> wrote:

 

I have used Excel for 30 years at least.  Works for me.

Jerry Michels

 


Ken Adams
 

As an retired DBA using DB2, Oracle, Object Oriented and SQL Server professionally for over 30 years, I would recommend a workbook type program such as Microsoft Excel or Open Office Calc and designing the columns to contain all necessary key fields and data fields. As long as you can search on columns there would be no need for the sophisticated relational or indexing capabilities of commercial database software.  Size limitations on spreadsheets and small database products have expanded over the last 20 years to accommodate quite large arrays of information. underlying file structures for the products of the same software vendor may be the same between workbooks and small databases. 

On the other hand a well designed cloud object database application that contained every RTR/Kit model, scale, ,material(s) and livery, numbering variant with photo and could be accessed by subscribers for a nominal fee does have some appeal. I could see problems with open vetting contributions and ensuring no duplications with differing descriptions of the same product could however mean going down a rabbit hole of contention. This should have been a project for the NMRA (mentioned in spite of some distaste by some in this community for that organization.)

It would be interesting if it were international as there are many fine non-North American models made for other markets. 
--
Ken Adams
Still in splendid Shelter In Place solitude, about half way up Walnut Creek
Owner PlasticFreightCarBuilders@groups.io


Robert J. Amsler, Jr.
 

Bill:

 

I use Railbase Professional by ShipIt.  There is a ton of information you can enter.  It takes info on the kit, the prototype, and photographs.  I use it to provide reports in Acrobat.

 

Robert J. Amsler, Jr.

514 Dover Place

Saint Louis, Missouri 63111

(314) 606-6118  (Mobile)

(314) 754-2688  (Facsimile)

MPFan1@...

 

From: main@RealSTMFC.groups.io <main@RealSTMFC.groups.io> On Behalf Of Bill McClure
Sent: Thursday, December 17, 2020 5:54 PM
To: main@RealSTMFC.groups.io
Subject: [RealSTMFC] Frt Car Model Database

 

Does anyone use a true database program to keep track of freight car models? As opposed to a spreadsheet program.

Thanks,
Bill